A conference on chaplaincy

Date: April 9, 2024

There is no question that if you wish to reach those outside the church and are very unlikely to ever go to church, then chaplaincy is the world that you should join. Increasingly, we have seminarians who are feeling called to the chaplaincy world. So, yesterday afternoon, we had a conference on chaplaincy.

Participants are international, ecumenical, and interfaith. So we have the Venerable Dr. (Air Vice-Marshal) Giles Legood from the UK; Ms. Leonora Ortega Till a non-denominational chaplain from a Women’s Correctional Facility; and we have Ms. Syazana Durrani – a Muslim chaplain at Goodwin Living. We also have representatives of the school world – the Rev. Elizabeth Rees, the Rev. Katie Beth Miksa, the Rev. Dr. Stefanie Taylor, prison chaplaincy – the Rev. P.K. Ray, military chaplaincy – Bishop Ann Ritonia, and from the healthcare world with The Rev. Andrew T. O’Connor and the Rev. Melina Dezhbod.

The quality of the discussion is rich. Important questions around boundaries, role, access to leadership, diversity, racism, and privilege are being explored. This is a complex world; and the resulting book will be important. A massive thank you to Elizabeth Clarke and Chris Leung, who are the organizers. For their efficiency and competency, I am deeply grateful.

The Very Rev. Ian S. Markham, Ph.D.
Dean and President of Virginia Theological Seminary and the President of The General Theological Seminary

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