OUR HISTORY

History of the Pediatric Chaplains Network

The Pediatric Chaplains Network began in 1995 as a pre-conference gathering of pediatric chaplains that met in conjunction with the Association for the Care of Children’s Health (ACCH) annual conference, an interdisciplinary group. The gathering came about as the result of an informal meeting the year before (1994) at the ACCH Conference in Toronto, Canada. The Network was officially organized in 1997 and was received as an affiliate organization of ACCH at that time.

When the ACCH dissolved as an organization, the PCN established itself as an independent group. The PCN incorporated in the fall of 1999 and was received as a member organization in the Coalition on Ministry in Specialized Settings (COMISS) in December 1999. Chaplains from a variety of children’s health care facilities and organizations are members of the Network. Each year the PCN sponsors the PCN Forum (renamed the PCN National Conference in 2011) designed to offer chaplains an opportunity to share ideas and hear presentations that will enhance their ministry.

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

A New Era – Incorporation as an Independent Organization

When the PCN became aware that ACCH would be disbanding for financial reasons, the pediatric chaplains voted in November 1999 to reform as an independent, non-profit corporation, chartered in the State of Texas. The membership adopted by-laws, a code of ethics, and a set of competencies for pediatric chaplains at that time. Membership was set at $65 per calendar year. The PCN had 37 dues-paying members in 2000. In July of 2000, the PCN held its first independent conference at the San Pedro Catholic Retreat Center with 35 chaplains registered and continuing education units granted by both NACC and APC.

Wilbert Foundation Grants

The Wilbert Foundation of Chicago, with logistical assistance from the PCN, began providing grants in 2004 to Pastoral Care Departments at children’s hospitals around the country. The Foundation was created by the Wilbert Corporation, the nation’s largest provider of burial supplies, as a way to give back to their communities. The Foundation wanted to provide financial resources for grief and bereavement support. A consultant for the Foundation identified pediatric chaplains as an under- served profession regarding philanthropic support from foundations.

The Pediatric Chaplains Institute

Wanting to do more for the cause of pediatric chaplaincy, the Wilbert Foundation asked the PCN in 2006 to submit a list of possible special projects. A list of five potential projects was developed by the PCN Advisory Council and proposed to the Foundation. In December 2006, the Foundation informed the PCN Advisory Council that it had decided to provide a grant of $50,000 for the largest and most expensive project – the creation of an ongoing national training event for pediatric chaplaincy. This project eventually became known as the Pediatric Chaplains Institute (PCI). A curriculum development team of 12 experienced PCN chaplains created the PCI curriculum in a span of six months and the first annual PCI training was held in October 2007.

