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Education, Events & News

Fall Workshop

Courage for Caregivers

Michelle O'Rourke

Date: Tues., Oct. 2 from 9:30 am to 3:30 p.m.

Location: Windfeldt Room, CentraCare Health Plaza in St. Cloud

 Description: Join us for an inspirational and nourishing day focused on exploring the concepts of caregiving and caring for one-self. Michelle O’Rourke is knowledgeable about and linked to the work of the Henri Nouwen Society and the new Courage for Caregiver Support Materials being promoted by the Westberg Institute for Faith Community Nursing, in support of caregivers growing roles.

“Caregiving carries within it an opportunity for inner healing, liberation, and transformation for the one being cared for and for the one who cares.” - Henri Nouwen.

Courage for CaregiversFee: $60. Includes the 2 Henri Nouwen Society Books Courage for Caregivers: A Courage for Caregivers leader Guide and the Retreat Participant Workbook. Books are a $37 value for $20 for this Conference from the Nouwen Society. Cost also includes continental breakfast and lunch.

Workshop Materials:

Foundations of Faith Community Nursing Class

Dates: Must attend all four classes

  • Thurs., Nov. 1, 3 to 9 pm
  • Fri., Nov. 2, 8 am to 4:30 pm
  • Thurs., Nov. 8, 3 to 9 pm
  • Fri., Nov. 9, 8 am to 4:30 pm

Location: Grace United Methodist Church, 2615 Clearwater Rd. in St. Cloud

Description: Health Ministries of Central Minnesota & the Faith Community Nurse Partnership of Central Minnesota are sponsoring this class through a CentraCare Foundation Grant. The St. Cloud Hospital & the Diocese of Saint Cloud began these partnerships to bring faith community nurses, area churches and service agencies together over 25 years ago. The goal they set was to increase the number of parish/faith community nurses in churches; promoting the well-being of faith community members by helping them to access health care with the support of clergy, the faith community nurse, and the church ministry team.

“I have come that you may have life and have it to the full.” John 10:10

Fee: $450

Scholarships: Limited scholarships available. Download application form. (PDF)

The Health Ministries of Central Minnesota Committee is offering 10 Scholarships for Tuition of $350 through a CentraCare Foundation Grant. For more information about class and scholarship application please contact or 320-249-0280.

Materials to Promote to Faith Communities:

Download Class Brochure Now!

Upcoming Events to Share With Faith Communities

Central Minnesota Council on Aging (CMCOA) Classes

The CMCOA has a number of classes available. Among them include sessions on:

  • improving balance
  • increasing physical activity
  • being aware of one's risk of falls
  • helping people live successfully with chronic pain

To see the schedule of upcoming classes and for more information, visit From this calendar, most classes have a flyer that you can print and post in your church and community.

Education Opportunities

Faith Community Nurse Foundation Classes (Required)

Foundations of Faith Community Nursing Curriculum

Across the United States, 140 locations/universities/agencies provide the basic education required for a Parish Nurse/Faith Community Nurse.

Find a Faith Community Nursing Foundation's course by date, state or online.

In Minnesota, there are two organizations that provide the basic program:

  • Concordia College of Moorhead – Visit website for more information.
  • Faith Community Nurse Network of the Greater Twin Cities (FCNNTC) offers the International Parish Nurse Resource Center (IPNRC) certified course in a 42.4 CEU format taught by professional nursing faculty who are both educators and experienced faith community nurses representing an array of faith community nursing practice. For more information or questions about the Faith Community Nursing Course, please contact FCNN at 651-204-0904 or In 2018, the class will be offered April 9-13 and October 8-12. To register, download a brochure and to learn more, please visit

Continuing Education: Required Ongoing Education

Parish Nurses are required to meet the Minnesota Board of Nursing criteria for continuing education which is 24 hours every two years. These continuing education programs may include both clinical nursing as well as courses that enhance the parish nurse role.

