Health, Spirituality & Religion Program



The program seeks to create opportunities for medical trainees and physicians to explore the intersections between health, spirituality and religion through lectures, research opportunities, and interdisciplinary training to enhance patient centered care and find personal meaning in the practice of medicine 


  • Develop spiritual competencies in all of our medical students. 
  • Provide opportunity for deeper discussion/education on this topic for interested students and other learners. 
  • Raise awareness of the intersection of spirituality, faith and religion with medicine in the health system at large. 
  • Ensure that our endeavors are open to all interested faculty, clinicians, nurses, chaplaincy staff and other health care professionals.
  • Develop a community of people at U-M who are passionate about this topic. 
  • Provide education on incorporating spirituality into professional and personal development. 
  • Improve patient care through these efforts.

You can make a difference

Gifts to the Program on Health, Spirituality, and Religion support efforts to reshape the culture of medicine. Your contribution ensures Michigan Medicine’s world-class research and education are influenced by the understanding that compassionate care must address the whole person.

The Woll Family Speaker Series on Health, Spirituality and Religion 

Upcoming Lectures

Friday, October 6
A Conversation with The New York Times’ Ruth Graham

A Conversation with Dr. Aasim Padela — Co hosted by Michigan Muslim Premeds and the American Muslim Medical Student Association 

Upcoming Events

Humanism Rounds Session 1: Death and Dying

Are you a medical student interested in discussing the meaning of medicine with other students? Please join our HSR student fellows for our first Humanism Round of the year to explore your thoughts and feelings about death and dying. The event will be held at the League on September 27, 2023. Please RSVP here.

Coffee with HSR

Come join Dr. Collier or Dr. Baruch for informal conversation about anything related to health, spirituality, and religion. You bring some thoughts; we'll provide the caffeine!

Tuesday, September 19 from 10 a.m.-noon in Dr. Collier's office
Friday, September 29 from noon-3 p.m. in Dr. Collier's office
Tuesday, October 10 from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. in Dr. Collier's office
Tuesday, October 24 from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at Angelo's with Dr. Baruch
Tuesday, November 7 from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at Angelo's with Dr. Baruch

Health Spirituality and Religion Welcome Dinner

We are hosting a welcome dinner for medical students in Dr. Adam Baruch's backyard on Monday, September 11 at 6:30 p.m.. Please join us to meet new friends, have interesting conversation and eat some delicious food. Please RSVP here so that we can have enough food for everyone.

