Faith Community Nursing


The Joy of Caring Conference: Fostering Resilience and Hope


The Clarke University Nursing and Religious Studies Departments have been collaborating with the Archdiocese of Dubuque and Mercy Medical Center to foster the initiatives of faith community nursing.  Support for faith community nursing has been offered for many years in the Dubuque region through the efforts of the Parish Health Ministry/Rural Health Services office at Mercy Medical Center. Last year, the Archdiocese of Dubuque strengthened its support for faith community nursing practice and ministry through the Office of Family Life.

Join us at this year's conference!
Click on the links below to download a PDF of the 2010 program or to view conference speakers and biographies.

The Joy of Caring: Fostering Resilience and Hope (PDF) 
Conference Speakers and Biographies


Linda Manternach
Contemplative Living: A Way to Resiliency and Hope

Linda Manternach

Living right here, right now gives us the strength and capacity for resilience and hope. God is only experienced right here, right now, even in the midst of our daily work. God gives us the resources needed to respond to all that life hands us. A contemplative life and perspective is the way to build one’s resiliency and to forge through with hope.

Linda is the Director of Family Life and Resource to Faith Community Nursing in the Archdiocese of Dubuque. She holds a BA from Loras College and an MA from Mount St. Joseph College, Cincinnati, OH.

The intended audience for the conference includes nurses, pastors and pastoral associates, seminary students, social workers, chaplains, and funeral home employees.  Persons of all faiths are welcome to participate!
Event Sponsors

Clarke University
Archdiocese of Dubuque
Mercy Medical Center, Dubuque

Map and Directions

This year’s conference is held in the R.C. and Celeste Wahlert Atrium.

Parking will be available August 13, 2010 in the RC Wahlert lot (next to the Wahlert Sports Complex) or the Keller Computer Center lot (behind Eliza Kelly Hall).  Should you desire special assistance getting from your car into the Atrium, contact us at (563)588-8154 and we can make arrangements to help you. Click here to view a map of the campus.

For more information about this conference and the support Clarke provides to nurses and parishes contact:

Dean P. Manternach, Ph.D., Chair of Religious Studies at (563)588-8154 or by e-mail at

Previous Faith Community Conferences

Living the Vision 
A New Heart and a New Spirit

Background on Faith Community Nursing

The changing demographics of aging membership in parishes throughout many dioceses in the country have prompted the growth of a faith-community nursing ministry.  This ministry will continue to grow throughout the country and be a vital way that parish leadership cares for its members.  Faith community nursing, also commonly referenced today as parish nursing, focuses on health promotion and care within the context of the values, beliefs, and practices of the faith community, family or individual served.  It is not limited to elderly members, but to health promotion for the entire community.  Since 1998 faith community nursing practice has been officially recognized and guided by standards of the American Nurses Association (ANA).

Many parishes are exploring options to provide holistic bodily care for its membership.  Rooted in a theology of the body, this ministry appreciates that spiritual care is connected to bodily care and health.  Some parishes are able to hire a registered nurse to serve on their ministry staff, while others organize health care promotion and ministries with existing staff or volunteer parish resources.  In many parishes this is possible because of the generous service and commitment of nurses and other interested persons sharing their expertise and gift of leadership in this area. 

What does a faith community nurse do?

The faith-based nurse maintains standards of care as demonstrated by the nursing process – assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementation, and evaluation – to all members of the parish community.  Often the faith community nurse, because of his or her professional training, is a vital link for families and parishioners with other medical and health care professionals in the community.  As part of the ministerial staff, salaried or volunteer, the nurse often provides direct pastoral care to persons and typically organizes a ministry of health promotion and care in the parish or parish cluster.

Where does one receive training for this ministry and professional practice?

Clarke University is a recognized area leader in nursing care and pastoral ministry training.  As a Catholic institution it desires to further support the development of this practice and ministry in service to the local Church. This annual conference is just one opportunity. Click here for more information on how to enroll in a Religious Studies course during the 2010-2011 academic year for continuing education. This education opportunity is arranged for ministry and care professionals with the Archdiocese of Dubuque.


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