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Columbia Union Members Assume New Pastoral Roles for Adventist HealthCare

By Cindy Glass

In the past five years, Adventist HealthCare, based in Rockville, Md., has undertaken significant changes with its Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) program to give it the attention it needs as it continues to grow. This growth culminated in March 2008 with its 10-year accreditation by the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education Inc. At the end of this month, this pastoral education program, which is currently housed at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, will celebrate its second year of accreditation with a regional director and new name that aptly conveys its expansion: Adventist HealthCare Clinical Pastoral Education Center. This new name marks a shift in focus to make the benefits of CPE training available to all entities of Adventist HealthCare.

Since February 2006, Ted Asfaw, DMin, BCC, has served in the dual role of being director of Mission Integration and Pastoral Care Services at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital and regional director of Adventist HealthCare’s CPE Program. As part of this transition, Asfaw will now lead the work of expanding the CPE program to all the other entities of Adventist HealthCare. This focused attention will enhance the growth of the CPE center to offer CPE training in other entities and add Supervisory CPE Accreditation to the training program.

Asfaw, an ordained Seventh-day Adventist minister, is a native of Ethiopia. He arrived in the United States in 1985 and became fully certified as an ACPE supervisor in 2000. He became the director of Mission Integration and Pastoral Care Services at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital in February 2006. Asfaw has three children and is married to Cynthia, a special education teacher in Loudoun County. Asfaw and his family are members of Potomac Conference’s Rockville church.

New Shady Grove Director

Jose Hernandez now holds the role of Pastoral Care Services director of Shady Grove Adventist Hospital. Before coming to Shady Grove, Hernandez was the manager of Pastoral Care Services and organizational integrity officer at the Adventist Rehabilitation Hospital of Maryland. He has served as a chaplain in various hospitals in Atlanta, Ga., and Seventh-day Adventist churches in Maryland, Illinois, and Georgia. He has completed graduate studies in World Religions and Ethics at the Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University (Mich.) and courses in marriage and family therapy. He is married to Ann Roda, who serves as an associate pastor at the New Hope church in Fulton, Md. The CPE program began in 2005 as a satellite relationship with Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, D.C., was accredited on March 31, 2008. Since the first CPE group, 83 students have graduated from the CPE training program. These successful graduates are clinically trained chaplains, many of whom serve as staff and directors of area healthcare institutions.