Helping Christians to grow in Christ was a burden I carried, even as I graduated from UofT, hoping to launch a counseling practice. I was led, by the Spirit, to Tyndale Seminary in 1998 to begin an MDiv. in counseling—graduating with a Spiritual Direction diploma as well in 2003. After 7 years of teaching spiritual formation and spiritual direction at Tyndale, I went on to graduate with a DMin. in Leadership and Spiritual Formation from George Fox Seminary in Oregon. Since then—and with much prayer and discernment with trusted leaders, God has clearly invited me to collaborate in this work: Emmaus Formation Centre. As I continue to lead Emmaus, I am challenged to ensure all ministry, is offered with grace and excellence. I am not only blessed to witness lives transformed and deepened in Christ, but also blessed to witness the movement of the ministry of spiritual direction—within the Evangelical Church.
Sandra has teaching experience in a variety of settings, most pertinent, at Tyndale Seminary.Her intimate knowledge of the practice of spiritual direction over 13 years, coupled with her teaching experience of Spiritual Direction over 7 years, affords a rich experience for students in the Emmaus Spiritual Direction Practicum.
Marc is an ordained minister with the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada and has been a congregational pastor for 25 years in Mississauga and Oakville, and is an experienced spiritual director.
For 10 years, he has been developing and delivering a discipleship-based approach to spiritual formation within the local church.
Marc enjoys his wife of 19 years and their 4 young boys.
Freda is a pastor at Logos Baptist Church (York Region) and a trained spiritual director. She has a Bachelors in Statistics and Masters in Business Administration from The Chinese University of Hong Kong, and a Master of Divinity (Chinese Pastoral Ministry & Christian Education) and in the last stage of a Doctor of Ministry (Spiritual Formation) from Tyndale Seminary, Toronto.
Freda treasures the Scriptures and takes joy in helping people engage with the Word of God and to live it out in daily life.
She enjoys silence, reading, hiking, journaling and spending quality time with husband Frederick, and their two daughters.
Pilar Gateman, Ven. Dr. has a BA and a BEd in Music Education and French, an MDiv in Theology, a DMin in Spiritual Formation, a certificate in Spiritual Direction, a certificate in Pastoral Coaching and is ordained in the Anglican Church. She has taught at all levels of education. She has led retreats, workshops and seminars on Spiritual Formation and Spiritual Disciplines. Pilar works as the Executive Officer for the Anglican Diocese of Calgary. Pilar’s husband is a medevac pilot and they have 3 adult children. She enjoys kayaking, reading and traveling with her husband and kids.
Elena T. Franklin, MDiv, has served extensively within local church and leadership structures for over 25 years. She began formally working as spiritual director 16 years ago, and is a SD supervisor. She loves this sacred work. A trained therapist and armchair theologian, Elena is a kind observer of people and systems, and is keenly aware of the importance of relationship for whole-person, team and organization flourishing. She has worked as therapist, pastor and church planter. She developed spiritual formation initiatives for seminary faculty and students, in addition to teaching Christian Spirituality and Principles of Spiritual Direction at Providence University College and Seminary.
Patrick Franklin, PhD, is associate professor of Theology at Tyndale Seminary (Toronto). Patrick teaches and writes about a range of topics in theology, spiritual formation, ecclesiology, ethics and sicence in relation to faith. An ethicist, pastor, and church planter, he is a fellow of the American Scientific Affiliation, and serves as consultant for churches, charitable organizations, and professional networks.
As founder and Executive Director of Emmaus Formation Centre, Sandra is committed to building up the laity of the Christian Church. After completing an undergraduate degree at U of T, she continued with an MDiv. at Tyndale Seminary, after which she began teaching Spiritual Formation and Spiritual Direction at Tyndale, lasting 7 years. These areas became central to Sandra’s call and ministry, which led to her Doctoral Degree: Leadership and Spiritual Formation, at George Fox Seminary (Oregon).
“Spiritual formation is that which connects our head knowledge of God to our heart knowledge of God. Help from another through the spiritual direction relationship can bring the head and heart closer than ever.”
Jim brings 40 years of non-profit leadership in the international development sector, including World Vision and Children Believe, to the Emmaus Board of Directors. Jim is a resident of Mississauga, and attends Clarkson Community Church with his wife, Dorothy
Steve Read has worked for 20 years in the field of Research and Development at IMAX, where he has applied his engineering and science degrees to find novel ways to control light. As an adult, Steve came to place his faith in a different light: the light of truth found in the person of Jesus Christ.
“Spiritual direction is invaluable to the journey, shining light into the darkness, enabling us to see and connect with our good and loving Creator—and each other—in purposeful ways that bring life, hope and freedom.”
Carol VanRavenstein’s passion is listening prayer and the healing and change that Jesus brings when we hear Him speak. She attends Clearview Christian Reformed Church in Oakville, where she has been an elder for the past 5 years and part of a prayer team for much longer than that. She has been using her spiritual direction training, both in ministry and individually, at the church. Carol recently acquired her own bookkeeping business and is looking forward to seeing how God will use her spiritual direction training in this. She has been married to her husband John for 33 years and they have one married daughter and two grandchildren.