Clinical Counselling in Pastoral Settings

Clinical Counselling in Pastoral Settings

Clinical Counselling in Pastoral Settings

Clinical Counselling in Pastoral Settings


Highlighting the cultural, spiritual and professional aspects of counselling in pastoral settings, this book explores key issues like the significance of religious tradition, appropriate professional boundaries, and the nature of transference and counter-transference. Other chapters discuss how counselors can respond therapeutically to survivors of abuse in religious settings and the challenges associated with pastoral counselling work. Combining theory with relevant case material, Clinical Counselling in Pastoral Settings is a useful resource for anyone involved in therapeutic work with a religious dimension.


Gordon Lynch

Clinical Counselling in Pastoral Settings is part of a new series of books published by Routledge which seeks to explore the practice of counselling in various contexts. Other titles in the series consider the significance of settings, such as primary care, and higher and further education, for the work of the counsellor. A fundamental assumption within this series is that the nature and process of therapeutic work is inextricably bound up with the context in which the counsellor is working. Thus, rather than seeing counselling practice simply as the application of generalised therapeutic theories, this series takes the view that effective counsellors shape their practice in response to the particular context of their work. The skilled counsellor should therefore be able to make use of those aspects of their context which promote therapeutic change and growth, as well as being aware of aspects of their context that are harmful to their clients’ psychological well-being.

This series has been prepared with practitioners very much in mind. Each book seeks to explore relevant issues for those working, or thinking of working, in various counselling settings. It is intended not only that readers should gain theoretical insights into the influence of particular contexts on counselling work, but that the books in the series should also explore specific examples of counselling practice in these contexts. Whilst some individual chapters inevitably lend themselves to more theoretical discussions, authors in the series have generally tried to weave case examples into their chapters to make the practical relevance of their material clear.

In certain respects, however, Clinical Counselling in Pastoral Settings is an unusual book within this series. The term ‘pastoral settings’ covers a much wider range of specific counselling contexts than any of the other titles. Pastoral counsellors work in settings as diverse as local parishes or congregations, independent pastoral counselling agencies, private practice, or educational, medical, industrial or prison chaplaincies. Clearly,

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