The College of Pastoral Supervision & Psychotherapy is a theologically based covenant community, dedicated to "recovery of the soul" and promoting competency in the clinical pastoral field.
The College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy (CPSP) is pleased to offer the National Clinical Training Seminar West (NCTS-West) this year near Sacramento, California, at the beautiful Passionist Retreat Center, a peaceful location with lush grounds and a relaxing environment. NCTS-West will be held Sept. 8-10, 2013.
NCTS–West is open to clinical chaplains, pastoral counselors and psychotherapists, supervisors-in-training, clinical pastoral trainees, and training supervisors. Members of new CPSP chapters and especially those in the West are strongly encouraged to attend. The design of the NCTS this year is based on the small-group experience where all participants are expected to bring and share clinical material for consultation with their peers under the care of CPSP diplomats and supervisors. In addition, there will be a Tavistock group experience that will be of value both at the training and as a take-away for participants' chapters. A special Supervisor-in-Training only session will follow dinner on Sunday evening.
The fee for the two-day training is $210 per person for a shared room and $270 for a single room. The price includes five meals from dinner Sunday through breakfast on Tuesday. There will be a box lunch available for purchase on Tuesday to take with you to the last meetings of the day or for your travel home.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 10:59 AM
There was an awesome movie that everyone in America was talking about, “Forrest Gump.” The title character in that film, Forrest, was credited with the following quote, “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are going to get.” You get the imagery of opening a box of chocolates, biting into a piece, and being shocked at what’s inside. Life is that way, full of surprises. And, unlike the chocolates, life may hold a surprise or two that can not only slow your roll, but stop you dead in your tracks. When that happens, what you wish for is a fellow traveler who is walking alongside you, accompanying you on your journey, someone who cares when life’s unexpected setbacks come your way.
Because Forrest Gump was a movie, I wonder if many people stopped to ponder the meaning behind this quotation. Cinema and literature often speak to life and truth in ways that most people fail to grasp. A movie is often most touching when it hits closest to home, and songs often bring tears when they strike a chord within our hearts. Nothing in life is guaranteed, and for many people, life is not smooth sailing on calm seas but sailing on rough seas. Many of the things that we as human beings struggle with can be found in a favorite song, movie or book; but we rarely make the connection between fiction and non-fiction. As fellow travelers in life, we are all connected in our humanity, and struggle to find meaning in our lives.
Life is full of unexpected turns and twists that often leave us wondering why. Why the deaths, why the tragedy, why the heartache, why all of the pain, why did I make that decision, why did God allow this to happen, why is the devil attacking me, why, why and why? For many of us, those questions remain unanswered and we have learned to live with not knowing why. Our patients and staff also face these same concerns of family, money, healthcare, deaths, etc. Many of the patients may ask, “Why this diagnosis? Why me? Why won’t my family call more often? Why can’t I go home?” Once again, the unexpected circumstances of life often leave us all lost and searching for answers.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 9:46 AM
Marriage: A Historical Word with Postmodern Meaning
“For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.”
2 Tim. 4:3
As a veteran and military chaplain I’ve done my share of running. I’ll never forget a particular morning with my unit when we had to run this hill by our barracks. We ran up and down, up and down several times. While standing at the top waiting for the final whistle signaling us to run down for the last time I can still recall the anticipation, it was almost over, my legs ached, and my stomach grumbled with hunger. The only vision playing in my head was the thought of the bottom, of breakfast, a shower, and rest. Then I heard the whistle blow and off I ran. With a passionate zeal I ran, my eyes fixed on the utopia I’d created in my mind of pancakes with strawberry jelly… yum. I pushed hard and fast- too fast. My mind, my goals, my body, had gotten too far ahead of my feet. Down to the ground I fell. Smack, roll, crash, and pain. I’d tried to go too far too fast and I paid the price.
