Foundations of Catholic Health Care Leadership 2021
An Online Course for Formation and Development

View the brochure

Online Sessions:
Weekly Sessions on Seven Consecutive Thursdays
Jan. 14 – Feb. 25, 2021
1 - 3 p.m. ET

Jan. 12, 2021
1 - 2 p.m. ET

Designed for New and Current Leaders Like You!
CHA's Online Foundations of Catholic Health Care Leadership program provides executives, board members, directors, managers, physicians, nurses, clinicians, spiritual care providers and other leaders in Catholic health care with a foundation in the core theological and ethical principles that are at the heart of the Catholic health ministry.

The program deepens leaders' understanding of their important role in Catholic health care and the moral principles of the church in serving the needs of patients, families, communities and the common good.

Engaging Online Experience
The Foundations program is an engaging online experience that places the accent on learning, discussion and networking. Each session of the seven-week series features online chat and breakout sessions for small group discussions with presentations from seasoned experts in key areas of Catholic health care. These focus areas include executive leadership, formation, mission, ethics, sponsorship, community benefit, advocacy, international outreach, spirituality and whole person care.

Comprehensive Seven-Week Series
Online Foundations takes place in a series of seven consecutive weekly sessions on Thursdays from Jan. 14 to Feb. 25, 2021 from 1 to 3 p.m. ET.

Since each session focuses on a key principle of Catholic health leadership, registrants are expected to participate in all sessions to benefit fully from the program. Assignments and reading materials will be available for download prior to each session. An orientation session to familiarize participants with the online format is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021, from 1 to 2 p.m. ET.

Here's What Participants Say About Online Foundations

"Excellent curriculum from start to finish, clarifying the mission, the principles of Catholic health, the resources, the need for spirituality and continued learning and formation. Very welcoming, collegial tone."

"My organization has undergone many challenges over the past few years, and we are really focusing on getting back to the 'why' of our mission. This session just helped to help me think of ways I can help my department and others in the medical center demonstrate this."  

"Not being Catholic, learning the social traditions was great. I now have had a light shed on my organization and why we do what we do the way we do."  

"It was good to see that all faiths and traditions are respected by the Catholic Church and that there is genuine interest in the value of being inclusive. We can all work together to make our health care ministries a special place for everyone."  

"I really enjoyed our group break out discussions today. I always enjoy them. It is so nice to hear what my colleagues are doing. There are so many best practices!!"  

"Everything about his program was beneficial. I was able to translate what I do and what I can do from all the content you provided through the sessions. Having a team to have breakout sessions with and discussions was very meaningful and insightful. The prayers and the suggestions for beginning with silence or prayer are impactful."

Participate Individually or as a Group
You may participate individually or as a group from the same system or facility. Many participants find that engaging in Online Foundations as a group is a great way to foster interaction and real-world application to their daily work. Individuals are also welcome to join the program. We will link you with participants from other locations for group discussions so you have the ample opportunity to share and exchange ideas.

Comprehensive Curriculum with Expert Presenters
The curriculum weaves biblical, theological and spiritual aspects of health care ministry in a model that incorporates adult learning methods within a framework of ministry formation and development. Upon completion of the program, participants will be able to begin articulating and integrating spiritual, theological and ethical principles of Catholic health care and apply them to their work.

Curriculum and Schedule

ORIENTATION — TUESDAY, JAN. 12, 2021, 1-2 p.m. ET

Diarmuid Rooney, M.S. Psych, M.T.S., D. Soc. Admin.
This session will review features of the online platform that will be used throughout the program, how to navigate the various screens, how breakout sessions will be handled, and answer any questions. The orientation will also provide an introduction about CHA and the programs and services available to members who work in Catholic health organizations. Participants will also receive a helpful glossary of Catholic health terminology.

SESSION ONE — THURSDAY, JAN. 14, 2021, 1-3 P.M. ET

Leadership and the Ministry of Catholic Health Care
Sr. Mary Haddad, RSM, MSW, MBA

The objective is to enable participants to articulate important challenges on the horizon for Catholic health care and their implications for leaders of this ministry. The themes include:

  • What are the important opportunities and challenges on the horizon for Catholic health care?
  • In light of this, what are the implications for leaders of this ministry?
  • What question do you have about these challenges on the horizon?
Carrie Meyer McGrath_150
Jesus, The Foundation of Catholic Health Care
Carrie Meyer McGrath, MA, M.Div.

The objective is to enable participants to express the relationship of the healing ministry of Jesus Christ to the foundation and work of Catholic health care. The themes include:

  • What are the implications of describing “the healing ministry of Jesus” as the foundation of our ministry?
  • How do we understand Jesus as a healer of the whole person?
  • What are the foundational healing stories for the Catholic health ministry?
  • What is the role of sacred Scripture as a spiritual touchstone for leaders?

SESSION TWO — THURSDAY, JAN. 21, 2021, 1-3 P.M. ET

Spirituality and Whole Person Care
Diarmuid Rooney, M.S. Psych, M.T.S., D. Soc. Admin. 

