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Courses

Fall 2021

Chaplaincy Settings and Models (SCPR-3000) - Hybrid
Instructor: Kamal Abu-Shamsieh | Mondays, (9:30am–11:00pm - Synchronous)

This course is required for all chaplaincy students (MA & Certificate) and provides an introduction to spiritual care in the different professional chaplaincy settings such as healthcare, universities, corrections, the military, fire and police departments, and corporate, and describes the roles and responsibilities of chaplains in multidisciplinary contexts. The class will offer a combination of asynchronous and synchronous lectures, reflection and research paper or a project. Open to MA, M.Div., D.Min., and Ph.D. students.

Interreligious Rituals for Chaplaincy: Faith, Ethics, and Politics (PR-2250) - Hybrid
Instructor: Terri Daniel | Tuesdays, (9:30am–11:00pm - Synchronous)

Chaplains are responsible for providing a spiritual presence at significant life milestones, from birth to death. Individuals in different chaplaincy settings may need support in daily prayer, during religious holiday observances, and various rituals and sacred practices across a vast spectrum of traditions. This class explores the dynamics of chaplains' engagement in life-time rituals, including faith-specific rites, which may trigger a dilemma for some chaplains when asked to perform these roles and duties. We will examine ethical and theological questions related to day-to-day interreligious chaplaincy work. How would a non-Christian chaplain respond to infant baptism or provide the sacrament of the sick in end-of-life care? How to address innate biases against rituals from other traditions different than your own? How to create innovative and inclusive practices and navigate faith boundaries while facilitating diverse communities' spiritual needs? The class will offer a combination of asynchronous and synchronous lectures, reflection and research papers, or projects. Open to MA, M.Div., D.Min., and Ph.D. students.

Spirituality in Bereavement: Interfaith Perspectives - SCPT-3002 - Hybrid
Instructor: Terri Daniel | Thursdays, (9:30am–11:00pm - Synchronous)

When facing a profound a loss of any kind, such as the death of a loved one, divorce, job loss, pet loss or loss of health, we cannot separate psychology from spirituality. Regardless of one’s belief system, spiritual outlook or concept of God, loss and grief almost always triggers existential questions, because searching for meaning is an intrinsic part of the grieving process. Anyone who works to support the bereaved inevitably encounters this struggle, but often feels uncertain of how to examine it. Indeed, a Christian might wonder, “Why would a loving god let this happen?” or “Is God punishing me?” A person who is Spiritual But Not Religious (SBNR) might ask, “What am I supposed to learn from this experience?” or “How is this experience challenging me to deepen my spiritual practice?” An atheist might question whether painful events are truly random, or if there is some deeper purpose to our losses. It can be unclear how to engage productively with these questions while respecting the uniqueness of each person’s spiritual journey. Furthermore, in the mental health field, spirituality is often regarded as a taboo subject and not adequately addressed in counseling sessions or support groups. This course is designed for masters-level pastoral care providers working with loss, trauma and grief. Course activities will include class discussion, lecture, interactive exercises, reflection papers, sacred ceremony. Course available for 1.5-3 units.

Spring 2021

Seminar in Pediatric Chaplaincy (PT-2000)
Instructor: Kamal Abu-Shamsieh | Tuesdays, 9:40am–12:30pm
The seminar is required for all chaplaincy students and provides an introduction to issues that define and impact spiritual care among children: infants, toddlers, preschoolers, school-age, and adolescents. Students will learn how diversity of cultures and religions impacts what rituals chaplains offer at birth and end-of-life in a healthcare setting. The components of cultural and spiritual assessments with patients and families, and how cultural group patterns and family structures influence communication, decision-making, sharing of medical information, and perceptions of palliative care. In addition, the pediatric needs and communications when dealing with death, grief, and bereavement. 

Religious and Spiritual Diversity in Counseling (PT-2050)
Instructor: Iman Farajallah | Mondays, 9:40am–12:30pm
This seminar broadly examines diverse religious and spiritual experiences as they impact people we serve, us, the counseling relationship, and how they relate to counseling theories and research. Students will explore their own beliefs and attitudes towards spiritual and religious identity: personal and cultural. Students will analyze the balance between increasing awareness of various religious and spiritual groups' unique experiences and identifying strengths and biases related to working with different religious and spiritual groups. Through group dialogue, readings, interactions, and interviews, we will broaden and deepen students' awareness and appreciation of personal differences and commonalities related to counseling. 

Intersession 2021

Spiritual Care for  Marginalized Communities: Cultural, Social and Theological Competencies
Instructor: Terri Daniel | Remote | Time (TBA)

The terms “marginalized” and “vulnerable” are often used interchangeably to describe populations that have limited access to health care, support services, employment, education, housing, societal acceptance, and basic human rights. Both terms can refer to groups that are historically socially oppressed, but there are so many cross-referenced areas of vulnerability and marginalization, and so many possible meanings that the terms have almost become meaningless.

This course will begin by defining these terms and exploring our relationships with these groups from two perspectives… how chaplains, counselors and clinicians can best provide spiritual care, and an examination of our personal embedded biases against these populations. Click here to view the syllabus.

Fall 2020

SCPT-3000 Chaplaincy Settings and Models
Instructor: Kamal Abu-Shamsieh | Wednesdays, 9:40am–12:30pm

This course is required for all chaplaincy students (MA & Certificate) and provides an introduction to spiritual care in the different settings of professional chaplaincy, and describes the roles and responsibilities of chaplains in multidisciplinary contexts such as healthcare, universities, corrections, the military, fire and police departments, and corporate. Students will get the opportunoty to virtually meet professional chaplains who will share details about career chaplaincy, duties and responsibilities, and challenges. [Faculty Consent required]

SCPT-3001 Interreligious Approaches to Spiritual Care
Instructors: Herbert Anderson and Kamal Abu-Shamsieh | Wednesdays, 12:40pm–3:30pm

This course will prepare students to respond to human need and sorrow with compassionate empathy informed by their own religious perspectives. Because care is always contextual, students will develop competence in listening and responding to people from differing religious worldviews and a variety of human crisis situations. Through assigned readings, class lectures and discussion, and role-play exercises, the course will also promote understanding of the history of spiritual care in each religious tradition, foster growth in self-awareness and strengthen their capacity for critical self-reflection on practices of spiritual care. [Faculty Consent required]

SCPT-3002 Spirituality in Bereavement: Interfaith Perspectives
Instructor: Terri Daniel | Tuesdays, 9:40am–12:30pm

When facing a profound a loss of any kind, such as the death of a loved one, divorce, job loss, pet loss or loss of health, we cannot separate psychology from spirituality. Regardless of one’s belief system, spiritual outlook or concept of God, loss and grief almost always triggers existential questions, because searching for meaning is an intrinsic part of the grieving process. Anyone who works to support the bereaved inevitably encounters this struggle, but often feels uncertain of how to examine it. Indeed, a Christian might wonder, “Why would a loving god let this happen?” or “Is God punishing me?” A person who is Spiritual But Not Religious (SBNR) might ask, “What am I supposed to learn from this experience?” or “How is this experience challenging me to deepen my spiritual practice?” An atheist might question whether painful events are truly random, or if there is some deeper purpose to our losses. It can be unclear how to engage productively with these questions while respecting the uniqueness of each person’s spiritual journey. Furthermore, in the mental health field, spirituality is often regarded as a taboo subject and not adequately addressed in counseling sessions or support groups. This course is designed for masters-level pastoral care providers working with loss, trauma and grief. Course activities will include class discussion, lecture, interactive exercises, reflection papers, sacred ceremony. Course available for 1.5-3 units.