Life changes and I've been very busy lately. In March I started working at a new full-time job in mental health chaplaincy. There are three aspects of the work, The first focus is “service planning and strategic planning, identifying, consultating, networking with potential partnerships in education and service delivery areas as well as advocacy and promotion in networking with agencies, hospital networks and faith communities”. Second is “research and development of education materials and programmes relating to spirituality and mental health”. And finally some hands-on chaplaincy, working for a day a week in two settings: a forensic hospital and a private mental health hospital and clinic, both offering a broad spectrum of services.
It is a nice stretch for me, with a lot that draws on my work in tertiary chaplaincy as well as moving into some new skills and practices. It also takes me back twenty years to my original training in Clinical Pastoral Education, which took place on a mental ward outside of San Francisco, so there’s a bit of a circle here as well. I am working with an interesting team of chaplaincy types and am enjoying the staff at both hospitals. I am also doing a lot of reading/research on spirituality and mental health, so there’s a good learning curve as well.
And it’s pretty exciting. When I left RMIT last year, I was aware that I might have a tough time getting any job, let a alone a good one, so this new beginning is very good news as well as a chance to grow ministry and gifts in a new area. I am looking at doing a unit of CPE (part-time) and maybe another grad degree in the process. So, with all that, it's keeping me very busy.