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EcoSpirituality

Interfaith Seminary

ABOUT COLORADO INTERFAITH SEMINARY

Colorado Interfaith Seminary (CIS) was founded to address a major shift that is affecting those in sacred service. In the face of expanding global interaction, we are motivated to widen our perceptions about what is sacred and holy. "Traditions" from a wide variety of spiritual paths are easily accessible and the conventional model of faith-based congregational ministry is finding its equal in individualized, multi-faith or interfaith service.

As of 2011, our ministry program is under the direction of Bonnie Willow, a graduate and interfaith minister and director of the School of Peace in Ashville, North Carolina. We are delighted to have Bonnie continue the dedicated work of our ministry.

What is an interfaith minister?

Unlike a Minister who is dedicated by oath to teach a specific religion, the Interfaith Minister is committed to teaching and serving people of many spiritual paths, most specifically, those who combine concepts from several faith-traditions. The Interfaith Minister is a servant of the Sacred Center and trusts that a Divine Source has guided each individual to his or her own form of worship and connection.

With the intention of supporting those who find themselves called into this non-traditional form of service, CIS has developed a ministerial education program culminating in ordination.

This program does not teach religion or religious doctrine, although it does ask the student to explore a wide variety of spiritual perspectives and to gain basic knowledge of religious culture. Instead, this program addresses the fundamental principles of Ministry such as pastoral counseling, legal, ethical and administrative responsibilities, ceremonies and associated services.

The 'Ministry for A New Millennium’ Program is ideal for contemplative teachers, alternative and holistic healers, metaphysicians and mystics, as well as for followers of non-conventional and contemporary spiritual paths where verifiable ministerial credentials are unavailable.

CIS Staff and Advisors

  • Rev. Ahriana Platten – Founder, Advisor
  • Rev. Bonnie Willow - School of Peace, Director
  • Rev. Jessica Trovik – Advisor
  • Rev. Crystal Torode – Advisor
  • Rev. Elena Romero – Advisor
  • Rev. Sherry Dell – Advisor
  • CIS TENETS

    In an effort to create a common starting ground, we believe that all students who enroll must agree with these very basic tenets:

    We agree to the existence of a Mother/Father/ God/ Goddess/ Great Spirit/Beloved/ Center/ All, and choose the name or name that best suits us for interacting with the Divine.

    We agree that every path to the Divine is a valid path, even if not the path we personally use.

    We agree to respect and protect each person’s right to freely follow his or her own path to the Sacred Center and see religious freedom as crucial to the well-being of all people.

    We agree to listen to the Intelligence of the Heart, as well as the Reasoning Mind, in all our actions.

    We honor the physical world as holy and every form of life as divinely intended, useful and important to the whole of Creation.

    We believe that consequences come from actions and live accordingly and accountably.

    We agree that peace, spontaneous joy, and wholeness are worthy pursuits.

    We agree to compassionate and discerning service as a way of life.

    SYLLABUS: MINISTRY FOR A NEW MILLENNIUM

    (This is a sample of our syllabus. For a complete and current explaination on this program, please contact us by email at Ahriana@Ahriana.com)

    The CIS Ministry Program includes thirty two 2-hour sessions sessions and is designed to provide each student with both academic and experiential learning. In addition, this program incorporates community service requirements and the attendance of special events. Most sessions will include an assignment and an on-line opportunity to share your experiences along the way.