If one were to reflect over the “progress” that our global culture has made through the human era they might find a relatively slow rate of development, that is, right up until this last millennia. The recent “progress” has been intense and the rate of change has been unparalleled. My prayer is that the collegial and professional growth of CPSP doesn’t get ahead of itself, risking a fall down the hill. Without assuming too much my guess would be that most members could trace their faith traditions back thousands of years. Let us not forget our history for the sake of the future.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 1:29 PM
The Institute for Psychodynamic Pastoral Supervision is excited to announce that it will admit a new cohort of students to its doctoral programs beginning with a Summer Intensive Week of Studies to be held August 18-23, 2013 at Avila Retreat Center in Durham, North Carolina.
This week of face-to-face studies will focus on group formation, group theory, intercultural theory and clinical case conferences. The main group theorists studied will be two prime movers at the Tavistock in London: W.R. Bion, and S.H. Foulkes. Intercultural theorists include Melinda McGarrah Sharp and Clifford Geertz.
Response to workshops and announcements about the IPPS doctoral programs has been so positive that the faculty has decided it will be necessary to admit a second cohort of students beginning in the fall of 2013 in order to meet demand. Currently our first cohort of students who started in August of 2012 is nearing the end of their first academic year. A third cohort will be admitted in the fall of 2014 as previously planned and announced.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 9:54 PM
I have been troubled by the proclamation made by our President and Executive Committee concerning same sex marriage. I am not here to debate the issues of same sex marriage but rather the issue of whether or not it was wise to make a statement for the entire organization when there are some in the membership that do not agree. CPSP has been a community that aspires to make space for a wide variety of viewpoints. I feel like someone else’s theological position is being forced on me.
Below, are two sections from the code of ethics in the standards which speak to our commitment to respect the individual beliefs of every member. I suggest we may be guilty of a violation of our own code of ethics and I appeal, for the sake of the organization, for a review of the proclamation. A better statement would be a reaffirmation of our respect for all persons and allow individual members to maintain their personal positions on the advisability of same sex marriage.
Professional ethics for CPSP are rooted in respect for all persons regardless of their race, gender, religion, ethnic origin, age, abilities or sexual orientation. In other words, who they are is the reason for our respect…
Colleagues, trainees, clients, parishioners, and patients deserve our respect. Therefore, members will not proselytize nor force their own theologies on others. CPSP members will refrain from exploiting relationships or using them to their own advantage. Exploitation includes emotional, financial, sexual, and/or social gain. (The Standards of the College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy , 2012 CPSP Page 35 of 36.)
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 9:10 AM
George Hull is to be thanked for providing the Pastoral Report with this fascinating conversation between Carl Rogers and Paul Tillich recorded in 1960.
Training Supervisors are encouraged to share this video with their clinical residents/interns who have heard and read about these two giants from their respected fields but who have never seen them in action.
-Perry Miller, Editor
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 9:52 PM
The well of civil discourse has been poisoned in recent years, and so I was pleased to see the two articles on same-sex marriage, taking opposite points of view without rancor.
I have enjoyed civil debate over the years until the last decade or so. I don’t like name calling among friends, and I know that some arguments are not correct or rational. I have also experienced the humble pie of being proven wrong when I was so sure of myself.
One of the earliest judgments that I made was that Adlai Stephenson would be a better president than Dwight Eisenhower. To my dismay Ike won, and seemed to enjoy playing golf with Arnold Palmer. But Ike appointed Earl Warren to be Chief Justice of the Supreme Court which led to the acceleration of the civil rights movement. And Ike made the most prophetic statement of the last century when he cautioned us about the devastating power of the growing military-industrial complex.
I was certain that “Landside” Lyndon was on track with “guns and butter” in fighting the Viet Nam war and beginning the “war on poverty.” Over 27000 young men lost their lives while Lyndon was president, and the “war on poverty” is far from over. Richard Nixon presided over the other 27000 deaths of our youth. In retrospect, I’ll paraphrase George Wallace, “I don’t see much difference between 27000 and 27000.”
