The Rev. Jacques Hadler Jr. is currently a pensioned itinerant priest, resident in the Diocese of Washington, having retired from the faculty of Virginia Theological Seminary in 2010. He attends the 7:30 am Holy Eucharist at St. George’s. His ministry consists primarily of offering spiritual direction and coaching to clergy and seminarians and clergy colleague groups, and consultation with congregations. He is privileged to continue in a teaching role on family systems theory and case studies in the Doctor of Ministry program at VTS. His diocesan ministry involves serving on the Finance Committee and Race and Social Justice Task Force. Previous diocesan involvement has included Companion Diocese Relations, Commission on Ministry, and Racial Reconciliation—all in the Diocese of Washington.
From 1984-1996 he studied Bowen Family Systems Theory with Rabbi Edwin Friedman, and applied Bowen theory to his pastoral care and leadership in three congregations, before joining the faculty at VTS. From 1993 – 2010 he has continued to study Bowen Theory with the Center for Family Process, while applying this theory to the supervision of seminarians and in courses on leadership and congregational development at the VTS. Since retiring from the faculty, he has continued to teach family systems theory at VTS to MDiv and DMin students.
In his forty-five years of ordained ministry, he has been a parish priest for 18 years, serving one parish as assistant, three parishes as interim, and one parish as rector for twelve years. He has also taught for 20 years in two seminaries, first as a mission partner, teaching Church History in a theological college in Tanzania, and later as Director of Field Education at VTS for seventeen years. In that role he also taught courses in Practical Theology and Global Christianity as well as leading and de-briefing Cross-cultural Internships to Tanzania.
Fr. Jacques is married with two grown children, each of whom became a parent in 2011. So grand-parenting has become a new and most joyful challenge. He also enjoys a life of prayer and just walking around in God’s wonderful creation. With his wife Susan of forty-six years, he loves traveling, visiting their children and grand-children, watching and discussing movies and plays, and following the development of her writing. As a lover of learning, he is continuing his education with courses from the Teaching Company on economics, history and the environment; and from the Bowen Center on staying fresh in family systems theory.