Center for Ignatian Spirituality Summer 2018 Courses

The Center for Ignatian Spirituality based at Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU), Loyola Heights, Quezon City announces their  Formation Courses for Ignatian Retreat–Giving and Spiritual Direction in a Community and Institutional Context.


Module 1

Foundations Of Ignatian Retreat-Giving And Spiritual Direction

Foundational to the ministry of retreat-giving and spiritual direction is a deep experience of God’s love and the experience of accompaniment that helps one to notice, relish and respond to God’s person and action in oneself and one’s world. Hence, every applicant to our Directors’ formation modules are required to go through an individually-directed retreat preferably guided by a CIS staff or senior associate.

Target Participants

This course is designed for those who desire to experience an individually-directed retreat in preparation for training and formation for the ministry of accompaniment. This will also benefit lay, religious, and clergy leaders in the ministry of accompaniment who proceed from different spiritualities and who wish to immerse themselves into the wellspring of Ignatian traditions of prayer and retreat-giving and spiritual direction. The CIS staff may recommend waiving this Module as a prerequisite to Module 2 for participants who have recently gone through an 8-day or longer individually directed Ignatian retreat and present evidence in the interview that they already possess some equivalent of the module course objectives for Module 1 as described below. As we need to ensure a common foundational experience of prayer and accompaniment, the CIS staff members reserve the right to recommend that an applicant go through Module 1 if they deem it more helpful for both the would-be participant and the class he or she will join.

Module 1a: Prayer Workshop: Basic Orientation To Christian & Ignatian Prayer

Module Course Objectives: By The End Of The Module, Participants Will Be Able To:

  1. Gain an experiential knowledge of Ignatian prayer that is affective, listening and relational.
  2. Gain an experiential knowledge and interior relish of a very personal God who engages one in an ongoing relationship in life and ministry.
  3. Gain an experiential knowledge of Christian and Ignatian prayer, articulate their core principles and list their requisite dispositions and skills.

Topics To Be Covered:

  • Listening to God in Prayer
  • Praying over My Spiritual Autobiography
  • Exploring My Ways of Imaging God
  • Exploring Various Methods of Prayer
  • Lectio divina
  • Consciousness Examen
  • Meditation
  • The Structure of Ignatian Prayer
  • Ignatian Contemplation
  • Other Prayer Methods
Module 1b: A Closed Individually Directed Retreat

Module Course Objectives: By The End Of The Module, Participants Will Be Able To:

  1. Gain experience of directed prayer, and by this exhibit greater sensitivity to interior movements akin to Ignatian retreats, be attentive to these movements and respond to them accordingly, welcoming and nurturing those that originate from God or the good spirit, and rejecting those that deflect movement towards God.
  2. Describe and discuss the dimensions and dynamics of a person’s relationship with God, and identify ways of fostering, confirming such dynamics.
  3. Reflect and discuss one’s experience of being accompanied in directed prayer and articulate director behaviors that helped or hindered in bringing forward his or her prayer process.

Topics To Be Covered:

  • Orientation to the Dynamics of Directed Ignatian Prayer
  • Individually Directed Retreat
  • Appropriation Day
  • Religious Experience
  • Discernment of Spirits
  • What’s next? Sensing the Call to the Ministry
Module 2

Fundamentals Of Ignatian Retreat-Giving And Spiritual Direction In A Community And Institutional Context

This second module of the Formation Course formally introduces participants to the ministry of retreat-giving and spiritual direction as a ministry practiced with the intent of animating individuals, communities or even whole institutions or societies. The participants are guided through conferences, case studies, real case spiritual direction demonstrations and workshops aimed at providing basic knowledge, skills and dispositions on spiritual direction and retreat-giving whether in individually-directed retreat formats or conference retreat formats. The course is also offered on a staggered basis (12 Saturdays during the regular school year) under the name, “Study Circle on Spiritual Direction and Ignatian Retreat-Giving.”

Beginning this program year (2012-2013), Module 2 will be subdivided into two live-out modules that seek to build competencies more gradually. Module 2a is a 4-day live-out program designed to form and train prayer guides. Module 2b is an 8-day live-out program designed to form and train spiritual directors and retreat guides. Module 2a is a prerequisite for Module 2b. Participants may however postpone moving to Module 2b should they choose to gain some amount of experience in guiding prayer groups before they begin guiding Ignatian retreats whether the individually-directed or conference retreat format.

Target Participants:

The course is designed for those who wish to discern the call to ministries of accompaniment, including prayer guides, spiritual directors, retreat directors, campus or youth ministers, seminary, parish or religious formators and retreat house administrators and guides. The first part (Module 2A) will teach the rudiments of fostering prayer in people whether praying individually or in groups. The second part (Module 2B) builds on the first part and elaborates further the skills and dispositions of spiritual direction and retreat-giving in the Ignatian Tradition.