I’ve had other lapses in clarity and correctness of thought. I thought Ronald Reagan was a “bonzo”. But listen to him say, “Mr Gorbachev, take down this wall.” And I thought “born again christian” James Earl Carter would make a fine president until 18% inflation took a generation of young adults out of the housing market. And I could go on, but I don’t want to bore you.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 9:38 AM
George Buck turned 80th this past March and I made the following comments at his birthday gathering-
In Celebration of George Buck
George Buck is a clinical pastoral education supervisor and a very good one at that. Anyone who has had George as a CPE supervisor will tell you he is very good at listening and very skilled at seeing what is in front of him. George is an expert in the dynamics of human behavior. George not only listens to people, he observes them. He often comments that “all behavior has meaning.”
You know we all love to watch people. People watching can be an intriguing pastime at places like an airport, a restaurant or a pub. Some people watch others hiding behind a newspaper or from behind their sunglasses.
There is a way of watching others that is very discerning; and this is especially important in the work that George does. Many pastoral trainees entering clinical training have a way of looking at themselves that is terribly blemished, damaged and toxic. Of such trainees one might say, - they have an inferiority complex but it’s not a very good one. Sadly, the average pastoral trainee often plays to the gallery of their low self-esteem.
George Buck has a way of watching his trainees (beholding them) that enables them to begin to recover the lost humanity in their own being so that they may learn to behold themselves more kindly and with less judgment.
Do you remember Muhammad Ali the heavy weight boxing champion who said “I float like a butterfly and sting like a bee” Well he also said that he was not just the “greatest boxer in the world” he said he was “doubly great” because he could not only knock out his opponents, but he could also “pick the round” he would knock them out in.
George Buck is like that with his comments to trainees. He is doubly great, because he has perfect timing with his one line observations such as-“I think I love you more than you love yourself!” or “there you go again shoulding all over yourself.”
George, tonight as you celebrate your 80th birthday, we celebrate you!
In conclusion, I offer you an observation on aging and temptation from Sir Winston Churchill who observed “Don’t worry about avoiding temptation… as you grow older, it will avoid you.”
Happy birthday, George.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 11:22 AM
April 16, 2013
Chaplain on Demand!
What Non-Pastoral Care Colleagues
Want & Believe They Need
Robert Charles Powell, MD, PhD
When is the last time you, the chaplain,
asked your non-chaplain colleagues
when they most wanted –
or believed they needed –
a chaplain on their unit?
Recently a clinical pastoral chaplain friend and I stumbled into a situation where asking what I like to call “the right stupid question” provoked some startling answers. We asked the nurse/ managers in a number of intensive care areas at one medical center the following question:
“If you had $500,000 to spend on pastoral care and counseling services –
and you did not have to answer to anyone about your decision –
when would you like to have your ‘own personal chaplain’ on the premises?”
First let me provide some minor details about the medical center. This tertiary care facility – built around a clustering of 8 intensive care programs – functions as the regional referral and teaching center for a 6-campus system. The 70,000 emergency room visits, 20,000 admissions, and 69,000 pastoral care contacts per year keep 440 out of 560 beds full and 8 certified chaplains plus chaplain trainees busy.
More formal research by trainees of the medical center’s pastoral care department, two years earlier, produced objective information that more chaplaincy coverage was needed on weekend afternoons as well as on Mondays and especially on Tuesdays. What distinguishes the informal inquiry reported in this short essay is that staff members of NON-pastoral-care departments were asked to produce – on the spot – subjective information about their wants and perceived needs.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 6:41 PM
Welcome to the 23rd Plenary of CPSP, and welcome to Las Vegas.
When I was a preadolescent boy growing up in Virginia we played marbles, and sometimes we were tempted to play for pennies. However, we were warned that the police would arrest us if they discovered such illicit behavior. And the threat was not an idle one. Coming to Las Vegas for me is like a time warp. It appears the whole world is gambling itself away. Perhaps I am old fashioned, but I fear for our children and grandchildren. On the other hand, I was out on Fremont street last night, watching with admiration two twenty-somethings dance their erotic dance for the crowd. They must have noticed I was transfixed. Several minutes later they came up from behind me, pushed me into the center and danced around me in an exuberant spirit, and I joined in, with the crowd's approbation. Unfortunately I did not see anyone from the Plenary around. So my moment of glory was wasted on strangers. However, the experience did give me another take on Vegas. I suppose that even in the crassest culture there are moments of grace.
