Students in this unit will explore the relationships between theology, pastoral practice, and context. A key focus is to help students develop a reflective capacity in pastoral ministry that is grounded in the Christian tradition, and in particular Christian theology of the human person. Consideration will be given to such matters as: the distinctiveness of ‘pastoral’ care; the roles of prayer, scripture and Christian spirituality in pastoral care; attention to the socio-economic and cultural setting of pastoral care; and differences between various traditions of pastoral theology. Scope will be given for students to explore a range of contextual issues and questions in pastoral ministry.

Unit code: DP1600T

Unit status: Approved (New unit)

Points: 18.0

Unit level: Undergraduate Level 1

Unit discipline: Pastoral Theology and Ministry Studies

Proposing College: Trinity College Theological School

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Learning outcomes


Demonstrate an understanding of biblical and theological foundations of pastoral care


Articulate integrative connections between pastoral practice, theology, and context


Reflectively engage in the task of integrating theology and pastoral practice


Outline biblical and theological motifs which inform the practice of care


Lectures, seminars, case studies, reflective practice

Indicative Bibliography

  • Allain-Chapman, J. Resilient Pastors: The Role of Adversity in Healing and Growth. London: SPCK, 2012.
  • Burns, S. Pastoral Theology for Public Ministry. New York: Church Publishing, 2015.
  • Carr, W. The Pastor as Theologian: The Formation of Today’s Ministry in Light of the Human Sciences. London: SPCK, [2] 2008.
  • Doehring, C. The Practice of Pastoral Care: A Postmodern Approach (revised and expanded edition), Louisville, John Knox Press, 2015.
  • Dykstra, R., ed. Images of Pastoral Care: Classic Readings. St Louis, MO: Chalice Press, 2004.
  • Graham, E. Words Made Flesh: Essays in Pastoral and Practical Theology. London: SCM Press, 2009
  • Gula, R.M. Just Ministry: Professional Ethics for Pastoral Ministers. Mahwah, NJ: Paulist Press, 2006.
  • Kujawa-Holbrook, S. and K. Montagno, eds. Injustice and the Care of Souls: Taking Oppression Seriously in Pastoral Care. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 2010.
  • Lartey, E.Y. Pastoral Theology in an Intercultural World. Peterborough: Epworth Press, 2006.
  • McGarrah Sharp, M. Misunderstanding Stories: Toward a Postcolonial Pastoral Theology. Eugene: Wipf and Stock, 2013.
  • Miller-McLemore, B., ed. Companion to Practical Theology. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2012.
  • Pattison, S. The Challenge of Practical Theology. London: Jessica Kingsley, 2007.
  • Pembroke, N. Trinitarian perspectives on pastoral care and counselling. Aldershot: Ashgate, .2006
  • Ramsey, N., ed. Pastoral Care and Counseling: Redefining the Paradigms. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, 2005.
  • Woodward, J. & Pattison, S. The Blackwell reader in pastoral and practical theology. Oxford: Blackwell, 2000


Type Description Word count Weight (%)
Book Review 600 10.0
Case Study

A presentation on a pastoral encounter which may take the form of a verbatim, case study or critical incident

600 25.0
Case Study

A presentation on a pastoral encounter which may take the form of a verbatim, case study or critical incident

800 25.0
Essay 2000 40.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by Carolyn Alsen on 5 Apr, 2022

Unit record last updated: 2022-04-05 16:54:57 +1000