AAPC-SE Region Annual Meeting | Kanuga Conference Center | October 21-23, 2016

 AAPC Southeast Region Annual Meeting

AAPClogo2 without white glowSoutheast Region
American Association of Pastoral Counselors
Annual Meeting
Kanuga Conference Center
Hendersonville, North Carolina

October 21-23, 2016

The AAPC Southeast Region Annual Meeting is an occasion for learning, networking, and renewal in the mountains of Western North Carolina. This year’s conference features four presentations by renowned writer and speaker Nancy McWilliams and additional workshops by leaders in the field of spiritually-integrated psychotherapy. Attendees can earn up to 15 NBCC- and AAMFT-approved continuing education hours, including up to 5 Ethics credits. The AAPC Southeast Region welcomes all mental health professionals, ministers, students, and others interested in the intersection of psychotherapy, spirituality, and theology. Scholarships are available for students and others. See below for a complete description of Dr. McWilliams’ presentations, additional workshops, the conference schedule, and scholarship information.


Mortality, Individuality, And Generativity: Facing our Humanity

Plenary Presentations by Nancy McWilliams

(Friday 7-9 pm, Saturday 9 am-12 pm, Saturday 7-9 pm)

Religious language has always addressed the question of limitation, but the secular, individualistic nature of American culture has preferred a narrative of unlimited power, resources, and possibilities -- a feeding of narcissistic illusions rather than a tempering of them. Contrary to this cultural emphasis, psychotherapy attempts to help people come to terms with their full humanity, and provides realistic comfort in the face of inevitable limitation rather than the stoking of omnipotent fantasies. Dr. McWilliams will explore this dilemma central to the human condition:although limitation evokes primal frustration, it also creates the conditions for creativity. Dr. McWilliams’s presentations will help us look honestly at limitation, creativity, and regeneration. Her lectures will also discuss authenticity, security and attachment, the capacity to mourn, and resilience.

Nancy McWilliamsNancy McWilliams teaches at Rutgers University’s Graduate School of Applied & Professional Psychology and has a private practice in Flemington, NJ. She is a well published author in the field of psychoanalysis. She is a former president of the Division of Psychoanalysis (39) of the American Psychological Association and is on the editorial board of Psychoanalytic Psychology. A graduate of the National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis, Dr. McWilliams is also affiliated with the Center for Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis of New Jersey and the National Training Program of the National Institute for the Psychotherapies in New York City. Dr. McWilliams is an honorary member of the American Psychoanalytic Association, the Moscow Psychoanalytic Society, and the Warsaw Scientific Association for Psychodynamic Psychotherapy. Dr. Williams has led many workshops and lectures on this topic, including our own conference at Kanuga in 2000.


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Friday, October 21, 1:00 – 2:30 pm, 1.5 CE hours

Moral Injury and Healing of the Soul: An Existential and Spiritual Crisis at the Juncture of Our Moral Limits*

Thomas C. Waynick, M.Div., M.S.

This workshop will offer a description and understanding of Moral Injury in relationship to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. The participant will learn to recognize how Moral Injury is distinct from PTSD and how it often times relates to PTSD. Therapeutic and theological ramifications, as well as treatment options, will be discussed. Through a variety of means, participants will gain knowledge of how the nature of war downrange or in the homeland can wound the human spirit. Discussions will center on what we know and what we are learning about moral injury, as well as how this affects the course of treatment for wounded souls. Perspectives of pastoral counseling within and outside of the military system will be provided with an eye on intervention for the damaged spirit. Case examples will be presented and group discussions will be facilitated.

CH (COL) Thomas C. Waynick (Ret.) is an Iraq combat veteran and currently the Director/CEO of the Pastoral Institute in Columbus. Georgia. He has published journal articles and several book chapters for counseling textbooks and is a frequent speaker on topics concerning trauma and the military family. He is a Diplomate in AAPC, a Diplomate in the College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy, and a Clinical Member and Approved Supervisor of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.

*This workshop will repeat on Saturday afternoon.