PCN National Conferences Known as PCN Forum Through 2011

1995 Boston, Massachusetts
  • The PCN’s conference was held in conjunction with the annual ACCH conference. Forty-eight people participated and a major focus was networking.
  • Theology of Violence: Chaos and Suffering
  • Uniqueness of Chaplain’s Role in Pediatric Healthcare
  • Round table discussions on various topics, problems, challenges
1996 Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • The PCN’s conference was held in conjunction with the annual ACCH conference.
  • A Theology of Childrens’ Rights
  • Cross Cultural Care: Native Americans
  • Pastoral Care and Administration
  • Education for Theory and Practice: Pastoral Care in the Neonatal ICU
  • Death of a Child: Creating a Community Context between Clergy, Funeral Homes and Chaplains
1997 Washington, D.C.
  • The PCN’s conference was held in conjunction with the annual ACCH conference.
  • The PCN formalized relationship as an affiliate of ACCH, unveiling guidelines and policies.
  • President: Dane Sommer, Children’s Mercy Hospital, Kansas City, MO
  • Vice President: Ann Redmond, Cook Children's Medical Center, Ft. Worth, TX
  • Spiritual Needs of Siblings in Neonatal ICU
  • Administrative Issues in Pediatric Chaplaincy
  • Breath: Holy Spirit Significance for Pediatric Spiritual Care Standards of Pediatric Healthcare
  • Ministry to Children with Chronic Illness
1998 Kansas City, Missouri
  • The PCN’s conference was held in conjunction with the annual ACCH conference.
  • Ethics in Pediatric Healthcare
  • Moral Distress: Staff Care
  • Miracle Language: Personal and Pastoral Implications Spiritual Development of Children
1999 Long Beach, California
  • The PCN’s conference was held in conjunction with the annual ACCH conference.
  • President: Dane Sommer, Children’s Mercy Hospital, Kansas City, MO President Elect: Ann Redmond, Cook Children’s Medical Center, Fort Worth, TX
  • Overview of Pediatric Spiritual Development
  • Foundation for series on spiritual development of children at different ages Uniqueness of Pediatric Chaplaincy Setting
  • Cross-Cultural Care: Meeting the Needs of Families and Staff
2000, July 7-9; Orlando, Florida (the PCN's First Independent Conference)
  • San Pedro Retreat Center
  • President: Ann Redmond, Cook Children’s Medical Center, Ft.Worth, TX President Elect: John Breding, San Diego Children’s Hospital, CA
  • Pediatric Spiritual Assessment: A Dialogue, John Breding, San Diego Children’s Hospital, CA and Doreen Duley, Children’s Hospital, Birmingham, AL
  • Storytelling and Children’s Literature in Pediatric Spiritual Care, 2 to 6 yr olds, Bob Flory, Children’s Hospital, Denver, CO
  • Work Groups on Spirituality and Spiritual Assessment of Young Children
2001, May 11-13; Colorado Springs, Colorado
  • Glen Eyrie Conference Center
  • President: Ann Redmond, Cook Children’s Medical Center, Ft.Worth, TX President Elect: John Breding, San Diego Children’s Hospital, CA
  • Conference Theme: "Spiritual Suffering and Healing"
  • The Importance of Self Care, Del Farris, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Little Rock, AR Pastoral Care with 6 to 12 year olds, Dave Sweeney, Children’s Hospital of Omaha, NE A Patient Oriented Perspective, Bob Flory, The Children’s Hospital, Denver, CO
  • A Family Oriented Perspective, Mark Bartel, Arnold Palmer Children’s, Orlando, FL Helping Other Staff, Steve Irwin, Cook Children’s Medical Center, Ft. Worth, TX
2002, May 2-5; Orlando, Florida
  • Canterbury Retreat and Conference Center
  • President: John Breding, San Diego Children's Hospital, CA
  • President Elect: Del Farris, Arkansas Children's Hospital, Little Rock, AR
  • Conference Theme: "Deepening Our Practice"
  • Pastoral Care with Hematology / Oncology Patients and Families, Lisa Anderson, St. Jude's
  • Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • Pastoral Care with Adolescents in the Health Care Setting, Daniel Grossoehme, Children's Hospital Medical Center of Akron, OH
  • Pastoral Care in the Wake of Suicide, Bob Flory, The Children’s Hospital, Denver, CO Power of Toys in Pastoral Care, Mark Bartel, Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital, Orlando, FL
  • Physicians' Perspective on Pediatric Chaplaincy, Dr. Judy Wall and Dr. Mark Weatherly, Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital, Orlando, FL
2003, May 1-4; Rancho Palos Verdes, California (Los Angeles Area)
  • Mary & Joseph Retreat Center
  • President: John Breding, San Diego Children's Hospital, CA
  • President Elect: Del Farris, Arkansas Children's Hospital, Little Rock, AR
  • Conference Theme: "Renewing the Spirit of Our Practice ... Through Resilience"
  • Resilience in Healthcare, John Breding and Daniel McQuown, San Diego Children's Hospital, San Diego, CA
  • Spiritual Resilience in Rehabilitation, Karen Black, Our Children's House at Baylor, Dallas, TX
