Remote Statewide Spiritual Director’s Gathering

During this time of deep care for one another, the spring regional gathering of spiritual directors in Des Moines will be offered by Zoom rather than in-person.  The day will be shortened, the fee adjusted to reflect whatever you are able to contribute, and the topics more relevant than ever!  We will offer practice for those who are unfamiliar with using Zoom. All you need is a computer, tablet, I-pad or cell phone with a camera and microphone.  The event offered through the Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center will provide opportunities to gather for continuing education and mutual support during these challenging times.

Date:  Monday, May 18, 2020

Time:  Sign on begins at 8:45AM.  A link will be sent to those who register.  Welcome and Opening Circle begins at 9:00AM.  We’ll end at 2:30 PM

Fee:  We know that finances may be impacted during these times.  When you register, you will have the opportunity  to choose how much you are able to pay.  If you are unable to contribute, join us!  If you are able to pay a little more, any excess will help support future spiritual direction events.

Presentation Descriptions

Morning Presentation:  A Vision for Self-Care in Emerging Times

Times are rapidly changing. The planet needs us. Creatures need us. Our bodies need us. And our fellow humans need us. In a time of such great need, how can we intentionally begin (and continue) our listening and giving ministries by caring for ourselves in a way that aligns with the emerging needs and cries of our times? Join us for a discussion about the nature and practice of self-care and how it directly serves not only ourselves, but all things. We will also explore possible practices for us to incorporate into our own lives and perhaps offer to those we serve.

Presenter:  Victoria L. Gloe has been working in the health and wellness world for over 20 years. She holds an M.S. in Health Fitness Management from American University along with a certificate from the Renovaré Institute for Christian Spiritual Formation. Victoria is also a certified yoga instructor and she recently completed her spiritual direction training through PrairieFire. After working in a variety of settings including corporate wellness, fitness, advocacy, church ministry, and as a homeschooling mom, she now find herself offering what she can to help further health, healing, wellness and listening in a world that seems to desperately need it. Her primary hope and passion is to support people on the healing journey, the journey to whole living. She finds it a privilege to companion others in multi-faceted ways as they grow in fullness of life through a vibrant relationship with God. And, this, of course, leads to a vibrant relationship with all of life in all its textures!

Afternoon Workshop:  (Please choose one)

Belonging: Dynamics within the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises Retreat in Everyday Life using Ignatian Imaginative Prayer and Contemplative Dialogue; a path towards healing.

This workshop will use several meditations using Ignatian imaginative prayer by personally entering into the Gospel story. Gary will share about his own experiences within the retreat framework as to dynamic of healing within a group setting where there is no judgement as we faithfully walk our spiritual journeys together. He will draw heavily upon the work of the authors Matthew, Dennis and Sheila Linn where they highlight the need to “belong” as the basis for all addictions and therefore when we provide spaces of belonging it allows healing to take place.

Gary A.T. Guthrie has been practicing spiritual direction since 1997 after receiving a certificate of S.D.  from the S.D. Institute centered in the St. Joseph Ed Center at Dowling H.S. Des Moines, Iowa. While Gary believes there are many paths to God – he resonates deeply with the Ignatian Imaginative path. He is also an organic vegetable farmer dedicating his life to nourishment in all its forms for God’s creation.


The Promise of Pain: How to Bring Hope in the Face of Suffering

In this workshop we will learn how a Spiritual Companion can walk with someone facing emotional or physical pain, what to avoid, and spiritual practices that help us manage and soothe pain.

Presenter:  Dr. Lisa Van Allen is a clinical psychologist who has been a spiritual director since 1995. Over the last 5 years, she has been living with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, a rare neurological condition that is considered to be the most painful disease known to modern medicine. Her spiritual practices have allowed her to reduce her need for medication, strengthened her relationships, and restored and renewed her faith. Lisa facilitates a support group for others suffering from CRPS, and offers spiritual companionship and coaching services to people living with pain. She is currently working on a book about Spiritual Companionship with people in pain.

Schedule for the Day

8:45:  Sign-on to Zoom

9:00:  Opening Meditation and “Circle” Check-in

10:00:  Morning Presentation:  A Vision for Self-Care in Emerging Times. Presenter:  Victoria Gloe

12:00:  Lunch

12:30:  Workshop (Choose one)
Belonging: Dynamics within the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises Retreat in Everyday Life…
Presenter:  Gary Guthrie

The Promise of Pain: How to Bring Hope in the Face of Suffering
Presenter:  Lisa Van Allen

2:00:  Closing


Diane McClanahan, M.Div., Director of Leadership and Spiritual Life at the Center

For more information:
contact Diane McClanahan at: 515-251-6667 or

1 thought on “Remote Statewide Spiritual Director’s Gathering

  1. Evie Waack

    Thank you for making a decision to gather by Zoom for the spring conference. Until then ~ Peace & All Good …


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