 Intimate Ethics: A Pastoral Theology of Mutuality between Intimate Partners(Ethics CE)

Robert Thompson, D.Min.

How do intimate partners navigate and negotiate their inevitable tensions about differences of opinion and behavior? Often one or both partners assumes a basic quid pro quo outlook, which inevitably leads to tension and frustration and later to resentment and even bitterness. What ethical outlook influences partners facing such challenges? This pastoral theology of mutuality proposes an ethical outlook based on an ethos of grace and depicted as “facing each other.” It provides a conceptual foundation for pastoral counselors who invite these partners to address managing anger, resolving conflict, and enacting forgiveness.

 Robert Thompson is a Readjustment Counselor at the Vet Center in Louisville, Kentucky, and was a chaplain in the Army for twenty years. He is an AAMFT Approved Supervisor and a Diplomate in AAPC.

*This workshop will repeat on Saturday afternoon.

Sharing a Terminal Illness with Your Clients: A Theological Reflection*

William Larrison, D.Min.

 This workshop will discuss the impact of a psychotherapist’s terminal illness upon the client and the therapist alike. The presenter earlier this year was diagnosed with Bulbar onset of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease). We will also discuss the issues that need to be addressed when, for whatever reason, you need to prematurely terminate clinical work with a client. Lapses in the therapeutic bond and attempts to repair that bond will be addressed. Actual clinical vignettes will be utilized in our discussion together.

William Larrison is a semi-retired pastoral counselor at Commuity Christian Counseling Center, an organization he also served as Executive Director and Clinical Director. He is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Florida and a Fellow in AAPC. Bill has over 30 years of practice in the field of psychotherapy.

*This workshop will repeat on Sunday morning.


Seeing the Invisible: Helping Trainees Visualize Relational Systems in Therapy and in Ethics (Ethics CE)

Wayne Perry, D.Min., Ph.D., Lisa Kelledy, Ph.D.

From its very beginning, pastoral psychotherapy has focused on relationships, specifically the relationship between theology and relationship science. Yet many trainees report struggling with understanding how to conceptualize their cases from a systemic, nonlinear perspective. Supervisors throughout the years have attempted many visual representations to help trainees understand what “thinking systemically” might look like, clinically and ethically. Among the more well-known approaches are genograms, structure grams, and eco-grams. Each of these has strengths, of course, and yet each has limitations for helping the struggling student really learn to think systemically. The presenters have created a new way of visualizing the factors in any clinical situation that has been demonstrated, in the crucible of weekly practicum classes, to help trainees apply systems concepts to their own cases. This workshop is grounded in on-going case-study research on students’ ability to conceptualize and intervene in their own cases systemically. Participants will learn about the case study results and will receive the tools they need to begin to apply this new form of systemic visualization with their own trainees. The workshop shows how to help trainees visualize what is already so natural to experienced therapists so that they, the students, can see the forces that were “hidden in plain sight” in the case, clinically and ethically.

Wayne Perry taught Marriage and Family Therapy for almost twenty years at Ambridge University (formerly Southern Christian University), Montgomery, Alabama, and is currently a part-time faculty member at Northcentral University. He served as a chaplain the Air Force for 23 years. He is an AAMFT Approved Supervisor and a Fellow in AAPC.

Lisa Kelledy is the MAMFT Program Director for the Department of Marriage and Family Sciences at Northcentral University. She is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Florida and is an AAMFT Approved Supervisor.


Asian American Historiography and Racial Identity: Implications for Asian American Subjectivity & Pastoral Care and Counseling with Asian Americans

Eunbee Ham, M.Div., M.A.

 While there seems to be an increasing Asian Pan American presence in Hollywood, a closer look at media portrayals of Asian Americans reveals a continuing reification of racial stereotypes. At the Oscars, for example, the emcee Chris Rock provided incisive commentary on the lack of opportunities given to black actresses, actors, and directors, while at the same time, making racist jokes against Asian Americans. For this reason, this workshop will deepen our awareness of Asian American experiences of racism, resistance, and agency through a brief historiography. The presenter will describe the political dynamics behind the construct “Asian American,” and describe some of the racist stereotypes and myths that continue to be reinforced through the media. A case study will be presented to show how the subjects of race, ethnicity, gender, and culture intersect with psychology and spirituality to deepen and enrich pastoral care and counseling with Asian Americans.

