ACPE Academy

The ACPE Academy is an interactive, online resource designed to support the professional development of ACPE Supervisors and students. Webinars, static videos, and discussion materials are available here for all ACPE members. While most materials are provided as a member benefit, some premium content is available at a fee. Those fees support the ongoing development of the kinds of materials that help advance ACPE’s mission: A community of professionals committed to nurturing connections to the sacred through experiential, transformational education and spiritual care.

To recommend future content or for questions/comments about current offerings, please contact Marc Medwed, Program Manager.


upcoming webinars



Bill Gaventa, Director, Summer Institute on Theology and Disability and Collaborative on Faith and Disability, has spent his pastoral/chaplaincy career working in both institutional and community settings that serve and support people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. He is a CPE Supervisor, now on retired status.

Meggie Kobb, Staff Chaplain at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania who covers the Emergency Department, ED Observation Unit, and the Psychiatric Emergency Evaluation Center. She did a CPE residency at Penn, and, as the proud mother of a ten year old son on the autism spectrum, has used both her training and experience as chaplain with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 

Webinar #1 An Introduction to Understanding of Models of Disability and Terminology

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

12:00 PM Eastern


Webinar #2 Dimensions of Grief and Loss in the Lives of People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and Pastoral Strategies for Addressing Them

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

12:00 PM Eastern

Webinar #3 Pastoral Care and Advocacy Beyond the Hospital Walls

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

12:00 PM Eastern


Do You Really See Me? "See me! Touch me! Feel me!" sang Tommy in the great rock musical by the Who. Intellectual and developmental disabilities are a diagnostic category but not an illness or disease. People with labels such as cerebral palsy, autism and intellectual disability also get sick and deal with other life threatening diseases. However, they and their families and/or caregivers often experience typical acute care hospitals as risky and dangerous places because of assumptions about disability, issues in communication, and judgments about quality of life, grief, and loss.  Pastoral caregivers thus have the opportunity to combine sensitive care of individuals, families, and staff with advocacy that addresses stereotypes, assumptions, and gaps in their care and support.




Rebecca Stapel-Wax is the Executive Director of SOJOURN. She holds a master’s degree in counseling from Georgia State and a B.A. from Clark University. Rebecca has dedicated her career to helping others navigate the pressures to conform one’s gender identity or sexual orientation. Along with many volunteers, Rebecca has trained thousands of youth, educators, parents, clergy, and advocates to build inclusive communities including family life, the work place, and congregational life.

Robbie Medwed is the Education Director of SOJOURN where he oversees their award-winning safe space, LGBT inclusion, and suicide prevention workshops and training seminars. Robbie holds a master’s degree in Jewish education from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, a B.A. from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and has written curricula and nationally-recognized inclusive programs for the Marcus JCC of Atlanta, BBYO, USY, NFTY, Camp Ramah, the Jewish Teen Funders Network. 


The Southern Jewish Resource Network for Gender and Sexual Diversity (SOJOURN) promotes increased understanding, acceptance, and inclusion of individuals across the entire spectrum of gender and sexual orientation in the Southeast through education, outreach, and advocacy, inspired by Jewish and universal ethics and ideals.

Webinar #1:
  Terminology, Vocabulary, and Key Concepts Surrounding Gender and Gender Identity
Thursday February 18, 2016; 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM Eastern

Click here to watch the webinar.
Additional Links: SOJOURN Terms
                         Ryland's Story
                         Debi Jackson 
                         Gender Pronouns
                         Gender Neutral Pronouns

Webinar #2: Becoming an Ally: Countering Microaggressions, Stereotypes, Transphobia and Faith Challenges
Tuesday, March 8, 2016; 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM Eastern

Registration Link:


Webinar #3: Negating Risk Factors (Suicide, Substance Abuse, Family Relationships) and Challenges of Healthcare
Tuesday, March 22, 2016; 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM Eastern

Registration Link:


Series Overview

SOJOURN's three-part series on transgender inclusion will discuss the terminology and concepts surrounding gender and gender identity. These interactive sessions will provide participants with accurate definitions of terms related to sexual orientation and gender identity, how gender identity and sexual orientation and gender identity differ, and will increase participants' comfort level when using terms related to sexual orientation and gender identity. Discussion areas will include combatting stereotypes, discrimination, micro-aggression, and how to translate this knowledge into action in healthcare and the workplace. Participants will learn how every day actions can create (or destroy) a sense of safety and comfort for our friends, family, and communities.