Past Lectures

Click on individual lecture for access to the recording 

Rachel Aviv, “Strangers to Ourselves,” September 7, 2023
Lena Juratli, Fairooz Oudeif, Hebah Reda, Kristina Marie Ghanem, Camila Mallad, Noor Alesawy, Neil Al-Saidi, “Honoring Multiple Faiths in a Second Language Acquisition Curricula: A Pilot Study” and Ellery Sarosi and Kavya Davuluri “Incorporating Cultural and Religious Humility into Whole-Person Care: A Systematic Approach,” April 10, 2023
Dr. Benjamin Doolittle, “The Priest, Philosopher, Scientist, and the New Age of Medicine,” March 24, 2023
Dr. Grace Kim, “Faith-based Global Surgery,” February 9, 2023
Sarah Hurwitz, J.D., “A Spiritual Journey from White House Speechwriting to Hospital Chaplaincy,” January 19, 2023
Dr. Deborah Cook, “The Three Wishes Program: Integrating Spiritual Care, Critical Care and Palliative Care,” December 19, 2022
Rabbi and Bassie Shemtov, “Healing from One Soul to Another,” November 11, 2022
Dr. Warren Kinghorn, ““From Fixing to Attending: A Christian Vision for Whole-Person Mental Health Care,” October 25, 2022
Dr. Rita Charon, “Native Fusion: Creativity, Responsibility, Meaning,” September 29, 2022
An Evening Conversation with Srs. Priscilla Busingye and Gertrude Kabanyomozi, September 19, 2022
Drs. Kristin Collier and Joel Howell, “Pro/Con Debate: Sharing One’s Faith Beliefs with Learners,” May 12, 2022
Bhante Pemarathana, “Illness and Healing: A Buddhist Perspective,” April 25, 2022
Richard Harris, “Pain, a Conscious Pivot in Buddhism,” March 8, 2022
Lydia Dugdale, “COVID-19 and Re-enchanting Medicine, February 11, 2022
Sr. Helen Prejean, “It's All About Life and Dignity,” January 10, 2022
Dr. Emman Dabaja, University of Michigan, “The Muslim Pediatric Fasting Study”; Sara Journey, University of Michigan, “A Moral Imperative: Initiating Conversations about Spirituality and Cultural Background with the Pediatric Patient”; Reni Forer and Meridith Pensler, University of Michigan, “Shiphra and Puah: What Can We Learn from Our Biblical Matriarchs,” December 3, 2021
Kate Bowler, Duke University, “No Cure for Being Human with Kate Bowler,” October 18, 2021
Hedy Wald, “Holocaust and Medicine Education for Resilient Professional Identity Formation: A Holocaust Survivor's Daughter Teaches German Medical Students at Auschwitz,” September 23, 2021
An Evening Conversation between Emma Green and Charlie Camosy on Dr. Camosy's new book, Losing Our Dignity: How Secularized Medicine is Undermining Fundamental Human Equality, September 13, 2011
Devan Stahl, “From Medical Image to Icon: How Art Can Heal a Broken Body,” May 10, 2021
Sheri Garrison and Brad Garrison, “A Relationship Based Model of Care: Combining a Great Compassion and a Great Commission Ministry for Better Health Outcomes,” April 19, 2021
Dr. Christian Alch, U-M Medical School, “Barriers to Addressing the Spiritual and Religious Needs of Patients and Families in the Intensive Care Unit: A Qualitative Study of Critical Care Physicians,” third-year medical students Abbass Berjaoui, Ruth Bishop and fourth-year medical student Elie Ellenberg, “Assessing the Spiritual Needs of Patients Awaiting Heart Transplantation,” and fourth-year medical student Nabeel Salka, “Exploring Physician Identity from an Islamic and Contemporary Western Perspective,” March 18, 2021
Dr. Alan Jotkowitz, Jakobovits Center for Jewish Medical Ethics, “The Role of Narrative in the Development of a Jewish End of Life Ethic,” February 8, 2021
Dr. E. Wesley Ely, Vanderbilt University, “Dehumanizing during COVID-19: Resurrection of the Family as Part of the Patient’s Healing Plan,” January 15, 2021
Dr. Patrick Smith, Duke Divinity School, “African-American Health Disparities and Moving Towards a Beloved Community in Health Care,” October 30, 2020
Dr. Jeffrey Bishop, Saint Louis University, and Micah Redding, Christian Transhumanist Association, “Debate on Humanism,” March 20, 2020
Dr. Sarah Barton, Duke University, “Considering Disability: Religion and Human Limitation in Medical Contexts,” February 20, 2020
Dr. Michael Redinger, Western Michigan University, “Catholic End of Life Ethics after Charlie Gard and Alfie Evans,” January 16, 20
Dr. A. Oveta Fuller, University of Michigan, “Getting to Zero: Religious Leaders as Trusted Messengers for Eliminating HIV/AIDS,” December 9, 2019
Dr. Daniel Sulmasy, Kennedy Institute of Ethics/Georgetown University, “Spirituality and Healthcare: Lessons from Fred," November 15, 2019
Dr. Len Mattano, “Celtic Crossing: A Literary Exploration of Spirituality and Religion in the Terminally Ill,” October 15, 2019
Dr. A. Oveta Fuller, University of Michigan, “Getting to Zero: Religious Leaders as Trusted Messengers for Eliminating HIV/AIDS,” September 26, 201
Dr. Scott Stonington, University of Michigan, “Working the Mind-Body: Discomfort and the Pragmatics of Spirituality (in Thailand and the U.S.),” May 6, 2019
Dr. Kenneth Pargament, Bowling Green University, “Shaken to the Core: Understanding and Addressing Spiritual Struggles in the Context of Health Care,” April 29, 2019
Dr. Mara Buchbinder, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Dr. William Toffler, Portland, Oregon, “Debate on Physician-assisted Suicide,” March 25, 2019
Dr. Conor Lucas-Roberts, “Finding Purpose and Peace in Chaos,” February 25, 2019
Dr. Devan Stahl, Michigan State University, “From Medical Image to Icon: How Art Can Heal a Broken Body,” January 28, 2019
Dr. Richard Souza, University of Michigan, "Astronomy and the Quest for the Transcendental: How Faith and Astronomy Have Met Down the Ages," December 7, 2018
Dr. Jonathan Crane, Emory University, "Disclosing Demise: Judaic Perspectives on Telling Dying Patients the Truth," November 29, 2018
Dr. Ray Barfield, Duke University, "I Wasn't Trained for This: God, Miracles and Medicine in Complex Decision Making," October 15, 2018
Dr. Jeffrey P. Bishop, Saint Louis University, "Religion and the Birth of Osler's Humanism," September 24, 2018
Dr. Tracy Balboni, Harvard University: "Spirituality in Palliative Care: State of the Science," May 24, 2018  
Dr. Adam Baruch, University of Michigan, "Genesis 38: Through the Looking Glass" April 19, 2018 
Dr. Naomi Laventhal (University of Michigan) and Dr. Ashley Fernandes (Ohio State University), Debate on Conscience Protection, March 9, 2018
Dr. Samya Z. Nasr, University of Michigan, "Multiculturalism in Medicine," February 22, 2018
Dr. Charlie Camosy, Fordham University, "Should a Religious Physician Check Her Faith at the Door When Practicing Medicine?," January 30, 2018
Dr. John Cropsey, Kibuye (Burundi) Hope Hospital, "Broken Fangs, Wounded Healers: An Ancient Call for Justice and Mercy," December 7, 2017
Rabbi Rachel Shere, Jewish Hospice and Chaplaincy Network, "End of Life Care as Midwifery for the Soul," November 9, 2017
Dr. John Patrick, Augustine College, October 3rd, 12-1 "Meaning and Purpose in Medicine," October 3, 2017
Dr. Farr Curlin, Duke University, "What does Religion have to do with the Practice of Medicine?," September 11, 2017 

