This unit explores relationships between theology, pastoral practice, and context. It aims 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: DP2500T

Unit status: Archived (New unit)

Points: 18.0

Unit level: Undergraduate Level 2

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


Communicate a foundational theology of the human person


Articulate integrative connections between pastoral practice, theology and context


Engage in the task of integrating theology and pastoral practice.

Unit sequence

1 x Level 1 unit in Field D


lectures, discussions, student presentations.

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, NY: Church Publishing, 2015. Doehring, C. The Practice of Pastoral Care: A Postmodern Approach. Louisville, TN: WJKP, 2006.

  • 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. Ramsey, N., ed. Pastoral Care and Counseling: Redefining the Paradigms. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, 2005. Pattison, S. The Challenge of Practical Theology. London: Jessica Kingsley, 2007.


Type Description Word count Weight (%)
Book Review

Book response of 1,000 words

1000 20.0

Essay of 2,000 words

2000 50.0

Essay of 1,500 words

1500 30.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by John Capper on 23 Oct, 2014

Unit record last updated: 2020-10-28 14:50:32 +1100