Shalom Center offers an intensive residential program for clergy and religious who experience psychological difficulties, interpersonal conflicts, emotional or sexual problems, grief and loss issues, stress and exhaustion, transitional trauma, sexual abuse, addictions or other related issues. The length of stay varies according to the needs of each person.
Residents engage in individual and group counseling, spiritual direction, expressive art therapy, education and spirituality seminars, skills building workshops, an exercise program and outdoor work projects. Participation in 12-step groups is available when indicated. Also available are massage for good health as well as arts and crafts for both enjoyment and healing.
Visits from designated leadership persons are encouraged particularly at the conclusion of the program. A written report is provided which offers a summary of a resident’s progress, recommendations and limits to ministry if applicable.
“You will know the truth and
the truth will set you free.”””.
— John 8:32
Shalom Center interweaves the spiritual and human journey of a person’s life. Each morning the residents gather to celebrate Holy Mass as a supportive faith community. Evening Prayer is prayed together daily. Eucharistic adoration provides time for deep meditation with Jesus. Spiritual guidance is offered individually, and group spirituality seminars are held weekly that offer continued spiritual growth. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is available weekly for residents.
Residents of Shalom Center meet with their primary therapist at scheduled times each week for individual therapy. Therapists and professional counselors skilled and licensed in a variety of counseling specialties such as addictions and sexual abuse, are available to the resident for individual counseling.
In individual therapy, a resident formulates a treatment plan in collaboration with the primary therapist. Week by week, the resident measures his or her progress towards specified goals. As new issues arise and personal insight grows, the treatment plan may undergo modifications. Ultimately, the resident achieves greater self-awareness and personal growth in areas that need healing and change.
Residents of Shalom Center participate in multiple group therapy experiences per week. The group is co-facilitated by professional therapists. Residents are given the opportunity to share the issues that have brought them to Shalom Center and are confronted to face realities preventing them from personal acceptance and growth. A variety of psychotherapeutic dynamics are utilized to achieve personal insight and necessary change.
The educational seminars offered seek to expand the participant’s knowledge of issues related to integral living as well as reinforce existing skills and attitudes in ministry. Audio-visual materials and presentations are utilized to address themes such as co-dependency and addictions, family systems, sexuality, relationships and ministerial boundaries. The seminars help residents to develop and practice a repertoire of skills and strategies for effective and integrated ministry.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
This multi-media class with presentations teach the value of “living in the present moment” (Saint Teresa of Calcutta) as opposed to dwelling on the past and agonizing about the future. Given with the views of the early church fathers, Thomas Aquinas, and contemporary Catholic thinkers, this class consists of 12 sessions which build on the practice of mindfulness in daily living.
Expressive therapy seeks to facilitate a harmonious integration of body, mind and spirit. The therapist uses a number of techniques and activities to help participants externalize experiences and feelings which are otherwise difficult to articulate. Such techniques include music, art, psychodrama, singing, movement, journaling and guided imagery.
Residents of Shalom Center may participate in evening 12-step groups. These support groups enable a person to pursue and maintain healthy living in a community of people who have experienced the same or similar “unmanageability.” Anonymity and confidentiality are the rules of all group experiences.
Prior to a resident’s departure, a plan of action is composed to maintain emotional, spiritual and physical health. It may include ongoing counseling (if applicable), spiritual direction, the participation in a support group, 12-step group meetings and visits with a mentor priest, brother or sister. Former residents are encouraged to return to Shalom Center for a minimum of two intensive follow-up programs during the first 2 years after discharge. Follow-up visits allow the staff to assess the progress and integration of a person’s holistic health plan. At the conclusion, a report is sent to the appropriate leadership persons.