What is Parish Nursing?
The parish nurse is a registered nurse who is committed to — and, on a broad level, is an integral part of — the concept of LCMS Health Ministry. He/she works with the members of the health ministry committee or health cabinet, helping and enabling people of the congregation and the community attain, maintain and/or regain optimal health.
Parish nursing is a unique blending of professional nursing and spiritual caregiving. We recommend the parish nurse attend a special preparation program for parish nursing. Opportunities for basic preparation and continuing education are available within The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. You might consider the following sources of Lutheran parish nurse preparation:
Lutheran Parish Nurse Educational Options
- Concordia University Wisconsin, Mequon Wis. Learn More
- Concordia University, Nebraska, Seward, Neb. Learn More
Alternative and Distance Educational Opportunities
Scope and Standards of Practice for Faith Community Nurses 2nd ed. (2012) identifies specialized education as a prime requisite for anyone who practices as a parish nurse. This education can vary in depth, but there are minimal standards. Health Ministry recommends parish nurses within the Synod complete a parish nurse course that includes theology taught by an LCMS clergy as minimal preparation.
Introduction to Parish Nursing Video Curriculum
LCMS Health Ministry offers a basic course, “Introduction to Parish Nursing,” available through distance learning, and it includes online videos, print materials and mentoring. You may watch the videos online at no cost. You must, however, register for the course to receive the print materials and mentoring, which leads to a Certificate of Completion, a parish nurse pin and listing in the LCMS Directory of Parish Nurses. The course does not offer college credit or contact units for licensure renewal. The person desiring either of these should contact Concordia University Wisconsin, Mequon, Wis., or Concordia University Nebraska, Seward, Neb. The course does meet the standards as identified in Scope and Standards of Practice for Faith Community Nurses and the LCMS Health Ministry.
View Videos Registration Form
You may also contact us with international inquiries regarding Lutheran Parish Nurse Training. Contact Us Online
Portfolio Review is possible for persons who have completed a self-directed study with experience as a parish nurse but have not completed a formal educational program. Persons desiring a portfolio review must complete an application and interview prior to initiating the review process. Upon successful completion of the portfolio review, the parish nurse will receive a Certificate of Completion, a parish nurse pin and listing in the LCMS Directory of Parish Nurses.
Download Portfolio Review Information Sheet
Special topic videos
Special topic videos will continue to be added to the listing of educational offerings through LCMS Health Ministry. These videos will come with a study guide and can be used either individually or in small group settings. The person desiring a Certificate of Completion for any of the topical studies will be asked to submit a request with a reflection paper as described on the study guide.
View Video Series