Author Archives: Allison Peet

Church Assessment Tool (CAT)

Do you want to know essential information about your congregation to make the right decisions?

The Church Assessment Tool (CAT)® can help.

The Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center’s trained consultants, in collaboration with Holy Cow! Consulting, are ready to work with you and your leadership to administer the CAT, a process to collect, analyze and share information from your entire congregation.
The CAT is a method of organizational listening so that leaders can move forward with decisions in a way that includes everyone, not just the voices that are the loudest, and does not rely on opinions or guesses of the few.

When might your congregation benefit from a CAT process?

1. If your congregation is in transition, for example in a pastoral search or if you have just received a new pastor.
2. If your congregation is preparing for strategic planning.

3. If your congregation is launching a capital campaign.

The CAT is also an invaluable tool for reading the overall health and vitality of congregations, to:
  • measure the level of community satisfaction and energy
  • identify the critical success factors for improving organizational climate
  • envision the future
  • gauge readiness for change
  • uncover potential resources
Thousands of CATs have been administered throughout the country and the Center is ready to help you.  For a complementary initial consult or for more information, please contact Chris Waddle, the Center’s Director for Leadership and Spiritual Life, by email:

Chris’ Blog

Chris Waddle, M.Div.

“I believe that the essence of spirituality is rooted in ever growing loving relationships with God, others, creation, and our best selves.  As the Director of Leadership and Spiritual Life, he helps leaders, communities, and individuals from all walks of life and religious beliefs nurture these significant relationships. Chris believes nurturing these relationships involves faith, vulnerability, wonder, and playfulness.”



No money? No insurance? No problem.  We can help! – November 2020

No money? No insurance? No problem.  We can help!

“I want you to know that right now, at the Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center, there are skilled counselors who are available, even if the one you care about has no insurance and no ability to pay.”


“You Saved My Life, Pastor!”

Click image for a printer-friendly flyer.

“Kyle was just calling to reserve a space at the church for a meeting, but something in his voice seemed a little off,” my friend told me. I asked my friend how Kyle was doing and he said, “Not so good, pastor.”

As I followed up with Kyle by asking some concerned questions, I realized he was deeply hurting and that he needed the care of a skilled counselor in addition to my continued spiritual care. My friend and I worked together to find Kyle that support.

A month later Kyle greeted me with a hug and said, “Thank you. You saved my life.”

Sometimes a listening ear, a courageous and compassionate question, and the right contact can be life saving. Literally!

Faith leaders often have visits and calls from people like “Kyle”. However, they are not the only ones. Anyone who has earned our trust and thinks of us as a “safe person” may give us a hint that they are hurting.  They may just need a friend with a listening ear to notice and say that they have time to listen.  This might be enough.  However, in addition to your continued friendship, they might also benefit from the gifts of a skilled counselor.  If so, the Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center is here to help.

During the COVID-19 epidemic it is understandable that people we know and love are experiencing more stress, anxiety, and depression.  It is OK to not be “OK” right now.  What is not “OK” is feeling like you have to go through it alone or that nothing can help. The good news is the DMPCC offers many ways of helping and connecting.

In addition to in person counseling at the Center and at our satellite location at Grace United Methodist Church, in Des Moines, we also offer telehealth sessions that allow anyone with an internet connection to meet with a counselor, face to face, online. If someone prefers a telehealth session, but needs a safe place with a computer, we can provide this, also.  If you are a faith leader or a member of a community of faith, you too might consider dedicating a safe, private space and a computer or tablet with a strong internet connection for anyone who needs a safe place for a telehealth session. 

That first decision to talk with a counselor can be frightening, that too is understandable.  One of the frightening unknowns is the cost.

As a faith leader or a friend, you too may be fearful that your recommendation of a skilled counselor could be a financial hardship for the one who has reached out to you for support.

I want you to know that right now, at the Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center, there are skilled counselors who are available, even if the one you care about has no insurance and no ability to pay.  They will not be financially burdened, shamed, or judged. They will receive a skilled counselor who has the support of a whole team of care givers dedicated to hope and healing.

As a faith leader or a trusted person, I hope you will consider us an important part of your care team. Because, sometimes a listening ear, a courageous and compassionate question, and the right contact can be lifesaving.

