MGH offers a 3 unit, 12-month CPE residency program, a summer intensive CPE unit, and extended CPE units.
The MGH CPE programs are accredited by The Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, Inc., www.acpe.edu
CPE serves as a part of one’s preparation for parish ministry, chaplaincy, lay ministry, teaching and counseling. Your learning contract will be tailored to your individual learning needs. An overall goal of CPE is the integration of theological, psychological, and pastoral insights into pastoral functioning in the setting of your religious community. One unit of CPE does not prepare you for professional chaplaincy.
CPE programs are available for healthcare providers. The individualized learning contracts and the overall program design are geared towards clinicians’ integration of spiritual care giving in clinical practice. By the end of a CPE program you will be able to
Becoming a certified chaplain isn’t an overnight process. It requires graduate-level theological education, at least four units of clinical pastoral education, ordination or commissioning by one’s faith group, ecclesiastical endorsement/support, and demonstrated competency in functioning as a chaplain. Once you have fulfilled these requirements, you are ready to apply for certification. You will then appear in front of a committee that will review your application. The entire process takes up to twelve months. For detailed information visit the websites of the major certifying bodies: The Association of Professional Chaplains, The National Association of Catholic Chaplains, Nashama: Association of Jewish Chaplains.
No. You can be ordained or commissioned, depending on your faith group’s requirements.
Level I CPE outcomes guide the learning during the first, second, and occasionally the third unit. In order to move to Level II a student needs to demonstrate that he/she has consistently reached the Level I functioning and is beginning to work on Level II outcomes.
Certification after four units of CPE is not an automatic process. Any candidate for certification needs to demonstrate pastoral functioning consistent with the Common Standards. Some students reach this level in four units, others prefer to take additional units of CPE.
Yes, some divinity schools offer academic credit for the first unit of CPE. Others do not. You may want to inquire about this. Some divinity schools also offer academic credit for advanced CPE at MGH.