Cultural Orientation Program for International Ministers

The Cultural Orientation Program for International Ministers (COPIM) is designed to support the ministry of priests and religious sisters and brothers whose native culture is not that of the United States. The program was started in 1990 in response to needs expressed by some international priests themselves, as well as diocesan bishops, vicars for clergy, continuing education directors, and offices of ethnic ministries.

Carried out in an intensive, four-night format, COPIM gives priests and religious opportunities for cultural dialogue in supportive, affirming contexts. They learn more about the church, society, and culture of the United States while also appreciating and affirming their own cultural heritage and values. The goal is to enable them to become more critically aware of both their own cultures and the U.S. culture(s) they serve.

Who Should Participate

COPIM is designed for priests and for religious sisters and brothers who have come from other countries to work in the United States within the past five years and are already engaged in pastoral ministry here. Invitation to participate in this program ordinarily comes through their bishop or religious superior. Ministers born in the United States who work in intercultural contexts or those from other countries who have been here for many years may also attend. Priests or religious from any culture will find the COPIM workshops informative, challenging, and helpful for ministry in today's Church.

Program Benefits

Understanding how to recognize and respect cross-cultural boundaries is crucial for ministry in today’s multicultural situations. Theory and skills learned in this program prepare the participants for more effective ministry in the U.S. and for reentry in case they return to their country of origin. Guest speakers include leading experts on the cultural, social, pastoral, theological, and legal aspects of Church life and ministry in the United States today. Students will expand and deepen their understanding of the church, society, and cultures in the United States, inviting them to:

  • Appreciate and affirm the unique contributions of their own cultural heritage
  • Learn skills for ministering more effectively within and across various cultures
  • Understand cultural issues better and integrate more easily into diocesan and religious ministries
  • Develop broader networks of support among international priests and religious
  • Recognize that each culture has a contribution to make and to receive from the Gospel

Methodology

The COPIM workshops use adult education models with as much dialogue and interaction as possible. Most of the presentations are given in English, but are translated into other languages, as necessary. Small group discussions may take place in Spanish or other languages common to the group. Content presentations provide useful information in areas of culture, church history, theology, and pastoral ministry. Question and answer periods allow the participants to understand more fully the issues raised by the presenters. 

Small group sessions provide time for further dialogue among the participants, whose ministerial and personal experiences are honored as valuable resources for pastoral reflection. Lecturers include leading experts on the cultural, social, pastoral, theological, and legal aspects of church life and ministry in the United States today. For further general information, please click on the following:

General Information

Course and program requirements, schedules and tuition are subject to change; and additional fees may be incurred for books and materials. Click here to review all policies prior to enrollment. A certificate of completion and continuing education credit is awarded to those who complete all three workshops. Regular attendance and in-class participation is required. For additional information, contact the Center for Religion and Spirituality at (310) 338-2799 or crs@lmu.edu, or contact the program facilitator directly (listed below under 'Faculty').

  • Registration + Fees

    Beginning this term, COPIM will be offered as a single, week-long intensive program, rather than three separate workshops.  We understand that some past participants may still need to attend one or two workshops to complete the program, and we have made that option available to them as well (see below).  This will be the last term which the three-workshop option will be offered.

    Week-long Program

    • Date: May 7-11, 2018
    • Course No.: CLPX 900

    There are three different tuition rates available, depending on participants’ housing preferences. Retreat center housing is limited, and will be filled on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please take a moment to review the options carefully:

    • Single Room Rate. Tuition is $1,795, and includes a private room, a shared bathroom between two rooms, and all meals for the duration of the program. A nonrefundable deposit of $675 is due by Friday, April 6, 2018. The remaining tuition balance must be paid in full by Friday, May 4, 2018. | REGISTER

    • Shared Room Rate. Tuition is $1,495, and includes a shared room (with a roommate), a shared bathroom between rooms, and all meals for the duration of the program. A nonrefundable deposit of $525 is due by Friday, April 6, 2018. The remaining tuition balance must be paid in full by Friday, May 4, 2018. | REGISTER

    • Commuter Rate. Tuition is $995, and includes all meals for the duration of the program (no retreat center housing will be provided).  A nonrefundable deposit of $325 is due by Friday, April 6, 2018. The remaining tuition balance must be paid in full by Friday, May 4, 2018. | REGISTER

    Individual Workshops

    Past participants who began the program before this term may enroll in one or more individual workshops as needed to complete the program. This option is available only for returning participants. New participants must enroll in the week-long program. All three workshops are offered within a single week.