The objective is for participants to understand the importance of whole person care and the central role of spirituality in Catholic health care. The themes include:

  • What is whole person care?
  • What is the place of spirit within this understanding of what it means to be human?
  • What are the spiritual needs of a person, and how do we respond to these needs in our work?
  • What are spiritual practices, and how do they get expressed in a diverse and pluralistic workplace?
Julie Trocchio_150
Community Benefit and Population Health
Julie Trocchio, MSN

The objective is to define and describe the importance of community benefit as part of Catholic health care. The themes include:

  • What do we mean by community benefit and the social determinants of health?
  • What are the social conditions necessary for an individual’s dignity to be actualized?
  • What do you know about how your organization is responding to the needs within your organization?


Brian Kane
Catholic Social Tradition
Brian M. Kane, Ph.D. 

The objective is to identify foundational concepts in Catholic Social Teaching and their implications for health care leadership. The themes include:

  • What is the Catholic social tradition?
  • What does Catholic Social Teaching mean as the "public face" of the church’s moral tradition?
  • Considering the key principles of this tradition, what are some ethical issues that arise, for example, in collaborative ventures with other organizations?
Bruce Compton
Social Justice and Global Health
Bruce Compton

The objective is to understand what global health and international outreach mean in Catholic health care and why they are social justice issues. The themes include:

  • Catholic health care has always transcended national boundaries. In today’s global environment, how has international outreach taken on new importance rooted in the imperative to preach the Gospel to the "ends of the earth?”
  • How are CHA’s outreach activities supporting members, partnering organizations and the church?
  • How do you think you can enhance your own and your organization’s global health and international outreach activities?


Nate Hibner
Ethics and Discernment
Nathaniel Blanton Hibner, Ph.D., and Diarmuid Rooney, M.S. Psych, M.T.S., D. Soc. Admin.

The objective is to introduce participants to the extensive history of ethics and moral theology. It will also situate the role of discernment in all ethical decision making. The themes include:

  • What do we mean by "ethics" and "morality"?
  • When did the Catholic moral and ethical theology begin? How has it evolved?
  • Where is "discernment" situated in moral and ethical decision making?
Clinical Aspects of the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services
Nathaniel Blanton Hibner, Ph.D.

The objective is to introduce the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services as a leadership resource and to articulate a basic process for ethical decision making in the health care setting. The themes include:

  • What are the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services (ERDs)?
  • How do the ERDs define the moral and ethical framework for Catholic health care in the United States?
  • How does our understanding of ethics play out in provider/patient relationships and in specific issues at the beginning and end of life?


Fr. Bouchard
Models of the Church: Spirit and Structure
Fr. Charles Bouchard, OP, S.T.D., and Diarmuid Rooney, M.S. Psych, M.T.S., D. Soc. Admin. 

The objective is to enable participants to understand the models and ethos of the church. The themes include:

  • How do we understand the church from servant to institution?
  • As institution, what is the structure of the church from parish to papacy?
  • Why is the mystical dimension of the church important to leadership in Catholic health care?
Sponsorship Today
Fr. Charles Bouchard, OP, S.T.D., and Diarmuid Rooney, M.S. Psych, M.T.S., D. Soc. Admin.

The objective is to introduce participants to the meaning of sponsorship in Catholic health care today. The themes include:

  • How has sponsorship emerged and evolved into its present structure?
  • What are sponsors responsible for, how are they structured and how do they live out their ministry?
  • What are some of the hopes and challenges facing sponsors now and into the future?

SESSION SIX — THURSDAY, FEB. 18, 2021, 1-3 P.M. ET

Brian Smith_150
Stewarding Organizational Culture in the Catholic Tradition
Damond Boatwright, FACHE and Brian Smith, MS, MA, M.Div.

The objective is to develop a plan for ongoing development and formation as a ministry leader in Catholic health care. The themes include:

  • In what ways are leaders "culture bearers" who hold the organization’s integrity in trust and shape its culture?
  • How do leaders in Catholic health care use leadership principles as tools for maintaining a distinctive Catholic culture?
  • What are some core spiritual practices that can strengthen a leader’s personal and professional growth?


Dennis Gonzales -150
Leadership During Challenging Times
Dennis Gonzales, Ph.D.
Ongoing Formation
Diarmuid Rooney, M.S. Psych, M.T.S., D. Soc. Admin.

The objective is to prepare leaders for ongoing formation opportunities, both personally and professionally, through CHA offerings and other local and national initiatives.

Certificate of Attendance

Please note, CHA does not offer Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for any programs.

CHA will provide all Online Foundations participants with a Certificate of Attendance indicating contact hours at the conclusion of the program. All program registrants will receive an email with a link to the overall evaluation as well as information regarding the Certificate of Attendance.

Participants may submit Certificates of Attendance to relevant organizations that accept proof of contact hours as credit.

These include:

American College of Healthcare Executives: American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) members may self-report qualifying CEUs using the contact hour information provided on their CHA Certificate of Attendance. To self-report, log in as a member on the ACHE site; use the link on the left-hand side to self-report applicable contact hours for CEU credit.

NACC Board Certified Chaplains: National Association of Catholic Chaplains (NACC) board certified chaplain members may self-report their continuing education hours (CEHs) using the contact hours information provided on their CHA Certificate of Attendance

For further information regarding Certificates of Attendance, please contact Danette Thompson, (314) 253-3408.