Pastoral Skills & Methods

Subject Code PC403 - Undergraduate
PC603- Graduate
TitlePC403 Pastoral Skills & Methods
Study Modes On-Campus, Distance
Next Available2017, Semester 2

Dr Thomas Kimber


This subject enables students to know and understand the aims and methods of pastoral care, administrative requirements of care, and community resources for pastoral care. Skills, models and methods of pastoral care and typical pastoral care contexts will also be practised. After students have completed the subject, they will be in a position to:

1. Integrate perspectives from pastoral skills and
methods with their other theological studies
2. Commence a ministry of pastoral care
3. Observe community standards in pastoral care,
including referral and record keeping
4. Maintain appropriate self care


Section A: Pastoral Skills and Methods
1 An introduction to aims and methods in pastoral care and pastoral counselling and their implications for Christian community.
2 Relational skills; empathy, respect, concreteness, genuineness; listening skills.
3 Equipping others; teaching, encouragement, recognition of abilities, training.
4 Mechanics of care; administration, publicity, the various settings of care, record-keeping.

Section B: Pastoral Care in Particular Situations
In the topics studied below, attention should be paid not only to the needs of those in care but the carers’ own lives.

5 Pastoral care of persons with special needs, including:
(a) the recognition of normal and abnormal conditions;
(b) the mentally ill;
(c) handicapped and disabled persons.

6 Pastoral care of people in the following situations:
(a) marital disharmony and divorce;
(b) dying, death and bereavement; the grief process;
(c) depression.

7 Pastoral care of those in crises, or with chronic conditions. Students study two of:
(a) alcoholism & drug dependence
(b) attempted suicide
(c) long-term illness
(d) child abuse and domestic violence
(e) AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases
(f) unemployment and work related stress
(g) those in trouble with the law
(h) financial or debt-related stress

8 Community resources for pastoral care, including other helping professions; when to refer.

Prerequisites and Exclusions

Pre-requisites: PC402/602

Time Commitment

This subject will require a time commitment on behalf of the student. If you are studying online you will need to commit to approximately 10 hours per week. If you are studying on campus you will need to commit to 3 hours of lecture time and approximately 7 hours private study per week.

Whatever method of study you choose, you will require Internet access to access the resources on our eCampus.