Gathering Our Voices - A Survey


Why this survey? Why now? SDI values our relationship with spiritual direction and companion formation and training programs across the country and around the world, and recognizes that we are all in the midst of rapid change and new opportunities. This survey is meant to gather information – to whatever extent you are willing to share – about the current state of spiritual companion formation and training programs.

Who are we inviting to complete the survey? We are inviting the 79 formation programs which are members of SDI as of June 2020, as well as several additional programs, institutions, and individuals who are all cultivating the characteristics and skills of a spiritual companion as outlined by the 2018 SDI task force in Portrait of a Spiritual Companion and Rev. Seifu’s Dimensions of a Spiritual Companion in the April 2020 Issue of Listen.

What will respondents get out of this survey Specifically, respondents with receive a report with an aggregate of all survey responses from SDI. More broadly, our hope is to create a safe container in which program leaders can take a long, loving look at our own offerings and the broader field of formation programs, with compassion and insight.

Who will see the results? Survey results will be aggregated and sent back to survey participants. SDI will not share the results publicly.

How will the results be used? Survey data will be used to launch a dialogue over the next year, first virtually and then in person at the 2021 Santa Fe conference. There we plan to reframe and revitalize the Leadership Institute as a space to be in dialogue with one another, to collectively process the survey results and strategize.

Disclaimer SDI offers educational opportunities that are intended to expand your understanding of spiritual companionship/direction and the multifaceted ways it can render service in the world. SDI educational opportunities are not intended to serve as free standing “spiritual direction/companion formation” programs. SDI does not provide any form of certification or credentialing for an individual to become a spiritual companion or director. We invite all interested parties who are not trained in spiritual companionship/direction to formally pursue their education through spiritual direction and/or companionship training, in ways that are appropriate and relevant to their core tradition or spiritual orientation, and that are in keeping with the hallmarks of an authentic spiritual companion/director. There are a number of spiritual direction/companion formation programs listed on the “Find a Spiritual Companion” Guide on this website. SDI does not endorse any particular program, and encourages those who are interested in obtaining training to perform all adequate due diligence before proceeding.