Have you completed the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius and wish to deepen that experience?

The Magis Program

Greater Understanding, Love and Service

The Magis program offered by the Bridges Foundation provides diverse, experienced lecturers who share their insights and  wisdom for people who wish to continue their spiritual journey. Seven sessions (offered monthly beginning in September) are designed to deepen your experience of the Spiritual Exercises.

Participants have the opportunity to explore the dynamics of the Spiritual Exercises and share their insights with others in a small group.  You may participate in the Magis Program every year if you  wish in order to take advantage of new perspectives from presenters that will be offered each year.

Cost: The cost to the Bridges Foundation to offer the Magis program is $425 per person, which includes a $40 non-refundable application fee. While no one will be turned away due to financial circumstances, we rely on the generosity of some to help make up the difference for those who require help.  We ask you to prayerfully consider what you can afford to pay. A payment schedule can be arranged.

Everyone must pay the $40 non-refundable application fee. You can pay this deposit or the entire fee via PayPal on the online form, or by sending a check to:

Bridges Foundation 331 N. New Ballas 410275 St. Louis, MO  63141-9998

To discuss your ability to pay and payment options, please email executive director Linda Leib: linda.leib@bridgesfoundation.org.


Program Requirements
Completion of the Spiritual Exercises including
the 18th, 19th, or 20th Annotation


Dates and Topics

Saturday, September 22, 2018 [4th Saturday]

  • Origin of the Spiritual Exercises—Jeff Putthoff, S.J.
  • Principle and Foundation—Jeff Putthoff, S.J.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

  • Root Sin & Root Grace—Joseph Hill, S.J.
  • Sin in the World—Joseph Hill, S.J.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

  • Jesus Invitation (Call of the King)—Steve Givens
  • Examination of Consciousness—Cindy Mackey

Saturday, January 19, 2019

  • Recognizing Movements of the Spirits (Consolation/Desolation)—Fr. Anthony Wieck, S.J.
  • Three Phases of Humility—Fr. Anthony Wieck, S.J.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

  • Discernment of Spirits: First Week—Mike Dooley, S.J.
  • Discernment of Spirits: Second Week—Mike Dooley, S.J.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

  • Eucharist—Hsin-hsin Huang, Ph.D.
  • Living the Paschal Mystery—Hsin-hsin Huang, Ph.D.

Saturday, April, 27, 2019 [4th Saturday]

  • The Cosmic Christ—Madeleine Lane, SSND
  • Graces of the Spiritual Exercises—Madeleine Lane, SSND

Descriptions of Small Groups:

All Groups Require a Minimum of 4 Participants

1. Ignatian Discernment   Learning to discern is an important part of our spiritual life.  Prayerful discernment can lead to discovery of what God desires for each of us.  This group will examine the discernment process as developed by St Ignatius of Loyola in the Spiritual Exercises. Participants will share their insights from reading the book, doing the exercises in the book and engaging in discernment in their daily lives. Open to all, with maximum 12 participants.

* Required Text: God’s Voice Within by Mark E. Thibodeaux, S.J.
* Co-facilitators: Tom Simon and Katherine Rucinsky

2. Teilhard and The Spiritual Exercises

For Teilhard, any new truth about the universe that science discovers needs to be integrated into our spirituality, since that truth is bound to reveal something more about who God is, who we are, and what God’s plans are for us and for the rest of creation.  Facilitators will provide input and motivation to read, reflect, and awaken an awareness of the Divine Mystery in which we are immersed. In the sessions each participant will be encouraged to listen, share their insights and experiences in the context of the Spiritual Exercises as viewed through the lens of Teilhard’s spirituality.   Open to all, Maximum 15 participants.

* Required Text: The New Spiritual Exercises in the Spirit of Teilhard de Chardin by Louis M. Savary.
* Co-facilitated by Miriam Wesselmann, SSND and Ron Nimer

3. Living the 5th Week:  Putting on the Heart and Mind of Christ  Most persons who receive the Spiritual Exercises do so to deepen their relationship with God and to better discern God’s will in their lives. In his book, Putting on the Heart of Christ, Gerald Fagin, S.J., suggests that we “view the Exercises as an essential tool in learning how to become the kind of person whose very life is in tune with the heart of Christ.” Fagin’s book is the basis for prayer and discussion to see beyond the question “What has God called me to do?” and shift to “Who has God called me to be?” Through the lens of virtue ethics, Fagin explores different virtues by thoughtfully explaining them, “both within the context of the Spiritual Exercises and the life of St. Ignatius, as well as within the context of Scripture.“ Open to all, maximum 10 participants.

* Required text:  Putting on the Heart of Christ by Gerald Fagin, S.J.
* Facilitated by Janet Nimer 

4. Dynamics of the Spiritual Exercises

The main focus of this group is an in-depth study of the psychological/spiritual dynamics and graces of the Exercises.  Participants will review their own experience of the Exercises and gain increased self-awareness and understanding of how the movements in each Week of the Exercises take place in their personal spiritual journey, leading to a deeper relationship with God.  Participation in this group is required for all those who wish to enter the Prayer Companions Training Program. And these people are accepted before others. Open to all, maximum 15 participants.

* Required text: Draw Me into Your Friendship by David L. Fleming, S.J. 
* Facilitated by Hsin-hsin Huang, Ph.D.

5. Prayer Companion Training

Entry in group requires admission into the Prayer Companion Training Program and is preparation for leading others through the Spiritual Exercises.  Specific requirements: a thorough knowledge and love of the Spiritual Exercises, full participation in the Magis program, evidence of a discerned call, obvious intention for helping individuals grow in their relationship with God using the Spiritual Exercises, and willingness to be a listener and to practice growing in these gifts with others in this group.  

* Facilitated by Marian Love and assisted by Rosemarie Parsons.

6. Peer Supervision/Consultation
The purpose of this group is to assist prayer companions in their spiritual growth and to enhance their skills as prayer companions.  It is both informational and experiential while focusing on the interior movements/counter movements of a prayer companion while interacting with a retreatant. Its main focus is on God’s presence for the retreatant and the prayer companion and the interior reactions to God’s presence, consolation, resistance, struggle, desires, repression, and denial. Consultation on questions of interest will also be addressed.

Open to Prayer Companions Only.  Requirement of second year Prayer Companions.  Maximum 8 participants.

* Required Text:  The Discerning Heart: Exploring the Christian Path by Wilkie Au and Noreen Cannon Au (Paulist Press, 2006). 
* Co-facilitated by Julie Harig and Linda Leib

The Magis Program will be offered at:
Webster Groves Christian Church, 1320 W Lockwood Ave, St. Louis, MO 63122


In the context of Bridges, Prayer Companions are those who have completed the Spiritual Exercises in either a thirty-day or Nineteenth Annotation Retreat (Retreat in Everyday Life), and who have received rigorous instruction from qualified trainers in the methods of instructing others in the Spiritual Exercises.If you feel called to become a Prayer Companion and guide others in the Bridges Retreat you will need to complete the Dynamics of the Exercises (and attend all seven sessions). Once you have done this, you may begin the application process to be considered for the Prayer Companions Training Program.