Rev. Dr. Jessica Chapman Lape is a womanist pastoral theologian, a clinically trained chaplain, and a community trained doula.
Jessica received a B.S. in health education with an emphasis in community health from Johnson C. Smith, a historically black university in Charlotte, North Carolina, and received her M.Div. with an emphasis in faith and health of the public from Wake Forest University School of Divinity. While engaged in her studies, Jessica served as a chaplain for various community organizations including the Prodigals Community, a nonprofit residential program for men in recovery with addiction. She also served as a chaplain for Greensboro Urban Ministry, a community resource center, community kitchen, and emergency shelter for the community’s unhoused families. As a community chaplain, Jessica integrated her experience in health education with faith-based community health programs.
Jessica completed two clinical pastoral education internships through Wake Forest Baptist Health and PIH Health and a two-year clinical pastoral residency through Wake Forest Baptist Health. She has served as a clinical chaplain in the Southern California area for several years working in hospice, palliative care, and perinatal care. She also served as a community trained doula working specifically with African American birthing persons in Southern California.
In 2021, Jessica received her Ph.D. in Practical Theology from Claremont School of Theology where she earned the school’s prestigious Presidential Award for Academic Excellence. Her dissertation, “MissTreated: A Clinical Pastoral Theology on the Mistreatment of African American Women in U.S. Healthcare,” researches and discusses black women’s perception of their mistreatment in U.S. healthcare. With her scholarship encompassing womanist pastoral theology, clinical pastoral care, and healthcare research, Jessica is committed to advancing the field of pastoral theology and clinical pastoral care to include the profession of black indigenous birthwork in order to address and interrupt black women’s mistreatment in U.S. healthcare.
Jessica is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ and a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. She lives with her partner, J.D., and their rambunctious yet adorable rescue pit bull, Andie.