  • Session 1 & 2 Exploring the Path of Interfaith Ministry
  • Session 3 Personal Tenets and Spiritual Direction
  • Session 4 Pastoral Counseling: Ethics and Integrity
  • Session 5 Responsibility and Legal Issues
  • Session 6 Pastoral Counseling: Life Changes and Healing
  • Session 7 Pastoral Counseling: Loss and Grief
  • Session 8 Oratory and Eloquence I – Classes & Workshops
  • Session 9 Oratory and Eloquence II – Sermons & Presentation
  • Session 10 Ceremonies, Rites and Passages – Introduction
  • Session 11 Ceremonies – Recipe For Your Rite
  • Session 12 Ceremonies – Weddings
  • Sessions 13-16 Weekend Comparative Religions Gathering
  • Session 17 Introduction to Community Service
  • Session 18 Ceremonies – Memorials
  • Session 19 Ceremonies – Rites of Passage
  • Session 20 Student presentations of Ceremonies
  • Session 21 Professional Business Management I – Structure
  • Session 22 Professional Business Management II – Attitude
  • Session 23 The Path of Sacred Service: Developing Community
  • Session 24 Presence: Sickness and Death
  • Session 25 Boundaries and Self-Care
  • Session 26 Thread of Truth: Finding Common Ground
  • Session 27 Visioning Your Ministry
  • Session 28-31 Weekend Comparative Religions Gathering
  • Session 32 Candidate’s Dinner and Summary
  • The order and title of various sessions may change at the Director’s discretion.

    DISTANCE LEARNING

    We are pleased to offer Distance Learning to those who are unable to attend classes locally. Distance learning students receive monthly recordings of the actual class sessions.

    ACCREDITATION

    Ministerial Ordination is conferred upon an individual for pastoral use and not for secular use. CIS is not accredited by any agency or association because accreditation is not necessary for our purposes.

    CIS is a registered business in the state of Colorado, USA

    ACADEMIC POLICY

    CIS takes pride in the quality of its graduates. Our program, when taken seriously, provides the skills and insights necessary for an Interfaith Minister to step into service in a well-prepared and confident manner. We give great attention to the people who participate in this program and do all we can to ensure their success.

    CIS is not an ordination mill. We do not award ministerial ordinations that have not been earned. You will be expected to complete your assignments and submit them for comment by our faculty and/or advisors. You will also be expected to share your personal experiences in our on-line forum.

    Should you fail to complete the requirements, you will receive one warning with an extension for completing anything that has not been completed. If, after the extension, you have not completed the requirements, you will be removed from the program with no refund of fees paid. Extenuating circumstances will be considered by the Director.

    Every course assignment you provide to us is actually read by at least one member of our faculty and/or advisory board. Any assignment which is deemed unsatisfactory will be returned with a full explanation and you will be given the opportunity to submit a revised assignment within a specified period of time.

    ORDINATION

    All CIS students who have completed the program will be invited to participate in this ceremony. This will include distance learners. The ordination ceremony y is a once-in-a-lifetime rite of passage and we sincerely hope you will attend. Family, friends and members of the community are also invited.

    If you are unable to attend, you will receive your ordination certificate and stole, and ministerial credentials by mail.

    TUITION

    Tuition for the CIS Ministerial Program is $1280. This equates to $40 per class for a total of 32 sessions and is considerably lower than most comparable programs.

    Additional Fees and Other Expenses

    Each student will submit a $50 non-refundable application fee with his or her application. This fee will be returned if your application is denied. This fee helps to cover the on-going costs of our website, telephone and written correspondence. An non-refundable Ordination Fee of $100 will be due upon completion of Session 12 (half way through the program). This fee covers the costs of your stole, ministerial credentials, facility rental and supplies for the ordination ceremony. This fee will be required for all students, whether you choose to participate in the actual ceremony or not (and we strongly encourage you to plan on being part of this event.)

    Should you choose to participate in the ordination ceremony, you will be responsible for your own travel and accommodation expenses. Your ordination will include a candle-lighting conference and the awarding of your ministerial stole and credentials.

    Students are expected to acquire books and other study tools required for program completion at their own expense.

    Tuition Payment

    Students enrolled in the ordination program may negotiate a payment plan by month, by quarter or by year. Classes must be paid for in advance or on the date of each class for those attending locally. Long distance participants must pay in advance unless the Director has approved other arrangements.

    Tuition Refunds

    Students are free to discontinue the program at any time, and receive a 50% refund for any sessions that have been paid for and not already completed.

    Financial Assistance

    While CIS does not offer financial aide, a few work exchange programs are available. Please inquire with the Director for more information.

    APPLICATION

    Click here for information on how to apply.

    CIS does not discriminate against any prospective or present student or any staff member, based on any of the following- race, gender, age, sexual orientation, religious background or national and ethnic origin.

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