M.Div. Emphasis – Spirituality

Lives committed to prayer and worship. Quest for personal spiritual growth. Study of the Bible and devotional classics. These are the foundations of all vital, authentic ministry.

This spiritual emphasis focuses on deepening students’ spiritual lives through intellectual study, inward examination, and connection with the leadings of the Holy Spirit. You will be prepared to offer ministry that is shaped by your personal experiences of God and the Spirit-led community.


Before entering Supervised Ministry, residential students who choose this emphasis undertake an extended (no less than eight days), personal, directed spiritual retreat, and participate in ongoing spiritual direction for a minimum of 24 sessions during a period of no more than two calendar years.

Courses in the spirituality emphasis include Individual Spiritual Direction, Prayer; Spirituality and the Body; Spirituality and Suffering; History of Christian Spirituality; Quaker Spirituality, and Spiritual Formation in Contemporary Faith Communities.

Students, prospective students and others interested in pastoral care should plan to attend ESR’s Annual Spirituality Gathering, offered each spring. Additionally, you may also be interested in the annual Quakers in Pastoral Care and Counseling Annual Conference.

Recent and upcoming Spirituality courses

YearSemesterCourse NumberCourse NameCourse Type
2022JanuaryP 273-TMediation as a Social and Spiritual PracticeTwo-week intensive
?SpringSP 370Spirituality of PeacemakingResidential
2021SpringSP 335Individual Spiritual DirectionBlended
2021SpringPM 150-OPastoral SpiritualityOnline
2021AugustFC 101-TSpiritual Formation and Personal PracticeTwo-week intensive
?MayFC 339-TDiscernment of Call and GiftsTwo-week intensive
2021JanuarySP 390Quaker SpiritualityResidential
2021SpringSP 342-OHistory of Christian SpiritualityOnline
2021JanuarySP 360-TThe Spirit of Islam: The Qur’an and Its InterpretersTwo-week intensive
2020FallFC 102Spiritual Formation and Public MissionResidential and blended

Our faculty

Earlham School of Religion teaching faculty create collaborative learning environments where students are engaged and challenged to think deeply and critically about matters of faith, theology and religious practice.

Next steps

Ministry isn’t just a vocation or a calling—it’s a way of being in this world, seeking to make it whole. ESR is ready to support you in answering your own call to ministry, whatever shape it takes.