What is Spiritual Direction?
What is Spiritual Direction?
One of the hallmarks of Franciscan and spiritual direction ministries is accompaniment. Together with your spiritual director, you will explore God’s presence, voice, and activity in your life. Through prayer, conversation, listening, and asking questions, your spiritual director can help you respond to God and take steps to further your relationship.
Is Spiritual Direction Right for Me?
Spiritual direction is valuable for all spiritual seekers.
Consider direction if you are:
About Our Directors
San Damiano’s directors are seasoned companions who have received extensive training. They share a deep commitment to ongoing spiritual formation and growth, both personally and with those they companion. After reading the biographies of our directors, we invite you to complete the form below to set up a complimentary 30 minute interview. You can ask questions, learn more about each other, discuss cost, and see if you would like to set up a spiritual direction session together.
David Williams formally began the practice of spiritual direction after training at the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley and Starr King School of Ministry, GTU, Berkeley, California. This followed many years of inviting others to notice God’s real presence in their lives while participating in Community Bible Study (CBS, a non-denominational Bible study) and Confirmation with teens in his parish.
David received his Master of Theological Studies (MTS) from the Jesuit School of Theology, Berkeley, California (JSTB/GTU) in 2001.
While a Roman Catholic from birth, David often engages with persons of differing cultures and faith traditions and has gained an appreciation of how diverse the experience of the Divine is in this world. Exploring the closeness of God in all things has motivated his studies, travels, working and living. While comfortable in journeying with anyone wishing to explore their experience with the transcendent, he is especially attuned with Franciscan Spirituality, Ignatian Spirituality, Mainline and Evangelical Christian Spirituality, certain traditions of Asian origin, and the spirituality of youth, grief and grieving, addiction, recovery and 12-step spirituality.
David is married with two adult children and six grandchildren.
Patricia Keenan is a Spiritual Director who has received her formation in Spiritual Direction in 2005 and Group Spiritual Direction in 2006 at Mercy Center in Burlingame, California. Her education includes a Theology and Psychology Degree from USF, Theological Studies in the Pastoral Ministry Program at Santa Clara University. Drug and Alcohol Studies of Pastoral Leadership in San Francisco. Some of her work background includes working with Addiction 12 Step Programs, Hospital Ministry at Stanford Valley Care hospital in Pleasanton, Chaplin Intern at Good Samaritan Hospital in San Jose, Directing Spiritual Exercises at Mercy Center, Retreat Work in the Bay Area, working with the elderly at the Independent Aging Program in San Jose, the Adult Day Care Center in Half Moon Bay, and the Sunol Memory Care Center in Pleasanton. She lives in Pleasanton California with her husband, Joe and her dog named Faith.
Margaret Riley has been a Spiritual Director since 2008, when she became certified via the Mercy Center in Burlingame, CA. Her Spiritual roots are Christian in the Roman Catholic Church, but in her practice as a Spiritual Director and retreat presenter, she enjoys companioning spiritual seekers from any tradition (or no tradition).
Margaret obtained a Master’s degree in Pastoral Ministry from the Franciscan School of Theology, Berkeley, CA. (FST/GTU) in 2004. She has joyfully lived in the Bay Area for over 31 years and has been a full-time Minister in the Diocese of Oakland since 1994. Margaret’s study, understanding and experience of spirituality is born of a great variety of sources, including but not limited to the Ignatian tradition, Social Justice work, Addiction Recovery and 12-Step spirituality, Codependency recovery, Divorced/Widowed healing, Grief and Loss, Incarceration/Justice work, Mindfulness/Meditation, and Franciscan Spirituality.
For Margaret, “Spiritual Direction is a humbling gift that God is giving me to help others know God IS working in their life, moving them to a mature faith, and an active life in the Spirit. I find it a great honor to journey with others on this Pilgrimage of Life.”
Nancy Jokerst, a Roman Catholic lay woman. Seventeen Years at De La Salle High School in spiritual leadership and college prep. Facilitated grief groups and small christian communities. Accompanies patients at John Muir Hospital in a spiritual director’s role. Married with four adult children, five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Trained for the ministry of spiritual direction at Mercy Center, Burlingame, California.
Note: Kathy is available for group spiritual direction and available for spiritual direction if a person come on private retreat.
Kathy Miranda is married and enjoys a blended family of five adult children and seven grandchildren. She has been a spiritual director for 24 years and received her formation at Mercy Center, Burlingame. Though Catholic, she also enjoys working with people of all traditions. She holds a Masters degree in Transpersonal Studies with a focus in spirituality and creativity. Her background is in parish ministry and religious formation. She has also done retreat work, spiritual spa days and has facilitated groups for many years. Her interests include grief work, divorce ministry, dream work, Enneagram and Creative Expression. She is also available to lead group spiritual direction.
Note: Bidi is only available for spiritual direction if a person come on private retreat.
Bidi is a trained spiritual director. She has been practicing the art of spiritual director at two retreat centers since 1996. She considers spiritual direction a deep privilege and graced entrustment. She has experience in accompanying people in discernment of life choices, grief, Twelve Step spirituality, and prayer.
Bidi holds a Master of Theology degree from St. Mary’s College, Moraga, California with course work at the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, California. She received her certificate in adult faith formation from the Diocese of Oakland in 1989. She has experience in pastoral ministry, adult faith formation and retreat guidance. She received her certificate in spiritual direction accompaniment from Mercy Center, Burlingame, California in 1995.
Bidi is married with two adult children, their spouses and six grandchildren. Grand mothering is her deep joy.
Lizy Stewart has been a spiritual director since 2005 after training at Mercy Center in Burlingame, CA. From 2007 to 2020, she went on to train and supervise spiritual directors and supervisors at Mercy Center. She has been directing the 19th Annotation of the Exercises of St. Ignatius since 2008. She loves companioning and directing the Exercises as she witnesses individuals come to new horizons and thresholds on their respective spiritual journeys. Lizy also leads retreats, teaches “Generous Living” workshops, and facilitates group spiritual direction, group supervision, and dream-work groups. She is committed to helping people become aware of and explore the movement of God.