To schedule a meeting with a counselor, please click below or call: 515-274-4006 ext. 108

Your partner in hope and healing,

Chris Waddle, M.Div.
Director of Leadership and Spiritual Life
Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center

A different approach to the holidays

Billie Wade, writer

November traditionally kicks off the holiday season for many people. Preparation for the Big Three holidays—Thanksgiving; Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa; and, New Year’s Eve—sometimes begins in August. The time brings together a massive celebration of hope for the new year. We breathe a collective sigh as the current year approaches extinction. This year has presented us with unique challenges for which none of us could have prepared. Sheltering-in-place has been both a bane and an opportunity. As this year progressed, we found ourselves more and more uncertain as several major occurrences converged. But life is always uncertain, always has been, always will be. Only now, it seems, the stakes are higher and the stress more intense. COVID-19 and the resultant fallout, racial tension, political stress, wildfires, floods, and hurricanes add to the strain of everyday living. Those in northern parts of the country may or may not be looking forward to this year’s snowfall and yet more time indoors. Our foray into the holidays this year may take on a different meaning, one of deeper reflection and introspection. Gratitude may be a balm to us or may be difficult to grasp.

Fall and winter are notorious for increasing our mental health symptoms. Long nights of darkness turn into short days which unfold in slow motion. The holidays have a way of magnifying loneliness, depression, anxiety, and addictions. In my October 2020 article, I discussed SAD (seasonal affective disorder) which complicates other mental health symptoms. A report by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states: Symptoms of anxiety disorder and depressive disorder increased considerably in the United States during April–June of 2020, compared with the same period in 2019. Their report includes sobering statistics of the effects of COVID-19 on these and other mental health distress—domestic violence, suicide, and alcohol and drug use. You can read the entire report here.

Gauge your situation with great care and reach out when you need to. Watch for signs and symptoms in friends and loved ones and enlist help if necessary. Click here to schedule an appointment with the Center. 

Many of you know I am an avid journaler and maintain a daily practice of written gratitude, reflection, introspection, and exploration. You may not know I am an introvert albeit a gregarious one. I can spend several hours with individuals or groups of fewer than five people. However, I can tolerate chitchatting in groups of more than five people for periods of about two hours, longer if we are focused on a topic or activity, such as a class. Then, I must return to the sanctuary of my home to recharge and reset. So, the COVID-19 restrictions have been less difficult for me than for some of my friends, and I suspect, for some of you.

At first the idea of self-isolation excited me. I was almost giddy as I thought about how much time I would save in driving time, finding a parking space, dealing with traffic, inclement weather, gas. (Imagine gleeful emoji here.) Then, reality set in. Other activities swallowed the hours of travel time I saved. Whether I am, in fact, more productive is debatable. Somehow, I seem to be busier than before, a sentiment echoed by some of my friends. Zoom appointments consume much of my time, sometimes four meetings in one day. That recognition is not a complaint, but rather a statement of gratitude for videoconferencing that allows me to continue connecting with others. I love everything I do, and I enjoy working with an expanding circle of incredible people. Conclusion: Zoom is a good thing. The most popular platforms I know of are Zoom, Google Meet, and Facetime (Apple)—there may be more.

At first, self-quarantining offered many opportunities for getting stuff done—clean out the garage, organize the photo album, read from our growing stack of books we planned to get to someday, try new recipes. Many of us took up new hobbies or revisited activities we had laid aside as life took over. Confined to our homes with ourselves, we may have bumped into latent thoughts and feelings we had relegated to our subconscious years ago. We suddenly faced ourselves. This time is an invitation to acknowledge and honor our grief and to express gratitude during this year. We look toward January with hope for a “new and improved” upcoming year. It also is a call to commit to ourselves with intention what we want, where we want to go, who we want to be and create a plan to get there.

Our most powerful tools may be acceptance and action. We look at ourselves, our circumstances, our relationships, and the world at large and acknowledge that what we see may not be what we want but that it is, if we are honest, what we face. Having named the reality, we can move forward. Next, we ask, “What can I do now?” The answer may surprise you. It may be different than writing letters, participating in protests, posting on social media, or organizing a book club, although all are excellent endeavors. However, those actions are not suitable for everyone. Sometimes, the best we can do is self-care and that is more than enough. We look for ways to become peaceful within ourselves. Enhancing or increasing spiritual practices can be of enormous benefit to some people.

