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.

Here’s a video describing the Magis program:

The objectives of the program are four-fold:

1. Deepening the prayerful experiences of participants in the Ignatian Way.

2. Facilitating a sense of connection and community through a monthly gathering and small group sharing.

3. Enhancing the learning and understanding of the spiritual and psychological movements of the Spiritual Exercises.

4. Discerning, learning, and practicing to be prayer companions (for those called to be companions). Click here to read more about that program

Suggested text for all participants: DRAW ME into YOUR FRIENDSHIP by David Fleming, S.J.

Cost: Contribute whatever amount you can afford.  The cost to the Bridges Foundation per participant is approximately $350.00. One person’s contribution helps another and no one is turned away for financial reasons. We ask you to prayerfully consider what you can afford to pay. A payment schedule can be arranged. Everyone must pay the $35 non-refundable application fee, which is 10 percent of the total cost of the program and will be put toward your “Promise to Pay” amount.

Checks can be mailed to: Bridges Foundation, 331 N. New Ballas Box 410275, St. Louis, MO  63141-9998

To discuss your ability to pay and payment options, please email executive director Steve Givens: executive.director@bridgesfoundation.org

For a PDF version of the Magis brochure, click here: Magis Brochure – 2023-2024

For a PDF version of the online Magis brochure, click here: Online Magis Brochure – 2023-2024

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

Dates and Topics

Saturday, September 16, 2023
Speaker: Ms. Virginia Herbers
Ignatius’ Life and the Exercises
Images of God

Saturday, October 21, 2023
Speaker: Ms. Danielle Harrison
Root Sin and Root Grace

Social and Systemic Sin

Saturday, November 18, 2023
Speaker: Jeffrey Harrison, S.J.
Incarnation – Contemplating Jesus’ Life

Saturday, January 20, 2024
Speaker: Mark McKenzie, S.J.
Active Indifference
Three Classes of People

Saturday, February 17, 2024
Speaker: Philip Steele, S.J.
Recognizing Movements of the Spirits
Three Ways of Making a Graced Decision

Saturday, March 16, 2024
Speaker: Hsin-hsin Huang, PhD
Contemplating the Eucharist: The Body of Christ
Speaker: Steve Givens
Contemplating the Passion

Saturday, April 20, 2024
Speaker: Carla Mae Streeter, OP

Graces of the Spiritual Exercises
Contemplatives in Action

Descriptions of Small Groups:

All small groups have a minimum of 5 and maximum of 12 (unless stated otherwise). First come, first served.

  1. Scripture, Imagination, & the Creative Process (FULL)

This group will focus on personal exploration of Gospel stories throughout the four weeks of the Spiritual Exercises from the practice of Ignatian imaginative prayer. Participants will be expected to create and share written reflections or other forms of art drawn from their experiences of imaginative prayer and journaling. Each session will also include imaginative prayer experiences and times for journaling. Open to all. Required text: Imagine You Walked with Jesus by Jerry Windley-Daoust, plus additional assigned online readings. Facilitated by Steve Givens.

  1. Extracting Wisdom from the Parables of Jesus (FULL)

In the Spiritual Exercises there was an emphasis placed on using our imagination and inserting ourselves into key moments in the Gospels. In this small group we will insert ourselves into the parables of Jesus to pull out what we think the meaning of each parable is for us in today’s world. We will look and discuss our perspectives on the meaning of the birth of Jesus, Jesus at 12 years old in the temple, and a few dozen parables. This small group would essentially focus on Week 2 of the Spiritual Exercises in a very discussion-oriented approach. Open to all.  Required text: Being There: The Parables of Jesus in a Different Voice by Fr. William O’Malley, S.J. Facilitated by Dan Coughlin, with David Harpring as assisting consultant.


  1. Interfacing the Spiritual Exercises with 12 Step Spirituality

By exploring certain similarities of the Spiritual Exercises and the 12-Step approach, participants will increase their self-knowledge and get in touch with attitudes, actions, and habits that deter or block their relationships with God. With this awareness they will be empowered to make more healthy choices. It will also help prayer companions understand experiences and orientations of retreatants who have been through 12-Step Programs and 12-Step Spirituality. Open to all. Required text: A 12-Step Approach to the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius by Jim Harbaugh, S.J. Facilitated by Rick Lageson, J.D.

  1. Racial Healing and the Spiritual Exercises

This study is an invitation to open participants to the lifelong work of racial healing in the context of the Spiritual Exercises. Come with an open heart and a willingness to pray for greater awareness, as well as imagine solutions that impact ourselves, individuals in our community, and the Church. Time will be spent on reflection, journaling, prayer, and discussion. Open to all.  Required text: The Spiritual Work of Racial Justice: A Month of Meditations by Patrick Saint-Jean, S.J. Other material from the Ignatian Solidarity Network and others will be included. Facilitated by Kate Stroble.


  1. 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 Companion Training Program. These people are accepted before others. Open to all. Required text: Draw Me into Your Friendship by David Fleming, S.J. Facilitated by Hsin-hsin Huang, PhD.


  1. Prayer Companion Support and Resource Sharing Group
    The purpose of this group is for prayer companions to gather and provide mutual support. There will be further exploration of themes emerged from the two morning presentations. Participants may also ask questions, discuss insights and/or challenges encountered as a prayer companion, share resources and experiences in companioning retreatants, and receive the benefits of valuable wisdom of fellow prayer companions. Each session will be focused on the Week and topics of the Spiritual Exercises. While the facilitators will offer information on various resources, each participant is invited to bring his or her own experiences and resources to share with the group. Open to Prayer Companions Only. No Required Text (there will be handouts). Co-facilitators: Joan Kletzker and Laurie Hannigan.


  1. Peer Supervision/Consultation

The purpose of this group is to assist prayer companions in their spiritual growth and enhance their skills in accompaniment. It focuses on the interior movements/counter movements of a prayer companion when interacting with a retreatant. It attends to God’s presence for the retreatant and the PC and the interior reactions to God’s presence, consolation, resistance, struggle, desires, repression, and denial. Consultation on questions of interest will also be addressed. Requirement of second year Prayer Companions. Open to Prayer Companions Only. Maximum 8 participants. Required text: The Discerning Heart: Exploring the Christian Path by Wilkie Au and Noreen Cannon Au (Paulist Press, 2006). Facilitated by Sister Thomas More Daly, OSU.

  1. Online Group: Reflecting on the Spiritual Exercises with Anthony de Mello
    This group
    meets online via Zoom from 7:30 – 9:00 p.m. Central Time on the following dates: 10/12/23, 11/9/23, 12/14/23, 1/11/24, 2/8/24, 3/14/24, 4/11/24.

We will go through the book, Seek God Everywhere: Reflections on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius by Anthony de Mello, with some extended attention to discernment. Please purchase the book in any form. There will be some additional material on discernment by de Mello and others.  Please bring in a story each month of how the particular topic in the SpEx has worked in your lives. Open to all. Required text: Seek God Everywhere: Reflections on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius by Anthony de Mello, S.J. Facilitated by Sharon Tan, PhD

Online brochure download

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

If you have any questions, please contact: Magis Program Coordinator: Vicki Harpring at 314-609-9304, or vharpring@yahoo.com