A transformative moment for me as a Dominican Associate was the last day of class at the end of the three-year Spiritual Direction Practicum. Sister Nancy Brousseau and Judy Hahn, our instructors, had equipped us with great teaching and training. Yet, I and the other students felt ill-equipped to go out into the world and journey alongside directees.

Nancy and Judy gave us sacred space to name our fears out loud. “What if we screw up someone’s spiritual life?” was our biggest concern.

“Having ‘coffee with the Creator’ is the best part of each day! That special time of meditation with God has convinced me that ‘Quiet Time’ solves everything,” says Brian.

After we finished our group lament, Nancy pulled out her Dominican index finger, shook it at us, and with holy fire in her voice, said these words, which I now paraphrase, “God has given you the charism of being a spiritual director. Of course, you need the Holy Spirit’s help to carry out your calling. But if you hide your gift under a bushel basket, the world will be a darker place. So go forth in confidence and let Christ’s Light shine in and through you.”

Those words have continued to inspire and shape my ministry as a Dominican Associate over these past 25 years. Even now as I reflect on them, they bring holy tears to my eyes.

I am grateful to the Dominican Community and God for helping me discover the contemplative path that grounds us in the Source of our Being and gives us the courage to let Christ’s Light shine in and through us. Blessed be God forever.



Journey with Brian Plachta at Dominican Center Marywood

After completing Dominican Center’s Spiritual Director Practicum, Brian Plachta has been a Spiritual Director for several years, guiding others on their spiritual journey and helping them to experience the presence of God in their daily lives. Brian is also a frequent teacher and has presented numerous workshops and retreats at Dominican Center Marywood.

Join Brian for one or both of his workshops — Finding Flow (June 24 / online) and Deepening Flow (June 25 / in person) based on his book, Finding Flow – Spiritual Practices to Reclaim Inner Peace, Balance, and Wholeness. These workshops will provide you with the tools you need for your journey into the heart of God and your True Self.