Then, we create a plan, any plan. Call it a vision. Call it a daydream. Call it wishful thinking. Call it an honest yearning of your heart. Give yourself more than a cursory, “I want to lose twenty pounds next year,” or “I want to save $x a month,” or “I promise to read a book a week.” These are great desires especially because they are specific and measurable. But, too often, we approach them without much thought. They become yet another defunct resolution. Think about what you need to transform your life into a self-celebration. Think about what brings you indescribable serenity. Think about the messages you recite when you communicate with yourself. Think of what brings you joy. Think of what nurtures and soothes you. Perhaps what you need is a bowl of oatmeal, a slice of toast, and a glass of orange juice.

Here are some tips for creating and executing a doable plan. (Please keep in mind some thoughts, beliefs, feelings, and patterns can be deep-seated messages we have carried a long time—even decades—and may require focused effort and patience  and, possible professional mental health support to accomplish or to heal.)

  1. Write what you want with crystal clear clarity. Try to avoid “walk more often” in favor of “walk twenty minutes every morning before work.”
  2. Think about why this is important to you. It may be murky at first. Record all your related thoughts.
  3. Define what do you need to make it happen. List every detail, then organize them into steps. Index cards are handy for this.
  4. Determine whether you need help
  5. For a list of activities to consider, see my posts: 23 Tips to Get Through the Holidays – November 2017, 23 Tips to Get Through the Holidays – November 2018, and 2019 Holiday Survival Guide – November 2019.
  6. This plan is flexible, making it doable for just about everyone. Do as much or as little as works for you. Revise and experiment and adapt.
  7. That’s it! Go for it! Celebrate the result!

Resolutions to current stressors are neither easy nor swift. Getting through this time is tough for all of us. We can take comfort in knowing we are not alone. Globally, the pandemic virtually every country. Nationally, we also grapple with myriad domestic issues. Regionally, we face natural disasters. From our states to our communities, additional problems arise. There are ways to reach out, to soothe ourselves and each other, to hold the Light of Hope lightly in our awareness, to breathe, just breathe.

Be well. Be safe. Be at peace. Cultivate joy. Wear your mask.


Licensed Psychologist

Career Opportunity: Licensed Psychologist

The Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center, a well-established nonprofit organization, is seeking a full-time, licensed psychologist to join our team of multi-disciplinary clinicians who are committed to a mind/body/spirit therapeutic approach and serving all ages. We are seeking a licensed psychologist with a preference to applicants experienced and interested in psychological assessment. We receive assessment referrals from psychiatric and medical providers for differential diagnosis, neuropsychological screenings, presurgical evaluations, and clergy evaluations.  We receive psychological testing requests for clients of all ages.

Please send a letter of interest and vita to: Kelli Hill, Ph.D., Director of Clinical Services, Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center, 8553 Urbandale Avenue, Urbandale, IA  50322, or email

Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center is a nonprofit, nonsectarian organization offering a broad range of mental health services, serving more than 4,000 individuals annually including 700 children and teens plus their families. Thanks to a broad base of community support, the Center serves people from all walks of life including those who are uninsured or underinsured. Although best known for its 48 years of quality, professional mental health therapy, the Center provides multi-faceted services, programs and classes:

  • Counseling, including specialized services for children and adolescents
  • Psychiatry (medication management)
  • Psychological testing and assessment
  • Training for graduate students, clinical professionals and the community
  • Holistic approaches such as biofeedback
  • Spiritual direction
  • Career coaching
  • Leadership and spiritual life programming
  • Conflict transformation and strategic planning services for congregations, nonprofits and businesses

For more information about the Center, visit our website

The two faces of autumn

Billie Wade, writer

Autumn is a time of change. Leaves turn vibrant colors of red, orange, gold, and brown, then float to earth to protect it from winter. The weather turns cool and brisk. Autumn is a prime season to take in the unique sights, sounds, and smells—all free for us to appreciate and celebrate. The crisp air refreshes our lungs from the summer heat and humidity and gives our skin a break from mosquitoes. Autumn asks us to slow down and relax, to consider our life over the previous nine months and where we want to go now. It is an excellent time to look inside ourselves and ask questions to which only we know the answer. A little introspection may reveal some activities we want to accomplish before winter sets in. As trees release their leaves we are challenged to let go as well—people, places, stuff, and ideas that no longer support where we are now or where we want to go. Letting go is a good thing. It is a celebration of where we have been and the wisdom we have acquired and a welcoming of something new into our lives.