  • Spiritual Development of the Post-Adolescent, Brett Vebber, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • Spiritual Care in an Eating Disorders Unit, Sheila Mee, Children's Hospital of Omaha, Omaha, NE
  • Theological Reflection within Pediatric Spiritual Care, Del Farris, Arkansas Children's Hospital, Little Rock, AR
  • From Yorkhill to New York - Bridging the Pond, Alister Bull, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Yorkhill NHS Trust, Glasgow, Scotland
2004, May 13-16; St. Louis, Missouri
  • Mercy Center
  • President: Del Farris, Arkansas Children's Hospital, Little Rock, AR
  • President Elect: Lisa Anderson, St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • Conference Theme: "Reclaiming Holy Ground... Coping and Ministering as Pediatric Chaplains"
  • Non-Accidental Trauma, Bob Flory, The Children’s Hospital, Denver, CO
  • Spiritual Care of Neonates, Joanna Bailey, De Vos Children's Hospital, Grand Rapids, MI
  • Spiritual Care of the Hospital Community, Michael Jackson, Primary Children's Hospital, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Coping with Holy Ground, Dan Hudson, Children's Hospital of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA
  • Pastoral Care and Bereavement, Dolores O'Connell, Children’s Hospital at Yale New Haven Hospital, New Haven, CT
2005, May 22-25; Orlando, Florida
  • DoubleTree Club Hotel
  • (10th Anniversary Celebration, with one day of meetings at the House of Blues in Downtown Disney)
  • President: Del Farris, Arkansas Children's Hospital, Little Rock, AR
  • President Elect: Lisa Anderson, St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • Conference Theme: "Practicing and Promoting Ethics in Pediatric Healthcare" Introduction to Medical Ethics, Mark Bartel, Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital, Orlando, FL
  • God's Little Walkie-Talkies: Pastoral Care of Toddlers, Ann Miller, Cook Children’s Medical Center, Ft.Worth, TX
  • Ethical Boundaries / Avoiding Burnout, Marilyn Cummings, St. Joseph's Children's Hospital, Tampa, FL and Karen Black, Our Children's House at Baylor, Dallas, TX
  • Institutional Review Boards and Medical Research Ethics, Lisa Anderson, St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • Spiritual Research Ethics, Alister Bull, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Yorkhill NHS Trust, Glasgow, Scotland
  • Twin to Twin Skin Graft Dilemma, Doreen Duley and Dr. William Hardin, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
2006, April 30-May 3; Federal Way, Washington (Seattle Area)
  • Palisades Retreat Center
  • President: Lisa Anderson, St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • President Elect: Doreen Duley, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • Conference Theme: "Called to Compassion: Fostering Our Gifts"
  • What is a Vocation of Compassion?, Joanna Bailey, De Vos Children's Hospital, Grand Rapids, MI and Michael Jackson, Primary Children's Hospital, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Compassion Fatigue's Life Stages, Bob Flory, The Chidren's Hospital of Denver, Denver, CO
  • Spiritual Self-Assessment, Mark Bartel and Constantino Ferriola, Arnold Palmer Children's Hospital, Orlando, FL
  • A Theology for Hospitalized Children, Ann Miller, Cook Children’s Medical Center, Fort Worth, TX
  • Holy Healing: Sacred Texts as a Resource for Pastoral Care of Children and their Families, Kathleen Ennis-Durstine and Jane Brooks, Children's National Medical Center, Washington, DC
  • Random Acts of Tea, Marilyn Cummings, St. Joseph's Children's Hospital, Tampa, FL
  • Life as a New Chaplain, Maggie Jones, Christus Santa Rosa Children's Hospital, San Antonio, TX
  • Theological Reflection, Del Farris, Arkansas Children's Hospital, Little Rock, AR
2007, April 30-May 3; San Antonio, Texas
  • Oblate Renewal Center
  • President: Lisa Anderson, St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • President Elect: Doreen Duley, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • Conference Theme: "Pediatric Chaplaincy: A Window of Hope"
  • The Many Faces of Hope, Lisa Anderson, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • Pastoral Care with Adolescents, Doreen Duley and Mark Knoper, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • Signs of Hope at the End of Life: Offering a Theology and Practice of Hope in Pediatric Chaplaincy, Claudia Schmitt, The Children's Hospital, Denver, CO
  • Hope from a New Chaplain's Perspective, Stacey Jutila, Children's Memorial Hospital, Chicago, IL
  • Relationship Between Lament and Hope, Sheila Mee, Children's Hospital, Omaha, NE
  • Images of Hope, Kathleen Ennis-Durstine and Jane Brooks, Children's National Medical Center, Washington, DC
2008, April 29-May 2; Richmond, Virginia
  • Roslyn Conference and Retreat Center
  • President: Doreen Duley, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • President Elect: Bob Flory, The Children's Hospital, Denver, CO
  • Conference Theme: "Forgiveness"
  • Forgiveness Overview, Hal Morse, St. Louis Children's Hospital, St. Louis, MO
