Companionship Training with Craig Rennebohm

Sat, Jan 20 • 9:00 am

Mears Room, First Presbyterian Church (across the street from First Church)

1/5/18  Note change of location

On Saturday, January 20, 2018, First Church is pleased to offer a day-long training on Companionship, with Craig Rennebohm, author of The Way of Companionship: Welcoming the Stranger and a nationally renowned expert.

Companionship is an effective approach to the practice of mental health ministry through which any caring human being can reach out and help another who is suffering. The training will prepare individuals, care teams and volunteers to respond to those suffering around us in a variety of settings, including worship gatherings and community programs such as shelters and food banks.

The Mental Health Ministry Team has been looking for a model of care as we have discussed the best way for us to respond to people experiencing “in-the- moment” events of a mental health nature at church. What can we do when we see someone who appears isolated or upset? How can we approach the person and start a conversation? Are there skills we can learn to reach out to people in worship, be they visitors or our own members? How can we practice the call of welcoming the stranger? Can we expand our skills to other locations outside the church where people are isolated or in need? We see Companionship as a model of care to help us address these questions.

Companionship welcomes the stranger, offering individuals who are isolated, alone and estranged the encouragement of five basic spiritual practices: hospitality, neighboring, sharing the journey side-by-side, listening, and accompaniment.

The Companionship Training will be held from 9 am to 4 pm in the Mears Room at First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley. This training is offered free-of-charge, with a requested donation of $10 for lunch. RSVP to Robin Kempster, Parish Nurse, by completing this online registration form.

Contact Robin with any questions at

$10 suggested donation for lunch
2407 Dana St, Berkeley, CA 94704

Robin Kempster