– a Question of Accreditation?
England, Scotland and Wales 2017/2018
In Summer 2017 a new project launched to explore the potential for a national accreditation pathway for spiritual directors. This could be a further development from existing regional codes of conduct and a move towards a new organisation for supporting best practice. Read further background to this project below.
The consultation included an Online Survey which closed on 31 March 2018. If you would like to receive future news please sign up:
Bringing together Elizabeth White’s interest in accountability, how practice develops following training, stewarding the gifts of the Spirit, and the ways people find a suitable spiritual director with Lynette Harborne’s doctoral research into spiritual direction, supervision and best practice, we are inviting views, comments and suggestions in the coming months from both directors and directees. Valuable ethical guidelines or codes of practice have developed in many regional areas in recent years, but around which there is not as yet a pathway for public accountability. We are considering the possibility of setting up some form of voluntary accreditation organisation for spiritual directors which would help to indicate levels of training and experience, give more information about individual’s styles and approaches and offer an additional benchmark for continuity and accountability of practice beyond training. We are exploring accreditation of individuals not of training courses, and we are not aiming to introduce mandatory registration. We are aware of very varied viewpoints on this ‘question of accreditation’ and we wish to explore what interest there may be, as well as areas of concern. All contributions are very welcome!
UPDATE January 2018
We are delighted in the interest thus far in this consultation project. The response to our online survey since its launch on 1 December has indicated greater and more varied engagement than we had ever anticipated. Views expressed so far range from those that are clearly positive about the possibility of an accreditation pathway to those who are strongly against it. There are also those who have named their uncertainty or indicate reservations. Many people (whatever their overall feeling) highlight the need for further information about what accreditation may involve practically, and also how this sits alongside ministry and charism.
Consultation meetings had been planned for Spring 2018 but in just a short time it has become clear that people are very much preferring the survey as a way of taking part in the consultation. In the light of this, and the survey feedback asking for more information, we have made the decision not to hold consultation meetings as planned. The survey runs until 31st March 2018. We now intend to re-order our work, responding to the survey data and questions asked, by bringing forward our next reflection stage with a view to disseminating more substantive information in due course.
Do pray with us in our work on this project that we may listen well to the Spirit as we continue to reflect on and discern the way forward.
UPDATE April 2018 Click here for FAQs
Who are You?
How did this project come about?
My area already has a register of directors?
UPDATE June 2018 Click here for FAQs
How did people hear about this project?
What has happened to the survey now?
Will accreditation exclude people who are not academic?
What about the recent data protection updates?
UPDATE September 2018
The key findings of the online Consultation were published on 17 September 2018; the report can be found here.
UPDATE October 2018
Now seeking Task Group Members. Details here
Elizabeth White and Lynette Harborne
For general enquiries contact firstname.lastname@example.org