FORMATIO: the art of spiritual formation

Program Overview:

A two-year journey in Christian spiritual formation for personal life and ministry. Formatio walks participants through their own experience of spiritual formation, a deepening understanding of the transformation process, and implications for engaging others – both individually and groups. Formatio is for those who have a desire to walk with and learn how to lead others through their own experience of spiritual formation. The primary skill we explore is listening. David Augsberger, a Mennonite pastor, said: “Being listened to is so close to being loved that most people cannot tell the difference.”

For those who have a desire to walk with others in their spiritual journey, we have to learn to be attentive to our own spiritual journey. As we learn to attend to our own souls we grow in the ability to lead others on their own journey. Walking with others in spiritual formation is more than just a set of learned skills, it is a “way of being” in our own lives. Throughout the history of the church, the care of souls has been the focus of our common life. Gregory the Great said, “The care of souls is the art of arts.”

Who is this for?

Pastors, ministry leaders, spiritual leaders (both laity and clergy), small group leaders, house church leaders/pastors. If you have hit a wall and are experiencing the desire for deepening in your own life, Formatio is for you. If you desire to grow in your ability to companion others in their formation, Formatio will walk you through a process that can inform your ministry.

The Formatio two-year journey will consist of 6 three-day/two-night retreats starting in Fall 2023. Participants will be a part of a cohort and work with a coach (both individually and in a group) over the two years. Cohort size will range from 12-20.

Additional elements: monthly coaching group and individual coaching throughout the program; light reading and reflection assignments monthly; offering a ministry of listening to others in year two.

Retreat Schedule & Other Work

  • 6 Cohort Retreats
  • 1 individual retreat

*Attendance at all the retreats and the monthly assignments are required elements of this communal learning experience.


Over the two years, participants will learn and experience: the contours of the human soul, the nature of God, the process for transformation, the wisdom and practice of taking care of their own soul, and the practice of listening to others for the care of their soul.


Themes explored: awakening, awareness, attentiveness, attachments, activity, abiding