  • Developmental Expressions of Forgiveness, Kathy Ozenberger, UTMB, Galveston, TX
  • Pastoral Care for Neonates, Gordon Pugh, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • Parental Guilt, Brent Peery, Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital, Houston, TX
  • Rituals / Anointing, Becky Crouse, Children's Mercy Hospital, Kansas City, MO
  • Self-Forgiveness, Ella McCarroll, Our Children's House at Baylor, Dallas, TX
2009, May 10-13; Federal Way, Washington (Seattle Area)
  • Palisades Retreat Center
  • President: Doreen Duley, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • President Elect: Bob Flory, The Children's Hospital, Denver, CO
  • Conference Theme: "Mystery"
  • Mystery Overview and Sharing Mystery Stories, Sheila Mee, Children's Hospital, Omaha, NE
  • Mystery of the Child, Hal Morse, St. Louis Children's Hospital, St. Louis, MO
  • Mystery of Evil, Kathleen Ennis-Durstine and Janie Brooks, Children's National Medical Center, Washington, DC
  • Where Angels Fear to Tread: Naming a Few of the Mysteries of Pediatric Ethics, Bentley Stewart, Arnold Palmer Medical Center, Orlando, FL
  • Age-Level Application -- Toddlers, Ann Haywood-Baxter, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA
  • The Magic and Mystery of Puppetry, Ervin X. Peplinski, Jr., Tidewell Hospice and Palliative Care, Venice, FL
  • Theological Reflection, Doreen Duley, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
2010, April 26-29; Houston, Texas
  • Holy Name Retreat Center
  • President: Bob Flory, The Children's Hospital, Denver, CO
  • President Elect: Mark Bartel, Arnold Palmer Medical Center, Orlando, FL
  • Conference Theme: "Coloring Outside the Lines"
  • The Chaplain and the Purple Crayon, Mark Bartel, Arnold Palmer Medical Center, Orlando, FL
  • Qualitative Research: When Numbers Don't Tell the Story, Francine Jones and Mark Knoper, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • School Age Spirituality: A Retrospective Study & Forum, Paul Byrd, Doreen Duley, Mark Knoper, Gordon Pugh, and Brett Vebber, Children's Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • Prophetic Projects: Aligning Personal Passion with Corporate Mission, Bentley Stewart, Arnold Palmer Medical Center, Orlando, FL
  • Coloring Outside the Lines: Innovative Practices in Pediatric Chaplaincy, Bob Flory, The Children's Hospital, Aurora, CO
  • Show Way: Finding Our Way Outside the Lines, Sheila Mee, Children's Hospital, Omaha, NE and Claudia Schmitt, The Children's Hospital, Aurora, CO
2011, April 26-29; Marriottsville, MD (Baltimore Area)
  • Bon Secours Spiritual Center
  • President: Bob Flory, The Children's Hospital, Denver, CO
  • President Elect: Mark Bartel, Arnold Palmer Medical Center, Orlando, FL
  • Conference Theme: "Sanctuary"
  • World Café Conversation – A Sanctuary Vestibule, Bentley Stewart, Arnold Palmer Medical Center, Orlando, FL
  • Nurturing Sanctuary During Adolescence, Mark Knoper, Children’s Hospital of Alabama, Birmingham, AL
  • Creating Sanctuary for Teens, Bob Flory, The Children’s Hospital of Colorado, Aurora, CO
  • Story as Sanctuary, Charlotte Nicholson, LeBonheur Children’s Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • Creating Sanctuary in Chaos & Death, Lisa Anderson, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • Creating Personal Sanctuary, Gloria Kroeze, Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, Grand Rapids, MI
  • Cinematic Theological Reflection: “Water” (group discussion)
  • Walking Sanctuary – Taking up the Staff, Sheila Mee, Children’s Hospital & Medical Center, Omaha, NE
2012, May 7-10; Menlo Park, CA (San Francisco)
  • Vallombrosa Center
  • President: Mark Bartel, Arnold Palmer Medical Center, Orlando, FL
  • President Elect: Ann Haywood-Baxter, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA
  • Conference Theme: "Bridges" 
2013 - Orlando, FL
  • President: Mark Bartel, Arnold Palmer Medical Center, Orlando, FL
  • President Elect: Ann Haywood-Baxter, Boston Childrens Hospital, Boston, MA
  • Conference Theme: "And These Gifts Endure"
2014, May 2-5; St Louis, MO
  • Mercy Center
  • President: Ann Haywood-Baxter, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, MA
  • President Elect: Mark Brown, St. Judes Childrens Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • Conference Theme: "Moving into Our Mission: Advocating and Inspiring Innovative Pediatric Chaplaincy"
2015, May 2-5; Boston, MA
  • President: Ann Haywood Baxter, Boston Childrens Hospital, Boston, MA
  • President Elect: Mark Brown, St. Judes Childrens Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • Conference Theme: "Resilience"
2016, May; Scottsdale, AZ (Phoenix area)
  • President: Mark Brown, St. Judes Childrens Hospital, Memphis, TN
  • President Elect: Lavender Kelly, Ann and Robert Lurie Childrens Hospital, Chicago, IL
  • Conference Theme: "Desert Streams"

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