Clinical Pastoral Education
Within the context of the Covenant HealthCare Pastoral Care Department, the Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) students have the opportunity to serve as chaplains and learn from their ministry experiences in a wide variety of clinical areas.
A number of years ago St. Luke's Hospital and the Saginaw General Hospital merged to create a 650-plus bed health care facility. Besides the Cooper and Harrison campuses, Covenant HealthCare also includes sites on Mackinaw Ave. and Michigan St. Within the context of the overall organization the following clinical programs offer numerous opportunities for engaging in pastoral care and education: Cardiology, Medical/Surgical, Rehabilitation, Geriatrics, Pediatric, Obstetrics, Oncology, Dialysis, and Hospice. CPE students also have an opportunity to engage in the study and practice of bio-ethics through participation with the Hospital Ethics Committee.
Covenant HealthCare is located in Saginaw, Michigan, near Midland and Bay City. Saginaw, the largest of the three communities, offers a variety of cultural and recreational opportunities, including water sports, theatres, museums, art galleries, symphony orchestras, and many festivals and fairs. For more information on Saginaw, click here.
Although learning is a highly individual process, it is expected that students will address and hopefully attain the following outcomes after completing their CPE at Covenant HealthCare:
- A heightened understanding of the needs of people and the ability to respond appropriately in a variety of situations.
- A greater awareness of one's identity and function as a minister.
- A greater integration of theology with the behavioral sciences in providing effective ministry.
- An enlarged capacity to evaluate one's ministry, including use of the peer group and individual supervision for feedback.
- An increased ability to work as part of a multi-disciplinary team in providing holistic care.
Students will be able to articulate a philosophy of ministry and demonstrate pastoral competence in various clinical specialties.
CPE is a program of professional education for ministry, accredited by the ACPE, Inc. (1549 Clairmont Road, Suite 103; Decatur, GA 30033; 404.320.1472; www.acpe.edu), and designed for pastors, seminary/theological students, prospective chaplains, and committed lay people to develop their competence and effectiveness in providing pastoral/spiritual care. It also renders an opportunity to clarify and enhance one's personal pastoral identity.
By utilizing an experiential learning environment, participants engage in direct pastoral/spiritual care with patients, families/loved ones, and staff. Students learn by reflecting on their experiences and applying what they learn in their ongoing ministry.
Integral to the learning process, besides direct ministry experience, are other components of the program's curriculum: didactic seminars, clinical case reviews, theological reflection, interpersonal relations group, and individual supervision. The CPE program at Covenant HealthCare offers two training modalities: the year-long Residency program and Extended Units (three days per week for 16 weeks).
Who May Apply?
Clergy, theological students, members of religious orders, and lay persons are eligible to apply for a single (intensive or extended) unit of CPE. In addition, the prerequisites for Covenant's 3-unit year of CPE residency are completion of a prior unit of CPE plus an M. Div. degree or its equivalent.
How to Apply
An ACPE application can be downloaded from the ACPE website at www.acpe.edu. The front of the application form asks for factual information about the applicant and a few references. The back of the form asks for further personal information, which is to be attached to the application form. The completed application will be several pages in length. The application can be sent electronically to Rev. Jill Rasmussen-Baker, CPE Program Manager. A $35 application fee, made out to "Covenant HealthCare CPE" can be sent to Rev. Jill Rasmussen-Baker; Pastoral Care and Education Dept.; Covenant HealthCare; 1447 N. Harrison; Saginaw, MI 48602. The fee must be received before the application can be processed.