This unit provides a framework for pastoral theology and ministry to older people within an ageing and longevity context. Biblical and theological perspectives on ageing are explored as well as the faith journey. Methods and benefits of spiritual assessment will be explored and contextualised for a diverse generational and cultural demographic. Students will have opportunity to reflect on the challenges, risks and ongoing potential within longer living and the relevance of life review.

Unit code: DP3315B

Unit status: Approved (New unit)

Points: 18.0

Unit level: Undergraduate Level 3

Unit discipline: Pastoral Theology and Ministry Studies

Delivery Mode: Face to Face

Proposing College: Eva Burrows College

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Learning outcomes


Interpret and examine the diverse context of ageing in Australia


Identify and discuss challenges and risks in ageing and how life review is relevant.


Illustrate through analytical reflection theological perspectives on ageing.


Define spiritual needs in ageing and apply different methods of assessment and planning.


Articulate ongoing potential within longer years of life, particularly ongoing faith development and how faith communities can respond effectively and appropriately.

Unit sequence

Pre-requisite 18 points in DP or equivalent practical experience.


Lectures, seminars, group work, videos, discussions

Indicative Bibliography

  • = set texts recommended for reading No set text

Carlson, D. Engaging in Ministry with Older Adults, Alban Institute, USA, 1997.

Coleman, P.G. and A. O’Hanlon. Ageing and Development, Hodder Headline Group, London, 2004.

Coleman, P.G. Belief and Ageing: Spiritual Pathways in Later Life, The Policy Press, University of Bristol, 2011.

Hauerwas, S, C. Stoneking, K. Meador and D. Cloutier. Growing old in Christ, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Michigan, 2003.

Houston, J.M. and M. Parker. A Vision for the Aging Church, Intervarsity Press, Illinoi, USA, 2011.

Kimble, M.A., S.H. McFadden, J.W. Ellor and J.J. Seeber (eds). Aging, spirituality and religion: A handbook, Augsburg Fortress, Minneapolis, 1995.

Kimble, M.A. and S.H. McFadden (eds). Aging, spirituality, and religion: A handbook (vol 2), Fortress Press, Minneapolis, 2003.

Koepke, D.R. The Essential Spirit, Providing Wholistic Services to and with Older Adults, Wipf and Stock Publishers, Eugene, USA, 2016.

MacKinlay, E.B. The Spiritual Dimension of Ageing, (2nd Edition), Jessica Kingsley Publishers, London, 2017.

MacKinlay, E.B. Spiritual growth and care in the fourth age of life, Jessica Kingsley Publishers, London, 2006.

Roberto, J. The Seasons of Adult faith formation, Lifelong Faith Publications, Naugatuck, 2015.

Swinton, J. and R. Payne. Living Well & Dying Faithfully, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co, USA, 2009.


Type Description Word count Weight (%)
Case Study - Case Study 2000 40.0
Essay - Essay 1500 30.0
Essay - Integrative Essay 1500 30.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by Maggie Kappelhoff on 6 Jul, 2020

Unit record last updated: 2020-07-06 16:26:51 +1000