Spiritual Formation

The Vision:  Spiritual Formation is a “process of being conformed to the image of Christ for the sake of others.” (Dr. Robert Mulholland - Invitation to a Journey

This definition helps us see that spiritual formation is on-going over our life time.  It is not a simple “fix” to become who God created us to be.  In many ways we have become wounded people.  We have learned habits and ways of being that are not God’s ways.  Spiritual formation is a journey back to God.  It is a journey to greater intimacy with God.  That is the process and the goal.  Being transformed into Christ-likeness includes disciplines and practices involving the Word of God, prayer, a devotional life, discernment in our life choices, healing, commitment to community, serving others and above all ~ learning to love and experience God.  “Love the Lord God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the first and greatest commandment.”  (Matt. 22:37-38)  To keep all of our growth, development and spiritual formation from becoming self-centered and self-focused … authentic spiritual formation will always be for the sake of others.  This is the essence of love summarized by Christ in the second great commandment: “Love your neighbor as yourself.  All the Law and Prophets hang on these two commandments.” (Matt 18: 39-40)

The progression of spiritual formation is outlined in various stages of the New Testament.  It is most fully spelled out in II Peter 1: “Now since you have become partakers of the divine nature,” the writer says, “applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, knowledge; and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness; and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love.” (vv. 4-7)

The Spiritual Formation Leadership Team:
Patti Bodenhamer,  Luanne Houser,  Donna Keith, Minta McDavid, Donell Seager, Rev. Jackie Slaughter, Kaye Westmark, Rev. Elizabeth Whatley, Gloria Wilson .  

As a part of the Board of Discipleship, the Spiritual Formation Leadership Team has sought to offer and encourage this invitation to a journey into deepening spiritual growth and formation through various opportunities in our Conference. 

Our work includes:

  • Bringing together a conference spiritual formation team to vision, discern, plan and explore, create and implement opportunities for spiritual growth inviting individuals and church communities to participate on the journey.
  • Assist you and your church with Spiritual Formation and Spiritual Direction
  • An “Experiential Prayer Room” is offered at each annual conference with various stations of prayer forms such as remembering your baptism, knitting prayer shawls, making prayer beads, prayers for the church, community and world, Centering Prayer, prayer walking the labyrinth and “The Resting Place”, which is an area of rocking chairs and prayer shawls; it is a space for prayer, rest and reflection.

For information about Spiritual Formation, please contact Patti Bodenhamer, Chair, Division of Spiritual Formation, Conference Board of Discipleship pattibodenhamer@gmail.com.

Click HERE for opportunities regarding Spiritual Formation

Click HERE for a listing of Spiritual Directors 

Spiritual Formation Links

Community of Spiritual Directors 

The Upper Room