Everett’s Fr. Paul Ikechukwu Ugwu Graduates From Hebrew Senior Life’s Clinical Pastoral Education Program

Ugwu comes to the U.S. from Eastern Nigeria. He had seminary trainings at St. John Cross seminary Nsukka for junior seminary, St. Pope John Paul II major seminary Awka for his philosophical studies, and Michael Iwene Tansi major seminary Onitsha for his theological studies, all in Nigeria.

He was ordained a priest on July 9, 2016 for the Catholic Diocese of Nsukka, Nigeria.  He had his pastoral assignments at St. Charles Parish Opi as an associate pastor from September 2016 to August 2017, and personal secretary to the emeritus bishop, Bishop Francis E. O. Okobo, from August 2017 to August 2021. Currently, he is a resident priest at St. Anthony’s Parish, Everett.

Hebrew SeniorLife’s Clinical Pastoral Education program in Boston provides geriatric-focused spiritual care training for seminary students of many faiths, future clergy seeking spiritual care skills, and aspiring or current health care chaplains. Hebrew SeniorLife is proud to offer the country’s only Jewish geriatric CPE program accredited by ACPE: The Standard for Spiritual Care & Education.

Students leave the program trained to support seniors and families through the joys and challenges of aging, loss, and end of life. They also provide 5,000 hours of care to patients at Hebrew SeniorLife’s Hebrew Rehabilitation Center each year as part of their training. The program attracts students from across North America and as far as Israel. 

What is a Jewish CPE Program?

Hebrew SeniorLife’s CPE program approaches spiritual care through a Jewish lens. It welcomes both Jewish and non-Jewish applicants. Learning is informed by the integrated study of relevant Jewish texts, ongoing reflection on the role of Jewish cultural and religious influences on the spiritual care relationship, and clinical experience gained with a predominantly Jewish population.

CPE students learn to develop their personal gifts for spiritual care through a disciplined program of learning, self-reflection, supervision, and clinical application.

The general CPE curriculum focuses on spiritual care as it relates to aging, illnesses of aging, bioethical decision-making, dying, and bereavement. Special attention is given to cultural and demographic diversity as they impact spiritual issues. Additional areas of focus, which may also be offered as specialty units, include:

• Dementia

• Trauma-informed care

• End of life

• LGBTQ older adults

• Spiritual care of the nonreligious.

Hebrew SeniorLife, an affiliate of Harvard Medical School, is a national senior services leader uniquely dedicated to rethinking, researching, and redefining the possibilities of aging. Hebrew SeniorLife cares for more than 4,500 seniors a day across six campuses throughout Greater Boston. Locations include: Hebrew Rehabilitation Center-Boston and Hebrew Rehabilitation Center-NewBridge in Dedham; NewBridge on the Charles, Dedham; Orchard Cove, Canton; Simon C. Fireman Community, Randolph; Center Communities of Brookline, Brookline; and Jack Satter House, Revere. Founded in 1903, Hebrew SeniorLife also conducts influential research into aging at the Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research, which has a portfolio of nearly $85 million, making it the largest gerontological research facility in the U.S. in a clinical setting. It also trains more than 1,000 geriatric care providers each year. For more information about Hebrew SeniorLife, visit our website or follow us on our blog, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

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