Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture

CAPS workshop: Spiritual reminiscence for people living with dementia

The Centre for Ageing and Pastoral Studies (CAPS) will present a two-day workshop on ‘Spiritual Reminiscence for Older People’. This course will enable participants to facilitate spiritual reminiscence for older people who are with or without cognitive decline. These skills will be able to be used either with individuals or in small groups. The skills learnt and used will empower each participant in the many situations they face day-to-day in a professional setting.

This is a face-to-face interactive workshop. New training videos show actual sessions with people who have dementia and the interactions between them and the facilitator. It is highly recommended for nurses, chaplains, pastoral carers, leisure activity officers and professionals who work with older adults.

“Spiritual reminiscence is a special way of communication that acknowledges the person as a spiritual being and seeks to engage the person in a more meaningful and person way. It focuses on the person with dementia and their emotional and spiritual being rather than on cognitive losses.” (MacKinlay & Trevitt, 2015).

This workshop is the part of a series of continuing education sessions planned by CAPS for 2023, including webinars and workshops on topics such as meeting the spiritual needs of older people, spiritual reminiscence and spirituality and creativity. To see details of all the continuing education sessions planned, see our website.


Rev Prof Elizabeth MacKinlay AM, FACN, MEd, PhD, Director of the Centre for Ageing and Pastoral Studies (CAPS), Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture

Elizabeth is both a registered nurse and a priest in the Anglican Church of Australia. She was the inaugural Director of the Centre for Ageing and Pastoral Studies at St Mark's National Theological Centre, Canberra 2001 to 2012. She is a Research Professor and Director, CAPS, Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, Charles Sturt University.

She researches and teaches in issues of spirituality, wellbeing, frailty, dementia and ageing. The book: Finding meaning in the experience of dementia. (MacKinlay and Trevitt) was awarded the 2013 Australasian Journal of Ageing book prize. A companion book 2015 is titled: Facilitating spiritual reminiscence for people with dementia: A learning guide. A second edition of Elizabeth’s book: The Spiritual Dimension of Ageing 2nd edition was published in 2017. Her latest completed research was a PaCT funded study (2019): Finding meaning in the experience of frailty.

Elizabeth Pringle, Managing Director, Improvement Matters

Elizabeth’s career started out as a Learning and Development professional. From her first role in aged care in 1998, she developed a passion and commitment to improving the lives of older people. From 2002-2014, she worked in aged care regulation and quality improvement to improve quality of care and quality of life for older people. In 2015-2016, Elizabeth was the Project Manager and researcher for the National Guidelines for Spiritual Care in Aged Care in Australia. These were the first spiritual care guidelines in the world specifically for older people. She now focuses on equipping individuals and organisations to offer quality of life to older people so they can live a meaningful, purposeful and enriching life. Her research is in the area of Spirituality and pastoral care with a focus on every older person receiving care, to have access to quality pastoral and spiritual care. Elizabeth is an international surveyor with ISQua, the United Nations recognised international body that accredits health accreditation bodies and health standards around the world.


Corporate Single $1600 (20% DISCOUNT)

Individual $900 (25% DISCOUNT)

Concession $450 (25% DISCOUNT)

Training videos: two videos of actual group sessions of people with dementia and small group facilitator, plus a guide, will be available for purchase at $200.00 for anyone who purchases a corporate ticket.

The book: Facilitating spiritual Reminiscence for People with Dementia: A Learning Guide, (2015) by MacKinlay & Trevitt, is highly recommended and will be used in the workshop. Limited copies will be available at the workshop, or you can purchase a copy through Woodslane. Details of how to order the book, along with a discount code, will be emailed through to you upon registration.

The Centre for Ageing and Pastoral Studies (CAPS) has a series of continuing learning sessions planned for 2023, including webinars and workshops. Throughout the year, webinars will be presented by a variety of speakers, all of whom have valuable knowledge and insight into ageing and pastoral studies. To see a list of all the continuing education sessions planned for the year, please see our website.

Please register for this event through Eventbrite.

Event details

  • Date: Commencing 21 Sep 2023 - 22 Sep 2023
  • Location: 15 Blackall Street, Barton, ACT
  • Address: Chambers Pavilion, Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture
  • Event flyer: Download flyer
  • Cost: $1600 Corporate, $900 Individual, $450 Concession

Please register through Eventbrite.