Elon University Chaplains

Elon has four full-time chaplains that serve the students, faculty, staff, and other members of the campus community.  The chaplains are part of the Student Life Staff and the Truitt Center for Religious & Spiritual Life.  Their offices are located in the Numen Lumen Pavilion in the Academic Village. 


What is a Chaplain?

Elon's chaplains encourage and provide for the religious and spiritual needs of the entire Elon community.
The chaplains:
•support students, faculty, and staff in their religious and spiritual lives 
•facilitate educational, spiritual, and religious opportunities on campus
•are available to members of the community as they have personal, social, spiritual, institutional concerns or joys
•serve the entire campus community regardless of religious and spiritual affiliations or background. 
 

Why Contact a Chaplain?

Chaplains:

• provide a listening ear and a non-judgmental conversation partner
•respond to those from all faith backgrounds including the irreligious and non-spiritual 
•lead programs and conversations about religious perspectives and worldviews

Contact a Chaplain to have conversations about:

•spiritual search and growth, wrestling with or deepening your tradition or worldview
•interest in multifaith interaction
•what you want to do with your life
•family or interpersonal challenges
•spiritual or ethical questions
•sexuality, illness, grief
•questions/reflections about happiness and meaning in your life
•setting up an event or conversation for your hall or group
•any other aspects of who you are and your relationship to the wider world

Elon Chaplains

Jan Fuller – University Chaplain
jfuller3@elon.edu x7729

Chaplain Jan Fuller grew up in Beirut, Lebanon, where, by the time she was 22, she had lived through four Middle Eastern wars and had become an expert in artillery.  She is bilingual in Arabic and English. She knows that respect between religions is necessary to the survival of the human race.  As a young adult, she engaged in a long search for a spiritual home, and eventually settled in the Episcopal Church.  Along the way she found many things to appreciate in lots of different spiritual communities.  Jan is a certified trainer for Crucial Conversations, a way of using conflict to enhance conversation.  She is an experienced counselor and likes to laugh.  Jan’s son, Sam, is a student at Radford University, and she lives in Burlington with her dog, Little Bit.
 

Rebecca Joseph - Associate Chaplain for Jewish Life
rjoseph4@elon.edu x7729

Rabbi Rebecca Joseph earned rabbinic ordination from the Jewish Theological Seminary where she received the Rubenovitz Prize in Jewish Theology. She holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of California San Diego and a B.A. in Sociology and Anthropology from Swarthmore College. Prior to her appointment at Elon, she was the Founder and President of 12 Tribes, an award-winning purveyor of farm-to-fork kosher foods; Senior Education Planner at the Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund in San Francisco from 2008-2010; and Director of Institutional Grants at the Jewish Theological Seminary from 2000-2008. Volunteering on the day after 9/11, Becky served as a Supervisory Disaster Spiritual Care Chaplain with the American Red Cross, directing multi-faith teams and working directly with survivors and first responders. She was the first woman to serve as rabbi to a Masorti/Conservative congregation South Africa.
 

Gerry Waterman - Associate Chaplain for Catholic Life
gwaterman@elon.edu x7355

Father Gerry is a member of the Franciscan Order and has been a Roman Catholic friar-priest for 30 years. Born and raised in New England, he has attended Catholic schools his entire life. Upon entrance into the Franciscan Order, he was educated in the seminaries of his community in Granby, MA, and Rensselaer, NY. As an extrovert and priest, Fr. Gerry is passionate about people! In his tenure as a Franciscan, he has served as Co-Director of the Pre-Novitiate Program; ministered in parishes in New York, New Jersey, Atlanta, and in his home state of Connecticut; served as Vocation Director, Mission Promoter, and Treasurer of the College-Seminary. As Mission Promoter, he has traveled to and enjoyed the people and cultures of Honduras, Costa Rica, and Ghana, West Africa. He is fond of running, tennis, painting watercolors, gardening, and reading. He is a former commercial winemaker and always willing to share his passion for wine with people. Fr. Gerry is an outdoors person and enjoys the ocean, the mountains, sunshine, and all of God's creation.
 

Joel Harter - Associate Chaplain for Protestant Life
jharter@elon.edu x7343

Joel has a diverse range of experience in teaching, ministry, and community organizing, mostly in Chicago, where he earned his Ph.D. in Religion and Literature from the University of Chicago Divinity School. An ordained Congregationalist minister, Joel served as a Religious Advisor at the University of Chicago, where he developed a contemplative Taizé worship service with Protestant and Catholic students and collaborated on multi-faith dialogue events with the Muslim Student Association. In Chicago, Joel also served as the Project Director for Urban Dolorosa, a multicultural effort to organize faith communities to address urban violence, and as an Inerfaith Chaplain for an inner city community hospital. Joel believes strongly that Christian diversity is a gift and that multi-faith work includes Christians. He develops programs that encourage different Christian groups to come together and that promote balance and spiritual wellness for all students, faculty, and staff. A native of West Texas, Joel lives in Burlington with his wife Melody and their two children. Joel is an avid Boston Red Sox fan, rides his bike to campus most days, and is working on incorporating Mindfulness into his daily prayer life.