We all owe George and his administrative team a word of thanks. I do know that the planning of this year's meeting has been a nightmare. By all rights we should send George and his team to the south sea islands for two weeks of R&R. But of course we won't. On the other hand, there have been moments when I would have sent George to the south sea islands on a one-way ticket.
Now a brief word about Chapter names:
I was talking with Nancy True over lunch, and she told me that she was in the process of forming a new Chapter, and that they planned on naming it the Living Water Chapter. I told her that Living Water is a nice name with good bonafides, but that it was illegal and would not be accepted, for reasons I will explain. Nancy was very gracious in accepting my rebuttal. We have been plagued from the beginning with the problem of Chapter names. The first Chapters were: Chapel Hill, Atlanta, Stoney Mountain, New York, and Washington. As we grew, more innovative names began to appear. Faith, Hope and Charity Chapter. Sunrise of Hope Chapter, Indian Nations Chapter, and so forth. Some of us began to feel queasy, fearing that the CPSP Directory might begin sounding like a bunch of weirdos. Then it happened. From Colorado we received a new Chapter application for a Chapter Eleven. The Executive Committee convened and ruled that Chapters shall be named by a particular point on the map, and nothing else. So that is the law. We will enforce it. If you are in a Chapter named Alabama, Florida and Georgia, we will ask you to decide on a new name, a name that is a point on the map. We are not going to have a Directory that makes us look like a collection of clowns. I know of course, that there are some who will search to the end of the earth to make any rule look foolish. I also know that there is a point on the map in Pennsylvania, a town named Intercourse. But I assure that we will not accept the name Intercourse for a Chapter name, even if it is a point on the map.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 7:01 AM
I am proud to be part of CPSP as it takes the stand to redefine marriage. Whom are we kidding? Marriage has been used for other purposes than the love between a man and a woman for centuries. And the church has participated in those purposes all along, bringing marriage in many diverse social personae into the church and infusing it with theological significance.
Most doctrines of the church like the realm of God, incarnation, resurrection have origins in cultures. We absorbed them as a way of giving voice in particular times and places to universal experiences initiated by God and shared by all.
In my mind one of those that we have taken into the Christian Church is Marriage. Love became a part of marriage personae in the 1400's in Europe. Troubadours romanticized love between a man and a woman and elevated it above family relations, political bonds and economical dominion as the most important basis for marriage. Individuals eventually became permitted to choose spouses instead of complying with marriage arranged by parents and relatives. Sexual attractions outside of marriage were permitted and sanctioned if properly choreographed to enable spouses to keep marriage bonds for other reasons than attraction and love. Procreation did not require love. Even birthing children served other purposes like keeping clan purity or dominion in place, or providing new candidates for baptism. Children were often not raised by parents or were raised as social security for the parents. Romeo and Juliet represented this shift in the social personae of marriage from utilitarian reasons to a relationship of love.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 9:24 AM
Shedding Light on the Unknown –
Without Presuming to Exhaust Its Meaning
– Comments Honoring
the Rev. Dr. Donald Eric Capps –
delivered in Las Vegas, NV,
on 19 March 2013, at the Plenary of the
College of Pastoral Supervision & Psychotherapy
Robert Charles Powell, MD, PhD
Can each of us be
engaged and attentive enough to
see and hear and understand
truths beyond the supposedly obvious?
– on the 90th anniversary of The Joint Committee on Religion & Medicine’s beginning (1923) of
focusing resources from the New York Academy of Medicine & the Federal Council of
Churches on “the religious healing problem”.
– on the 90th anniversary of [Helen] Flanders Dunbar’s beginning (1923) of the philosophical
studies of “insight symbolism” that later would shape her holistic studies of supposed medical disorders that contained unappreciated layers of meaning.