  • MN Board of Nursing contact hours (formerly referred to as Continuing Education Units or CEUs) are based on 60 minutes of learning. Last at least 0.25 contact hours (15 minutes). Continuing Education. Overview (CE Rules & Requirements) from MN Department of Nursing Continuing Ed Link: MN Board of Nursing CE Rules. Learn more at
  • Parish Nurses in the Diocese of Saint Cloud are required to complete the Diocesan Safe Environment Training and report the training to the parish office.

Scholarship Opportunities

  • The St. Cloud School of Nursing Alumni Association.
    The Alumni group budgets money each year for Parish Nurse Scholarships. Among the purposes in our Constitution and Bylaws are the objectives to promote fellowship and mutual support among the graduates of our (now-closed) School of Nursing and to provide continuing education opportunities to our alumni. Please call Elaine Prom, Treasurer, if you have any questions 320-253-7363.
  • The Central MN Parish Nurse Advisory Committee is offering $250 scholarships for persons intending to work as parish nurses in Central Minnesota. Conditions of the scholarships include:
    • The parish nurse role will be activated within 6-9 months of course completion.
    • In a brief letter (one page or less), please address how the above criteria will be met in your parish nurse ministry.
    • Reside in Central Minnesota or have approval from the Central Minnesota Parish Nurse Ministry Committee Officers.
    Contact Annette Jesh for a scholarship guidelines and application questions 320-249-0280. Download the scholarship application (PDF)
  • The Catholic Education Ministries Grant generally covers about one third of tuition with the expectation that the parish and the awardee each pay one third. Application deadlines are Jan. 15, May 15 and Aug. 15. Processing and approval are usually completed within five weeks. Please submit the completed grant application to: Linda L. Kaiser, Director, Catholic Education Ministries, Diocese of St. Cloud, 305 7th Ave. N, St. Cloud, MN 56303, 320-251-0111. Catholic Education Ministries Grant Application (PDF)
  • Scholarships from Faith Community Nurse Network (FCNN) of the Twin Cities. FCNN is committed to increasing the number of faith community nurses practicing in the metro area. FCNN will award a limited number of $150 scholarships to Registered Nurses who live in the 11-county Twin Cities area (Anoka, Carver, Chisago, Dakota, Hennepin, Isanti, Ramsey, Scott, Sherburne, Washington, or Wright County).

    For consideration, the nurse must submit an initial $300 payment along with a letter of support from her congregation’s leadership (i.e. pastor, rabbi, church council) documenting (1) the congregation’s intent to initiate a faith community nursing program and their support of this nurse’s candidacy and (2) a statement of financial need. The nurse will be notified if a scholarship will be awarded within 2 weeks of receipt of all required materials. Learn more at

Funding Opportunity

Elim Care Faith Community Nursing offers up to $1,000 in matching funds to North Central District EFCA churches to assist in starting a Faith Community Nurse Ministry. Funding may cover education costs for a 36 hour FCN preparation course. For more information, contact:

Joanne Hall, RN, BN
Faith Community Nurse/Director of Faith Community Nursing
Elim Care Ministries
7485 Office Ridge Circle
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Parish Nurse Recruitment Samples

Parish Nursing is the specialized practice of professional nursing that focuses on the intentional care of the spirit as part of the process of promoting wholistic health and preventing or minimizing illness in a faith community. It is a part of a broader outreach health ministry. With parish nursing and a structured health ministry program, the parishioners find connectedness, encouragement, hope and love.

Download the following resources to help recruit other Faith Community Nurses and share information about its mission.

Sample Bulletin Announcement (PDF)
FCN Recruitment Letter (PDF)
Letter From Alison Jergens, FCN, on Her Ministry (PDF)
FCN Exploration and Implementation Packet (PDF)


St. Cloud Visitor Article and Photos from Mass for Health Care Professionals

Review the St. Cloud Visitors article from October's third annual Mass for Health Care Professionals at Sacred Heart Chapel in St. Joseph.

Bishop Donald Kettler led the mass where health care workers from all faiths — as well as family, friends and spouses — were welcome.

Faith Community Nurses Graduate

FCN Nurses Graduate

From left: Carol Engelhart of Grace United Methodist
Church, St. Cloud; Sheryl Roemer of First Baptist
Church, Cokato; and Bety Clark of St. Andrew's
Church, Elk River.