    Cultural Orientation I

    • Date: May 7-8, 2018
    • Course No.: CLPX 800

    Cultural Orientation II

    • Date: May 9-10, 2018
    • Course No.: CLPX 801

    Cultural Orientation III

    • Date: May 10-11, 2018
    • Course No.: CLPX 802

    Similar to the registration options above, there are three tuition rates available for each workshop, depending on participants’ housing preferences. Retreat center housing is limited, and will be filled on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please take a moment to review the options carefully:

    • Single Room Rate. Tuition is $605 per workshop, and includes a private room for one night, a shared bathroom between two rooms, and all meals for the duration of the workshop. A nonrefundable deposit of $250 is due by Friday, April 6, 2018. The remaining tuition balance must be paid in full by Friday, May 4, 2018.

    • Shared Room Rate. Tuition is $505 per workshop, and includes a shared room (with a roommate) for one night, a shared bathroom between rooms, and all meals for the duration of the workshop. A nonrefundable deposit of $200 is due by Friday, April 6, 2018. The remaining tuition balance must be paid in full by Friday, May 4, 2018.

    • Commuter Rate. Tuition is $340 per workshop, and includes all meals for the duration of the workshop (no retreat center housing will be provided).  A nonrefundable deposit of $105 is due by Friday, April 6, 2018. The remaining tuition balance must be paid in full by Friday, May 4, 2018.

    Registration. Please contact Michael McNaught at michael.mcnaught@lmu.edu or 310-338-2799 to enroll.

  • Schedule

    Monday, May 7 – Friday, May 11, 2018

    The program will begin Monday at 2:30 p.m., and conclude Friday at 1:30 p.m. Meals, and lodging (except for commuting participants), are provided at the retreat center. For returning participants, individual workshops will be held accordingly:

    • Cultural Orientation I: Begins Monday, May 7, at 2:30 p.m.; concludes Tuesday, May 8, at 6 p.m.
    • Cultural Orientation II: Begins Wednesday, May 9, at 8 a.m.; concludes Thursday, May 10, at 12 p.m.
    • Cultural Orientation III: Begins Thursday, May 10, at 8 a.m.; concludes Friday, May 11, at 1:30 p.m.

    Location
    This program will be held at the Mary and Joseph Retreat Center in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. The retreat center is 17 miles (avg. 40-minute drive) south of Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

     

  • Faculty

    Instructors

    Lecturers

    • TBA
  • Course Requirements

    Students must complete a total of 4.5 semester hours in coursework with a letter grade of 'B-' or higher in each course to receive a certificate of completion. Please refer to the course catalog for required text, class meeting location, and other general information.

    Coursework: CLPX 900 (this single registration for the entire program replaces the former three-workshop option: CLPX 800, CLPX 801, and CLPX 802)

  • Course Descriptions

    CLPX 900
    Cultural Orientation

    4.5 Semester Hours

    Understanding how to recognize and respect cross-cultural boundaries is crucial for ministry in today’s multicultural situations. The Cultural Orientation Program for International Ministers (COPIM) is designed to support the ministry of priests and religious sisters and brothers whose native culture is not that of the United States. Students will expand and deepen their understanding of the church, society, and cultures in the United States through an examination global and American culture, pastoral ministry, theological, social and legal aspects of Church life in the United States today. Theory and skills learned in this program prepare students for more effective ministry in the U.S. and for reentry in case they return to their country of origin.