Interfaith Intern Receives 1 CPE Unit

I’ve been reading a number of interesting comments on Interfaith chaplaincy on the professional blogs. I’ve reproduced my own experience of my Interfaith Internship at Interfaith. Read about the travesty of interfaith CPE at a mid-sized acute care facility, and some of my experiences of so-called “supervision” and some questionable interns.

My CPE Group & Supervisor

2 Replies to “Interfaith?”

  1. My best advice to you, Patricia, is to be skeptical, not cynical. Go for it! Part of the formational aspect is self-care, of course, and part of that is reflecting and forgiving. Don’t expect–but don’t stop hoping for–justice or fairness, but do your absolute best for your patients and their families. It is absolutely essential that you have a clear understanding of what you’re going to be called to do and that you have the gifts to do it. The worst thing that you can do is accept the challenge and not feel that you can meet it; it’s not going to be about you on the units but about the spiritual needs of souls in existential crisis. A poorly prepared or sloppy chaplain can do a hell of a lot of damage, some of it long-lasting, even irreparable. If you are prepared and willing to make the necessary sacrifices, the rewards are beyond telling.

    Have faith only in yourself, in God or Buddha or Krishna, but have strong faith and respect the faith of those to whom you are ministering.

    Be aware that not everyone in chaplaincy or those in your CPE unit are there for the right reasons (theirs or their program’s), and that the particular supervisor may have the supervisory skills of a dishrag, but that’s surmountable if you keep in mind that s/he’ll write an end-of-unit evaluation and recommendation that can either make you or break you in your pastoral care career, and that evaluation does not have to reflect objective reality, only the supervisor’s.

    See my piece on the disciple-syndrome on my Pastoral Care blog and my piece on Chaplain Wuss on my Church, Ministry, and Pastoral Care blog.

    Good luck and do well!
    Peace and blessings!

  2. This certainly does not give me great hope for my upcoming summer CPE internship– especially what was said about the supervisors. Are there more questions I can ask ahead of time to get a better fit for all involved?

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