Spiritual Direction: A Guide for Sharing the Father’s Love

By Fr. Boniface Hicks and Fr. Thomas Acklin
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The need for spiritual direction—or the accompaniment of a spiritual guide—is becoming more prominent in a world where so many are suffering from so many wounds. With a harmonious integration of both timeless spiritual wisdom from the Catholic Church’s tradition of prayer and direction, and the insight of the psychological sciences, Fathers Thomas Acklin and Boniface Hicks offer a comprehensive guide for all who provide or seek spiritual direction.

Spiritual Direction: A Guide for Sharing the Father’s Love fortifies priests, religious, and lay faithful who embrace the ministry of spiritual direction and accompany the wounded, assist men and women in hearing the voice of God, and model the love and mercy of the Father for the many who are seeking Him but do not know Him or have false images of Him. This book also shows how various aspects of the spiritual life can emerge from and be fostered by a one-on-one relationship with a spiritual director.

Together with concrete guidelines and numerous examples from personal experience, this book refers extensively to Sacred Scripture as the foundation for spiritual direction. Furthermore, since the practice of spiritual direction goes back to the first centuries of the Church, the authors turn for guidance to the Doctors of the Church, the writings of the saints, and the papal magisterium in developing and supporting their insights.

Spiritual Direction will call spiritual directors to deeper holiness even as they assist others in growing closer to the Father through His loving gaze of mercy.

 

About the authors:

Fr. Thomas Acklin, OSB, is a Benedictine monk of St. Vincent Archabbey in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. He earned an MA in philosophy at Duquesne University as well as an STD in theology and a PhD in religious studies at the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium where he specialized in psychology of religion. He is a psychoanalyst as well as a spiritual director and has been a professor at St. Vincent Seminary where he also served as rector. Fr. Acklin is the author of The Passion of the Lamb and The Unchanging Heart of the Priesthood.

Fr. Boniface Hicks, OSB, is a Benedictine monk of St. Vincent Archabbey in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. He has provided spiritual direction for many men and women, including married couples, seminarians, consecrated religious, and priests, even while completing his PhD in computer science at Penn State University. He became the programming manager and an on-air contributor for We Are One Body Catholic Radio in 2010 and has recorded thousands of radio programs on theology and the spiritual life. He has extensive experience as a retreat master for laity, consecrated religious, and priests. He became the Director of Spiritual Formation for St. Vincent Seminary in 2016.

 

Endorsements:

“In Spiritual Direction: A Guide for Sharing the Father’s Love, the authors have written a superb guide to giving spiritual direction, and receiving it as well, worthy of the masters. I highly recommend it.”

—Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., Archbishop of Philadelphia

“The demand for sound spiritual directors far outpaces the supply, leaving so many who could be helped toward sanctity stumbling on the journey. . . . That’s why Fathers Acklin and Hicks have done the whole Church, present and future directors, and the directees they will guide an enormous service in fusing the Church’s spiritual wisdom and their extensive experience into a superb, systematic primer.”

—Fr. Roger J. Landry, National Chaplain, CatholicVoices USA, CatholicPreaching.com

 

Spiritual Direction is a trustworthy guide not only for spiritual directors, but for all of us who seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit.”

—Archabbot Douglas Nowicki, OSB, St. Vincent Archabbey, Latrobe, PA

 

“Those involved in, or considering, spiritual direction will be sure to mine many gems from this work.”

—Curtis Martin, Founder of Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS)

 

“In Spiritual Direction we are reminded of the preciousness of each soul and the love, patience, and prayerfulness that are necessary qualities for those entrusted with directing souls in their relationship with God. . . . May this book bear the fruit of great holiness for priests, religious, and laity who long to deepen their own prayer life and are called to lead others on that same path.”

—Mother Dolores Marie, PCPA, Our Lady of the Angels Monastery, Hanceville, AL

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