Module 2a: Formation For Prayer Guides

Module Course Objectives: By The End Of The Course, The Participants Will Be Able To:

  1. Reflect on the general outlines of the life of Ignatius as a paradigm for spiritual maturing and a way of understanding the dynamics of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius.
  2. Articulate and discuss the meaning of religious experience and share how their experience of prayer and of receiving spiritual direction (whether as an individual or in a group), help foster religious experience.
  3. Gain a working knowledge of the theological and pastoral principles behind creating good Sacred Spaces and Communal liturgies.
  4. Discuss Ignatian Discernment in general and the Rules of Discernment of Spirits in particular and apply these in directing particular cases.
  5. Gain a conceptual map of basic helper skills and be able to practice them in the context of spiritual conversation in small groups.
  6. Gain a working knowledge of group dynamics and skills and dispositions involved in good facilitation of groups.

Topics To Be Covered:

  • Life of Ignatius and the Dynamics of the Spiritual Exercises
  • Introduction to Religious Experience
  • Sacred Space and Communal Liturgies
  • Ignatian Discernment: Input and Cases
  • Basic Helper Skills I: Exercises and Cases
  • Group Facilitation and Spiritual Conversation in Small Groups
Module 2b: Formation For Ignatian Retreat-Giving And Spiritual Direction

Module Course Objectives: By The End Of The Course, The Participants Will Be Able To:

  1. To explain the theological underpinnings and dynamics of spiritual direction and Ignatian retreat giving, following a contemplative-evocative approach.
  2. To be able to reflect on and practice giving spiritual direction via the real play demo and the practicum exercises.
  3. To explore and practice the more advanced helper skills of spiritual direction—probing, exploring, paraphrasing, magnifying, amplifying.
  1. To be able to explore more deeply retreat client profiles applying various human developmental theories which impact on the development of faith and spirituality in persons.
  2. To discuss ethical concerns in the practice of ministry, especially those that apply to retreat-giving and spiritual direction.
  3. To appreciate the role and dynamics of supervision of spiritual directors and retreat guides.
  4. To gain a conceptual map of ways of interpreting and employing Sacred Scriptures for Spiritual Exercises according to St. Ignatius.

Topics To Be Covered:

  • Spiritual Direction Real Play Demo
  • The Person of the Directee I: Psychosocial and Psychosexual Human Developmental Issues
  • The Person of the Directee II: Moral and Faith Human Developmental Issues
  • Exploring Blocks and Resistances to Deepening Religious Experience
  • Basic Helper’s Skills II: Exercises and Cases
  • Guided Practicum on Giving Spiritual Direction
  • Supervision of Spiritual Directors and Guides
  • Ethical Standards in Ministry
  • The Use of Sacred Scriptures in the Spiritual Exercises
  • Presentation and Critique of proposals for retreat prayer points.
Module 3

Supervised Retreat-Giving Experience 1

[Individually-Directed Retreat Format]

The Guides’ Formation courses provide for occasions for supervised retreat-giving experiences in Modules 3 and 5 respectively. Module 3 focuses on providing a practicum experience for Individually-directed retreats [IDR] format. Participants are guided through a review and deepening of the learnings of Module 2 and then initiated into directing 1-2 retreatants making a 4-5 day Individually directed retreats, while receiving one-on-one supervision with our Center staff or associates. After the practicum, participants gather together for appropriation sessions on retreat-giving. Only those who satisfactorily completed Module 2 qualify for this third module.

Module Course Objectives: By The End Of The Module, Participants Will Be Able To:

  1. Guide 1-2 persons through a 4-5-day silent, Individually-directed retreat.
  2. List important elements and dynamics in a retreat process and use these in designing retreat game plans for an individually-directed retreat of specific individuals.
  1. Exhibit basic familiarity with the inner dynamics of Scriptural texts which mirror particular spiritual dynamics  common in short retreats.
  1. Notice and record in a supervision verbatim, particular interior movements and concerns that s/he experiences  while accompanying his/her retreatant(s).
  1. Appreciate the value of supervision sessions in noticing and exploring how God visits upon him or her during spiritual direction or retreat individual conferences.

Target Participants:

This program is designed for those who have finished the CIS Module 2/Study Circle. We invite all who have completed Modules 2A and 2B: Fundamentals on Ignatian Retreat-Giving and Spiritual Direction to engage in actual retreat-giving experience and be accompanied by our staff in appropriating the experience both in the context of one-on-one supervision and through mentoring.

