Just as a potter uses a "rib" to exert pressure and give shape to clay vessels spinning on a wheel, so God has used the practice of mentoring to shape leaders from the times of ancient Israel to the modern church. This book provides a theological and historical foundation for the practice, inviting the modern supervisor and seminarian to step into the church's rich heritage of mentors and mentees by offering selected vignettes of these relationships in the lives of such influential leaders as Gregory the Great, St. Augustine, John Newton and Dietrich Bonhoeffer. By tracing out the spiritual formation of some of the most influential leaders in church history, Brian Williams shows how certain patterns of mentoring relationships have been pivotal for the people of God in ages past. He then combines the wisdom of the classical discipline of spiritual direction with the tradespractice of apprenticeship to offer us a practical model for mentoring today. The book concludes with a number of tools, forms, and practical suggestions to help shape and guide this demanding but rewarding practice. The Potter's Rib will challenge experienced pastors and seminary students alike to take seriously the role of mentoring in becoming the pastors they are called to be. Brian A. Williams, a graduate of Regent College, is involved in local ministry in Vancouver, British Columbia.