Soul rest. Renewal. Training in soul care and ministry.

Our Spiritual Formation week of training is the first of a 4 retreat program developed by Soul Shepherding Institute.  With a cohort of about 16 pastors/leaders (men and women in ministry) you’ll be revitalized in an experience of intimacy with Jesus and spiritual growth.

Spiritual Formation in Christ

Everybody is getting a formation. Culture, responsibilities, ego and family of origin dysfunction cause our personalities to be malformed. We need to be re-formed by becoming soft clay in God’s loving hands. We need to hear the Word of the Lord Jesus: “Rethink how you’re living your life in light of your opportunity to do all that you do with me in my Father’s world” (Matthew 3:17, paraphrased). He’s inviting us to step into his easy yoke, his rhythms of grace, to walk with him and work with him, to love with him and lead with him.

The life you long to live starts with being captivated by the beauty and goodness of Christ and his Kingdom of Light. Bill and Kristi Gaultiere, doctors of psychology and founders of Soul Shepherding, will inspire you to devote your whole person and your whole life to him. It’s the best life!

We Personally Guide You

Each day of this retreat is a blend of conversational teaching in a small group, soul talk, guided experiences in Scripture meditation and prayer, and extended “soul time” to enjoy God’s love. You will also receive individual spiritual direction/mentoring. All the teaching, groups, and spiritual direction at the retreats are led by Bill & Kristi. Our program is heavily influenced by the learning and personal mentoring we received from Dallas Willard.

Since 2013 over 65 pastors and leaders from all over the United States, Canada, Mexico, Columbia, China, New Zealand, and South Africa have come to Southern California to participate in this life changing experience.

Southern California Sunshine For Your Soul!

The January retreats are hosted in an estate home nestled in the beautiful hills of Coto de Caza, CA (South Orange County), close to the beach! Expect sunshine and a blue ocean! During the afternoons you can nap, go on a hike, drive to the ocean, or do whatever else will refresh your soul and connect you with Jesus. There is lodging in the main house or in another large home nearby. Or you could arrange to stay in a nearby hotel.

The July retreats are hosted at the Hilltop Renewal Center, a large and spacious retreat house and guest house in the mountains at Idyllwild, CA. You’ll find delightful, quiet spaces to sit or walk and hiking trails to explore.

Delicious and healthy meals are provided for you as well as retreat materials. You can attend alone or if you’re married you can bring your spouse.

Our Spiritual Formation Retreat is 1 of a series of 4 retreats designed to provide spiritual care and direction for your soul. By listening to you and caring for your soul we show you how to make more space to hear God’s voice, be renewed spiritually, and engage in soul training activities that will transform your life and ministry.

Retreat Cohort 6 Schedule

  • “Spiritual Formation”: January 15-19, 2018 in Coto de Caza, CA
  • “Spiritual & Psychological Development”: July 16-20, 2018 in Idyllwild, CA
  • “Soul Care Ministry”: January 21-25, 2019 in Coto de Caza, CA
  • “Spiritual Leadership”: July 22-26, 2019 in Idyllwild, CA

You can also complete the 4 retreats in six months. Contact us to learn more.

Certificate in Spiritual Direction Ministry

If you complete all four retreats you can earn a certificate in “Spiritual Formation and Soul Care Ministry.” If you’re interested in becoming a Certified Spiritual Director, Soul Shepherding now provides a Spiritual Direction Certification Program. This includes supervised studies and experiences in classical spiritual direction ministry, receiving spiritual direction, meeting with “directess”, and monthly group supervision. Through this program, we can help you meet the recommendations of the Evangelical Spiritual Directors’ Association.  


Space is limited to about 16 participants and every cohort has filled. Your payment reserves a spot.

The cost for each 5-day retreat is $900 per person. The spiritual direction certification process costs extra. (Payments are not refundable, but in the event of an emergency you can apply your payment to a future retreat week.) To pay for your retreat you can use our secure Donate button online or mail a check to “Soul Shepherding, Inc.”

More Info

For more information, including testimonies of past participants, visit our page on “TLC Retreats for Pastors and Leaders.”

We have pictures of past retreats on our Soul Shepherding Facebook page.

Contact us if you have questions or want to complete an application.

4 responses to “Institute: Spiritual Formation Retreat

  • looking for a retreat for someone who is a committed Christian has worked in a very high stress field and is sufffering from burnout, would one of these retreats be suitable? Although they have not been in an ” official” pastoring job they have been pastoring in their field of work.

  • Please send me more information about the training, your denominational affiliation, and practical applications of this training. Also, please note whether housing is included in the $900.00 price, and how convenient the locations are to major airports. Thank you.

    • Hi Elizabeth. We’re glad you’re interested in TLC!
      Kristi and I (Bill) are members of a nondenominational Bible church and I’m ordained for ministry by the Evangelical Church Alliance.
      Participants use the training for pastoral ministry, spiritual direction, counseling, small groups, Christian leadership, missions work, soul friendship, and discipling others to Christ.
      Yes, housing and all your meals are included in the cost.
      Coto de Caza, CA is 35 minutes from the Santa Ana airport (Orange County, CA) and Idyllwild, CA is 45 minutes from Ontario airport. Contact us if you’d like to submit an application.

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