Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, the student will be able to:

Unit Description

The unit commences with an introduction to the analytical study and history of pastoral care and counselling throughout the Christian era. The distinctions that are made in academic literature between counselling and pastoral care and the justification for consideration of pastoral care as a form of counselling are considered.

The functions of pastoral care are itemised. Particular attention is given to the healing, sustaining and reconciling features of pastoral care. The skills that are required to meet the demands made on the care-giver in a range of situations are identified.

The theoretical underpinnings of different approaches to pastoral care are examined. Emphasis is given to the historical contexts in which the various approaches have developed and their relevance to contemporary situations. Study in this area relates specifically to the practice of pastoral care in guiding troubled individuals in spiritual settings.

The pastoral care role of a minister/pastor is explored. The student analyses specific situations that require an understanding of the pastor’s caring role in: offering a caring ministry; developing and supporting lay care givers; coping with stress; and maintaining a pastoral care program in a local church.

Specific protocols about the conduct of pastoral care services are addressed with attention being given to: confidentiality and privacy issues; establishing and operating an advisory centre; telephone services; storing and disposal of records; and the release of information when required by law.

An important component of the unit requires the student to evaluate the application of specific pastoral care activities in a variety of practical settings including: drug and alcohol abuse; hospital visitation; caring for the aged and handicapped; industrial and welfare care services; and crisis pastoral care.

Throughout the unit, emphasis is placed on the need for spiritual carers to restrict their activities to their areas of competence. The need for an appropriate and ethical standard of behaviour in pastoral care situations is stressed throughout the unit. Through analysis of hypothetical situations, the student is required to demonstrate an understanding of the legal and ethical responsibilities of the ministry of pastoral care.

At the conclusion of the unit, the student is expected to be able to design assess and implement a basic pastoral care program in a church setting.

Teaching Strategies

Teaching strategies include some or all of the following: lectures and tutorials; residential and weekend schools; class discussions; presentation of instructional material in the form of printed documentation, DVD, video and audio tape and on-line interaction.

Unit offerings

Face to face:

Please note

The Unit Offerings listed above are a guide only and the timetable for any year is the final authority. The College may vary offerings based on demand or other conditions.

This unit may be available in different modes of delivery i.e. online and face-to-face as listed above. The unit content will not differ between these modes of delivery. There will possibly be a difference in the schedule and/or the prescribed assessment tasks, however both will cover and assess the same content.