Spiritual Formation & Soul Care

Spiritual Formation & Soul Care

"...until Christ is formed in you." Galatians 4:19.



What is Spiritual Formation?

The church has done a good job telling people what to "do for God," but we have not done a good job teaching people how to "be with God." Spiritual formation draws upon the Scriptures, spiritual disciplines, and lessons of the early and contemporary church to help people on that inward journey to be with Christ, hear from the Holy Spirit, and receive God's love.

Christian spiritual formation is the ongoing process in which we are shaped and formed into the person God created and intended us to be (Galatians 4:19). It is part of the journey of a disciple who follows Jesus.  It demands a different approach which is not concerned with programs that are instruction-based and focused on information about God, but rather are invitations for the formation of our spiritual heart.

As the context of the church, spiritual formation will not be loud, 'splashy,' or concerned about how many people fill the chairs of a will ideally be quieter, gentler, embracing God's presence and creation, and concerned more with what fills people's hearts.

Our department offers a variety of ways for one to learn and practice the art of spiritual formation through events and conferences (see below).

God is the true guide and director, while the human spiritual director is like a coach or a midwife, assisting you in noticing and responding to the inner voice of God and movement in your life. Please visit our spiritual direction page for more information on connecting with a spiritual director and/or learning how to become one yourself. 

Blessings on your journey,
Care Crawford
Pastor of Spiritual Formation and Soul Care.


Questions about Spiritual Formation & Soul Care? Contact ::

Soul Care Events

Men and women are welcome to all Soul Care events!


Practice Centering Prayer

Centering Prayer is a receptive method of silent prayer that prepares us to receive the gift of contemplative prayer, prayer in which we experience God's presence within us, closer than breathing and thinking. This is a prayer is that both builds a relationship with God and a discipline to foster that relationship.

Centering Prayer is not meant to replace other kinds of prayer. Rather, it adds depth of meaning to all prayer and facilitates the movement from more active types of prayer into a receptive prayer of resting in and with God. Centering Prayer emphasizes prayer as a personal relationship with God and as a movement beyond conversation with Christ to communion with Christ. Contact for more information.

2 or 3 Wednesday evenings per month > Evans Chapel
7–8 p.m., followed by 30 minutes of reading
Studying Open Mind; Open Heart, by Thomas Keating

Upcoming dates:
June 5: 7 p.m.
June 19: 7 p.m.
July 10: 7 p.m.
July 24: 7 p.m.
August 7: 7 p.m.
August 21: 7 p.m.

If it's your first time joining us, please arrive 15 minutes before for brief explanation, or email Kim Upton.

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Lenten Lectio

From Latin, Lectio Divina means 'divine reading.' An ancient art, lectio divina is a slow and contemplative way of praying the Scriptures that enables God's Word to come alive in new ways, inviting you into a deeper experience of knowing the Scriptures. Check back here for future events.

Past Events


All Shall Be Well Conference

An All-Day Conference to Refresh Your Soul

Saturday, February 9, 2019 > 9 a.m.–5 p.m. > Bel Air Campus
Keynote Speaker: James Bryan Smith

Dr. Smith is on the faculty at at Friends University, in Wichita, Kansas, newly installed in the Dallas Willard chair of Spiritual Formation. Author of the The Good and Beautiful God series and a new The Magnificent Story series.

Seminars Include:  

Lynn Ziegenfuss > Growing Up: The Journey to Maturity
Alan Fadling > Inhaling Grace: Living in the Strength of Divine Generosity
Rebecca Willard Heatley > Living in the Reality of the 23rd Psalm: A Life Without Lack
Jeff Tacklind > Blessed Even are the Peacemakers… Promoting Peace in the Midst of Division
David Cobia > Jumping the Path: Exploring the Intersections of Creativity & Spiritual Formation 

Continental breakfast and lunch served. Cost is $50 for the day. 

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Silent Retreats

In this noisy and over scheduled world it's important to set aside times of silence and solitude to better hear God's voice. Unplug from technology and do what Jesus did: come away and learn the unforced rhythms of grace.We will put our full focus on Christ for a weekend of guided teachings, reflections, and time spent in God's beautiful creation.Silent retreats are typically held three times each year- Spring, Fall, and Advent at Saint Andrew's Abbey in Valyermo, CA. 

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Stations of the Cross

Enhance Holy Week with this contemplative practice, offered the Thursday and Friday before Easter. Come journey to the cross as you see pictures, read Scripture, and contemplate Christ’s passion. Come at any time, stay as long as you need to within the event hours.

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What is Spiritual Direction?

Spiritual Direction is the art of Christian conversation and listening carried out in the context of a trusting relationship.Spiritual Direction is a conversation of the heart and uses all our human faculties (intuition, emotion, imagination, senses, and intellect) to discern God’s presence and will for you, as you understand it. A Spiritual Director seeks to listen with you for the voice of God and to help you notice God’s movement in your life. 

To learn more about these visit the Spiritual Direction page by clicking on a topic below:

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