Spiritual Support for Trent Students
Trent University works with a group of volunteer Chaplains and Community Liaisons from various faith traditions in the community. Chaplains are available for one-on-one appointments with students, and are trained to provide spiritual care through their respective certifying bodies. Community Liaisons, while not formally trained to provide spiritual care, can offer a point of connection with the faith group that they represent. They can share information about the faith, service times, meeting locations, and may be able to discuss questions of an ethical, spiritual or religious nature with students. Indigenous Students who are seeking cultural or spiritual support can visit the First Peoples House of Learning website or email email@example.com.
Multi-Faith Network - Chaplains
Farheen Khan is the co-founder and Imama of the first Women's Mosque of Canada and is one of the Founding Directors of the Azeeza for Women. She is the author of two memoirs that speak to the impacts of gender-based Islamophobia and gender-based violence. Farheen has worked in the anti-violence-against-women sector for the last 17+ years. She has organized and spoken at several rallies, including Take Back the Night, Dec 6th vigils, International Women's Day gatherings, and Walks to end Violence Against Women. Outside her work with the Women's Mosque, Farheen is the Principal Consultant of FSK & Associates - an organization focused on building capacity of community organizations that are led by and for Black, People of Colour, Women and other marginalized communities to create a more equitable society for all.
Dr. Rabbi Denise Handlarski, a Professor in the Trent School of Education, is affiliated with Secular Humanistic Judaism. She serves people who are Jewish, Jew-ish, secular, agnotic, atheist, spiritual but not religious, or culturally Jewish. She is an ordained Rabbi through the International Institute for Secular Humanistic Judaism and a member of the Association of Humanistic Rabbis. Denise can act as a guide to help folks through difficult moments, mental health challenges, decision-making, transitions, and more. She loves having conversations about how to have a more spiritually connected and engaged life. Find her at secularsynagogue.com.
Reverend Julie Stoneberg has been ministering to the Unitarian Fellowship of Peterborough for 13 years. Julie obtained a Masters of Divinity from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California, and before coming to Peterborough, served the Lakehead Unitarian Fellowship in Thunder Bay, ON. Julie's personal theology is grounded in process and community. She believes that we are all on an unfinished journey best traveled in the company of others.
Christian - Catholic
Father John Perdue has a B.Sc(Hons) from Trent University in Biology and Environmental Resource Science. Having worked briefly as a Fisheries Biologist, Father John felt a call to ministerial priesthood in the Roman Catholic Church. After 6 years of formation and study, he obtained his STB and MDiv from the University of Toronto and was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Peterborough in 2014. Father John loves students and accepts each student where they are at; he feels blessed to be back at Trent University to support students in every way he can. His other assignments include serving as Vocations Director, as Catholic Chaplain at Sir Sanford Fleming College, and as Director of JPII House, a residence for young men discerning their vocation. In his free time, Father John loves hockey, soccer, baseball, reading, riding his motorcycle and fishing.
Christian - Non-Denominational
Ben Peltz lives in the north end of Peterborough with his wife and daughter. Ben and his wife were students at Trent University from 2006-2010 before going into pastoral ministry. He currently serves as a pastor at Curve Lake Christian Assembly and is a doctoral candidate at Tyndale Seminary. He also runs summer camps for First Nations youth and oversees a student-run group called Christians For Trent. Ben is always happy to meet with students to discuss spiritual matters, regardless of their background. If you wish to find out more about him or his work you can visit his personal website.
Christian - Non-Denominational
Cormac Culkeen holds a degree in Cultural Studies and Philosophy from Trent University (’10). Cormac has experience in many different faith spaces, and currently holds a number of leadership roles with the Anglican Church for the spiritual care of youth and young adults, including being the Area Coordinator for Youth Ministry for the Trent-Durham Area, and being the Director of Youth and Family Ministries at All Saints’ Anglican Church in Peterborough.Cormac brings an inclusive, affirming, and queer-positive attitude toward their spiritual care work. They love talking about all things spiritual, and they make space for students with wide-ranging beliefs and experiences. Cormac believes that everyone deserves to have safe spaces to explore and deepen their spiritual practices! When they are not working, Cormac likes being a volunteer Chaplain for Camp fYrefly – a camp for LGBTQ2SIA+ youth, producing radio at Trent Radio, and teaching their big, nervous rescue mutt Bruno how to be a dog.
Multi-Faith Network - Community Liaisons
Interested in finding out more about one of these faiths, including meeting times and locations? Please reach out individually to the Community Liaisons below.
Professor Saud Choudhry is a faculty member in the Trent Department of Economics, and is also an involved member of the Kawartha Muslim Religious Association. He enjoys supporting Muslim students and participating in events with Trent Spiritual Affairs.
Christine Welter is a staff member with the School of Indigenous Studies, and a practicing Baha'i. She enjoys sharing her knowledge of the Baha'i faith, as well as facilitating events which bring together people of all faiths around themes of unity and inspiration.
Terri Morrison has a degree in English from University of Toronto. Terri considers all spiritual journeys to be like paths up a mountain - the summit being the same regardless of which path one chooses. Terri has been practicing with the Buddhist Place in Peterborough for almost four years. She would be happy to share with students the Buddhist teachings on alleviating suffering and finding peace and joy, as well as providing guided meditations. Terri also enjoys family, spending time in nature, yoga, reading, music, theatre, good movies, documentaries and podcasts.
Stephen Ginley is a member of Peterborough Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends, a community sometimes more commonly recognized as Quakers. As a spiritual seeker, he was drawn to Friends because of their history of faith-grounded activism and emphasis on personal experiences with Spirit. He stayed because he is learning that even when our values, expression of faith, or desired course of action differ, we can still regard and honour each other as friends. Stephen is eager to chat with students curious about Quakers and their spiritually-grounded process of non-hierarchical group decision-making and discernment. He began reclaiming his faith and Christianity only a few years ago and finds great joy in sharing around his experience and challenges here with folks from all walks of life. In his spare time Stephen enjoys cycling, karaoke, food, basketball, and gaming.
Risk Management: All of the volunteers with Trent University Spiritual Affairs have signed a volunteer contract and have submitted a current criminal record check with vulnerable sector screening. If ever you feel unsafe when meeting with a Spiritual Affairs volunteer, please call security at x1333 and report the incident. Please feel free to share feedback on any experiences you have had, both positive or negative, by reaching out to Johanna Hart, Coordinator of Spiritual Affairs.