The unit commences with an introduction to the history of pastoral care in the church.
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 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.
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.
+ The nature, historical development and dimensions of pastoral care.
+ The professional standards and ethics involved in pastoral care.
+ The difference in tasks of pastoral care from other helping professions.
+ Basic people helping skills required to meet the demands made on the care-giver in a range of situations
+ The pastoral care role of a minister/pastor and a church care program
+ Specific protocols about the conduct of pastoral care services
+ Appropriate legal and ethical standards of behaviour and responsibilities in pastoral care situations