St. Luke's University Health Network

Pastoral Care

Department of Pastoral Care

In its 36th year, the Department of Pastoral Care provides 24-hour spiritual care through staff, trainees and volunteers. Our ACPE-accredited programs are innovative and collaborative.

  • Department offices are located adjacent to the chapel which is near the Priscilla Payne Hurd Pavilion lobby.
  • Pastoral Care Department serves as a leader in hospital education on cultural and spiritual diversity, medical ethics and ethical decision-making, and loss and bereavement.
  • 24/7 on-call chaplaincy coverage provided by CPE trainees, chaplaincy staff, and community clergy serving as associate chaplains.
  • Innovative CPE curriculum involves persons in an intense program of reflection on self, others, and offering ministry in health care, modeling and encouraging working collaboratively with other professionals in holistic care of persons and their families respectful of culture/ethnicity, gender, developmental stage, affiliation, and spiritual resources and needs.
  • Opportunity for close collaboration with community clergy in pastoral care for congregants and parishioners.
  • Department serves as community leader in developing faith community resources in the continuum of the health care delivery system.

Pastoral Care Staff

  • The Rev. Mary Catherine Cole, is the Director of Pastoral Care and is also an ACPE-certified CPE Supervisor. An ordained Baptist minister and graduate of Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, she has extensive experience in health care institutions and parish ministry.  
  • The Rev. Nancy Adams, M.Div., BCC, is coordinator of pastoral services. An ordained United Church of Christ minister, she is Board certified by the Association of Professional Chaplains with extensive work in acute care and HIV+/AIDS ministries.

CPE Programs - Residency and Internships

Chaplain Residency

August 19, 2013 - September 2, 2014

This full-time 12-month+ program of three CPE units includes a weekly schedule of 28 hours of pastoral ministry and 12 hours of seminar, group and individual supervision. Residents also share in the 24/7 on-call schedule approximately once per week, including nights, weekends and holidays with compensatory time off.

Residents have access to patients, families, and staff in a variety of clinical settings, leading to a specialty in ministry. Practicing ministry on assigned floors and doing independent study including reading research in pastoral care and related disciplines are the foci of three integration periods between units.

There is no tuition for CPE Residents.

  • Renumeration: Annualized salary is $28, 259 for first year residents plus employee benefits package which includes health insurance, holidays, and paid time off.
  • Criteria for Admission
    • First-Year Residency - at least one unit of CPE training completed, readiness for pastoral learning, previous pastoral experience, ordination and/or faith community endorsement, and ability to minister in crises with persons of diverse faiths and cultures. Open to clergy, laity, religious, and persons studying for the ministry.
    • Second-Year Residency - successful completion of first-year residency at any ACPE-accredited CPE center.

Summer CPE

May 27 – August 1, 2014

This intensive 10-week program is designed to help students integrate personal, interpersonal, and professional learning through at least 100 hours of structured group and individual education and at least 300 hours of clinical practice of ministry.

  • Professional practice includes assignments on patient care units, sharing in the 24/7 on-call ministry, and time for department and CPE written materials.
  • Personal practice focuses on wellness and self-care through the use of spiritual direction, journaling, meditation and exercise.

Criteria for admission includes readiness for pastoral learning, professional or lay ministry experience, faith community endorsement, openness to spiritual and cultural diversity and ability to ministry in crises. Open to clergy, laity, religious, and persons studying for the ministry.

Tuition for the program is $400 plus $25 application fee.

Extended CPE Unit

October 7, 2013 – April 24, 2014

This 7-month part-time program involves three parts:

  • Group: 12 - 5:30 pm Thursdays
  • Patient/family visitation: 7 hours-per-week (spread over two days)
  • Participation in the 24/7 on-call schedule: 2 on-calls per month (one weeknight and
    one weekend shift each month)

Criteria for admission includes readiness for pastoral learning, previous professional or lay ministry experience, faith community endorsement, openness to spiritual and cultural diversity. Open to clergy, laity, religious, and persons studying for the ministry.

Tuition for the program is $400 for first unit plus $25 application fee; subsequent units are $150 each.


Application Steps

  • Complete the ACPE application form (including essays).
  • Send completed application form and $25 application fee made out to “St. Luke’s Hospital”
  • Visit us for an interview and assessment of our setting. We will process your application on a timely basis as arranged at your interview.
  • If you are accepted, a $100 deposit secures your position. The deposit is your first payment towards the $400 unit tuition; the remainder is due the first day of the program.

For more information, conversation, or to send your application, contact:

Rev. Mary Catherine Cole
Director of Pastoral Care
St. Luke's University Hospital
801 Ostrum Street
Bethlehem, PA 18015
484-526-4775
484-526-4336 (fax)