Module 4

Recollection-Workshops On Giving The Spiritual Exercises Of Ignatius Of Loyola In Full Or Adapted Forms

An ideal Institute on the Giving of the full Ignatian Exercises would have participants go through the full thirty-day individually-directed Ignatian retreat and its adapted from the 32-week or so Retreat in Daily Life according the Annotation 19 of the Exercises, and then help them fully appropriate religious experience by introducing theological and psychological handles which help them articulate clearer conceptual map of the spiritual journey. To more fully respond to pastoral needs of various kinds of ministers and to make the formation program more accessible to people, we have divided the Exercises into the Ignatian Weeks and designed recollection-workshops around these Weeks to help initiate people into giving different forms of Exercises.

Module 4A which focuses on the Introductory Annotations and First Week is open to all who have finished Module 3 and are ready to receive further content on the Exercises to substantiate their retreat design proposals. After finishing 4A those who train with us may immediately proceed to Module 5 which is a Supervised Retreat-Giving module for Semi-Directed and Conference Retreats.

Modules 4B and 4D explore the 2nd Week and 3rd/4th Weeks of the Exercises respectively, while 4C tackles the Dynamics of Ignatian Discernment and Election. Modules 4B and 4D require applicants to have experienced the full exercises, whether in the Thirty-day format or the 19th annotation Retreat in Daily Life format and have finished Modules 1-4A.

Module 4C which tackles Ignatian Discernment and Election is a stand alone program and is ideal for those guiding the discernment of people engaged in a serious process of decision-making or spiritual conversion or deepening—formators, vocation directors, superiors, ministry leaders, seminary rectors, and leaders in lay communities, etc.

Module 4A

“Coming Home to our Fundamentum”: Exploring the Exercises of the First Week.

Program Description

As an exercitant enters the Spiritual Exercises, St. Ignatius guides her into praying over the fact of her creaturehood, and on her creaturely existence as founded on God. This process initiates the exercitant into a foundational experience of love and brings her to come home to God who continues to offer his children healing, mercy, conversion and a call to service. This 8-day recollection-workshop is designed to help participants to gain a conceptual map of and an insight into the dynamics of the First Week of the Spiritual Exercises. The process seeks to guide participants through conferences, reflective reading, personal and common prayer, faith sharing and spiritual direction, whether one-on-one or in groups. This offering of Module 4A should help beginning directors make sense of the dynamics behind the Exercises of the First Week— creaturehood, evil and sin, and most importantly the experience of being rooted and grounded in God’s unconditional love. We invite our participants to go through the prayers of the First Week, engage each other in spiritual direction, and receive instruction in basic Scripture and Psychology as they tread aspects of the the First Week journey of the Exercises alongside fellow pilgrims and guides.

Program Goals: By The End Of The Module 4a, We Expect Our Graduates To Be Able To:

  1. Gain a beginner’s conceptual map of the themes and dynamics of the First Week of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola, including the first twenty-three annotations.
  1. Explore Scriptural themes, moral and psychological topics related to the major themes of the First Week of the Ignatian Exercises.
  1. Discuss director-directee dynamics at this stage of the Exercises.
  2. Propose topic outlines, adaptations and retreat designs using First Week themes or dynamics.

Topics To Be Covered

  • The Foundational Experience of Love and Mercy—Ignatius’ and Ours
  • The Structure and Dynamics of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius
  • The First Week in the Context of the Full Exercises
  • Exploring the great themes of the First Week: Creaturehood, Active Indifference, Magis, Sin, Mercy and Healing
  • The Rules for Discernment of Spirits for the First Week
  • Psychological Dynamics Related to the First Week Experience
  • Scriptures and the First Week
  • Spiritual Direction while praying on the First Week
  • Designing and delivering semi-directed retreats based on the First Week

Target Participants

We invite practicing retreat directors, spiritual directors, formators, campus and pastoral ministers who wish to deepen in their familiarity with the dynamics of the First Week of the Exercises. This familiarity will not only give an initial instruction for one to preach on the great themes of First Week–Creaturehood, Sin and Mercy, inordinate attachments, active indifference, and God’s call to live out the Magis or “the more,” but more importantly, this will initiate participants into accompanying people who struggle through conversion, the reordering of one’s life, and through attempts at making or renewing ones foundational commitment to God.

Module 4BCD

“In Companionship and Communion with Christ in Mission:” Exploring Exercises of the Second, Third and Fourth Weeks (Giving Advanced Ignatian Exercises)

Program Description

After an exercitant receives the grace of the First Week and feels that s/he has come home to a real experience of God’s love and mercy, some sense a surplus of generosity to respond to God’s call with magis or “the more,” and asks the Lord with a great sense of gratitude, “What return can I make for all the goodness of the Lord?” And to this the Father seems to respond to us, “You want to make a response: look at my Son and follow him.” Hence for the new disciple, the Second, Third and Fourth Weeks are Ignatius’ way of accompanying the exercitant in a genuine discernment of life direction and mission. The Second Week is a time of intimate knowledge and walking with the Lord through infancy and public ministry. The Third and Fourth Weeks are a time of entering into profound communion with Jesus as the Lord embraces his cross and death and rises into new life. Through these weeks the exercitant is guided through his or her personal discernment. As with Module 4A, this module is a recollection-workshop where participants will be asked to pray particular themes of the Spiritual Exercises of the Second, Third and Fourth Weeks. They will go through the prayers, bring the fruits of the prayer to communal spiritual direction and receive instruction on related theological and psychological topics such as Ignatian Contemplation, Christology, Theology of Redemption, Discernment and Election. Cases will be taken which help participants gain some familiarity with Scripture texts that relate to the mysteries of the life of Christ.

