Annual Conference

September 9-10, 2022
Belle Meade United Methodist Church (BMUMC)
121 Davidson Rd., Nashville, TN 37205

Conference Schedule

Friday, September 9
4:30-4:55PM Registration
5:00PM Annual Business Meeting / 5:45PM Honoring our Founders / Generativity Award
6:15PM Dinner
6:55PM Welcome & Introductions
7:00PM Dr. Ryan Noel Fraser – Connecting Spirituality in Pastoral Counseling: Mindfulness, Mantras, and Memories
8:30-9:00PM Social

Saturday, September 10
8:30AM Registration opens
8:45AM Breakfast
9:30AM Welcome & Introductions
9:40-11:00AM Dr. Mark Loftis – Suicidology
11:00AM Break
11:10-12:30PM Educational Program Continues
12:30PM Conference concludes / 1:15PM Optional Lunch out together at Dalt’s Grill

Friday Evening, Sept. 9:
Connecting Spirituality in Pastoral Counseling: Mindfulness, Mantras, and Memories
Dr. Ryan Noel Fraser  (1.5 CE)

This educational program will explore intentional and creative approaches to unlocking and engaging the powerful spiritual resources so frequently overlooked and underutilized in pastoral psychotherapy.

Emphasis will be placed on distinctively Christian approaches to mindfulness interventions, auditory and visual mantras, and the invitation to the spiritual “cloud of witnesses” who serves as both an imaginal audience and collective witness to clients’ narratives of travail and triumph.

He will discuss the integration of theologically-informed psychological theory along with demonstrating related therapeutic techniques.

Dr. Ryan Noel Fraser was born in the States but raised in South Africa on the mission field. He attended Freed-Hardeman University (FHU) where he met and married his wife of 34 years, Missy Housel. They have two adult children, Olivia and Austin, and a terrific son-in-law, Dalen, and reside in Henderson, TN. Ryan is an Associate Professor of Bible and Pastoral Counseling at Freed-Hardeman University and has been teaching at FHU since 2006. Up until 2019, he primarily taught in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling graduate program. He coordinates the M.A. in Pastoral Care and Counseling program as well as the Youth & Family Ministry undergraduate program. Ryan holds a Ph.D. in Pastoral Theology & Pastoral Counseling from Brite Divinity School at Texas Christian University. He is a former fellow of AAPC, a psychotherapist member of ACPE, and a Licensed Clinical Pastoral Therapist (LCPT) and approved supervisor in the state of Tennessee. He serves as the pulpit minister and an elder for the Bethel Springs Church of Christ (in McNairy County). He travels extensively nationally and internationally providing conference seminars and specialized training workshops for ministers, counselors, chaplains, missionaries, and laypersons.

Saturday Morning, Sept. 10:
Dr. Mark Loftis  (3 CE)

Suicidology is now over 60 years old as an area of study in the U.S. Beginning with the pioneering work of Dr. Edwin Shneidman, many others have contributed to research of suicide and suicidal behaviors, yet rates of suicide remain high and in certain groups have increased over the past few decades. The speaker will provide an overview of the study of suicide beginning with Shneidman’s work and look at contemporary theories and interventions.

Dr. Mark Loftis is an Associate Professor at Tennessee Tech University. He is a Licensed Professional Counselor-Mental Health Service Provider, Senior Psychological Examiner-Health Service Provider, Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor II, and Master Addiction Counselor.

Dr. Loftis provides counseling, supervision, consultation, and other mental health services through his private practice within the Upper Cumberland region. In addition, he serves as the senior minister at Netherland Church of Christ in Rickman, TN.

Previous Annual Conference (2021)

Spiritual and Racial Abuse and Healing: Clinical and Ethical Response

Spiritual Abuse and Healing – Clinical and Ethical Response
Dr. David Thornton
Lecture available at:

Learning Objectives:

  1. To focus our understanding of the nature of spiritual abuse;
  2. To recognize the wide variety of forms it takes in different faith contexts; and
  3. To identify therapeutic strategies and responses

Racial Abuse and Healing – Clinical and Ethical Response
J. Bernard Kynes, Jr.
Lecture available at:

Learning Objectives:

  1. To discuss concepts of Racial Abuse and its implications for individual, family, and group counseling psychotherapy.
  2. To discuss the ethical issues and implications of addressing Racial Abuse concerns for therapists and their clients.
  3. And, to discuss and consider practical ways to ethically and competently manage the trauma experienced from Racial Abuse dilemmas in clinical practice.