Spiritual Directors International

The Home of Spiritual Companionship

John Veltri, SJ (1933-2008)

Heart Speaks to Heart

"We are being led by the Spirit in many hidden ways to enter into the life of the Trinity.

When we disclose something of ourselves to another in trust and love, we are sharing in God's revelation to the beloved Son.

When we listen with loving attention to another who speaks of what is deepest in life, we understand a little more the Son's listening attention to Abba."

From Orientations by John Veltri, SJ (Loyola House, 1996)

Tributes from the Community


I remember meeting and interacting with John in the 1970's and then using his books in a retreat direction workshop that I offered. His insight and personal presence played a brief but important role in my own formation as a spiritual director. I am grateful for him and his patience.

Don Piraro


As we approach the one-year anniversary of John's death, I find myself very aware of his presence, especially as I guide others through the Exercises here in Guelph. John was both friend and mentor. I had the priviledge to live with him in community during my Jesuit formation. He was witty, humble, prickly, astute, and above all, a lover of God.

Erik Oland, SJ


Tonight is August 15, Feast of Mary's Assumption, and I just learned on line of John Veltri's passing. I have been out-of-touch for a long time but would like to pay tribute to this marvelous man. I spent 1987-1988 with John in Guelph as he guided me through the intern program. John remains one of the most significant persons who has crossed my life. Over those eight months we talked, shared, I learned, was challenged to go deeper and deeper into myself to experience the Living Christ. He helped me with so many ideas that have come to fruition in my life. I can never be thankful enough to the Spirit for putting John in my life. I was just writing an article and checked to see if he had any new means of communicating with him. God must be giving retreats and spiritual direction seminars in heaven now as John will be his right arm. Rest in peace, brother, you were a good and faithful servant. I love you in Christ. 

Rev. Malcolm Smith


I am saddened to hear of the death of John Veltri who I was privileged to know during a nine month program in 1997-1998. He was a man of wisdom, wonderful gifts, wit, goodness, and down to earth holiness. I am grateful that his passing was gentle after years of suffering. His legacy will long continue.

Patricia Nugent



Father John was my supervisor when I was directing at Loyola House in Guelph. I had told him what reading I had given to a particular directee when he roared: "Why on earth did you give him that text?" Startled, I mumbled an explanation. He laughed and said, "I just wanted to be sure that you knew why you did it."

He was an astute, intuitive supervisor, and I felt affirmed by his interest and his expressed approval of my work. His writings inspired me and his comments and suggestions taught me a great deal about spiritual direction and myself as a director.

Mary E. Miller


I will not forget him and believe his death was so much like he lived, as far as I know. May those he leaves be blessed with his memory.

Sr. Teresa Mary Dolan


John Veltri was a great guide in my formation as a retreat director in the summer of 1976 and again in the fall of l978. His last words to me as I left for my plane were: "There is no need for you to come back. We have taught you everything we know." I doubted it then. After reading the three volumes of "Orientations," I know it wasn't true. He was a master of the spiritual life.

Mary Pat MacDonald


John's amazing intelligence and sense of humor stretched and deepened me when he was my supervisor for part of the summer practicum at Loyola House. He was blessing and mentor to me. I appreciated his faith in dealing with his diminishments.

Marise May, OSF

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