Pastors and lay leaders often use the increasingly popular language of spiritual formation and spiritual practices, yet they sometimes struggle to germinate a culture of honest conversation about the life of faith. Drawing on decades of experience in spiritual direction, congregational ministry, and seminary teaching, this book offers a clear and rich introduction to the theology and practice of spiritual companioning in the Protestant tradition. Angela H. Reed, Richard R. Osmer, and Marcus Smucker give practical help for cultivating spiritual relationships in congregations and beyond, using stories to illustrate key ideas. Spiritual Companioning is written for seminary professors and students as well as pastors and lay leaders, with helpful study materials included.
For more resources on relationships, see the T&T Clark Studies in Practical and Pastoral Theology.
Everyone who ventures into a church today is looking for more than simply an hour of spiritual entertainment. From the depths of their souls rises a yearning to be part of a truly spiritual community, to be knit together with other seekers of holiness. This book unfolds how it can happen.
—Craig Barnes, president, Princeton Theological Seminary
The authors of this book have rightly discerned that life, church, and community are about relationships. They have outlined those crucial phases of life where companionship is desperately needed. Writing in a personal and passionate way, these sensitive authors offer insight and guidance for modern, growing disciples.
—Ben Campbell Johnson, professor emeritus, Christian spirituality, Columbia Theological Seminary
Spiritual Companioning offers a comprehensive, well-rounded exploration of the ways spiritual guidance can become an animating vision for healthy congregations and their leaders. Carefully and clearly written, with exercises at the end of each chapter that are designed to inspire contemplative reflection on personal and congregational dimensions of faith formation, this book could be a stimulating guidebook for discussions among pastors and lay leaders, in Christian formation committees, or in seminary classrooms. Readers will be inspired by the clarity and simplicity of this vision, which is nothing less than a return to the pulsing heart of the gospel: loving God, neighbor, and self.
—Marlene Kropf, professor emerita of spiritual formation and worship, Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary
In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.
Angela H. Reed is assistant professor of practical theology and director of spiritual formation at Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University in Waco, Texas. She is also the author of Quest for Spiritual Community: Reclaiming Spiritual Guidance for Contemporary Congregations.
Richard R. Osmer is Ralph B. and Helen S. Ashenfelter Professor of Mission and Evangelism at Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, New Jersey. He is the author of several books, including Practical Theology: An Introduction and The Teaching Ministry of Congregations.
Marcus G. Smucker (1931-2014) was a pastor, teacher, spiritual advisor, and conflict mediator. He taught at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary and Eastern Mennonite Seminary.