This unit enables students to integrate theology and pastoral practice. It explores the theological nature of pastoral care and the relationship between theology and pastoral ministry as well as providing an insight into recent trends in the nature and practice of pastoral care. It aims to help students develop a reflective basis for their own pastoral practice which is grounded in Christian theology and Biblical studies. Consideration will be given to some of the challenging questions raised in situations of crisis, to diverse cultural perspectives, and to the appropriate use of prayer and Scripture in pastoral situations. Liberty will be given for students to explore a range of contemporary issues and questions in pastoral ministry and to offer a way of dealing with these issues and questions which integrates sound theology and effective practice.

Unit code: DP8500P (Approved)

Points: 24.0

Unit level: Postgraduate Foundational

Unit discipline: Pastoral Theology and Ministry Studies

Proposing College: Pilgrim Theological College

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Learning outcomes


Demonstrate an understanding of the biblical and theological foundations of pastoral care.


Articulate and critique the integrative connections between theology and pastoral practice


Integrate theology and skills in their own pastoral practice


Engage with challenging questions raised in contemporary pastoral ministry in such a way that demonstrates an integration of theology and pastoral practice

Unit sequence

At least 48 points of Foundational Study


Interactive engagement among class participants between contextual pastoral experience and the foundations of Christian theology and Biblical Studies

Indicative Bibliography

  • Burns, S. Pastoral Theology for Public Ministry. New York: Church Publishing, 2015
  • Van Deusen Hunsinger. D. Pray Without Ceasing: Revitalizing Pastoral Care. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2006.
  • Doehring, C. The Practice of Pastoral Care: a Postmodern Approach. Rev. ed.. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press 2015.
  • Dykstra, R. Images of Pastoral Care. St Louis, US: Chalice Press 2005
  • Lartey, E. Pastoral Theology in an Intercultural World. Rev. ed. Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 2013.
  • Ramsey, N., ed. Pastoral Care and Counseling: Redefining the Paradigms. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, 2005.
  • Pembroke, N. Renewing Pastoral Practice: Trinitarian Perspectives on Pastoral Care and Counselling. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006
  • Swinton, J. Raging with Compassion: Pastoral Responses to the problem of evil. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans 2007.
  • Thornton, S. Broken Yet beloved: A Pastoral Theology of the Cross. St Louis: Chalice Press 2005
  • Woodward, J. and S. Pattison. The Blackwell Reader in Pastoral and Practical Theology. Oxford: Blackwell, 2000.


Type Description Word count Weight (%)

Written Reflective Journal 2000 words

2000 30.0

Paper 4000 words

4000 70.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by John Capper on 29 Sep, 2019

Unit record last updated: 2019-10-18 14:44:24 +1100