Union Theological Seminary Student Life

Student Affairs

Spirit Care

Union Theological Seminary offers students a variety of spiritual care workshops and counseling sessions.

Spiritual Direction

Spiritual Direction is a process wherein a person is attentive to inner movements through conversation with a director to discern God's presence in the particulars of life and to respond in how we live.  At its best it is a tool of discovering the place where one's deepest desire meets God's invitation.

Rev. Fran Thiessen, Spiritual Director

The Rev. Fran Thiessen graduated from Union Theological Seminary in 2004 and is extravagantly grateful for her time there.  As an ordained Presbyterian Minister, she is the Pastor of the Presbyterian Church in Norwood, NJ and is actively involved in spiritual direction in that region.  Rev. Thiessen studied the Art of Spiritual Direction at the Mercy Center in Burlingame, California.   She has also earned a Certificate in the Art of Supervision for Spiritual Directors from the Mercy Center and she is currently a member of Spiritual Director’s International.

By Appointment Only:

Lampman Chapel from 12:30-5:30 p.m.
Every Monday during the Fall semester beginning September 9th and ending December 16th
Every Monday during the Spring semester beginning January 27th and ending May 12th

Interfaith Chaplaincy

Interfaith Chaplaincy at Union offers spiritual, compassionate and emotional care to a diverse community of students with varying spiritual, religious and denominational backgrounds, identities, cultures and vocational aspirations.  It fosters understanding and the building of meaningful, collaborative relationships across differences.  It also invites students to practice the art of prayer or meditation.  Interfaith Chaplaincy acts as a resource for spiritual formation, encouraging thoughtful reflection and dialogue and providing spiritual support in times of personal concern.

Gadadhara Pandit Dasa, Interfaith Chaplain
Gadadjara Pandit Dasa (also known as Pandit) has been a Hindu priest and monk since 1999.  He has been serving as the Religious Life Advisor/chaplain for Columbia University and New York University since 2002.  He currently teaches courses on Hinduism at Union Theological Seminary and Teachers College.  He writes for the Huffington Post and appeared in a PBS special on the Bhagavad Gita.  Pandit’s life is chronicled in his autobiography “Urban Monk - Exploring Karma, Consciousness and the Divine released July 2013.  Learn more about Pandit here: http://www.nycpandit.com/biography.html.


Drop-in Lampman Chapel from 2:15-4:15 p.m.
Every Tuesday during the Fall semester beginning September 10th and ending December 17th
Every Tuesday during the Spring semester beginning January 28th and ending May 13th

Evening SpiriTalk, September 24th, Tuesday 5:00-6:00 p.m.

Fall SU 125 Course – Introduction to Spiritual Formation
Sec 01: Avatars, Sages, and Mystic Yogas: Stories of Hinduism, Tuesday 1:10-2:00 p.m.
(See 2013-14 Course Catalog p. 41 for full description)


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3041 Broadway at 121st Street, New York, NY 10027 | Tel: (212) 662-7100