While some people may dislike the brown tree branches, I find them fascinating. They provide an opportunity for me to pause and look at the skeletons of trees that survive year after year. I smile when I see a bird’s nest and I know the bird will return in the spring to sing a beautiful song and begin a new family. I live across the street from a flood-control berm with grass and trees. The transition from season to season seems to happen overnight. One spring night, I go to bed and wake up the next morning to previously bare branches now hidden by bright green leaves. Likewise, in autumn, morning greets me with bare tree limbs as high winds dislodged the loosened leaves during the night and scattered them over the earth.

2020 has been a year of changes we have not faced in our lifetime. Much of the change has meant relinquishing our grip on what we held dear, accepting, surrendering, adapting, and creating. The coronavirus pandemic has resulted in a complete upheaval of virtually every facet of our lives. Stress brought on by COVID-19 cannot be underestimated. The quarantine has left many people isolated, alone, lonely, and with limited or no means of assistance. Some people find themselves quarantined with abusive partners or family members. Normally active people feel stuck indoors. Current affairs, domestic and global, may add to the tension.

I usually dread autumn because I dread what follows—winter. That attitude effectively robs me of gratitude and joy in the present moment, the only one I have. Five seconds ago are gone, five seconds from now are not yet here. When I get off track, I try to recognize what I am doing and then gently remind myself to “come back” to now. I am not always successful. Most years, I feel the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)—increased fatigue, major depression, disruptions in my sleep—beginning between early September to mid-October. There is no predictable pattern. These signs are different from the depression which usually affects me and sadness different from grief. It is not a separate disorder but is layered on top of what I already feel. The cause of SAD is unknown. The most prevalent theory is decrease in sunlight in autumn and winter may be the culprit. The shift from daylight savings time also may be a factor as we attempt to adjust to an hour more or an hour less. SAD usually lifts for me between mid-January and mid-March. I may awake one morning feeling like a different person.

Autumn and winter are often a time of increased stress, anxiety, and deeper depression, now complicated as our time with family friends, work, recreation, and travel became almost nonexistent seven months ago. The holiday season looms large, perhaps more so than in past years. There may be less money to buy gifts. Holiday festivities are limited because of COVID-19 safety protocols. Winter vacations have been cancelled. These major disappointments may bring on frustration and anger with few if any outlets for expression. Transitions from summer to autumn to winter may feel like a downhill slide as we think about cold winds, icy streets and walkways, and gray or white skies. We are bracing ourselves with trepidation as we anticipate even more isolation and time indoors. Or we may celebrate getting out of holiday expectations others have for us, relieving us of being subjected to strained relationships and dissention.

Here are some ideas for getting through autumn and winter:

  • Write your thoughts and emotions—all of them. Explore why the entry is important to you. If necessary, write goals and strategies.
  • Join groups. Seek groups that interest you and find out if they meet on videoconferencing—Zoom, Google Meets, Skype, FaceTime (for Apple users), or others. Many online meetings are “attended” by people across the United States and around the world. What you learn will amaze you. Because of videoconferencing, I now have friends in Canada, Germany, Barbados, England, Australia, and New Zealand. Videoconferencing is a lifesaver used by therapists, yoga instructors, orchestras, and an enormous number of organizations and individuals.
  • Move your body as much as possible even if you start with simple stretches. You can check out YouTube or type words into the search feature of your favorite search engine. Narrowing your search to specifics yields better results—such as “30 minute chair yoga” rather than “yoga.”
  • Spend time outdoors. Even a short walk or standing just outside your door have the potential to refresh you and clear brain fog. Breathe in and out slowly while you focus on the air moving in and out of your nostrils.
  • Nurture your body. Rest and sleep when you need to. Adequate sleep will strengthen you physically and improve your mood. If insomnia is a problem, ask your primary care provider for tips and strategies. For long-term, chronic, or severe insomnia, medication may be required. Healthy food choices may alleviate some fatigue and sluggishness.
  • Look for seasonal patterns of sadness or depression. You may want to discuss Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) with your primary care provider or mental health professional. Schedule an appointment with the Center HERE.

The above suggestions are starters. You may find other practices and modifications that work well for you. Whatever this time of year means for you, pausing to gain perspective will ease stress and contribute to appreciation and enjoyment. Be well. Be safe. Be at peace.

Oh, by the way, to help slow the spread of COVID-19, WEAR A MASK!, and to make your voice heard, VOTE!  – Billie

Learn how Bank of America cares for their employees!

The Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center recently partnered with Bank of America to offer wellness services to BOA employees.

October 2020 – It’s called preventative maintenance, an upstream approach to health and well-being.

Corporations and organizations are very aware of the many difficulties and challenges employees are facing during the pandemic and the chronic, long-term stress it is causing. One of the Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center’s generous donors, Bank of America, is taking a proactive approach.

Bank of America staff in Iowa have launched a series of physical and emotional wellness opportunities for their teammates called Get Iowa Moving.  They are running four different activities every other week from September through October. Activities include, walking outdoors, guided mindfulness meditation, chair yoga, and desk exercises. All sessions begin with a reminder of the benefits and programs the bank offers and how to take advantage of them, especially though their employee networks. Bank of America knows that members of their employee networks feel more connected and engaged at work, which is an important component of overall wellness.

Annie Brandt

“I was talking with my market president about ways we can connect with our team in this virtual world, and she reminded me of her often repeated mantra, ‘Move your body, heal your mind.’  I thought of the things Bank of America is offering teammates across the country like chair yoga and guided mindfulness meditation. I thought it could be a fun way to further engage our Iowa teammates if we made it local and special for us.”  Says, Annie Brandt, Bank of America Senior Vice President and Market Manager for Iowa.  Annie is also a long-time supporter of the Center, 2019 Women Helping Women co-chair and volunteer.

Would you like to get your team involved in preventative healthcare? Learn more about the Center’s mindfulness offerings HERE.

Allison Peet

Written by Allison Peet, certified Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction instructor.

Living, Breathing, Values

James E. Hayes, D. Min., M. Div., Executive Director, Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center

I hope get a chance to peruse our most recent annual report.

The Community Relations team did a great job organizing the narrative around our foundational values. As I thought about those values as expressed in the report and on our web site I had a moment: these values are the reason I chose to join in the Center’s work as an executive director. So much of who I am as a person in this world and my own values align directly with what this place is about.

First a bit of clarification about values since the word is often misrepresented in our hyper charged political environment. We can express our values as an organization, but if they aren’t enfleshed, lived out in daily behavior, they become empty rhetoric. Somewhere along the way I read this on a management website (forgive me for not tracking down the source yet):

Values shift the focus from the greater organization to the individual.  Values define who individuals need to be to achieve the organization’s vision and/or live out its mission.  Values articulate a set of desirable traits or characteristics that people can exemplify in their faithful service to the organization and its cause.            

For me this means that organizations and individuals walk the talk and the behaviors are easy to spot when you observe the day-to-day. So let’s take a look at our publicly expressed values and see if we can find evidence of how they’re lived


We strive to help as many people as we can regardless of ability to pay. One of my personal values is social justice, that all might have what they need to flourish in this life. I’m glad to know that we provide services to help as many as we can. That is not to say that we don’t also provide services to those with good insurance who can afford to go anywhere. We strive to help as many as we can. It’s good to know that people choose our exemplary services no matter where they land on the socio-economic spectrum and that we do our best to serve as many as we can.

Integration/holistic approach

We like to talk about the healing process for the whole person: body, mind and spirit. Practically, this has meant a number of things over the years. Lots of modalities use work on healing the mind, but a number of our clinicians utilize techniques that help clients and patients to get in touch with their bodies so that they can augment the healing process. Hope and healing for the spirit means different things to different people. One of my favorite quotes heard around here is that we meet people where they are, not looking to “fix” them, but to walk with them as a whole person to explore what a flourishing life might look like for them.


The annual report mentions that a large percentage of people come to us because they have been referred by someone in their circle that currently or previously used our services. What could be a better indicator of trust. We don’t take this lightly.

Respect and compassion

This hearkens back to the quote about meeting people where they are. We encounter diversity in many forms among our clients, staff and board. Lots of varied perspectives and commitments, yet we somehow find a way to hold together the notion of community so that we can carry on this important work together. At the root of compassion is the ability to empathize, something we see on display every day at all levels of the organization.

High standards/experience

It is incredibly humbling to watch colleagues carry on their craft. Our staff have great credentials and are products of high level training programs—including our own. That’s inspiring enough. It’s the witnessing of it in daily behaviors that’s even more inspiring. I wish more people could sit in on our consultations just to hear the wisdom of colleagues as they work together on sorting out what the best course of action might be for a client. Their compassion is evident, but their expertise always leaves me feeling grateful that our staff is there to help in moments that people are most in need. The people we serve are in good hands.

