July 2017 Newsletter


July 2017 - News & Events

ChI News

ChI Launches Eco-Ministry Intensive

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In February and April, eight students gathered for the first-ever ChI Eco-Ministry Intensive. 

In February, students who hadn't already done so, participated in the Interfaith Studies Certificate Program Earth-Based Traditions' module deepening their exploration of the existing connections between the earth, religion and spirituality.
In April, students explored themes more specific to Eco-Ministry including classes on Finding our place in the Ecosystem of Our Planet Home with Patricia St. Onge, Deep Change as Serious Opportunity with Jesse Ford, An Evolutionary Approach to Eco-Ministry with David Mitchell, Spiritualities for Earth-size Economics: Healing the Wounds of Disconnection with Rev. Lee Van Ham, Human Needs, Human Addictions: Making Sense of Greed and Grief in our Consumer Age with Tom Rockwell and We Were Made for These Times with Martha O'Hehir.

The program included a visit to an Ohlone shell mound (native burial site) and to Canticle Farms, an urban farm and neighborhood resource  with Anne Symens-Bucher;  as well as a trip with Clinton Williams to Planting Justice nursery, a project in East Oakland employing many youth and formerly incarcerated individuals, who now help private residences become active permaculture and greywater sites.  Visits to these locations were described as “touching, informative, experientially powerful and perhaps the most striking part of the module.”

While this was a pilot of this new, innovative program, the participant evaluations demonstrated excitement, enthusiasm and hunger for more. Planning is underway for the next intensive and for ways to expand  the teaching for this timely and essential ministry.

Read more about the ChI Eco-Ministry Intensive


Staff Changes at ChI

ChI is undergoing some staff changes.

This spring, we said goodbye to two women who added immeasurable value to our organization.

Mary Mallahan Hicken, with ChI since 2015, has moved on to be a counselor to the students at Bishop O'Dowd High School in Oakland. We are grateful for her efforts to manage the Admissions process.

Shawn Masten worked as Communications Manager for the past two years. We will miss the gifts she brought to ChI and the ChI message. 

We are excited to introduce our new staff to you in the next newsletter. Staff changes are always a bit challenging. We appreciate your patience while we are in transition.

In this Issue





ChI Events

Other Events

Support ChI


Community Spotlight

Rev. Scott Quinn, ChI credentialed clergy and Spiritual Director named as Executive Director of The Marin Interfaith Council
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Scott Quinn has been named as Executive Director for The Marin Interfaith Council. He has been serving in the role of Acting Executive Director for the past year. Previously, Scott was Director of Community at ChI. Scott received his Certificate in Interfaith Spiritual Direction and another in Supervision of Spiritual Directors from ChI. He also transferred his ministerial standing to The ChI Community.

At The Marin Interfaith Council, with a focus on social justice,  Scott says:   “When we talk about affordable housing, homelessness and immigration, education, it starts from one place...Each person here is of equal value and worth, inestimable value... how do we create a community where all of us thrive?”

We look forward to witnessing Scott's ongoing gifts in leading this agency. 

Read more


Rev. Mark Estes speaks on spirituality and end of life

Interview on KDIA's "Aging by the Bay"

rev_mark_estesRev. Mark Estes was interviewed on a local radio show "Aging by the Bay" which delivers relevant, helpful material about aging. Mark spoke as a chaplain on how he approaches those at the end of life who don't necessarily identify as having a strong spiritual life. Through "compassionate curiosity" Mark discovers the stories and beliefs of those who may have been closed down. By giving people the space to share their story,  Mark says of his interactions with patients, "...at that point the floodgates open and the stories come out and things that are meaningful come into play and when those things bubble up, many  people come to a place of a big picture, large perspective of life, life stance and are then able to say, this is my life, I am here now."

► Hear Mark's interview, a "Spiritual and Emotional Approach to Life"


Are you called to Interfaith ministry and chaplaincy but unsure how to fulfill your calling?

Take a look at the Types of Interfaith Ministries page of the ChI website. There we list the many ways there are to be of Interfaith service and how training at ChI can manifest in the world.

If you are a ChI graduate who is providing unique spiritual care in your community,  please share your story with us and help others heed the call to Interfaith service.


Still Time to Apply

2017-18 Interfaith Spiritual Direction Certificate Program

Application deadline is  July 31st extended to August 7!
Course Schedule is August 2017 - March 2018
Download the Application

This program is designed for those who feel called to a private practice in personal, one-on-one spiritual direction, and who anticipate working with clients from a variety of faith traditions. It is also well-suited for those who intend to do group spiritual direction, and for those of other helping professions who want to add a spiritual guidance perspective to their current work (such as psychotherapists, social workers, health practitioners, ministers and chaplains). Upon successful completion of the program, participants are qualified to provide spiritual direction in the context of their choosing.

