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Iona-Olympia-School-1Comprehensive Formation in Spiritual Leadership

The Iona School provides comprehensive theological education and formation in spiritual leadership, for people seeking ordination as deacons and local priests in the Episcopal Diocese of Olympia, as well as for lay persons who feel called to training to support their ministry. The program engages a rigorous academic and practical curriculum (comprised of textbooks, videos, discussion, activities, and field study), developed by the Iona Collaborative at Seminary of the Southwest as a formal Certificate Program in Theological Studies, and adapted by us for our local needs.

The Iona School follows a traditional academic calendar year, beginning with a fall in-residence retreat in late August. Students continue to meet weekly on Thursday evenings (from 6:00-9:00 pm) throughout the year, as well as for one Saturday session per month (from 9am to Noon), all via Zoom. Participants gather in-person for two more retreats throughout the year, spending time learning together and growing in community. The training program engages students in the study of scripture, church history, and theology, while also fostering the development of practical spiritual leadership skills, in such areas as liturgy, preaching, and pastoral care.

Additional Information


Tuition for the 2023-24 school year is set at $3,900 per year, which includes attendance at all Iona School retreats. Participants who are in at least Phase II of discernment towards ordination will have half their tuition expense covered by the Diocese, with supporting congregations expected to pay the other half of tuition. Note that the Office of the Bishop may provide additional scholarships for students and congregations demonstrating financial need.

Sound intriguing?

If you are in discernment regarding potential ordination, or want to enhance your lay ministry through a meaningful formation program, please reach out today to the Dean of the Iona School for more information!

Dr. Thea Mirabella Maeve Wyatt, Dean