- First read carefully all of the information below.
- Email to Abbot General’s Office at firstname.lastname@example.org. Include in the email your name, contact information (email, physical address and phone number) and a paragraph explaining why you desire this service.
- The Abbot’s office will forward that information to the volunteer and he/she will contact you.
This service is free but donations are welcome. All donations go back into the program, not to the volunteers.
Christianity is a community experience. We are intentioned to find God by participating in a faith community. Some of the gifts that are available within a community are spiritual direction and reconciliation with God. Spiritual direction is concerned with helping a person directly with his or her relationship with God. The underlying question is, “Who is God for me, and who am I for Him?” Spiritual direction transcends any particular jurisdiction or denomination.
The Director helps the person to address God directly and to listen to what God has to communicate. The focus of this kind of direction is the relationship between God and the person. The person is helped not so much to understand the relationship better but to engage in it and to enter into dialogue with God. Spiritual direction of this kind focuses on what happens when a person listens to and responds to a self-communicating God.
We define spiritual direction as help given by a director that enables a person to pay attention to God’s personal communication, to respond and grow in intimacy with this God and to live out the consequences of the relationship both personally and in community. The focus on this type of direction is on experience, not ideas, and specifically on religious experience
The spiritual director is most interested in what happens when a person consciously puts himself into the presence of God. Not that the director has little or no interest in the rest of a person’s life. He is interested in the whole person, but the focus of interest is the prayer experience.
Spiritual Direction utilizes The Holy Scriptures, The Rule of St. Benedict, and the Church Fathers. Spiritual Direction is a vehicle for the “renewing the mind.” We need to be taught in the “School of the Lord’s Service.” “For as we advance in the religious life and in faith, our hearts expand and we run the way of God’s commandments with unspeakable sweetness of love.” (The Rule of St. Benedict)
Confidentiality is as important to us as it is to you. Confidentiality may be broken if you:
- Report child or elder abuse or neglect
- Report that you intend to hurt yourself or someone else
- File a suit against us or complain about the service or volunteer
- Give permission to us to discuss your case
The Right Reverend Oscar Joseph, O.C.C.O. holds a Master’s of Science in Education, doctoral degrees in Sacred Theology (Scripture) and Christian Counseling, as well as several honorary doctorates.
He has been a TV and radio personality, former pastor of a local conservative Anglican Church, college educator, retreat master and seminar leader.
Ordained a priest in 1993, Abbot Oscar Joseph is currently a Bishop and serves as the Abbot General of the Cistercian Order of the Holy Cross. The Cistercian Order is a contemplative worldwide religious Order and one of the oldest of its type. Abbot Oscar Joseph has been called a leader in the Benedictine movement in the United States.
Abbot Oscar Joseph has been a Christian Counselor and Spiritual Director to hundreds over the past thirty-five years. He has authored a number of books, including Memoirs of a Christian Healer, The Joy of Spiritual Freedom, Listen With the Ear of Your Heart, Your Pilgrimage Toward Intimacy with God along with numerous articles on spiritual direction, liturgy, emotional fitness and leisure. He has also conducted healing services throughout the East Coast of the United States. Abbot Oscar Joseph was the founder and principal counselor at the St. Matthew’s Institute from 1987 to 2019.
Abbot Oscar Joseph has an extensive background as an educator. He taught psychology, sociology, Old and New Testament, English and ethics at several local community colleges. He is the Founder/President of St. Stephen Harding Theological College and Seminary, which provides a scholarly and classically Anglo-Catholic educational experience.
Retired from his counseling practice in 2019, Abbot Oscar Joseph is currently focused on his duties as leader of the Cistercian Order, providing spiritual direction, conducting seminars and healing services.
If you are interested in having Abbot Oscar Joseph OCCO conduct seminars, healing services or wish information on the Cistercian Order, he may be contacted at email@example.com.
By your participation in the We Got Your Back Program or the Emergency Fund you are agreeing to the following:
The We Got Your Back Program and Emergency Fund is operated through the generosity and good will of volunteers. Each volunteer has been properly vetted and is a person of good will. Their service to the Cistercian members is for the sole purpose of giving glory to God and serving His people.
Those persons receiving these services realize that they are free agents and are responsible for their own actions, and are not coerced or otherwise forced into any action by the volunteers or the We Got Your Back Program and Emergency Fund.
The Cistercian Order of the Holy Cross nor the Board of Trustees of the Corporation, nor its officers, nor the Abbot General, his successors, clergy, priors or abbots, Deans, volunteers etc., have any liability, financial, legal or otherwise toward its: Abbeys, Priories, Houses of Prayer, Oblates, Postulants, Novices, Life Professed Monks, clergy, employees, volunteers, seminarians, candidates for ordination and/or incardination, those participating in the Order’s hospitality, programs or other relationships to the Order.
You or the volunteer may terminate this agreement at any time and without cause.
There are no guarantees as to the outcomes of these services or any prayer request to our Lord and Savior Jesus the Christ.
This volunteer service is NOT formal professional counseling in any form.
Should participants or volunteers have any questions or concerns they should contact the office of the Abbot General.