Program goals: By the end of module 4bcd, we expect our graduates to be able to:

  1. Gain a beginner’s conceptual map of the themes and dynamics of the Second, Third and Fourth Weeks of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola.
  2. To see the Dynamics of Discernment Underlying the Great Ignatian Meditations and the Rules for the Discernment of Spirits pertaining to the Second Week as well as the annotations on Election.
  3. Explore Scriptural themes, theological and psychological topics related to the major themes of the Advanced Exercises.
  4. Deepen in their understanding and appreciation for the dynamics of Ignatian Contemplation.
  5. Discuss cases on Discernment, especially of exercitants experiencing false consolation, as well as those going through election.
  6. Propose topic outlines, adaptations and retreat designs using Second, Third and Fourth Week themes or dynamics.

Topics To Be Covered:

  • Theory and Dynamics of Ignatian Contemplation
  • The Structure and Dynamics of the Exercises of the Second, Third and Fourth Week
Module 5

Supervised Retreat-Giving 2: Conference And Semi-Directed Retreats (Adapted Ignatian Exercises)

Program Description

Since St. Ignatius began giving the Exercises in his lifetime, he already paid particular attention to dispositions, capacities and readiness of people who desire to make the full Exercises. In many cases, Ignatius brought people through what he called ejercicios leves or light exercises which were meant to focus and intensify desire for God, gain interior knowledge of foundational religious truths and prepare the directee for self-awareness and deeper contemplative prayers.

In our time, these adapted forms of the Exercises have taken the form of week-end retreats, 5-day retreats, or even 8-day retreats whose prayer matter revolved around basic catechetical themes or First Week themes that lead retreatants to explore the import of the Principle and Foundation in their life. Adapted exercises can also come in the form of theme retreats that address particular needs of retreatant groups. Centers for Spirituality worldwide have offered a rich and diverse menu of theme retreats with great flexibility and freedom, eg. “Day-off with Jesus” for day wage-earners, “Life Direction Discernment” Retreats for seniors, “Grieving with Mary” retreat for widows, “Healing Retreats” for the terminally ill or for their caregivers, “Conversations with Job” for social development workers, “Come Away to a Wayside Place” for active parish ministers, etc.

Module 5 of the Guides’ Formation series is a second Supervised Retreat-Giving experience which focuses on Designing and Giving Conference or Semi-directed Retreats. After exploring the history of adapted exercises in the Ignatian tradition and getting a sound grasp of the conversion cycle and the Ignatian pedagogical paradigm, participants will be walked through the planning, execution and evaluation of actual conference retreats for actual retreat groups.

Program Goals: By The End Of Module 5, We Expect Our Graduates To Be Able To:

  1. Identify key pastoral concerns that gave rise to adapted Exercises in the Ignatian tradition.
  2. Highlight strengths and weaknesses of preached retreats and identify contexts in which they are appropriate and most helpful.
  3. Appreciate conference and semi-directed retreats as retreat formats that may help recover opportunities for fostering and tracking religious experience in retreatants as are possible in individually directed retreats.
  4. Prayerfully explore material from the profile of requesting retreatants or retreat groups and draw information from these that help build a retreat game plan.
  5. Design a retreat game plan for a particular group that includes conferences, prayer exercises, proposed scripture texts, grace petitions, prayer points and communal prayer.
  6. Implement a planned recollection to their assigned group and receive feedback from their retreatants, colleagues and supervising staff.

Topics To Be Covered:

  • History and Dynamics of a Semi-directed Retreat Ignatian Dynamics and Pedagogy
  • Review of Developmental Perspectives and Cultural Context
  • Group Process, Facilitation, and Models of Group Spiritual Direction
  • Sacred Space and Communal Liturgies
  • Ethical Considerations & Supervision
  • Designing, and critique of recollection designs and supervised delivery of a semi-directed or conference retreat with an actual retreat group.

Target Participants:

We invite retreat directors, formators, campus and pastoral ministers and any minister who wish to gain dispositions and skills in designing and giving conference and semi-directed retreats in the Ignatian tradition, and apply the principles of group and communal spiritual direction as well those of Sacred Space and Communal Liturgies in their proposed retreat designs. Modules 3 and 4A are pre-requisites for Module 5.

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