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Michigan’s first Muslim chaplaincy program offered in Detroit


With the growth of people who practice the Islamic faith in the United States, there is increasing need for Muslim chaplains in hospitals, universities, law enforcement departments, and in prisons. However, there are few educational centers in the nation offering a comprehensive training program exclusively for Muslims. The Ecumenical Theological Seminary (ETS) in Detroit will offer its Muslim Chaplaincy Program beginning with the fall semester, September 2011.

The Muslim Chaplaincy Program, which is part of the seminary’s Urban Ministry Diploma program, is designed to prepare persons for the ministry of spiritual care. It will provide basic skills in pastoral care, arts of ministry, theology, ethics, dialogue and interfaith relations needed to serve as chaplains in a variety of settings. The program leaders and principal instructors are Urias Beverly, D.Min, director of the Doctor of Ministry Program, and Mustapha Elturk, Imam and President of the Islamic Organization of North America.

A chaplain is a bridge between local Islamic centers and the wider community. There is a significant population of Muslims living in Southeast Michigan, but few are educated and trained in the practice of spiritual care. There is a shortage of Muslim chaplains in the area, although many Muslims are in hospitals and other health care agencies as patients, staff, and doctors. Some are in hospices and extended care facilities. This program will prepare the participant to provide spiritual care not only for Muslims but also for anyone in need.

The prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) once said, “Each of you is a shepherd and each of you is responsible for his flock. The ruler is a shepherd. A man is the shepherd of his family. A woman is the shepherd of her husband’s household and the children. Each of you is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock.” Al- Bukhari, one of the six canonical collections of religious teachings in Islam.

The first year will focus on academic studies and the second year will focus on practical and reflective experiences. Specific course offerings include:

·      Listen, Learn, and Live, a course that acquaints the student with other religious cultures.

·      Introduction to Research and writing, a course that teaches the students how to develop effective writing skills.

·      Tajweed and Qur’anic memorization, a course that teaches the articulation of reciting the Qur’an.

·      Arabic for Everyday Use, a course that introduces the student to the fundementals of Arabic grammar so that they feel at ease with colloquial Arabic for everyday use.

·      Islamic Beliefs and Practice: Aqidah and Ibadaat, a course in Islamic beliefs and rituals.

·      Theology of Shepherding, a course about how to be an effective shepherd – a care-giver; how to be supportive of people who are sick, and/or having surgery; give care to one who is in jail, and helping resolve family issues from an Islamic perspective.

·      Islamic History, a course in the history of Islam, from the time of the Prophet Muhammad, Peace be Upon Him, to the present day.

·      Shepherding Identity: Study of Quran, a course that studies the Quran from a shepherding perspective, borrowing the concept of salvation – faith, good deeds, enjoining one another to truth, and enjoining one another to patience and perseverance.

·      Effective Shepherding: Learning shepherding skills, learning what to do if someone is sick, dying, or has died.

Other courses will cover research and writing, medical ethics, group dynamics and development, practical group work, and three quarters of practice experience in chaplaincy.



For more information on the program, contact the program director Urias Beverly313-831-5200 ext. 216 or Imam Elturk at 586-558-6900. For general information on the ETS Urban Ministry Diploma Program, contact director Charles Clark at  313-831-5200 ext. 224. 

To apply for the Muslim Chaplaincy Program, contact Patricia Chunn in Admissions, at 313-831-5200, ext. 217, or email Charles Clark 313-831-5200 ext. 224, our Recruitment Director, who would be happy to set up a tour of our building with you.

Click here to apply Application.

Our 2012-1012 classes will be on Mondays and Wednesdays from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM.

Ecumenical Theological Seminary is accredited by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools. The seminary is appreciated to provide a Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Pastoral Ministry, and Doctor of Ministry.  It also offers several other courses for practicing ministers and the community at large. The seminary is located at 2930 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48201.  For information visit www.etseminary.edu or call 313-831-5200, ext. 500.

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itassistant@etseminary.edu,
Oct 6, 2011, 8:36 AM
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