SpiritualDirection.com / Catholic Spiritual Direction

Spiritual Direction is NOT A One Time Emergency-Room Event

September 25, 2012 by  
Filed under Dan Burke, Perspective, Spiritual Direction

Spiritual Direction is NOT a One-Time Emergency Room Event


for post on how spiritual direction is not a one-time emergency room eventUnder normal circumstances, spiritual direction should not be akin to an emergency room visit. Spiritual direction is better likened to a wellness program or a long-term exercise and diet commitment that will result in maximum health. Even though there are plenty of appropriate emergency calls into spiritual directors, the healthiest calls typically occur within the context of an ongoing spiritual direction relationship. In general, it is not reasonable to expect a spiritual director to be responsive to emergency needs outside of a longer-term relationship. Why? Because experienced spiritual directors understand that if the person who finds themselves in an emergency is not ready to work diligently and consistently on their relationship with God (both at the point of crisis and afterward) the director is not likely to be able to assist in any substantive way. That said, it is important to note that some, during times of crisis, may experience a level of clarity that could be the beginning of a serious and life-altering faith commitment. Those in this category are ready and eager to do whatever is necessary to pursue God and cooperate with his work in their soul. These are not in the same camp as those who have a heart attack, receive emergency services, and then return to the lifestyle that brought them to their knees in the first place. The good news is that God is always ready to receive us when we are ready to turn to him.


This is an excerpt from Dan’s book Navigating the Interior Life – Spiritual Direction and the Journey to God. To learn more, click here


Art for this post on how spiritual direction is not a one-time emergency room event: Christ and Saint Mina [or Menas]], 6th-century icon from Bawit, Egypt, now in the Louvre, user-Abraham, PD-US, copyright expired; Wikimedia Commons. Feature Image art: Modified cover of Navigating the Interior Life, used with permission, all rights reserved.
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

About Dan Burke

Dan is the President of the Avila Foundation, the parent organization of SpiritualDirection.com, the Avila Institute for Spiritual Formation, Divine Intimacy Radio and Divine Intimacy Radio - Resources Edition, Into the Deep Parish Programs, the Apostoli Viae (Apostles of the Way) Community, the High Calling Seminary Preparation Program, and the FireLight Student Leadership Formation Program, author of the award-winning book, Navigating the Interior Life - Spiritual Direction and the Journey to God, Finding God Through Meditation-St. Peter of Alcantara, 30 Days with Teresa of Avila, Into the Deep, Living the Mystery of Merciful Love: 30 Days with Thérèse of Lisieux, and his newest book The Contemplative Rosary with St. John Paul II and St. Teresa of Avila. In 2018, he launched the annual Avila Summit held at Hanceville, Alabama. Beyond his "contagious" love for Jesus and His Church, he is a grateful husband, father of four, and grandfather of one, the President and Chief Operating Officer of EWTN News, Inc., a regular co-host on Register Radio, a writer, speaker and pilgrimage director who provides online spiritual formation and travels to share his conversion story and the great riches that the Church provides us through authentic Catholic spirituality. Dan has been featured on EWTN's Journey Home program and numerous radio programs.

please consider supporting our mission with a donation!