Ron Stua, CMF, MDiv, is a graduate of Catholic Theological Union who has worked in parish and campus ministry in the United States, Zambia, and Cameroon. He co-facilitates the Claret Center Spiritual Direction Internship.
For Ron Stua, MDiv, Spiritual Direction is not a job but a way of living. “It’s a way of bringing your life to your work, ” he says.
Ron began his life’s work as a volunteer missionary, working with the Jesuits in Zambia. Charged with teaching African history and Zambian civics. “I was one chapter ahead of the students, ” he laughs.
After Ron completed his stint as a missionary, he explored priesthood as a calling, eventually joining the Claretians join them in their work. “I enjoyed their commitment to missionary work whether in a foreign land or in the states. They work with very poor people in a very simple way. ” He also liked the small size of the Claretian community “It’s a humane setting, ” he says.
Ron’s first assignment was in campus ministry, but it wasn’t long before he returned to Africa, this time to Cameroon. He worked in a parish there before returning to the Chicago area to work in formation with the Claretians. In the mid-1980s, Ron joined the staff of the Claret Center, first as an intern, then as a spiritual director. Today, he partners with Beth Saner to facilitate Claret’s spiritual direction practicum.
Ron loves bringing new people into this work, which is in itself a sort of spiritual practice. He says, “Every year, people come out saying, ‘This is the best thing that’s happened to me in ages. ’” He knows exactly what they mean. “This is the work I really love, ” he says.