Eunbee Ham is a Th.D Candidate in Pastoral Counseling at Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia. She has served as a pastoral counselor at the Care and Counseling Center of Georgia and is currently Children’s Ministry Pastor at Central Presbyterian Church in Atlanta. In 2012, she was awarded the International Peace Scholar Aard by Philanthropic Educational Organization to recognize and support international women contributing to community development, justice, and peace.

This Age of Insecurity: Understanding the Calcification of Anxiety and Developing Calmness

Ron McDonald, D.Min.

This workshop will explore Tillich's three types of existential anxiety plus a fourth I will propose. Participants will share experiences with one another of difficulties with anxiety. Then we will look at anxiety and its connection with socio-political insecurity and the quest for power, hopefully sparking a discussion of the psychology surrounding the Presidential campaigns. Finally, we will identify effective and healthy ways that people manage anxiety and overcome insecurity.

Ron McDonald is a pastoral counselor at the Church Health Center and in private practice in Memphis, Tennessee. He teaches at Memphis Theological Seminary and is author of several books, including Building the Therapeutic Sanctuary. Ron is a Tennessee Licensed Clinical Pastoral Therapist and a Diplomate in AAPC.


2:45-4:45 pm: Pastoral Counseling in the Twenty-First Century, Part 1 (2.0 CE hours)

Russell Siler Jones, Th.D., Kathryn Summers, Psy.D.

In Spring 2015, the American Association of Pastoral Counselors’ Board of Directors made two momentous decisions: to close its national office and to end the process of certification for pastoral counselors. These decisions change the landscape for the field of pastoral counseling. This workshop gives attention to the identity of pastoral counselors in this new landscape and to the vision and mission of the Southeast Region of AAPC. All are welcome at this workshop, though it will perhaps be of more interest to members of AAPC than to our guests.

Russell Siler Jones is a pastoral counselor in Asheville, North Carolina, and Director of CareNet/Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center’s Residency in Psychotherapy and Spirituality. He is a Diplomate in AAPC and serves as Chair of the Southeast Region of AAPC.

Kathryn Summers is a pastoral counselor with the Pastoral Care and Counseling Institute in Durham, NC. She serves as Vice-Chair of the Southeast Region of AAPC as well as Vice-Chair of the North Carolina Association of Pastoral Counselors.


Saturday, October 22, 1:15-2:15 pm

 Pastoral Counseling in the Twenty-First Century, Part 2 (1.0 CE hours)

Russell Siler Jones, Th.D., Kathryn Summers, Psy.D.

This workshop is a continuation of the Friday workshop led by Russell Siler Jones and Kathryn Summers.


Saturday, October 22, 3:30-5:00, (1.5 CE hours)

Ambiguous Loss

Robert Cooke, D.Min.

Ambiguous losses are situations of chronic loss where there is no end in sight, as described in Loss, Trauma and Resilience, by Dr. Pauline Boss. Examples of ambiguous losses include divorce, Alzheimer’s Disease, and addiction. Such losses are painful, are all around us, and are deeply wounding. This workshop will help sensitize participants to ambiguous losses, explore the mechanisms that make such losses pernicious, and address methods of being with clients who face them.

Robert Cooke is a pastoral counselor at Triangle Pastoral Counseling, Raleigh, North Carolina, and interim pastor at Pauline Baptist Church, Four Oaks, North Carolina. He is a Certified Fee-Based Practicing Pastoral Counselor in North Carolina and a Fellow in AAPC.


Multiple Intelligence Pastoral Counseling

Evon Flesberg, Ph.D.