Relevant Articles

Religious Involvement, Spirituality, and Medicine: Implications for Clinical Practice
Developing Curricula in Spirituality and Medicine
Spirituality and Health: The Development of a Field
The Relationship between Medicine, Spirituality and Religion: Three Models for Integration
Is medicine a spiritual practice?
Doctor, Will You Pray for Me? Responding to Patients' Religious and Spiritual Concerns
How Should Clinicians Respond to Requests from Patients to Participate in Prayer?
Training Physicians as Healers
Spirituality in Serious Illness and Health


Michigan Medicine Spiritual Care Department
Spiritual Assessment Tools 


An Academic Program for Exploring the Divine Healing Touch in Medicine (Church Life Journal), Sept. 18, 2018
U-M Medical School Launches Program on Health, Spirituality and Religion (Michigan Medicine Headlines), Aug. 21, 2017
Finding meaning in medicine via spirituality

Michigan Medicine HSR Scholarship

Is it Time to More Fully Address Teaching Religion and Spirituality in Medicine?
Barriers to Addressing the Spiritual and Religious Needs of Patients and Families in the Intensive Care Unit: A Qualitative Study of Critical Care Physicians 
Addressing Spiritual and Religious Needs in Advanced Illness — A Teachable Moment
What is medicine for?
The Role of Spirituality and Religion in Physician and Trainee Wellness
From a culture of blame to a culture of grace: A letter in reply to Papadakis
Religion and Spirituality in Primary Care | 2021-03-19

Meet Our Team

Kristin Collier, M.D., FACP, Director
Dr. Collier is an associate professor of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School where she serves as the director of the Program on Health, Spirituality, and Religion.  Her academic interests are in the overlap of spirituality, religion and medicine and her peer reviewed work has been published in high-impact journals such as JAMA Internal Medicine, the Annals of Internal Medicine, and the British Medical Journal. She also has had writings published in Notre Dame’s Church Life Journal, Theopolis, America Magazine, and Public Discourse.

Adam Baruch, M.D., Associate Director
Dr. Baruch is a member of the Women’s Health Division in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He is an award-winning medical educator having received the Senior Award, Golden Beeper and a three time recipient of the Bronze Beeper. He is passionate about making space for the individual physician, trainee and patient within the practice of medicine. He studied Hebrew and Jewish Cultural Studies at the University of Michigan and wrote an honors thesis entitled “(Mis)Understand the Ba’al Shem Tov: A Contrast in Methodological Approaches.

Ellery Sarosi, M.D., Assistant Director for Student Fellow Formation
Dr. Sarosi is a first-year Obstetrics & Gynecology resident at the University of Michigan. She was involved with the Program on Health, Spirituality and Religion as a UMMS student and was the program’s inaugural fellow during her M4 year. She is thrilled to be joining the leadership team as the Assistant Director for Student Fellow Formation and is excited to practice whole-person care throughout residency.

Welcome to our 2023-24 HSR Student Fellows

Amanda Bahamonde
Amanda grew up mostly in sunny, South Florida and she attended Nova Southeastern University for her BS in Biology and Florida International University for her MPH in Epidemiology. She is applying into Anesthesiology and just spent a year away from clinicals to partake in anesthesia research at Michigan Medicine. She is also one of the Anesthesiology Student Interest Group Presidents for 2023-2024. Her interests are in medical education and outcomes-based research. 

Jill Byrne
Jill is interested in growing her understanding of what it means to take care of the whole person. Clinically, she is interested in emergency medicine. She is specifically interested in rural medicine and hopes to serve patients in one of Michigan's rural communities. Outside of medicine, she enjoys spending time with her husband and being outdoors biking, skiing, and hiking.

Bassel Salka
Bassel is an M4 pursuing a career in Urology. He graduated from the University of Michigan in 2019 with a bachelor’s in Industrial and Operations Engineering and spoke at both the school-wide and engineering commencement ceremonies. Following his graduation, he worked as a healthcare engineer at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab. Previously, he had completed summer internships with the Center for Healthcare Engineering and Patient Safety and Amazon. Bassel is Co-founder and Co-president of the American Muslim Medical Student Association (AMMSA), the largest student-led Muslim organization in the country. His research focuses are broad and include endourology, uro-oncology, implementation of automated dashboards, and discrimination. He is passionate about community work and dreams of synthesizing technical skills in engineering with clinical medicine to improve patient outcomes.


Kristin M. Collier, M.D.
[email protected]
[email protected]