University of Malta

Study-Unit Description
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TITLE Practicum in Spiritual Companionship

LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course


DEPARTMENT Pastoral Theology, Liturgy and Canon Law

DESCRIPTION The practicum study-unit of spiritual companionship consists of training sessions within groups of five participants. The participants are encouraged to form their own Spiritual Companionship sessions with directees they would be mentoring throughout the unit. Each participant is mentored and supervised in the companionship sessions and alternatively they are given case studies and real life sharing respecting confidentiality. The group members rotate being companion, seeker and observer. Sessions will provide participants with critical feedback regarding the skills used during the sessions. Participants are also required to keep up a log book of the sessions.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- understand basic dynamics of the spiritual life;
- know that which is particular of personality types;
- apply practical theology to different issues and areas of life;
- understand the nature, context and art of listening, the major pitfalls and effective skills;
- have a practical insight on how different personalities operate;
- access to a wide range of spiritual issues related to gender (male, female, LGBTQI), people suffering from terminal illness, and other;
- respond with basic and advanced empathy;
- understand his/her accompaniment dynamics.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- have gained psychological presence skills;
- use reflective listening skills;
- confront inconsistencies, transference and counter transference issues;
- use one's story for the sake of others;
- discern issues;
- apply images, prayer forms, guidance in one's accompaniment;
- accompany others when specific spiritual dynamics occur, such as grief, guilt, shame;
- make self-reflection as a basic tool for continuous self-growth.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

- Edwards, Tilden. Spiritual Director, Spiritual Companion, Paulist Press, US, 2001.
- Ruffing, Janet Spiritual Direction, Beyond the beginning, Paulist Press, US, 2000.
- Sheenhan, Barbara. Partners in Covenant. The Art of Spiritual Companionship, Pilgrim Press, USA, 1999.
- Sperry, Len. Spirituality in Clinical Practice, Brunner-Routledge, USA, 2001.
- Wicks R, Parsons R, Capps D (ed). Clinical Handbook of Pastoral Counselling, Vol 1-3, Paulist Press, USA, 2003.


Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Classwork Yes 20%
Logbook Yes 20%
Practical Yes 60%

LECTURER/S Charlo Camilleri

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2017/8, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.
The Spirit of the Reformation: 500 Years On
The Spirit of the Reformation: 500 Years On - An International Conference organised by the Faculty of Theology - 27-28 October 2017

Augustinian Institute Academic Year 2017-18

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