– on the 90th anniversary of Anton Theophilus Boisen’s beginning (1923) of the “dynamic
psychology” studies of souls in the midst of their communities – research that paralleled his earlier (1908) “religious sociology” studies of individual worshipers in the midst of their contexts, as well as his still earlier (1903) “social ecology” studies of individual trees in the midst of their forests.
– on the 80th anniversary of Dunbar’s de facto merging of Anton Boisen’s professional chaplaincy
movement with her own “mind and body” psychosomatic movement – the one program being focused on education & the other being focused on medical research – but with both focused on healing & wholeness.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 8:55 AM
A friend of CPSP, Todd DuBose, M.Div., Ph.D., Researcher
Associate Professor, The Chicago School of Professional Psychology provided the Pastoral Report an announcement regarding an interesting research study on suffering.
Dr. DuBose states: "The purpose of the study is to explore the relationship between the kind of suffering experienced in unwanted and unchangeable life situations, often known as “fated situations,” and the practices of care offered in response to them". The study includes, "... impossible, incurable, inevitable, irreparable, unbearable, unpredictable, uncertain, uncontrollable, irreversible, unalterable, unknowing, uncertain, unrelenting, or irreversible..." suffering.
Those interested in participating can download the detail description below as well as contact Todd DuBose at 312-329-6694 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 8:45 AM
Dear Chaplain Alexander,
Hearty thanks to you for you thoughtful and well written essay in response to the CPSP left-liberal juggernaut!
I essentially agree with your remarks, and especially your effort to counter the very strong current within CPSP leadership, as well as the "liberal" culture as a whole, that demonizes those who dare to express alternate, non-politically-correct points of view.
It is quite startling that your remarks even saw the light of day in a CPSP publication. Is this a sign of hope that the Great Wizard of CPSP media has regained a measure of reasonableness, or, I suspect, merely a sop to feign an attitude of "tolerance"?
Best wishes and Easter blessings in advance of your May 5 Holy Day,
-Bill Carr, D. Min.
CPSP Diplomate and Founding Member
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 5:57 PM
The debate about what constitutes a marriage is an increasingly lively one in the United States and in a number of other places in the world. The debate, and perhaps even the liveliness of the debate, is of great importance, because marriage has proven to be among the most foundational institutions for the sustainment of human welfare and flourishing in global history, across all cultures.
My own experience has been that my fellow CPSP members from chapters in the United States, coming from different backgrounds and adhering to various faith traditions, hold conscientiously to a wide variety of perspectives on same-sex marriage, and indeed have a wide variety of perspectives on the essential nature of marriage itself.
I cannot necessarily speak for others, but I can speak for myself in saying that the March 14th, 2013 Public Declaration of Commitment to Marriage Equality posted on the Pastoral Report does not represent my voice either as an Eastern Orthodox Christian or as a member and Diplomate of the college.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 11:29 AM
March 18, 2013
Las Vegas, NV
Brian H. Childs, CPSP President
I have recently turned 66 years old. Recently I have been thinking quite a bit about my own death. I have come realize that I have lived more than likely the vast majority of my life years. Now this realization is not macabre. I am most grateful for my life. I have lived a good and full life. I have loved and been loved. I have been forgiven as I have forgiven. I have dear children and I have done the best I can in my work and my calling. Te Deum. Yet, I had always thought that I would die without ever having been to Las Vegas. Here I am. Likewise I had never ever thought I would be the President of the College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy. Here I am. What curves life can throw even at the end of it all.
I am honored and pleased to be your President over the next two years. As I have prepared for this post over the year of my term as President elect I have come to focus on what I hope is accomplished by us all. I have three interrelated hopes for our successful work together. I want to outline them briefly with you today.