Do your clients share music they love, pictures they’ve taken, or text exchanges in the midst of your pastoral counseling work together? What do you make of references to movie scenes and poignant metaphors? Howard Gardner’s understanding of multiple intelligences enable us to appreciate the individuality and generativity of those who come seeking help for what hurts or is missing in themselves, their relationships, or in their lives as they seek the Holy. In the spirit of playful, creative engagement, I invite you to come prepared to share significant pieces of songs, poetry, photos, paintings, precious objects, tattoos, or stories that are examples of the multiple intelligences at work in your counseling practice or in your own thinking about the work you do.

Evon Flesberg is the Assistant Professor of the Practice of Pastoral Theology and Counseling at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee, and pastoral counselor at A Talking Place Pastoral Counseling Service, Brentwood, Tennessee. She is a Licensed Clinical Pastoral Therapist in Tennessee and a Diplomate in AAPC.

Moral Injury and Healing of the Soul: An Existential and Spiritual Crisis at the Juncture of Our Moral Limits (1.5 CE hours)

Thomas C. Waynick, M.Div., M.S.

(This workshop is a repeat from Friday afternoon. See description on Friday.)

Saturday, October 22, 3:30-5:30 (2.0 Ethics CE’s)

Professing Your Identity: An Ethical Process for Growing and Deepening Your Practice (2.0 CE ethics hours)

David Harris, M.T.S., M.S.

Learn more about our proven approach to building your practice: THERAPEUTIC OUTREACH for PROFESSIONALS. In this program, we promote a therapeutic dialogue around the questions of providing ethical approaches to building a practice. Part experiential and very informational, this workshop will demonstrate a number of outreach approaches for personal and professional practice development. It will also share how outreach changes as helping professionals deepen their practice. Resources and informational handouts will be available that guide participants through our process.

David Harris is the Founding Executive Director of Rock Springs Positive Coaching, Caring, and Counseling, Inc., in Atlanta, Georgia. His first career was in the non-profit world, first as a manager of technologies for Emory University Hospital and later in the American Cancer Society’s national home office. In his encore career, he practices as a career and relational coach, helping clients find new ways of being in the world and helping psychotherapists better serve clients.

Sunday, October 23, 9:00 – 10:30 am (1.5 CE hours)

"How Does It Feel To Be A Problem?"

Wynnetta Wimberly, Th.D.

This renowned quote from W. E. B. Dubois' seminal work, The Souls of Black Folk, provides a resource for engaging contemporary issues around mortality, individuality and generativity in an increasingly diverse world. Mining from Dubois' writings, this workshop explores how our assumptions about who people are can impede the provision of best practices in culturally relevant care-giving.

Wynnetta Wimberly is Adjunct Professor at Candler School of Theology, Emory University, in Atlanta, Georga, and a Patient Navigator at Emory University School of Medicine, where she provides linkage to care for Grady patients and patients from area Neighborhood Clinics who test positive for the Hepatitis C infection. She is the author of Depression in African American Clergy.

The Distinctive Character of Bowen theory: Relating to Family Psychotherapy

Christopher East, Psy.D.

When Murray Bowen began his own clinical practice, he identified specific strengths and weakness of conventional psychoanalytic theory. Bowen operated under the premise that accurate theory would lead to the best possible treatment. Without dismissing the inherent strengths of psychoanalytic theory, Bowen addressed the inconsistencies of traditional theory by reconstructing his own theory of human behavior based on intense observation in both the research and the clinical setting. His evolving theory was not only distinct from conventional psychoanalytic theory, but was also divergent from many of the newer ideas in the family therapy movement. Over time a new title, Bowen theory, was necessary to differentiate his theoretical perspective from parallel efforts in the family movement. As Bowen applied this new theory in his work with clients the term Family Psychotherapy was utilized to depict distinctive practices in the treatment process. This presentation represents a broad effort to take a comprehensive look at treatment in the clinical setting, and to recognize the most distinctive components of Bowen theory as this theory applies to Family Psychotherapy.

