Skip to main content

Advanced Certificate

Spiritual Direction

Pursue Advanced Certification in the field of Spiritual Direction. Learn from seasoned practitioners about serving others in this historic Christian discipline. Students with prior seminary may apply directly to the program. Students with no prior seminary may pursue the Certificate as part of the M.A. in Spiritual Formation.  

Spiritual Direction

Responding to life as it comes to you is a theological practice."

Dr. Rebecca Letterman

Spiritual Direction- Featured Courses


Exploring Personal and Spiritual Faith Development

Faith will be explored from a life cycle, developmental perspective, from infancy through senior adulthood. Autobiographical, theological, and theoretical perspectives will be examined. Students will narrate/map their own faith journeys. Strategies for facilitating faith development in the church setting will be discussed.

World Religions and Human Spirituality

This course explores the global character of the church and the practice of ministry in the multifaith and multicultural context of contemporary society. Attention is given to the wide diversity of religious traditions present in the potential ministry settings and considers how the church can serve with faithfulness and respect in a religiously pluralistic culture. Students will have the opportunity to develop their theological convictions in dialog with other religious traditions and gain skills in interfaith engagement as an expression of their Christian discipleship.

Christian Faith: A Global Survey

What do Christian solitaries in the Egyptian desert, mothers of rebellious teenagers, monks in a community in the mountains of France, missionaries to Japan, and charismatic worshipers in a megachurch all have in common? They all provide a glimpse of people seeking to follow Christ faithfully in their different geographic and cultural contexts. This course surveys the myriad ways in which Christians across the globe have found themselves redeemed and enlivened by the Spirit of God, and celebrates the diverse expressions of our shared Christian faith.

Want more information on this program?

All Northeastern Seminary students enrolled in the M.A. Spiritual Formation or Advanced Certificate in Spiritual Direction programs are eligible for a free account with Grafted Life Ministry. Upon graduation, they can be added to the growing database of Spiritual DirectorsGrafted Life Ministries supports churches and individuals with resources that help people root their lives in Christ’s transforming love.

Frequently Asked Questions

In addition to the standard application, students applying to the Certificate in Spiritual Direction must complete the following four things before enrolling:

  • Complete at least 18 graduate credits in theological studies from an Association of Theological Schools (ATS) accredited seminary
  • Submit an essay describing personal experience providing spiritual guidance to others
  • Provide a reference letter from a person who has benefited from the applicant’s spiritual guidance
  • Complete an interview with a faculty member during the application process.

Full admission steps can be found in our Admissions pages here. 

You may apply to the Spiritual Formation program (44 credits) and complete the Spiritual Direction Certificate as part of the M.A. program. You will need to complete an abbreviated application following your first or second semester.  

You could get credit for a prior seminary course if you have taken Spiritual Formation (PSF 612) at Northeastern Seminary or another course with at least 2/3 of the content of Spiritual Formation (PSF 612). If you received transfer credit for a Spiritual Formation class, they would only complete the remaining 15 credits to complete the Certification.

If you have 18 or more seminary credits in a cross-section of theology, scripture, and church history, you may be eligible for direct entry into the Spiritual Direction program.

You will need to complete this autobiographical statement and request an interview with the Director of the program by emailing (subject line: Interview with Director of Spiritual Direction program)

If you do not have a Spiritual Director you are working with already, we can recommend some to you. All costs associated with paying for a Spiritual Director will be the responsibility of the student. If you are already working with a Spiritual Director, you should discuss this with the Director of the program. In most cases, you can continue working with this individual for the duration of the program.