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Fall Institute 2008

Para-Professional Counseling I   

Are You Listening?

Margaret Alter, Peter Coster, Sandi Hedlund, Susan S. Phillips,
Martha de Laveaga Stewart, and Charles Wickstrand  

Tuesdays, September 2 - December 9, 7 pm - 9:30 pm

First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley, Rm. G206 / McKinley Hall, 2407 Dana St.

Cost: $325 per semester


Para-professional Counseling I is designed to combine practical counseling training with theory, integrating psychology, Biblical theology, and spirituality. Participants will be prepared for service in para-professional counseling programs in churches and communities, and will learn skills for use with family, friends, and in professional relationships, especially those of ministry. Counseling professionals will gain theological integration for practice. The course will be taught collaboratively by licensed counseling professionals and scholars.


Margaret Alter (M.Div., Ph.D., LMFT) is NCB professor of psychology and Christianity and a licensed marriage and family counselor in private practice in Berkeley. She is the author of “Resurrection Psychology.
Peter Coster (M.Div., M.A., Ph.D., LMFT) is a psychotherapist in private practice in Berkeley and Sonoma.  He is a clinical supervisor for graduate level trainees in psychology at
JFK University.
Sandi Hedlund (M.A., LMFT) directs the Lay Counseling Services at First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley, and is a therapist in private practice in Berkeley.
Martha de Laveaga Stewart (M.S., LMFT) is a licensed therapist and has a private practice in Orinda. Susan S. Phillips (Ph.D.) is executive director of New College Berkeley, teaches Christian spirituality at the GTU and other seminaries, and is a spiritual director. She is the author of a new book, “Candlelight: Illuminating the Art of Spiritual Direction.”
Charles Wickstrand (M.A., LMFT) supervises the FPCB lay counselors and has counseling practices in Oakland and Alameda.


Co-sponsored with First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley's Christian Lay Counseling Service
Contact NCB for information about GTU academic credit and/or MFT and LCSW CEUs




Biblical Hebrew Study Group I (with emphasis on the Psalms)   

Chris Corwin

Thursday, September 4 - December 11, 7 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.

Cosponsored with and at First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley, Room G202
Cost: $100 (one semester)


Learn Biblical Hebrew by reading and listening to the Psalms. No prior study of Hebrew is needed. Through linguistically proven techniques, this class will focus on basic grammar and vocabulary building in order to enable a lifetime of reading the Hebrew Scriptures. This class will develop a deeper understanding of the Psalms' poetic nature, enriching their impact in worship and spirituality.


Chris Corwin (Ph.D.) is an adjunct professor at Fuller Theological Seminary and Chabot College. His doctoral work focused on the Hebrew Scriptures, with special emphasis on the Psalms.



Scripture Study for Spiritual Growth

Bonnie Howe

Mondays, September 8 - December 8, 7:10 p.m. - 9:40 p.m.
Pacific School of Religion, 1798 Scenic Avenue Berkeley, Room 103 / Mudd Building

Cost: $325 (one semester) )  
GTU academic credit available.


Findings from a recent study of how churches can help people mature spiritually encourages leaders to reassess current programs and levels of participation. The multiyear study had concluded that teaching people how to read the Bible between Sundays was key to cultivating spiritual growth. How to do this? In this course for Biblically hungry Christians, Bible study leaders, ministers, and seminarians, Dr. Howe will explore ways to teach others how to read the Bible for growth in their spiritual lives.


Bonnie Howe (Ph.D.) is visiting NCB professor of New Testament Studies and Christian Ethics.  She is the author of “Because You Bear This Name: Conceptual Metaphor and the Moral Meaning of 1 Peter.”



Global Slavery and the Plague of Poverty Conference

Jaime Farrant, Mike Perreau, Pranitha Timothy, and others

Friday - Sunday, October 17-19

First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley, Sanctuary, 2407 Dana Street

Cost: $50  //  Student: $20

Register through FPCB


Over 28 million people today are slaves: held against their will, forced to work under someone else’s rule, trapped in a cycle of control, abuse, and injustice. Some are born, live, and die as slaves. From sex-trafficking to forced labor, across Asia, Africa, and Europe to the United States, slavery thrives. Poverty is the soil in which this horror flourishes. Three billion people today live on $2 or less per day.


This 2008 Global Church Conference focuses on slavery in the context of poverty. Christian leaders in the Majority World will help us understand, engage with, and respond to these realities as we follow Jesus Christ.


Jaime Farrant works with IJM in Latin America, serving as a legal advocate for children and women victimized by sex trafficking.
Mike Perreau is a director of Transformational Business Network  which combats poverty through business enterprise.
Pranitha Timothy works with IJM in South Asia, rehabilitating forced labor clients.

Co-sponsored with First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley, Global Strategies for HIV Prevention, International Justice Mission, Not for Sale, and Trade as One.






Advent Retreat: Anticipating Christ's Coming

Susan Phillips

Saturday, December 13, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Co-sponsored with and at First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley, Room G213 and Mears A

Cost: $25  (Enrolment limited to 25)


The Psalmist yearned for God: "As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God" (Psalm 42:1). Do you yearn for God as intensely as you thirst for water? Or is your thirst for God obscured by other desires, disappointments, or distractions? Advent offers opportunity to make space in our lives for the God who is always coming to us, seeking our attention and devotion, offering us new life.


Enter Advent before facing the onslaught of the culture's Christmas. Join us for this morning of thoughtful discussion and contemplative prayer


Susan English Fetcho is a performer, choreographer, and videographer. She is artist-in-residence at New College Berkeley.


NCB Seminars


Poetry, Science and So Forth

Walt Hearn

Wednesday,  October 22, 7 p.m.

Walter Hearn (Ph.D.) is a biochemist and a poet with many published works.

He is the author of "Being a Christian in Science."


Judgement Calls: Theological Reflections on "The Scarlet Letter"
Marilyn McEntyre

Wednesday, November 12, 7 p.m.

Marilyn McEntyre (Ph.D.) formerly professor of English Literature, Westmont College, is the author of  The Color of Light: Poems on Van Gogh's Late Paintings” and many other books and articles


 For Locations: Call NCB on 510 841-9386

 Click HERE to register and pay online or by check.

Preparing the whole people of God for active ministry in all the settings in which God has placed them

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