|Pastoral care and counseling workshop will explore applications of spirituality
Explore the role of spirituality in pastoral care and counseling during a workshop entitled “Meeting at the Borders of Spirituality” on Friday, Oct. 12, at San Francisco Theological Seminary.
The day will begin with a panel discussion on pastoral counseling, chaplaincy and spiritual direction led by SFTS faculty members. Panelists are Dr. Scott Sullender, associate professor of Pastoral Counseling, Rev. Laurie Garrett-Cobbina, the Shaw Family Chair for Clinical Pastoral Education, and Rev. Dr. Sam Hamilton-Poore, director of the seminary’s Program in Christian Spirituality and assistant professor of Christian Spirituality.
The keynote speaker is Dr. David Augsburger, professor of Pastoral Care at Fuller Theological Seminary. He will lecture on “What is Spirituality?” Augsburger, an ordained Mennonite pastor, has written 20 books on pastoral counseling, marriage, conflict and human relations, and leads workshops throughout the world.
This one-day program is sponsored by the Pacific Region of the American Association of Pastoral Counselors. Both Augsburger and Sullender are AAPC Diplomates.
“While organized religion is declining in western cultures, interest in spirituality is growing,” Sullender said. “Meditation is more popular than ever as a spiritual practice and mental health tool. Various forms of psychotherapy seek to blend in spirituality. But what is spirituality exactly? There are many differing perspectives, definitions and applications of spirituality. Are all of the various spiritualities equally healthy? Can spirituality be used to promote healing?”
Sullender points out that spiritual direction is an emerging discipline in its own right, a fact reinforced by the seminary’s well-respected Program in Christian Spirituality. SFTS trains spiritual directors through its Diploma in Art of Spiritual Direction program under the direction of Hamilton-Poore, an ordained Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) pastor.
“As you grow in the art of listening, discernment and spiritual direction, you will learn to nourish thirsty souls, and to honor heart, body and spirit, as well as mind,” Hamilton-Poore said. “These skills, sensibilities and experiences are invaluable for every ministry setting.”
The SFTS Shaw Family Chair of Clinical Pastoral Education is the first fully-endowed chair in the discipline of Clinical Pastoral Education in a theological education institution. Garrett-Cobbina, the CPE director, is also an ordained PC(USA) pastor.
“I’m interested in the educational development of pastors who learn to do the work of pastoral ministry in a way that truly serves God’s people,” Garrett-Cobbina said. “The pedagogical method of CPE can be a catalyst for ordained and lay leaders to become competent pastoral care providers who are theologically disciplined, socially relevant, spiritually mature, and able to make use of psychological and social science theory.”
SFTS is fortunate to have faculty members who are experts in the three prominent modes of pastoral care: pastoral counseling, chaplaincy and spiritual direction. During their panel discussion, Sullender, Garrett-Cobbina and Hamilton-Poore will highlight what these modes have in common and how are they different. The SFTS faculty members will also discuss their understanding of spirituality and its place in healing.
Following the keynote address by Augsberger, the afternoon panel discussion will focus on different approaches in pastoral counseling offered by Buddhist, Sufi, Jewish and Christian faith practitioners. Augsberger is a national and international leader in cross-cultural pastoral care.
In addition to the workshop, there will be an on-campus chapel service at noon led by Rev. Dr. Janie Spahr (M.Div. ’70, D.Min. ’87).
The event is open to the Bay Area pastors, lay leaders and theology students. Please contact Sullender at email@example.com for further information or to register.
“Meeting at the Borders of Spirituality”
At SFTS, Alexander Hall
Friday, Oct. 12
9 a.m. – Welcome and conference overview
10:30 a.m. – Panel Discussion on three prominent modes of pastoral care (Dr. Scott Sullender , Rev. Laurie Garrett-Cobbina, Rev. Dr. Sam Hamilton-Poore)
Noon – Community Worship (Rev. Dr. Janie Spahr)
12:30 p.m. – Community Lunch
1:15 p.m. – Keynote Address (Dr. David Augsburger)
2:10 p.m. – Interfaith approaches in pastoral counseling
4 p.m. – Interfaith worship (Rev. Dr. Janie Spahr)