System Requirements: An internet connection – broadband wired or wireless (3G or 4G/LTE), Speakers and a microphone – built-in or USB plug-in or wireless Bluetooth


Supported Operating Systems: Mac OS X with MacOS 10.6.8 /(Snow Leopard) or later; Windows XP with SP3 or later, Windows Vista with SP1, Windows 7, 8, 8.1 10

Supported Browsers: Windows: IE7+,  Firefox,  Chrome,  Safari5+, Opera12+; Mac: Safari5+,  Firefox,  Chrome



past Webinars



Rev. Mary Martha Thiel is Director of Clinical Pastoral Education at Hebrew SeniorLife/Hebrew Rehabilitation Center. She is an ordained United Church of Christ minister, Board Certified Chaplain in the Association of Professional Chaplains, and a CPE Supervisor in the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education. She began her career at Calvary Hospital in the Bronx NY, a palliative care hospital for persons with advanced cancer, and served for many years in leadership of the Chaplaincy at Massachusetts General Hospital. She loves the creativity of CPE, and in addition to starting the unique Jewish Geriatric program at HSL/HRC, helped to create a groundbreaking CPE program for teaching healthcare professionals how to integrate spiritual caregiving into the practice of their own disciplines. She lives in Brookline, and enjoys being part of an interfaith Daughters of Abraham book group.


Rabbi Sara Paasche-Orlow was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. She began CPE training at St. Mary’s Hospital in San Francisco and did a rabbinical internship doing pastoral care with people with HIV and AIDS in NYC. As a CLAL Fellow, she co-authored a curriculum on Jewish Healing for the National Association for Jewish Healing. Sara worked as a Program Officer and Educator for the Jewish Life Network, and then as the National Education Director for Spark (Jewish Service Learning). She is now Rabbi and Director of Spiritual Care at HSL.

Webinar # 1 Spiritual Care of the Nonreligious

Presented by Rev. Mary Martha Thiel

Wednesday, February 3, 2016  

12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Eastern

Watch the webinar here and view the slides here .
For an article about this topic, please click here: Spiritual Care of the Nonreligious 


Professional chaplains need education and humility to provide skillful and sensitive spiritual support to the growing numbers of nonreligious persons – the so-called “spiritual but not religious,” unaffiliated, agnostics, and atheists – in their institutions.  Training should encourage increased awareness of why persons are nonreligious, a clear understanding of the chaplain’s role as a caregiver of all, inclusive assessment tools, and an enlarged toolkit of spiritual care interventions.  Because professional chaplains are often socialized and trained in religious settings, the spiritual care of nonreligious persons requires intentional cultural humility.

Webinar #2 Teaching Spiritual Care of the Nonreligious

Presented by Rev. Mary Martha Thiel

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Watch the webinar here and view the slides here

For an article about this topic, please click here: Teaching Spiritual Care of the Nonreligious 


Curricula for teaching chaplains to provide skillful spiritual care of the nonreligious should include self-inventory of each chaplain’s attitudes and assumptions regarding nonreligious persons, and the translation of religious care giving skills into a variety of nonreligious vocabularies and interventions.  A number of learning tools are proposed as means to these goals.


Webinar #3 Spiritual Care of Jews Who Identify as Nonreligious

Presented by Rev. Mary Martha Thiel and Rabbi Sara Paasche-Orlow

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Watch the webinar here and view the slides here

For an article about this topic, please click here: Spiritual Care of Jews who Identify as Nonreligious 


Culturally appropriate spiritual care of Jews who are not religious shares some characteristics with spiritual care of other nonreligious Americans, and differs significantly in other ways, due to Judaism’s uniqueness as a tradition.  Mapping a Jewish patient’s location in the wide expanse of belief, behaviors that are based in Jewish values or ritual, and sense of belonging, is essential to providing appropriate spiritual care.  Chaplains’ awareness should include “Jews of No Religion” as a significant identifier within American Jewish pluralism. In addition, a chaplain needs spiritual assessment models sufficiently inclusive to guide their work with this subset of Jews, and a culturally appropriate toolkit of spiritual care interventions.  Because professional chaplains are usually religiously socialized and seminary or rabbinical school trained, the spiritual care of “Jews of No Religion” requires intentional empathy and cultural humility.  Given the historical abuses of Jews by Christians, professional chaplains affiliated with Christian denominations often face the additional challenge of establishing their credibility as trustworthy caregivers willing to support Jews on the patients’ own terms.


