What is Clinical Pastoral Education?
Clinical Pastoral Education is interfaith professional education for ministry. It brings theological students and ministers of all faiths (pastors, priests, rabbis, imams and others) into supervised encounter with persons in crisis. Out of an intense involvement with persons in need, and the feedback from peers and teachers, students develop new awareness of themselves as persons and of the needs of those to whom they minister. From theological reflection on specific human situations, they gain a new understanding of ministry. Within the interdisciplinary team process of helping persons, they develop skills in interpersonal and interprofessional relationships.
The Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, Inc. (ACPE) is a professional association committed to advancing experience- based theological education for seminarians, clergy and lay persons of diverse cultures, ethnic groups and faith traditions. We establish standards, certify supervisors and accredit programs and centers in varied settings. ACPE programs promote the integration of personal history, faith tradition and the behavioral sciences in the practice of spiritual care.
Among the 350 ACPE Accredited CPE Centers that make up the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, many are located in the South Central Region. We are in association with over 115 theological schools and 15 Faith Groups who are partners with ACPE in seeking to provide excellence in theological education. Other groups of ACPE members are clinical members, students, individuals, retired supervisors, retired members, and ACPE networks.