First of all I want us to work together to make peace with our sister organization the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education. I have very practical reasons for this hope. We need not nor should we suffer our shared ministry of caring and training with internecine squabbling and conflict. There is room for us all in our shared mission. But I also have some real existential interests in our mutual respect and cooperation. I have been a member of ACPE since 1972. I am, I suppose, ‘third generation’ in the clinical pastoral movement. I have known first generation grandparents. I was Seward Hiltner’s last Ph.D. student at Princeton and I worked closely with him and in fact was clinically trained by him when we shared a supervision group at Trinity Counseling Service in Princeton. I am pretty sure that I am the only person in this room who can make this claim. My clinical and pastoral theological teeth were cut within the ACPE movement and I was trained by some of the ‘second generation’ such as C. George Fitzgerald, Don Cabaniss and I worked closely with Jap Keith and my dear friend John Patton. ACPE is in my blood and ACPE is part of my birthright.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 11:13 PM
The creative, imaginative, innovative and courageous spirit of CPSP is to be alive in all discussions, decisions and implementations.
CPSP began as and continues to be a daring experiment challenging the status quo, trusted norms, old thinking and ways of doing and being.
Creating trouble is to be embraced as friend while playing it safe is to be captured by the the darker forces.
Seek inspiration from the gods in their heavens as well as the homeless on the streets.
Honor madness...yours' within, that of your colleagues and the madness that will erupt as you work to do a new thing. Madness will be your genius.
If your mission and work ceases to feel like play, you are off the mark. Creativity and imagination will have left your soul leaving only duty and obligation killing your spirit and dimming your vision.
Seek out the poets and dreamers within the CPSP Community and beyond as they hold the sacred stories of old and the vision of the new.
As said of old, "It is the crazy ones who believe they can change the world and they often do".
--Perry Miller, Editor
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 5:49 PM
Commitment to Marriage Equality
The College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy (CPSP) declares publicly in the name of justice its dismay with the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) passed by Congress in 1996 and the subsequent Defense of Marriage Act laws passed by some states designed to penalizes persons due to their sexual identity.
The College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy endorses the right of civil marriage and that it should be available to all who wish to make this relational commitment.
The basis for this endorsement rests on two basic principles:
• Every human being is entitled to justice and dignity as a given right and that we have an obligation to respect and defend the dignity of every human being and of every loving relationship including the relationship of raising future generations,
• That every couple, including same-sex couples, should enjoy the liberty of equal justice under law including the legal protections, benefits, and responsibilities of civil marriage.
The Covenant of the College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy supports this position in that it values relationships, encourages our relational and spiritual journeys, and values diversity with equality.
Brian Childs, President
Raymond J. Lawrence, General Secretary
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 10:39 PM
As previously announced, a CPSP and GTF-affiliated doctoral program in Clinical Pastoral Supervision was successfully launched in August of 2012 with a Summer Intensive week of studies held at Codrington College, an Anglican Seminary in Barbados, West Indies. The foci for this week of studies were group formation, group theory and practice, and intercultural relations theory. Our host for this week of studies was the Rev. Ian Rock, Ph.D., Principle of Codrington College.
In September the fall semester got under way with a cohort of five students who meet weekly for doctoral seminars online. Seminars are lively, the dialogue is engaging, and the doctoral program is now at the mid-point of its second semester. In its fall meeting at Little Rock, the CPSP Executive Committee expressed its delight with the progress of the doctoral program, but it also became clear that CPSP itself was not in a position to provide ongoing management of a doctoral program. Our faculty was therefore encouraged to incorporate the doctoral program as a separate entity that relates to CPSP in a manner similar to the way its CPE programs do.
The Institute for Psychodynamic Pastoral Supervision
With this solid vote of affirmation from the CPSP Executive Committee, the doctoral program was incorporated in January, 2013 as The Institute for Psychodynamic Pastoral Supervision, LLC. The founding officers and faculty in IPPS, LLC are Dr. David Franzen and Dr. H. Mac Wallace. Other faculty are Dr. Joel Harvey and Dr. Cesar Espineda. Practically speaking, the effect of this change upon our students has been imperceptible. For faculty the change has given us a real sense of ownership of the program while reaffirming our freedom to be educationally creative and responsive to the learning needs of our students.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 12:08 PM
It can happen on the way to the office.
An interview on the radio this morning about the slow movement caught my attention, so much so in fact I decided I should stop and reflect awhile, even write what came to mind.
