Dates: 04/11/2013 - 15/11/2013
Mode of Delivery: Onsite
Level: 5 (Year 2)
Credit Value: 20 (for regular BA Theology and Religious Study)
This module explores the theory and practice of pastoral care as a function of Vaishnava caring and mission. In this context, rooted in the scriptures and the Vaishnava tradition of spiritual care, it will explore practical and theoretical approaches to pastoral care in critical dialogue with current practices in the helping professions, studying a range of different approaches to pastoral care:
•Communication – skills in listening and responding.
•Models of mourning and celebration along with basic practice in administering suitable rituals.
•Relationship development – understanding others, feelings, boundaries, roles, impact on the care.
•The dynamics of human relationships, key stages of life (including transitions through the traditional ashrams and modern variations), transitions and loss – and the pastoral, moral, political and theological questions raised – will be explored from a personal and communal perspective.
•Stages in pastoral relationships including movement towards wholeness and exit processes (ways and times for the caregiver to exit).
•Pastoral abuse—its forms and consequences.
•The module will also cover a selection of pastoral topics, such as: contraception, abortion, childlessness, anorexia, drugs, bereavement, compulsions, depression, suicide, death, euthanasia, feminism, gender roles, singleness, cohabitation, homosexuality, premarital counselling, marriage, parenting, single parenting, marital conflict, divorce, abuse.
Yadunandana Swami has been the Principal of Bhaktivedanta College since its opening, in 2002. He joined ISKCON in 1977 in Spain and received initiation from Satsvarupa Dasa Goswami and later sannyasa initiation from Jayadvaita Swami (both disciples of Srila A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada). He has performed leadership and educational services in ISKCON since 1982. The latter include ministering spiritual education and counseling to many persons; teaching scriptural, academic, and vocational courses; and lecturing in more than twenty universities. He holds a MA in the Study of Religion from the University of Wales. He is the ISKCON Minister of Educational Development in Europe and the Rector of the Instituto de Estudios Bhaktivedanta in Spain.
Expected Student Learning Activity and Contact Hours
200 hours notional learning hours of which 32 hours will be contact time.
Students are expected to attend all lectures and seminars.
To provide students with systematic knowledge, understanding, and critical evaluation of the principles and practice of pastoral care, including a range of approaches in administering them.
To help students to integrate pastoral care theory and practice with a view of applying various caring approaches to specific situations, in the context of skill development.
To expose students to the demands and challenges of Vaishnava caring and counseling in selected crisis situations and to develop the students’ self-awareness and empathic skills in pastoral ministry.
To equip students with knowledge of counseling models and pastoral care found in Vaishnava scriptures (Bhagavata Purana, Bhagavata Gita, Chaitanya Charitamrita), and in the lives and teachings of Vaishnava acharyas.
Methods of Learning and Teaching and Formative Assessment
The course is delivered mainly in interactive lectures, supplemented with audio and video clips, power point presentations, and additional handouts. Student learning is encouraged through class discussion, role-plays, interactive assignments (questionnaires and interviews) and tutorials. Formative assessment will include participation in class discussions.
Students will be assessed on their ability to:
- Critically reflect upon and evaluate their journey over the duration of the module and how this has impacted their capacity to engage pastorally with other people.
- Display knowledge of, and ability in a variety of communication skills and relationship building within pastoral ministry contexts. This involves showing critical awareness of resources for pastoral ministry and competency in the skills to apply them in appropriate contexts.
- Critically evaluate the relationship between psychology and theology, and the place of personality in the practice of religion.
- Demonstrate counselling skills in ethical decision-making in relation to difficult issues.
Assessment and Reassessment Components and Weighting
1.A 2,000-word essay (50%) [LO1, 3].
2.A 2,000-word portfolio/journal entry (50%) [LO 1, 2, 4].
Reassessment: As assessment.
Culbertson, P.L. (2000). Caring for God’s People (Integrating Spirituality Into Pastoral Counselling). Fortress Press.
Gerkin, C. (1997). Introduction to Pastoral Care. Abingdon.
Lebacqz, K. (2000). Ethics and Spiritual Care: A Guide for Pastors and Spiritual Directors. Abingdon.
Pattinson , S. (2002). The Final Journey: Complete Hospice Care for Departing Vaisnavas. Torchlight.
Stairs, J. (2000). Listening for the Soul: Pastoral Care and Spiritual Direction. Fortress Press.
Worden, J.W. (2008) 4th.ed. Grief Counselling and Grief Therapy: A Handbook for the Mental Health Practitioner. NY: Springer.
Young-Eisendrath, P., & Miller, M. (eds.). (2000). The Psychology of Mature Spirituality: Integrity, Wisdom, Transcendence. London: Routledge.