Christopher East is staff counselor at Replacements, Ltd., in Greensboro, North Carolina, and has pastored Presbyterian churches since 1983. He completed a Doctor of Psychology through the Graduate Theological Foundation, South Bend, Indiana, and a postgraduate program at the Bowen Center for the Study of the FamilyHe is a Fellow in AAPC.

Intimate Ethics: A Pastoral Theology of Mutuality between Intimate Partners (Ethics CE)

Robert Thompson, D.Min

(This is a repeat of the workshop offered Friday afternoon. See Friday description. )

Sharing a Terminal Illness with Your Clients: A Theological Reflection

William Larrison, D.Min.

 (This is a repeat of the workshop offered Friday afternoon. See Friday description.)

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Friday October 21

10:30 am Registration begins

12 pm Lunch

1:00-2:30 pm Workshops (1.5 CE hours)

2:45-4:45 pm Pastoral Counseling in the 21st Century, Part 1 (2.0 CE Hours)

5:00-6:00 pm Reception

6:00 pm Dinner

7:00-9:00 pm Plenary with Nancy McWilliams (2.0 CE hours)

9:15 pm Reception for Newcomers and Students

Saturday October 22

8:00 am Breakfast

9:00 am -12:00 pm Plenary with Nancy McWilliams (3.0 CE hours)

Noon Lunch

1:15-2:15 pm Pastoral Counseling in the 21st Century, Part 2 (1.0 CE hours)

2:30-3:15 pm Business meeting

3:30-5:00 pm Workshops (1.5 CE hours)

3:30-5:30 pm Workshop (2.0 hours)

6: 00 pm Dinner

7:00-9:00 pm Plenary with Nancy McWilliams (2.0 CE hours)

9:00 pm Toasts and Jam (Our Annual Talent Show) Fireplace Room

Sunday October 23

9:00 -10:30 am Workshops (1.5 CE hours)

10:45 – 11:45 am Worship in Chapel

12:00 pm Lunch, then Traveling Mercies……

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For Your Information…

Conference Fees:

$180 for non members

$140 for members (25% discount)

$75: student and retiree

$25: work study

One day pass: $75

Continuing education credit: $30


Costs vary depending on length of stay.

The cost of meals is included in the price of staying at Kanuga.

*A typical cost from Friday lunch to Sunday lunch is $240 for a double room.

*Budget minded accommodations are available in dormitory setting for $110.

*Adult commuter rates for meals are optional and available.

Accommodations reservations are accessible through the registration link. Reservations for accommodations should not be made directly through Kanuga.

Need a Scholarship? 

If you are a student, unemployed, or can provide some reason for financial need, you are encouraged to apply for a scholarship! All decisions will be made by the program committee. Please send an email with your request to JoEllen Holmes, program chair, at jholmeslcsw@gmail.com . We will ask that you volunteer with the program committee during the weekend. Examples of volunteer activities include helping at registration, assisting the speakers, or planning worship

Click Here to download the full conference information and share it with others!

Click Here for Conference Registration

If you are a student, unemployed, or can provide some reason for financial need, you are encouraged to apply for a scholarship! All decisions will be made by the program committee. Please send an email with your request to JoEllen Holmes, program chair, at jholmeslcsw@gmail.com . We will ask that you volunteer with the program committee during the weekend. Examples of volunteer activities include helping at registration, assisting the speakers, or planning worship

New Discounted Lodging Accommodations

Kanuga is offering a discounted housing package. The Carter Lodge Dorm has 2 medium rooms and 2 larger rooms all with bunk beds, several bathrooms in the middle of the building, and a good sized living room and two rooms with one bunk bed in each that affords a little privacy. The price per person, per day, which includes three meals, is $54. This lodging option is reserved to students and counselors in training to reduce the overall expense of attending the conference.

Other local lodging options
Leoni's Mountain Lake Inn

Online Conference Registration
2016 Conference Brochure


Sacred Places, Sacred Spaces, Sacred Faces ‎(2010)‎ | 4 min.


Please let us know if you have any questions. We're excited to see you there!