Read more
►More info: please contact Admissions at 510-631-3066 or admissions(at)chaplaincyinstitute.org


Islam Themed Module

July 19-23, 2017, Berkeley, California

islamThis module will focus on the tradition of Islam. Students will explore the sacred texts of Islam, the Qur’an and Hadith, the Five Pillars of the faith, and also consider the cultural and religious dimensions of Islam in health care and community life. Islamophobia and images of Muslims in the media will be topics of discussion in a class this year. Students will also attend Friday Prayers at the Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California. In addition to the study of the faith tradition, this module will include social justice education.  While focusing on spiritual care, students will explore the elements of prayer and presence, and boundaries and transference.

►To register contact Admissions Manager,  510-631-3066 or admissions(at)chaplaincyinstitute.org

For more information on this module

Join a ChI Module as a Student

Our modules are designed to inspire, nurture and educate those who are called to serve in an Interfaith capacity in our increasingly diverse world or for those who are interested in learning more about a specific faith tradition. Our innovative programs focus on a combination of the study of world's religions, an exploration of mystical paths and teachings, and spiritual care and ministry skills... all in a creatively infused context.  We invite you to take a single module or up to 3 modules total. If you are interested in more, the Interfaith Studies Certificate Program prepares students for spiritual service to people of all faiths & paths.

Module Calendar
►More info: Admissions at 510-631-3066 or admissions@chaplaincyinstitute.org


Attend Visitor’s Day as Our Guest

If you are interested in learning more about our seminary programs and potentially becoming a student, we invite you to visit the first day of the Interfaith Studies Certificate Program module as our guest. 

► To schedule a visit, contact Admissions at 510-631-3066 or admissions@chaplaincyinstitute.org
ChI Events

Interfaith Labyrinth Walk

labryinthThis is a contemplative service, with few words spoken, and lots of freedom as we invite people to pray, sing, meditate, or walk the labyrinth.

When:  6 p.m. - 7 p.m., Friday, July 28, 2017
Where:  Christ Church, 2138 Cedar Street, Berkeley, CA

More information

Other Events

NAIN Harmony

North America Interfaith Network Conference Harmony

August 6-10, 2017
San Diego, California

NAIN's annual four-day conference this year will feature a Bridge for Peace Ceremony, City Proclamations for Interfaith Awareness Week, and an interfaith choir and serenading by Karl Anthony to name a few highlights. Keynote speakers include author Azim KhamisaMonsignor Dennis MikulanisImam Taha Hassane and a surprise guest. More than 12 workshops will complement tours of local religious sites and historic Old Town San Diego.

NAIN is offering a Young Adult Scholarship, open to anyone between the ages of 18 and 35 who is currently involved in some form of interfaith or other social justice work. Scholarship recipients receive a $500 stipend to attend the conference. Application deadline is April 5th. 

More information



Parliament of World Religions

November 1 - 8, 2018, Toronto

Registration fees are reduced until August 2017, then they will increase. If we form a group of ChI participants, there is a group rate available as well. Please contact Rev. Jessica Shine, Community Minister, at jessica(at)chaplaincyinstitute.org if you'd like to help form a group or register with our group attending.ParliamentChI

Over 40 participants from The ChI community had a wonderful and fulfilling experience at the previous Parliament in 2015.

More than 10,000 people will participate in the 2018 Parliament, which will last for seven days and comprise more than 500 programs, workshops, and dialogues, alongside music, dance, art and photography exhibitions, in addition to related events presented by the world’s religious communities and cultural institutions.

Help Promote ChI at These Events

Donate to ChI today and help us have a presence at these conferences. Your donation will help us reserve a booth, and provide flyers and other participant materials to raise awareness for our programs.

Donate Now!

If you plan to attend any of these events and are willing to help staff a ChI booth, or if you have an event you would like us to publicize, please contact chioffice(at)chaplaincyinstitute.org or call the office at 510-843-1422.

Thank you!

Support ChI

Special Thanks to our Monthly Supporters


We offer heartfelt gratitude to ChI's 2016 monthly donors who provided sustaining support for our work and mission. If you would like to offer much needed ongoing support to ChI, you can donate here.

Visit our 2016 Monthly Donors Page

We Want You!

volunteerDue to the very limited staff resource at ChI, we rely heavily on volunteers to bring their skills and talents to assist with various functions If you have time to dedicate to ChI, we would love to have you locally or virtually. Click on the link below for a list of opportunities.

Volunteer with The Chaplaincy Institute

Thank you in advance for your support!


To inspire and educate for innovative interfaith service
and spiritual care to heal and transform the world.

The Chaplaincy Institute is a nonprofit organization. 
Tax ID #94-3334108

Join us: 



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