Objectives of Clinical Pastoral Education
Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) is experience-based theological education and allows ministers, seminarians, and other religiously-oriented persons to develop counseling and pastoral care-giving skills, familiarity within a particular pastoral setting and self-awareness as a pastoral caregiver. This exciting type of adult learning combines the action of ministry with reflection through diverse seminars, individual supervision and conceptual material.
The focus is on pastoral identity, pastoral authority and pastoral functioning in the midst of a supportive, structured and compassionate setting. In this unique type of theological education, the adult learner has the opportunity to integrate knowledge from medicine, psychology and spirituality into pastoral theology.
- To become aware of one’s self as a minister and of the ways one’s ministry affects people.
- To become a competent pastor of people and groups in various life situations and crisis circumstances and to develop the maturity to provide intensive and extensive pastoral care and counseling.
- To utilize the clinical method of learning.
- To utilize the support, confrontation, and clarification of the peer group for the integration of personal attributes and pastoral functioning.
- To become competent in self-evaluation and in utilizing supervision and consultation to evaluate one’s pastoral practice.
- To develop the ability to make optimum use of one’s religious heritage, theological understanding, and knowledge of behavioral sciences in pastoral ministry to people and groups.
- To acquire self-knowledge to a degree that permits pastoral care to be offered within the strengths and limitations of one’s own person.
- To develop the ability to work as a pastoral member of an interdisciplinary team.
- To develop the capacity to utilize one’s pastoral perspective and competence in a variety of functions such as preaching, teaching and administration, as well as pastoral care and counseling.
- To become aware of how one’s attitudes, values and assumptions affect one’s ministry.
- To understand the theological issues arising from experience and to utilize theology and the behavioral sciences to understand the human condition.
CMC’s Clinical Pastoral Education program is provisionally accredited through the College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy and the training reflects that of “Recovery of Soul.”
Each student is on CMC’s campus one day a week for classroom interaction including verbatim seminars, didactics and interpersonal relations sessions. Students are also responsible to document eight hours per week of active patient care, most of which will be done at CMC by visiting patients in response to pastoral consultation requests. Students meet with the supervisor for bi-weekly individual sessions as part of their training and course work.