This unit can be undertaken as full time (DS8703Y) or part time (DS8713Y) and (DS8723Y)


The unit covers the experience of conversion – turning points in one’s life, true and false self, Lonergan’s understanding on conversion – and psychological aspects of spiritual direction – a Christian anthropology of the human person and Luigi Rulla’s theory of self-transcendent consistency.


Enrolment in Graduate Diploma in Spiritual Direction at Heart of Life Centre


Full Time = DS8701Y and DS8705Y

Part Time = DS8711Y and DS8715Y

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this unit, it is expected that students will be able to:

  1. demonstrate an understanding of the anthropological, psychological and pastoral underpinnings of the ministry of spiritual direction
  2. discuss the various ways of expressing the human encounter with God
  3. identify how Lonergan’s understanding of the conversion processes can enhance the practice of spiritual direction
  4. analyse critically the different theories of anthropology and their impact on approaches to spiritual direction ministry.


2000 word reflection paper / Conversion (33%);

A take-home examination of 4000 words / Psychological Aspects of Spiritual Direction (66%)


* = set texts recommended for purchase

*Barry, William A. Spiritual Direction and the Encounter with God. New York: Paulist, 1992.

Conn, Walter E., ed. Conversion. New York: Alba House, 1978.

_____ .Christian Conversion.  New York: Alba House, 1986.

Ferder, Fran. Words Made Flesh: Scripture, Psychology & Human Communication. Notre Dame, IN: Ave Maria Press, 1988.

Ignatius of Loyola. Spiritual Exercises. Chicago, IL: Loyola UP, 1952.

* Keating, Thomas. The Human Condition: Contemplation and Transformation. New York: Paulist Press, 2007.

Lonergan, Bernard. Method in Theology. London: Darton, Longman & Todd, 1994.

Rulla, Luigi M. Depth Psychology and Vocation. Rome: Gregorian UP, 1971.

_____. Anthropology of Christian Vocation. Rome: Gregorian UP, 1986.