As is usual, however, when an idea like this comes to me I at once determine I don’t know enough and should do some research. This once meant going to the library, finding a book or two on the subject in question, dawdling away a half hour or so and going home slower than I arrived. Or, depending on the subject –church issues, politics or just plain gossip -I had authorities to call to obtain their spin on the matter, all the while slowing the morning to a walk.
But not to day, rather I heard a voice say “go on line.” And I did. It might be argued this was my first mistake.
With a click or two, even on my antiquated system, I had enough information to make me an expert on the subject of slow or, to be more exact, the slow movement. You might say I was up to speed in minutes.
The movement has gone international with organizations of one sort or another in over 50 countries, every conceivable area of life affected and offering information on how to quickly slow down. But you sense the problem; I began to feel overwhelmed, inundated. So much to do. So little done. So far behind. How to begin. I was tempted to give up but after a time I regrouped, picked out one page that seemed promising, got rid of the rest and settled down to read, that is read as slowly as one ever does on the internet. One line here, one there. Like eating at McDonalds. But the article proved interesting. Between gulps I began to slow ever so slightly.
The slow movement began –that is if you ignore all the efforts over the centuries in various religious traditions to accomplish the same end -in Italy in 1986 as a reaction to fast food outlets. You can understand why. Anyone who has eaten at a fast food establishment –indeed the whole restaurant industry has been affected in a similar way -knows the speed at which you are expected to function. Get in line. Order. Sit down. Get your burger. Eat. Leave. What’s worse you know you are doing it and can’t stop. The market place requires of us speed and we do our best. All the forces of advertising and consumerism are intent on us keeping the pedal to the floor.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 6:27 PM
The 2013 CPSP Plenary and Workshop Schedules have been updated. It is important for attendees to review these updates that are posted below and plan accordingly.
Below is a copy of the 2013 CPSP Plenary Brochure with the Plenary and Workshop schedules updated.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 12:06 PM
The CPSP Executive Committee met in Arkansas, October 11-12, 2012 and appointed two task forces (Pastoral Clinicians and Diplomates) to develop a new governance model for CPSP. Henry Heffernan and his task force have worked hard in looking at issues specific to Pastoral Clinicians and I (Dallas Speight) have been leading the Diplomate Task Force.
You will find a copy of the report from the Diplomate Task Force, which will be discussed at the upcoming Plenary, March 17, 2013, 7:30-9:30 p.m. We welcome any input or ideas that you might have after reviewing our work. Our task force will be the first to acknowledge that what is being presented is not a finished work, but a summary of ideas that we believe captures the essence of what we were assigned to do as well as the suggestions of many Diplomates.
Feel free to send your ideas and responses to us. Members of the Diplomate Task Force are as follows:
Dallas E. Speight, Chair, Email: email@example.com Dee Jaquet, Email:firstname.lastname@example.org John Jeffrey, Email: johnpacinstitute.org Beverley Jessup,Email: email@example.com Ed Outlaw, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please download and study the following documents in preparation for discussion at the CPSP Plenary or feedback via email to the leadership.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 7:16 PM
(Bill Alberts with his 18-months-old granddaughter, Aoife)
(This article is a condensation and update of an address presented at the January 20, 2011 Grand Rounds of Boston Medical Center’s Psychiatry Department)
I represent a profession that is naturally seen as embodying godliness. A godliness that is believed, by some, to be contrary to what it means to be human. A godliness in which the humanness of people like me must be suppressed rather than be a source of pastoral empowerment.
I attended a seminary that taught me much more about godliness than humanness. It taught me how to be holy not whole. I had courses in theology, Christology, Eschatology, Christocentricology, Methodistology, doctrineology, evangelismology, and Bibleology, Old and New Testaments. But there was little taught about humanology, i.e., feelingology, introspectionology, sexual orientationology, multiculturalology, interfaithology, human rightsology and peaceology. And I graduated cum laude-- ology.
