Sydney Adventist Hospital SAN CPE

The SAN CPE centre has been re- established as a registered CPE centre as a result of a review which took place on February 20, 2019. It is affiliated with SAN Education, a registered training organization that supports the education program for the Sydney Adventist Hospital and the wider community.

SAN CPE is a centre of the New South Wales College of Clinical Pastoral Education. The college accredits supervisors and training programs and issues certificates. The college is a member institute of the Sydney College of Divinity and as such is able to provide course work that can be used towards a Master’s Degree in Chaplaincy studies

Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) is a different way of learning. It grew out of a movement in education where case studies began to be seen as a valuable learning tool. CPE offers both theoretical and practical learning using an action reflection model where students reflect on an event in their ministry and explore the social, cultural, environmental and spiritual background to the conversation. The relational dynamic is explored as well as spiritual needs and theological issues. It aims to develop professional competence, self-awareness theological understanding and pastoral identity.

Clinical pastoral education is an adult learning model that is based on the student’s own learning goals and capacity to seek out the resources they need for the achievement of those goals. Students assess their pastoral strengths and weaknesses and develop learning goals and strategies to achieve those goals. Learning is done in a small supportive group were ministry experiences are presented and together the group explores the dynamics and possibilities that were present in the conversation. From this the student is able to formulate different strategies and possibilities in ministry to this person and in other related situations. Individual supervision is a part of the course that allows for more personalised exploration of ministry events. Topics covered in the course include empathic listening skills, grief and loss, spiritual assessment, theological reflection, ethical and cultural issues and other topic that arise within the group in the course of study.

Our Supervisors

Cheryll Bird

is a Clinical Pastoral Educator and is the San CPE Centre Director. Her background is parish ministry in Australia and New Zealand. She began CPE around 2000, at Rozelle Hospital – a large state psychiatric hospital. After completing 4 units of CPE as well as a Master of Ministry, she began training as a CPE Supervisor initially at St Vincent’s Hospital. It was during that time that she qualified as a Clinical Pastoral Supervisor and completed an MA in Pastoral Supervision then as a Clinical Pastoral Educator in 2017. She also teaches undergraduate CPE at Avondale University College.

Julie Fehlberg

is a Provisional Level 1 Supervisor since 2018, when she started working with Cheryll. She is from a nursing background and so feels comfortable in the hospital environment, and has been working at the Sydney Adventist Hospital for the past 7 years in full time Chaplaincy. Julie commenced studying for a Master of Arts in Pastoral Supervision in 2018 and is part of the new San CPE Centre. She has a passion for Chaplaincy and the ministry of Presence and is excited to be teaching others the necessary skills in pastoral listening.

What courses are offered?

Extended foundational course

This course is undertaken 2 days a month over 9 months. The group meets on a Thursday and Friday from 9 AM to 3.30 PM. It is designed to accommodate study for people who live close enough to attend the hospital on a monthly basis. Overnight accommodation is available if needed.

Online foundational course

This course has been designed with rural and remote chaplains in mind. There are some pre requisites for this course.

• You must already be employed in pastoral care.
• An on site mentor/ liaison person is necessary
•A good internet connection &
• Some pre reading will be necessary

NSWCCPE’S Requirements for all courses

90 Hours of group work
10 hours of individual supervision
160 hours practical
140 hours for personal study, reflection and writing up ministry events.

Who can apply?

  • Parish workers and volunteers
  • Those wishing to work in pastoral and spiritual care and chaplaincy
  • Nurses/teachers interested in holistic care
  • Those seeking more effective ways to care for people’s spiritual needs
  • Those wishing to discern their suitability to be a pastoral or spiritual care
  • Kind hearted people with a genuine care for others
  • Those interested in spiritual care in Aged Care Facilities

2023 Course Dates

Course Dates

Face to Face Group

March 16 and 17, April 13 and 14, May 11 and 12, June 8 and 9, August 10 and 11,
September 14 and 15, October 5 and 6, November 16 and 17

Online Group

Semester 1 March 2  to May 30
Semester 2  July 3 to November 6

What is the cost?


For further information:

Contact details for the SAN CPE Centre

Academic Recognition

As a Member Institute of the Sydney College of Divinity, the NSW College of Clinical Pastoral Education provides Master of Arts degrees specialising in Chaplaincy and Pastoral Supervision, and gives credit for Basic and Advanced Units of CPE.

Students with a Bachelor degree or other relevant qualification may enrol in a Master of Arts (leading to a Specialisation in Chaplaincy) which is offered by the NSW College of CPE through the Sydney College of Divinity. Students undertake three core units of CPE (CPE 1, 2, 3) and receive 54 credit points, half the course work. The remaining 54 credit points may be gained by enrolment in related courses (such as theology, Biblical studies, pastoral counselling) offered through the other member institutes of the Sydney College of Divinity.

Ready to enrol with NSWCCPE?

Call our Registrar on 0420 359 097

or send us an email message

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