Stay tuned for 2021 course info

We typically publish the application and dates in January each year. 

Foundations Course

The Health Ministries Network (HMN) Foundations Course prepares state licensed RNs for faith community nurse (FCN) ministry and other caring individuals for health minister (HM) service in their respective congregation or faith community. The next course will be offered over eight weeks beginning April 2020.

The Foundations Course has 15 modules (providing 36 contact hours) designed to help participants care for the whole person by integrating mind, body and spirit wellness, with an emphasis on elements of spirituality in caring for the health needs of congregations and communities.  The 15 modules align with Faith Community Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice (2017, 3rd edition) published by the American Nurses Association and the Health Ministries Association. 


The course is open to people of all faiths and religions.


This faith community nursing and health ministry foundations course embraces four study areas:

I: Spirituality

Central to faith community nursing health ministry process

II: Professionalism

Historic roots of professional nursing, emphasizing health and healing


III: Holistic Health

A dynamic process that includes spiritual, psychological, physical and social dimensions of each person


IV: Community

Forging a partnership with both a faith or spiritual community and with the larger community


This course fulfills the educational requirement for board certification in faith community nursing from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). RN participants receive 36 contact hours.

This Foundations of Faith Community Nursing course is based on the curriculum developed through the Westberg Institute for Faith Community Nursing, which is owned by Church Health Center of Memphis, Inc., 1350 Concourse Ave., Suite 142, Memphis, TN 38104. 

All graduates receive a symbolic health and healing lapel pin, joining the Westberg Institute international consortium of faith community nurses and health ministers.

This course is a partnership with Western Washington University's Continuing Education and the online coursework will be hosted on the WWU platform, Canvas. 

Graduates also receive benefits from our coordinated services agreement with PeaceHealth.


Thanks to our partnership with PeaceHealth, anyone who completes the Foundations Course ​will receive: 

  • access to St. Joseph’s Medical Center (SJMC) and Medical Library with badge, and 

  • an annual flu shot, through the SJMC flu shot clinic.


Bill Lonneman, DNP, RN

Bill Lonneman is an assistant professor and interim director of the RN-to-BSN program at Western Washington University.  He became a nurse in 1982 and has worked in hospice, neighborhood health centers, and primary care as a family nurse practitioner.  He received his Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from Madonna University and also holds a Master's degree in Theology from Xavier University in Cincinnati.  He currently serves as chaplain for Francis Place, a ministry of Catholic Community Services that provides program-supported permanent housing in Bellingham for people who were chronically homeless.

Instructor and Coordinator

Carol Nicolay, Ed.D

Carol Nicolay is a retired registered nurse who is active as a Health Minister at the First Congregational Church of Bellingham and as a Westberg Institute instructor. Previously she held positions as Director for Professional Studies (WWU), Assistant Director for Academic Programs (UW), and Manager of Continuing Education (SPIE). She earned her doctorate in Educational Leadership at Northern Arizona University and holds a graduate degree from University of Phoenix and under-graduate degree in Adult Education from Grand Canyon University (Phoenix.) She and her husband Neal have lived in Bellingham for over 20 years.

Format, Dates and Location

Stay Tuned for 2021 Dates

This course is hybrid, combining in-person and online learning. Students should have internet access and a computer with audio and video capabilities. The opening sessions will be followed by two hours of online work per week over 8 weeks during the months of April and May.

The in-person portions of this course is held at First Congregational Church, 2401 Cornwall Ave., Bellingham, WA 98225. We provide light meals and snacks throughout the course. 

Diversity Scholarship

The Diversity Scholarship promotes racial, ethnic, and religious diversity within HMN. This scholarship is open to residents of Whatcom, Skagit, San Juan and Islands Counties.


A full course scholarship is valued at $375. Please consider asking your congregation to support your costs before applying for a scholarship.


$375 per person for in-person and online contact hours. Includes course materials, light meals including a family/friends reception. 

Note: the cost is $425 for students who reside outside Whatcom, Skagit, Island and San Juan counties. 


A $50 non-refundable deposit is required with each completed application.


Group rates: $350 each for two or more persons (up to three). 

Application (closed)

A completed application will include: Commitment Statement, Course Application, References, and Confirmation. Applications may be completed online or scanned to PDF and emailed to, or by mail to the address below:


Health Ministries Network

800 E. Chestnut St., Suite 1A

Bellingham, WA  98225


A nonrefundable $50 application deposit must be submitted with your application. You may submit your deposit online at or by check made out to “Health Ministries Network” and mailed to the address above.


You are required to complete the PeaceHealth conviction/criminal history information background check which is attached to the end of the application packet and is available online at Your background check can be submitted by PDF emailed to or by mail to the address above.


As part of the application process, course applicants will receive a call from Instructor and Course Coordinator, Carol Nicolay. You will have the opportunity to ask questions and clarify the course objectives. 

For more information please contact:

Carol Nicolay, HM, Ed.D.

HMN Foundations Course Coordinator

Call or Text: (360) 510-9797

Health Ministries Network (HMN) is a non-profit in Bellingham, WA affiliated with the Chuckanut Health Foundation.

HMN logo full size.png

800 E. Chestnut St., Ste 1A

Bellingham, WA 98225


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