Covenant Seminary is pleased to announce the establishment of The Richard Winter Chair of Counseling. The endowed faculty chair is funded through the Seminary’s Hope for the Future capital campaign and named in honor of Professor Emeritus of Counseling Dr. Richard Winter. Dr. Winter founded Covenant’s Master of Arts in Counseling (MAC) program in 1992 and served as its Director until his retirement in 2016. The creation of the Chair recognizes Dr. Winter’s dedicated leadership, teaching, and mentoring of hundreds of counseling and pastoral students over the past quarter-century and more.
Honoring a Legacy of Counseling Excellence
Dr. Mark Dalbey, president of Covenant Seminary, said, “We are grateful to Dr. Winter for his many years of faithful service to our students and the church and are excited to establish the Richard Winter Chair of Counseling in his name. The Chair will help ensure that the vision and qualities Richard brought to the MAC—compassion for hurting people, a heart for applying the gospel to the deepest issues of life, and a passion for grounding the counseling process in scriptural principles—will continue to guide the program for many years to come. Richard has long sought to equip counselors to help people push back against the curse of the Fall by bringing the light of the gospel into the darkness of the world. We are grateful for his impact and influence over many years, and we look forward to seeing how God will use his legacy to further strengthen and grow our Counseling program.”
A native of England, Dr. Winter trained in medicine at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, and in psychiatry in Bristol. He served as a counselor, teacher, and leader at the English L’Abri and was Associate Pastor of the International Presbyterian Church in Hampshire for several years before moving to St. Louis to develop and lead the MAC program at Covenant. In 2017 he received the Frank Minirth Award for Excellence in Christian Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine from the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC) for his teaching on, writing about, and training counselors in the complex interplay between medicine, psychology, and theology. His books include When Life Goes Dark: Finding Hope in the Midst of Depression (an updating of his earlier The Roots of Sorrow), Perfecting Ourselves to Death: The Pursuit of Excellence and the Perils of Perfectionism, and Still Bored in a Culture of Entertainment: Rediscovering Passion and Wonder. Dr. Winter remains a popular conference and seminar speaker, and teaches annually at the European Leadership Forum and as an adjunct professor at Covenant. He and his wife, Jane, have four children and nine grandchildren.
Of the Winter Chair, Dr. Winter commented, “When I first came to Covenant, my desire and vision was to create a counseling program that would meld the best insights from medicine and psychology with a profoundly biblical understanding of theology, sin, and the human person. The goal has always been to use the tools and resources God gives us in Scripture and in the science and art of psychology to prepare gospel-centered counselors and pastors to address the hurts and brokenness in people’s lives. I have been amazed by stories from our graduates of how God has worked through them and their time at Covenant to bring hope and healing to so many. I am grateful to the Lord for the privilege of being part of that, and I am deeply moved and humbled by the creation of this Chair.”
Further Enhancing Our Counseling Program
The establishment of the Richard Winter Chair of Counseling comes at an exciting time for the MAC program. The MAC provides a unique and high quality training experience that includes a deep biblical and theological foundation paired with a practical clinical focus that enables graduates to serve in all kinds of counseling settings. Covenant’s MAC graduates serve in private practice, in hospitals and healthcare systems, in counseling centers, and on pastoral teams. The program equips students to meet the increasing counseling needs of those struggling with sin and brokenness in a fallen world.
The Seminary recently expanded the MAC’s scope, staff, and scholarship support to further strengthen the training experience and better resource future students. A new Counseling faculty member, Paul Loosemore, LPC, joins the department this summer as Assistant Professor of Counseling. Additionally, changes to the MAC curriculum now align it more closely with the requirements of the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), with which the Seminary is currently pursuing accreditation. These include expanded training in key areas and a broadening of graduates’ ability to pursue professional licensing in states other than Missouri. The changes are effective for the 2020–21 academic year.