Reconciliation is the mission of the Church; and reconciliation is not the absence of conflict but rather the navigation of it.  When approached with skill and grounded in Christ’s love, conflict is a healthy process through which we fully encounter our neighbor, we learn about ourselves, and ultimately leads to unity amidst difference.  In this course, you will learn concrete skills and tools that help keep conflict healthy and safe.  You will also explore the spiritual practices which form the bedrock of this work.  Over the seven weeks, you will be asked to read, listen, reflect, and practice skills.

This course focuses on practical and theological foundations for engaging authentically and meaningfully with communities where life experiences, identities, and/or demographic characteristics reveal a social divide that can preclude others (and ourselves) from recognizing their full humanity.  Readings and other course content integrate literature from social science, practical theology, and personal narratives of experience.  Pastoral care in this framework honors the full humanity and unique experiences of individuals while simultaneously recognizing the social challenges of stigma, oppression, privilege and unconscious bias which can affect the quality and effectiveness of the helping relationship.