I am a retired Research Professor in Practical Theology at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary (see my web page there) and member of the Graduate Faculty, Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California.  I can now best be reached via the following email address:  herbert.e.anderson@icloud.com

Curriculum Vitae (PDF)

Some of my areas of focus in research and teaching:

  • Practical theology for ministry

  • Formation for ministry

  • Dying and grieving

  • Pastoral care and empathy

  • Marriage and family, sustaining diversity of forms and flexibility of functions

  • Practical theology as an organizing framework to overcome fragmentation in the practices of ministry

News and Announcements:

July 9, 2019: As part of updating the webpage, there is a new look and some links may be broken! Please let me know if there is anything you can’t find.

November 30, 2017: The "Sermons and Lectures" now includes links to a few lectures, and the last couple minutes of my last class at PLTS:

  • Four Lectures at the Ernest Becker Foundation's "Finitude and the Faithful Care of the Dying" workshop: available on YouTube here

  • "How to Live Well While Dying"; lecture at the Seattle Science Foundation in 2017.  Link to the video here

  • Audio of the final class meeting (at PLTS) of the course on "Introduction to Pastoral Care" that I taught most of my career. 

January 6, 2017: my son (and webmaster), Joel, has just done a massive update of the publications page.  There are now over a hundred of my various writings available for download.  Feel free to share!

May 16, 2016:  I recently was interviewed as part of the "Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio" podcast, with discussion sof the divine art of dying. The episode I'm on is titled "Conscious Caregiving & Dying-The Last Frontiers of Life".  It's now availble for listening via any of the links below (be aware that some may start playing automatically!):



With all due modesty, I'm delighted to announce that the book I wrote with Karen Speerstra – The Divine Art of Dying: How to Live Well While Dying – has just won an award for independent publishers:

2014 INDIEFAB Book of the Year Award Winner

(in the category Body, Mind & Spirit of Adult Nonfiction)


  • Now available as a free PDF download:  my "classic" book, The Family and Pastoral Care (50MB).

  • Also available for free, my book Jacob's Shadow. (Follow with link at the top of this page)

  • Most of my older publications are in the process of being digitalized, and I'll be making them available as they are ready. 

If you have any questions about how to get ahold of any of the materials mentioned here, feel free to contact me by email!