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Hospital, seminary partner for degree program

La Grange, IL – Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital is pleased to announce a new partnership with one of the most prestigious seminaries in the country. The hospital has teamed up with McCormick Theological Seminary to offer a doctor of ministry degree in pastoral and spiritual care.

Aimed at hospital chaplains both within and outside the Adventist Health System and pastors interested in wellness and health care, the program is for those whose ministry focuses on a faith community as the context for pastoral and spiritual care. It enables pastors and organizational leaders to study the dynamic life of the people of God as a helping community.

 “This partnership presents an opportunity to connect our hospital to a world-class theological seminary,” said Tricia Treft, manager of pastoral care at Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital, one of three Adventist Midwest Health employees enrolled in the first class. “Further education will make our ministry more effective.”

Martha Brown, doctor of ministry recruitment and retention coordinator at McCormick Theological Seminary, said the partnership benefits both institutions.

“We are excited about this partnership with Adventist Midwest Health because it provides an opportunity to offer doctoral level education to hospital chaplains in the same program as parish clergy,” Brown said. “We believe this educational setting will create opportunities for vigorous conversation and a lively synergy among the students from both the hospital and the parish. The partnership also creates an opportunity for McCormick faculty to learn from the students. We are looking forward to a long and mutually beneficial association.”

The first class, “Ministry With Groups,” taught by Professor Deborah Kapp, begins today (March 31) at Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital. Twelve students are enrolled, including Treft and fellow Adventist Midwest Health chaplains Maria Maestre and Peggy Lindsey. A second core course in pastoral care, taught by Professor Homer Ashby, will be offered May 12-16.

The program, composed of nine one-unit courses and a thesis, is the equivalent of one year of full-time work. But because the program is closely integrated with students’ professional work, most students complete the program in three to five years. Admissions requirements include a master of divinity degree and a minimum of three years full-time professional ministry experience.

Chicago-based McCormick Theological Seminary is a seminary of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Nearly 40 percent of McCormick’s students come from Christian traditions other than Presbyterian. The seminary is associated with the University of Chicago.

For more information on the program and its requirements, visit and click on “D.Min.Program.”


Adventist Midwest Health includes Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital, Adventist GlenOaks Hospital, Adventist Hinsdale Hospital and Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital.  To find a physician, visit