Let me conclude with a final value: community. Though much of our work happens in one-on-one settings, none of this mission is lived out in isolation. Other patients, staff, board members, volunteers and donors have gone before us. We stand on those shoulders as we do our work. Each member of this community—past, present and future—is necessary in order for us to be who we are and do what we do. The values we share aren’t just words, they are actions we see walking the hallways, in meetings and phone calls and broadcast on zoom screens each day.

I am grateful to be a part of it. I am also grateful for all of you who are the community that makes it all possible.

To read more of Jim’s blogs, click HERE

Intake Coordinator

The Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center is seeking a full-time Intake Coordinator to join our team. The ideal candidate is compassionate, reliable, well organized, can communicate clearly and professionally, able to multi-task and pay close attention to detail. Responsibilities include screening concerns of all new clients, assigning a clinician, and scheduling for services such as: psychotherapy, psychological testing, or psychiatry. This position also handles the initial client paperwork, the credentialing of new clinicians and re-credentialing of current clinicians.

Experience and educational requirements: The ideal candidate will have a high school education, two or more years of similar office experience, advanced telephone and computer skills including MS Office. Credentialing knowledge. Understanding of insurance company practices. Bilingual skills a plus.

Benefits: Competitive hourly wage, individual health insurance, and paid holiday, vacation, and sick leave. Collegial working environment. Training provided.

Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center is a nonprofit, nonsectarian organization offering a broad range of mental health services, serving more than 4,000 individuals annually including 700 children. Although best known for its 48 years of quality, professional mental health therapy, the Center provides multi-faceted services, programs and classes through 30 multi-disciplinary clinicians. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Center has implemented a robust telehealth service delivery system. Key services include:

  • Counseling, including specialized services for children and adolescents
  • Psychological testing and assessment
  • Psychiatric consultation and care (medication management)
  • Spiritual Direction
  • Training for clinical professionals
  • Leadership and spiritual life programming
  • Career Counseling

Please send a letter of interest and resume to:

Penny Heiss, Office Manager, Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center, 8553 Urbandale Ave., Urbandale, IA 50322, or email

For more information about the Center, visit our website

Wounded Healers: A Gathering of Spiritual Directors

We are living through trying times.  As spiritual directors, we hold space for the pain of others even as we acknowledge our own woundedness.  Join us for a time of mutual encouragement as we reflect together on how we can care well for ourselves while companioning others.  The day will include spiritual practices, small group reflection and sharing, and a presentation by Rev. Dr. Jan Everhart Hartliff, entitled “Wounded Healers: There is a Balm in Gilead.”

Centuries ago the prophet Jeremiah asked the question, “Is there no balm in Gilead?” The prophet witnessed the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple and accompanied leaders of Jerusalem into exile in Babylon. Millennia later, enslaved Black people asked the same question, and answered, “Yes, there IS a balm in Gilead.” Three days after a contentious national election, when we may not even know the results, how do spiritual directors find balm to continue a healing ministry? Jan will work with several biblical passages to suggest how we might maintain our own spiritual health during these trying times.


Location:  Friday, November 6, 2020 from 9 AM to 3 PM.  The event will be held live, online via Zoom.

Zoom technical information:

  1. If you don’t already have a Zoom account, sign up for one here: The first time you log on, Zoom will ask you to download a small application.
  2. If you’re not familiar with how to join a Zoom session, please watch this video. And if you need to practice joining a Zoom meeting, you can do that here.
  3. If needed, you can review computer system requirements for Zoom here.


Speaker Bio:

Jan Everhart Hartliff

Jan is an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church, serving in her 41st year under appointment. She has pastored a variety of churches in California and is now Senior Pastor at Central United Methodist Church in Stockton. She took a long break from parish ministry to earn a Ph.D. and then teach for 16 years at Simpson College in Iowa, where she retired in 2019 as Professor of Religion. Her academic specialty is biblical studies.

Jan loves studying Scripture with a wide variety of people, including those from non-Christian traditions. She is committed to the social justice ministries of the United Methodist Church and longs for the day when we can live peacefully in God’s kindom*, a community of love and justice. (*Kindom is used as an intentional alternative to kingdom.)

For more information or if you have questions, please email Chris Waddle, Director of Leadership and Spiritual Life: