April 5, 2021
This season is special in that within the span of 18 days, Jews, Christians, and Muslims are all celebrating Holy days. I hope your Holy Days are just what you need to continue the good work you do.

I am a progressive Christian from a Baptist background (yes, we really exist). And, I am a chaplain at Children’s Medical Center Dallas.

Our program was one of the first to use a philosophy of Children’s Spirituality talked about by Rev. Dr. Jerome Berryman of the US and informed by Rebecca Nye of the United Kingdom. Dr. Berryman’s use of stories of God and the people of God, both ancient and throughout the ages, are embodied in specific wooden figures placed and moved upon specific underlays, often from wooden boxes or other special receptacles. Children’s Spirituality is a part of our curriculum throughout the year. The work is not only in learning the stories, rather it is also about helping each student (and Chaplain and Educator) “do our work” around what we find in the stories told. And helping children, families, and staff recognize and make their meaning in difficult situations as well.
In preparation for the 2021 ACPE Annual Conference: Creating Room to Breathe, ACPE has identified key themes from the Anti-Bias survey of ACPE members. In the following weeks, ACPE will be publishing the key themes that emerged from the Anti-Bias survey results and questions for reflection.

Key Theme #5: We are shaped by our history; shaping our future differently will require intentional changes in our present practice. 
After decades of collaboration and a few years of negotiations, the Boards of Directors of the ACPE: The Standard for Spiritual Care and Education and the Association of Professional Chaplains met concurrently on March 18, 2021 at 10:00am EDT/9:00am CDT to entertain a motion that the organizations officially merge. Both organizations approved the motion.

Sign-in to ACPE's SharePoint: This is where member conversations happen! Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), a timeline of collaboration, and a conversation with ACPE leaders have been posted in ACPE's SharePoint. Sign-in to www.office.com with your 'ACPE.EDU' email address to review the info and join the conversation.
Once a month the ACPE Professional Ethics Commission (PEC) posts a couple of statements from our Code of Professional Ethics for ACPE Members. Each posting is accompanied by a brief personal reflection from a member of the PEC discussing some ways this person lives these commitments*. 
ACPE rolled out a new Salesforce database, website, and SharePoint sites in 2020. Join John Roch, Director of Communications & Technology, and Carl Jones-Reid, Technology Specialist for a Tech Talk ACPE.
Any ACPE member interested in discussing the changes in the ACPE structure and ethos in the past five years and before may want to join a new community of practice to do that. We will be soliciting educators' opinions and experience of the changes through surveys and zoom discussions of organization, accreditation, certification, and other changes impacting our life together in ACPE. We will use the clinical methods of action–reflection–refined action to understand our organization. The first meeting will be on April 8. Contact Katherine Higgins or Gordon J Hilsman if interested.
Dr. Kirk Bingaman, Professor of Pastoral Mental Health Counseling at Fordham University, and Psychotherapy Member of ACPE, has been appointed Editor-in-
Chief of the journal, Pastoral Psychology. The journal is one of the oldest and most well established academic publications in the field of psychology and religion/theology, pastoral care and counseling, and pastoral theology. ACPE members are invited to submit articles for peer review, as well as to propose ideas
for special-issue editions (along with guest editorship). If you have any questions about the journal, please email Kirk Bingaman. You can also submit a Journal Article.
We invite all ACPE Certified Educators who are working with Educator Candidates to join us for informal consultations and conversations via Zoom in 2021. 

The drop-in meeting (no RSVP required) will take place on Mondays, beginning from 12:00pm to 1:00pm Eastern time.  
Certified Educators, are you due for a peer review in 2021? You are due this year if your last review was in 2018, or if you were certified in 2018. If you have not yet participated in the new peer review process (and are not newly certified), then you are likely overdue. Information about the process, including how to form your peer review team, the written materials required, and the procedures for using your SharePoint portfolio, may be found in the certification section of the Members Home SharePoint site, here. Please contact Katherine Higgins with any questions.
In Case You Missed It
This year the readers unanimously selected the theory papers written by Imani Jones to receive the ACPE Theory Papers of the Year Award. Imani Jones, DMin, MDiv, ThM, BCC, is the CPE Program Manager, Department of Chaplaincy and Clinical Pastoral Education, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.
ACPE Spiritual Care Professional and Editor of the ACPE Research articles John Ehman tests a Spiritual Care Advocate program designed as a partnership between a hospital and local congregations, to improve cancer patients' sense of spiritual support and health care outcomes at the end of life in this month's article.
While some of our colleagues, especially in the south, are suffering from the effects of wild weather, here in the New York City metropolitan area, I’m heartened to see and feel hints of Spring – crocuses popping up from the ground, more hours of sunlight, warmer days.
The ACPE SIP Program offers trainings to help mental health practitioners work more competently with spirituality in the context of psychotherapy. The 30-hour NBCC-approved continuing education curriculum is a specialty training for persons who have previous training in psychotherapy.
Weekly Highlights
This Week's Reflection
Every once in a while, it is not a whole poem but one line that seems so powerful, so current, so profound that it will not be ignored. Such is the case with this poem by Ada Limon: “Patient, plodding, a green skin growing over whatever winter did to us, a return to the strange idea of continuous living despite the mess of us, the hurt, the empty.” 
Instructions on Not Giving Up
by Ada Limón

