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PAST316 Current Perspectives on Pastoral Care (Advanced)

Pastoral care as the caring, nurturing and compassionate work of the church as a whole, increasingly viewed as outward-facing, lay-centred, and attentive to communal, societal and cross-cultural dynamics.

The word pastoral in pastoral care conjures up images of pastors - ministers, priests, clergy. Instead, this paper will present pastoral care as the work of the church as a whole. Thus this paper will provide opportunities to explore pastoral care as missional, involving all Christians in a variety of settings.

Paper title Current Perspectives on Pastoral Care (Advanced)
Paper code PAST316
Subject Pastoral Studies
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points
Teaching period Not offered in 2019
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $886.35
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $3,766.35

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One 200-level PAST or PASX paper
PAST 216
Schedule C
Arts and Music, Theology
May not be credited together with PASX207 or PASX307 passed in 2013.
Any student can study Theology, whether they are of the Christian faith, another faith or of no religious faith at all. Theology is an examination of the scriptures, history, content and relevance of the Christian faith, but it presupposes or requires no Christian commitment from students. All it requires is an inquiring mind and an interest in those skills that can be gained through the study of any subject in the Humanities.
Professor Paul Trebilco
Teaching staff
Academic Liasion: Professor Paul Trebilco
Lecturer: To be advised
Paper Structure
  • Module 1: What is Pastoral Care?
  • Module 2: The Theological and Historical Underpinnings of Pastoral Care
  • Module 3: The 20th-Century Pastoral Care Paradigm and its Post-modern Critique
  • Module 4: Pastoral Care Today, Setting 1 - The Congregations
  • Module 5: Pastoral Care Today, Setting 2 - The Community
  • Module 6: Pastoral Care Today, Setting 3 - Cross-Cultural Encounters
  • Module 7: Pastoral Care Today, Setting 4 - An Unjust World
  • Two essays - 30% each
  • One essay - 25%
  • Online discussion - 15%
Teaching Arrangements
Five 1-hour videoconferences, plus a teaching day
No textbook required. A course book has been developed for this paper.
Course outline
View the course outline for PAST 316
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Communication, Critical thinking, Ethics, Research, Self-motivation, scholoarship.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
Students who successfully complete the paper at 300-level will be able to
  1. Understand the biblical and theological foundations of the church's ministry of pastoral care
  2. Critically evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the therapeutic paradigm that undergirded the normative understanding of pastoral care and counselling in the latter half of the twentieth century
  3. Critically assess theological and sociological rationales for the shift to the communal-contextual and intercultural paradigms of pastoral care in the present era
  4. Recognise the core components of today's congregational setting of pastoral care (lay involvement, pastoral care with families/couples, visitation ministries with the sick, the ageing, the dying and the bereaved)
  5. Be aware of key underlying principles and examples of pastoral care in the community setting, including pastoral care with prisoners, the homeless and the mentally ill
  6. Design a pastoral care programme for a church or community that incorporates relevant insights from their reading and research and articulates the student's own theology of pastoral care

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Not offered in 2019

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system