I’m exaggerating some. Seminary greatly motivated my desire for an education, and helped to lay the foundation of my writing skills. It introduced me to pastoral psychology, which gave space and air to my humanness, and pointed me to Boston University Graduate School, where, in 1961, I received a Ph.D. in Psychology and Pastoral Counseling. Clinical supervisors in a variety of fields and settings introduced me to myself—as did a couple of different psychotherapists along the way. What began as an outward calling from above became an inward journey into self.
Thus for me, pastoral/spiritual care is rooted in the humanness of a chaplain. The inward journey where one becomes self-aware, and is in touch with and accepting of oneself. The more such self-awareness the better prepared one is to understand and accept patients and their loved ones as themselves, and to experience their reality not interpret it. We chaplains have to know where we—and our god—are coming from in order to know where patients and their families—and their god—are at. Self-knowledge helps one avoid the counter-transference of getting in one’s own way in living and working with and providing care for people—whether a chaplain, or other clergy person, or non-religious-oriented care-giver.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 10:38 AM
Training Designed to Strengthen Quality of Palliative Care; Classes start in March 2013
New York (February 21, 2013) – HealthCare Chaplaincy and The California State University Institute for Palliative Care – two leaders in their fields – have joined forces to create a new online certificate course to support chaplains and other spiritual care providers with the delivery of palliative care to patients and their families in hospitals, hospices, long-term care facilities, and elsewhere.
Created by a team of national experts, the nine-week curriculum strengthens the quality of palliative care by providing a foundation of knowledge and practice built on the applicable areas of the National Consensus Project’s Clinical Practice Guidelines for Quality Palliative Care and the National Quality Forum’s National Framework and Preferred Practices for Palliative and Hospice Care Quality.
This course will be valuable to any chaplain who wants to increase their skill and expertise in the field of palliative care regardless of what setting they serve in. It will also provide in-depth continuing education for other health professionals interested in the integration of spirituality in the care of palliative patients. Additionally, the course will assist Board Certified Chaplains desiring to work towards meeting the competencies required for specialty certification by their professional association.
The course is designed also for other health care professionals who want to gain expertise in the importance of spirituality in palliative care.
All who successfully complete the course will receive a joint certificate of completion from HealthCare Chaplaincy and the California State University Institute for Palliative Care, which is offering the program through its award-winning online learning system.
“This online certificate program is an exciting and important move forward in the field of palliative care,” says Michael W. Rabow, MD, director, symptom management service andprofessor of clinical medicine at University of California, San Francisco.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 8:15 AM
There has been a enthusiastic response to the 2013 Spring CPSP Plenary being held March 17-20, 2013 in Las Vegas.
The Golden Nugget has agreed for the second time to re-open the block of rooms negotiated by CPSP at the $49 rate! Call: 800-634-3454
These rooms will be open for booking until February 25. There are a limited number of rooms available. These will be booked by the hotel on a first come, first serve basis.
You can register for the Plenary by clicking here.
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 9:03 PM
The block of rooms reserved at the special rate of $49 per night is almost sold out. If you are planning to attend the plenary, please make your reservation as quickly as possible in order to get the plenary rates which we have negotiated for advance reservations. The Golden Nugget staff has informed us that the hotel is almost sold out for that period of time, which means that you may not find it possible to get a room at all if you delay.
Reserve your room online today by clicking on this link: Golden Nugget - Reservations, or call 800-634-3454.
Download the Plenary Brochure by selecting this link: 2013 CPSP PLENARY BROCHURE"
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 9:03 AM
January 24, 2013
Report from India and South Africa: “Devotional Care”:
Rethinking Clinical Pastoral Chaplaincy Training Sites
Robert Charles Powell, MD, PhD
Centers for Devotional Care:
Places to Take Shelter at
Times of Profound Transition
one more hour,
one more person, and
one more dollar
to the caring can
make all the difference.”
Blessed be the Lord, the rock
wherein I take shelter –
my shield and champion,
my fortress and refuge!
II Samuel 22:3.
Seek refuge in the Lord
with all your being!
By the Lord’s Grace
will you attain …
the Imperishable Abode!
Posted by Perry Miller, Editor at 11:33 AM