Pastoral Care Specialist Program

“When I first began serving as a pastor, my care was informed by classroom and short-term clinical settings. In the time since, my experience has deepened and broadened, but my opportunity for reflection with colleagues and others was absent. The Pastoral Care Specialist class provided the opportunity to share my experiences and gain new learning about how to provide pastoral care, and introduced a network of colleagues for support and ongoing encouragement.”

Rev. Daniel G. Kuckuck
Assistant to the Bishop for Leadership and Congregational Transitions
Southeastern Iowa Synod — ELCA

Classes begin September 2023 and end June 2025

This two-year course is designed for clergy, parish nurses, Stephen ministers, chaplains and others involved in pastoral care ministries. Meeting monthly, participants learn about areas critical to effective pastoral care, and receive support, encouragement and consultation on their work. Participants will reinforce what they already do well and integrate new knowledge and skills into their ministries.

Dates and Time: 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. monthly, every second Thursday beginning September 2023 and ending June 2025 (No class July and August)

Location: Online via Zoom

Tuition: $650 for each of the two years, plus a $50 non-refundable registration fee. To discuss a payment plan option for tuition, please contact Chris Waddle,

Topics Will Include:

  • Forgiveness: Practical Applications and Implications of Forgiveness in Ministry.
  • Whole-hearted Listening
  • Memory Loss and Cognitive Decline
  • Suicide Awareness and Prevention in Faith Communities
  • The Spirituality of Children
  • Caring for the Anxious: Being a Non-Anxious Presence in an Anxious World
  • Ministry with LGBTQ Individuals
  • Mindful Ministry


  1. Set up a meeting by phone or in-person with Chris Waddle, Director of Leadership and Spiritual Life at the Mind & Spirit Counseling Center, to make sure the program is a good fit:, 515-868-7172.
  2. Register below – $50 non-refundable fee to hold your spot in the course. $650 tuition will be due at your first class.