More than the fuchsia funnels breaking out
of the crabapple tree, more than the neighbor’s
almost obscene display of cherry limbs shoving
their cotton candy-colored blossoms to the slate
sky of Spring rains, it’s the greening of the trees
that really gets to me. When all the shock of white
and taffy, the world’s baubles and trinkets, leave
the pavement strewn with the confetti of aftermath,
the leaves come. Patient, plodding, a green skin
growing over whatever winter did to us, a return
to the strange idea of continuous living despite
the mess of us, the hurt, the empty. Fine then,
I’ll take it, the tree seems to say, a new slick leaf
unfurling like a fist to an open palm, I’ll take it all.

Copyright © 2017 by Ada Limón.
We usually reserve this space for something fun, but this new study about congregational affiliation seems very important to the work of ACPE. How are you thinking about, shaping, and recruiting for your programs in ways that reflect the emerging realities of religious life in the US?

This Week on the Calendar
April 5
Quingming (Confucianism)
Quingming is a celebration to remember ancestors and to tend to their grave sites. Some leave offerings at graves, such as food, tea and other libations. Willow branches are often carried or hung outside doors to ward off evil spirits.

April 8  
Feast Jalál (Bahai)
First day of the month of Jalál (Glory), the second month of the Badí’ Calendar. The Badí’ Calendar is a solar calendar consisting of 19 months of 19 days each (361 days), with the addition of either four or five “Intercalary Days” to adjust the calendar to the solar year. The days and months are named after the attributes of God. The Nineteen Day Feast, the primary community gathering for Bahá’ís in each town and city, is held on the first day of each Bahá’í month.

Hanamatsuri or Wesak (Buddhism)
The observance of the birth of Siddhartha Gautama, who would eventually become the historical Buddha

Yom Hashoah (Judaism)
Commemorates the murder of six million Jews by Hitler and the Nazi regime.

April 12
Ramadan begins at sundown (Islam)
Observed by Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting to commemorate the first revelation of the Qur'an to the Prophet Muhammad.
This Week in our Thoughts
  • ACPE Emeritus Thomas H. Cole died on April 3, 2021. During his career he worked at Memorial-Hermann Southwest Hospital in Houston, TX where he served as Director of Pastoral Care for many years, helping to train at least 6 ACPE Educators before retiring.

Visit the ACPE Memorials and Milestones page for more details. Please email webmaster@acpe.edu to add someone to our thoughts.
Bethleham, PA
St. Luke's University Health Network is currently seeking an ACPE Certified Educator
Houston, TX
Our Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) Chaplaincy Fellowship offers a 12-month, three unit program – accredited by ACPE.
Educational Opportunities
ACPE: The Standard for Spiritual Care & Education
ACPE is the standard for spiritual care and education. Our diverse membership includes Certified CPE Educators, Spiritually Integrated Psychotherapists, Spiritual Care Professionals and Practitioners, Pastoral Counselors, Chaplains, Faith Communities, and Seminaries. Our multi-disciplinary, multi-faith, multi-racial community of professionals provides education, connection, and formation through continuing education, networking, and leadership development.
ACPE is the premier, Department of Education recognized, organization that provides the highest quality CPE programs for spiritual care professionals of any faith and in any setting. We do this through a rigorous accreditation and certification process for centers and educators that provide CPE.
The depth of our training enables students to realize their full potential to strengthen the spiritual health of people in their care as well as themselves.
ACPE members are actively engaged in a wide variety of professional development activities including communities of practice, conferences, spiritual care research, and informal networking. We are more than just an association: we are a movement committed to the transformation of the human suffering.Our opportunities for formation and community enrich our member's work of healing and transforming people and communities in the US and across the globe.