The third biennial Conference on Human Formation will address mental health concerns that commonly arise among men and women pursuing priesthood and religious life.

Plenary sessions will provide an overview of the main areas of psychological functioning (affect, behavior, cognition and relationship) and help participants better understand problems that frequently occur within each of these domains. Workshops will deal in depth with several specific psychological disorders and address questions related to screening candidates, making referrals, and helping superiors and formation personnel participate more effectively in the mental health of their charges.

Plenary Sessions

  • Plenary 1 - Mental Health 101 (Br. John Mark Falkenhain, OSB, Ph.D.)
  • Plenary 2 - Affect: Understanding Mood & Anxiety Disorders (Crystal Taylor-Dietz, Psy.D.)
  • Plenary 3 - Behavior: Understanding Addictions & Compulsive Behaviors (Msgr. Stephen J. Rossetti, Ph.D., D.Min.)
  • Plenary 4 - Relationship: Understanding Personality Disorders (Emily R. Cash, Psy.D.)
  • Plenary 5 - Cognition: Understanding Intellectual Deficits and Learning Disabilities (Br. John Mark Falkenhain, OSB, Ph.D.)

Workshop Topics

  • How to refer & participate in a candidate’s treatment (Michael Pollard, LCSW)
  • Counseling vs. spiritual direction (Rev. David Songy, O.F.M.Cap., S.T.D., Psy.D.
  • Dealing with histories of trauma and sexual abuse (Br. John Mark Falkenhain, OSB, Ph.D.)
  • Internet pornography & online addictions (Emily R. Cash, Psy.D.)
  • Monitoring progress and judging suitability for continuation in formation (Rev. Peter Marshall, M.S.W., M.Div.)
  • Managing difficult personalities (Sr. Jane Becker, OSB, Ph.D.)
  • Using the psychological report as a roadmap for discernment and formation (Michael Day, Psy.D.)
  • Psychological considerations in the new Program for Priestly Formation (Rev. Denis Robinson, OSB, S.T.D.)
  • Working with older candidates (Sr. Mary Pat Garvin, RSM, Ph.D.)