Central MN Faith Community Nurse Committee President Rosemary Weiser is pleased to announce that three new Faith Community Nurses graduated from the Foundations of Faith Community Nursing Class held April 3-7, 2017, at the Faith Community Nurse Network of the Twin Cities in St. Paul. Sheryl Roemer is a CentraCare Dialysis nurse. Carol Engelhart and Betsy Clark are Nurse Educators.

Notes on the Westberg Symposium 30th Anniversary

Westberg conference

Annette Jesh, Bev Wiehoff and Rosemary Weiser were
honored to be present for the 30th Anniversary of the Westberg
Conference on April 8th and 9th in Chicago.

Rosemary Weiser, Bev Wiehoff & Annette Jesh were honored to be present for the 30th Anniversary of the Westberg Conference for the unveiling of the new name of Westberg Institute for Faith Community Nursing (formerly known as IPNRC & Church Health Center).

The keynote speaker was Martin Marty, colleague and friend of Granger Westberg. He was Keynote speaker at the first Symposium 30 years ago. At age 88, he was funny and brilliant. One of our Lutheran Parish Nurses said when I told her he spoke, “Oh, the famous Lutheran Theologian!” What an honor.

“Marty” is one of the most prominent interpreters of religion and culture today. Author of more than 50 books, he is also a speaker, columnist, pastor, and teacher, having been a professor of religious history for 35 years at the University of Chicago.

Notes of interest from the symposium:

  • Use this: “Registered professional nurses claiming the specialty of faith community nursing”. Finding new language for our specialty. We can call ourselves parish nurses or faith community nurses but that is what we claim!
  • Parish/Faith Community Nursing is the only specialty practice of nursing that is for the most part unpaid volunteer nursing.
  • Use term “Unpaid professional nurse” versus “volunteer”. Theme of giving our profession credit and an infrastructure for support and sustainability.
  • A new revision of Faith Community Nursing: Scope and Standards is coming out fall 2016 from ANA and HMA.
  • Striving for all FCN to receive a salary stipend or honorarium for their ministry – one that allows for continuing education and resources and creating a sustainable ministry.
  • Create a Paid professional role within the context of congregational staff. This is what Granger Westberg promoted from the start.
  • A new platform of Yammer started from Westberg Institute. We signed up. The platform is a virtual space intended for knowledge sharing. Essentially, it is an online forum where FCNs can discuss important topics, ask questions of the wider FCN community, make connections, form and join groups they are interested in, and download and share resources.
  • History Lesson: 15,000 parish nurses in US. International Faith Community Nursing Parish Nursing as a recent movement of the 20th century, has grown from the revival by Rev. Dr. Granger Westberg in the USA to its current practice in 23 countries around the world. While each country adapts the program to its specific culture, nursing practice and needs, the core model of faith and health ministry to body, mind and spirit remains the same throughout each of these countries. The movement into other countries occurred as nurses/clergy requested information and assistance to initiate programs in other countries, and when Parish Nurses in various countries shared it with other countries via missions or outreach. In the early days of Parish Nursing, leaders were invited to go to Canada and Australia to provide presentations on parish nurse practice. Once Canadians developed their practice, they took it to the Bahamas through their Canadian/Bahamian church connections. The countries practicing Parish Nursing today include: Australia, Bahamas, Canada, England, Germany, Ghana, Kenya, Korea, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Scotland, Singapore, South Africa, Swaziland, Ukraine, USA, Wales, Zambia, Zimbabwe. Request at Westberg to use World terminology to note it is not a US only nursing capacity but people there from other countries.
  • Interesting fact learned: The word “Wholistic” is used to refer to this nursing practice of Parish/Faith Community Nursing, including Mind, Body & Spirit. The Research group of Westberg has tried to get the word included in Webster’s Dictionary and Wikipedia instead of “Holistic” and it has been declined up to this point. Any entry to Wikipedia that is made with word “Wholistic” is changed or declined. Try using it! And spell check will ask to change it.


Email the St. Cloud Hospital Parish Health Ministries Program.