Date: Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Time: 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM ET

Presenter: Dennis Kenny


Click here to watch the webinar. Click here for the powerpoint slides.

Our standards ask us to evaluate the individual supervision abilities of our supervisory students, to look at the ability to build learning alliances, help set goals, and evaluate students practice.

We are asked to have a group theory and talk about how we lead groups.  I have never heard a student asked what they do in supervisory conference, why they do it and what the end goal of it is. 

As in much of CPE we do what was once done unto us.  Better supervision I belief would be to connect our theories directly to the supervisory conference; deciding whether we will talk about verbatim, goals, peer and supervisory relationships or none of the above. 

Deciding that allows us to evaluate our supervisory students abilities more precisely, give more directed feedback and create training opportunities that improve this mysterious hour that students value so highly.

The Webinar will focus on the purpose of the conference, the impact of different educational theories on what is discussed in it and attempt to elevate the training for this valued time.  



Dennis Kenny



Date: October 23, 2015

Time: 12:00PM-1:00PM EDT

Presenter: Lex Tartaglia and George Fitchett


Watch the webinar here. For more information on Transforming Chaplaincy .

Funded by two grants totaling $4.5M over four years from the John Templeton Foundation, with additional support from ACPE and the major professional chaplaincy organizations, the Transforming Chaplaincy: Promoting Research Literacy for Improved Patient Outcomes project seeks to equip hospital chaplains to use research to guide, evaluate and advocate for the spiritual care they provide. One of the ways Transforming Chaplaincy plans to close the gap between hospital chaplains’ current limited research literacy and evidence-based care is through the provision of Curriculum Development Grants to 70 ACPE-accredited CPE residency programs. The grants are intended to support the incorporation of research literacy education in their curricula.


The webinar, co-led by Lex Tartaglia (Virginia Commonwealth University) and George Fitchett (Rush University Medical Center), will review the CPE Curriculum Development Grant application requirements, present several models for teaching research literacy in CPE residency programs, and allow time for questions from webinar participants.


George Fitchett, DMin, PhD, BCC

Lex Tartaglia, DMin


Further information about the CPE Curriculum Development Grants and the Transforming Chaplaincy project is available on the project website ( and by contacting Kathryn Lyndes, PhD (312.942.0247).


Date: Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Time: 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM ET
Presenter: Dr. Judy Ragsdale

Watch the webinar here. Download the PowerPoint here

When one enters the Certification process as a Supervisory Education Student (SES), the journey is filled with opportunities for growth, reflection and transformation.  Attaining the status of Associate Supervisor is an achievement to be lauded and celebrated. Having a research-based theory to guide supervisors in their work with SESs could prove useful. This study is the third in a series of research studies conducted for the purpose of developing a theory for educating CPE supervisors.

Over the past 16 months, Dr. Judy Ragsdale, along with several ACPE supervisory colleagues Johnny Bush, Sheryl Lyndes Stowman, Rod Seeger and Chuck Orme-Rogers conducted a study that identified key behavioral outcomes of SES's that had a positive impact on their process of becoming certified as an Associate Supervisor.  Through interviews with twenty-eight ACPE Certification Commissioners and using the qualitative research methodology of grounded theory, the research team identified twelve key themes and developed descriptors for each one.

In this webinar, Dr. Ragsdale will highlight the key themes, explore the various descriptors and facilitate a conversation that will enable those engaged in the education of SESs to utilize the findings of the research as they further develop and refine the theories and methodologies currently in place. 


Judith R. Ragsdale, M.Div., Ph.D.
Director of Education and Research
Department of Pastoral Care
Assistant Professor
Division of General and Community Pediatrics
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center


Webinar #2 Teaching Spiritual Care of the Nonreligious

Presented by Rev. Mary Martha Thiel

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Eastern

Webinar #2 Teaching Spiritual Care of the Nonreligious

Presented by Rev. Mary Martha Thiel

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Eastern