Our Annual Conference has been postponed. Statement from the SFSAZ Board:

Our Annual Conference (Trusting God in the Wilderness), scheduled for February 2019, has been postponed.

As many of you know, SFSAZ Director Ted Wueste has been battling cancer for the last year. We received reports in the late summer that his cancer was in remission but have learned in the last two weeks that cancer has come back and will need further treatment. For the next few months and most likely for a few months into the new year, he will be undergoing intensive chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant. After prayerful discernment, the SFSAZ Board has made this decision to postpone the conference to provide the space for Ted to undergo all these treatments without the stress of leading the conference. Because of the isolation that is required for the transplant and recovery, it is almost certain that he couldn’t be present at the conference.

A core ministry team will continue to provide leadership and offer a few smaller events in the first quarter of the year. Check out the website for more details in the coming months. We are looking forward to the rescheduling of the conference, likely at the same time in 2020.

We would appreciate your prayers for Ted and for the SFSAZ in this season as we “trust God in the wilderness.”


Trusting God in the Wilderness: Suffering, Dark Nights, and Temptation

How do we walk with God in the wilderness places of our lives? How do we navigate suffering, dark nights, and temptation in ways that connect with God’s heart for us in these seasons? Our response is often to escape as quickly as possible but what does it look like to abide?

With plenary sessions on such as Suffering, Dark Nights, and Temptation, we will also have two workshop tracks from which to choose: Self Care (how do I personally navigate wilderness seasons?) and Soul Care (how do I help others in a wilderness season?).

Date: February 22-23, 2019

Time: 9:00am-4:30pm (Friday and Saturday)

Location: Mt. Claret Retreat Center, 4633. N. 54thStreet, Phoenix, AZ

Cost: $189 per person

Early registration: $169 per person (August 15-October 1)

Late registration: $209 per person (February 2-22)

Optional Sunday Morning (contemplative hike and worship in the Phoenix Mountain Preserve “wilderness”)

Location: Canaan in the Desert, 9849 N. 40thStreet, Phoenix

Time: 9:00-11:30am

Cost: $15


Plenary Presenters:


John Coe (Talbot Seminary/Institute for Spiritual Formation)

Dark Nights, Prayer



Debbie Swindoll (Grafted Life Ministries)

Temptation, Navigating the Heart


Ted Wueste (SFSAZ/Phoenix Seminary/Leadership Transformations)

Suffering, Wilderness Seasons


Workshop Presenters:


Mindy Caliguire (Soul Care/Gloo)

Workshop: Self Care


David Wu (Pastor of Spiritual Formation/Leadership Transformations)

Workshop: Soul Care

Presenter Bios:

Dr. John Coe

Dr. Coe is the Director of the Institute for Spiritual Formation at Biola University and Professor Spiritual Theology. A specialist in the philosophical and theological foundation of the integration of faith and learning, John’s research focuses on understanding the nature of spiritual and psychological health, the history of spirituality, the work of the Holy Spirit in personal change and the interface between psychology, spirituality and philosophy. A particular interest is in exploring approaches to spiritual direction as a compliment to Christian psychotherapy.

Debbie Swindoll

Debbie is the founder of Grafted Life Ministries. She serves as the producer and teacher of Grafted Life’s formation and training products. Debbie writes, speaks, and consults on issues of relational theology and spiritual leadership. She also ministers as a spiritual director for both individuals and groups. Debbie received her MA in Spiritual Formation and Soul Care from Talbot School of Theology in 2007.

Learn more at graftedlife.org
Dr. Ted Wueste

Ted serves as the Director of the Spiritual Formation Society of Arizona. After having served as a Senior Pastor and in other Pastoral staff roles for 22 years, Ted now devotes his time to the formation and soul care of leaders. He practices spiritual direction and also teaches as adjunct faculty in the Spiritual Formation Program at Phoenix Seminary where he serves as the Associate Director for SF. Ted is also a part of the Senior Faculty for Selah, training program in spiritual direction. Ted has written several formation resources: a Study Guide for Mansions of the Heart, a Study Guide for Brother Lawrence’s The Practice of the Presence of God, and an advent daily devotional. He lives in the Phoenix area with his wife, Jenifer, and they have two children, a son in college and a daughter in high school.

Learn more about Ted at desertdirection.com and sfsaz.org


Mindy Caliguire

Mindy is the founder of Soul Care, a spiritual formation ministry that exists to increase “soul health” in the body of Christ. She leads the development of Growth Journeys for Faith-organizations​ at Gloo (www.gloo.us), and prior to that as Director of Transformation Ministry for the Willow Creek Association (WCA). Her books include STIR: Spiritual Transformation in Relationships, Become Like Jesus, Discovering Soul Care, Spiritual Friendship, Soul Searching and Simplicity, as well as Write for Your Soul: The Whys and Hows of Journaling.

Learn more at www.soulcare.com


David Wu

David is Pastor of Spiritual Formation at Access Church and leads the Houston office of Leadership Transformations, where he offers spiritual direction and facilitates soul care retreats. He also loves to lead worship, which like spiritual direction, involves creating hospitable space for others to commune with God. David and his wife, Cindy, have three children.