Clergy Leadership Programs
Pastoral Care Specialist
Persons in need within congregations and the broader community regularly turn to clergy. The question is not whether clergy and lay leaders will respond to these requests, but how effectively they will respond. The Pastoral Care Specialist Program is intended to facilitate the equipping of pastoral care-givers to understand and respond effectively to these needs and the inevitable suffering around us with integrity, faithfulness and pastoral sophistication.
The goals of this program are: 1) to facilitate the acquisition of a solid competency in the theory and practice of pastoral care; 2) to enhance the integration of theological reflection and commitment to a life of faith with the practices of caring embodied within ministry; and 3) to encourage personal growth in faith and spiritual leadership through the ministry of pastoral care. The Pastoral Care Specialist Program meets 17 times over the course of a year. The Pastoral Care Specialist Program is designed to satisfy membership requirements in AAPC as a Pastoral Care Specialist.
Theological Reflection For Life and Ministry
Theological reflection groups provide clergy an opportunity to think theologically about the situations faced in ministry. This involves asking how we interpret life experience through a theological lens as well as how life experience forms and informs theological concepts. Case studies will be presented to focus these discussions. Groups will meet once a month.
Supervision of Ministry
For ministers who desire a process that is both educational and formative, pastoral supervision is a formal arrangement that may be engaged in either an individual or group setting. Presentation of actual situations encountered in ministry is required in supervision. Pastoral supervision is a contractual arrangement that may be either short or long-term. Ministers who are preparing for certification in a professional association may be especially interested in this option.
Especially for clergy just entering ministry, mentoring seeks to address questions and issues around the day-to-day life of the minister. Questions not taught in seminary are the focus of clergy mentoring. Also, seasoned clergy facing transitions in ministry or wanting to address specific concerns may be interested in clergy mentoring.
PCH offers periodic continuing education events that focus on issues presently affecting ministers and congregational life. Clergy or denominations may request workshops on particular topics.
Clergy Growth and Healing Programs
While there are many excellent secular therapists in the Nashville area, the counselors at PCH are trained in the integration of both theological and psychological theories which makes them distinctively able to assist clergy in achieving integration between their own theologies and their experiences. This in turn enables clergy to function in a more integrated way in their ministries. Because the counselors at PCH are ordained in their respective traditions, they understand the unique contexts in which ministers serve and the distinctive issues that exist in clergy marriage and family life.
Spiritual Direction invites clergy into deeper spiritual life by helping them tell their sacred stories. This assists clergy to provide leadership helping their congregations move toward more connected spiritual practices. PCH coordinates with several spiritual directors to provide assistance in this area.
Congregational Well-Being Programs
Topical Workshops/Seminars – e.g. parenting, marriage enrichment, grief groups
Faith community leaders are frequently asked to provide a response to an immediate concern. Our classes, workshops, seminars and retreats are carefully constructed with the particular needs of the specific faith community in mind. In consult with faith community leaders Congregational Well Being Programs are created to answer the immediate questions like “my spouse of 45 years died, I don’t want to get out of bed in the morning”, “I’m afraid our teenage son is using drugs”, “all we seem to do anymore is fight all of the time- do I still love my spouse?” Congregational Well Being Programs incorporated into the life cycle of a faith community are preventative in nature, encouraging participants to explore their concerns, their questions, and their hopes in a context of care and support.
Church Staff Team Building
Church Team Staff Building guides your staff through the steps of identifying roles and responsibilities of staff members, creating an environment that fosters personal accountability, understanding and valuing temperament differences and pursuing a common goal in staff meetings. Each Church Team Staff Building program is created in collaboration with the faith community with options as varied as weekly meetings with PCH and staff, one time workshops or seminars to retreats.
Empowering Congregational Vision
Congregations find themselves impacted by sweeping changes in the religious landscape within the United States. This frequently leaves them disoriented about their identity, including how to interpret and embody their faith. The first phase of the program begins with helping the congregation construct a narrative history. This is followed by an evaluation of a congregation’s character and context. In the second phase, PCH facilitates small group discussions to enable the congregation to reflect creatively on its unique combination of gifts and desires. The second phase strives towards the formation of a missional vision that will guide the congregation as it implements concrete plans for the future.