Mission Statement

The Bridges Foundation is a St. Louis based organization that offers opportunities to anyone seeking to deepen their relationship with God and God’s people through ongoing formation grounded in the experience of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola.

Through retreats, workshops and educational opportunities grounded in Ignatian Spirituality, foundation members assist individuals in spiritual growth so they can transform themselves and their world.

About The Bridges Foundation

In 1979, Bishop Reme J. DeRoo of Victoria, British Columbia, invited Jim and Joan Felling to make an 8-day directed Ignatian retreat. Two years later, they made a thirty-day retreat based on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola. Eventually, they were asked by the Bishop to coordinate the Prayer Companions Program in Canada, a training program designed so that qualified trainers could direct others in the Spiritual Exercises.

The Fellings, native St. Louisans, returned to St. Louis in 1988 and over the course of the next few years joined with other lay people, Jesuits and religious in the St. Louis area to form the Bridges Foundation.

Since 1989, over 1000 people have received the Spiritual Exercises in the metropolitan St. Louis area. Through the dedication and hard work of many devoted volunteers, as well as monetary donations from supporters and foundations, the Bridges Foundation provides ongoing prayer companion training and offers workshops, retreats and other Ignatian based programs to those who are seeking spiritual growth.

Bridges Foundation Timeline