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Counselling in the Pastoral and Spiritual Context

This volume explores the practice of counselling not only in the context of traditional ministries of pastoral care within the Christian Church, but also in the context of other world religions and among counsellors with a concern for the spiritual dimension of life. A detailed account is given of the development of pastoral counselling in Britain; parallel movements in other major world religions are examined. An attempt is made to engage sympathetically with the theory and practice of a wide range of approaches to counselling in a context which embraces both the rapidly growing Christian counselling movement and more humanistic understandings of spirituality. The author explores the implications of metaphors which have shaped our understanding of pastoral care and counselling, finding, in a narrative understanding of religious faith and in the spiritual journey of Thomas Merton, a model which respects the contribution of the secular therapies and affims the integrating potential of faith. This book should be of interest to clergy and lay people in churches and other faiths who seek an understanding of counselling in pastoral and spiritual contexts. It should also have more general appeal to practitioners who wish to explore the relationship of counselling in this context to forms of counselling elsewhere.
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Table of Contents

The development of counselling in the pastoral and spiritual context counselling in the pastoral and spiritual context the practice of counselling in the pastoral and spiritual context specific issues in counselling in the pastoral and spiritual context professional relationships in counselling in the pastoral and spiritual context a critique of counselling in the pastoral and spiritual context


"David Lyall's Counselling in the Pastoral and Spiritual Context is a most readable short history of pastoral counselling and any who want to discover their identities as pastoral counsellors should read it. Though many publishers' blurbs claim this or that book is exceptional, the most comprehensive, the only one on the subject, Counselling in the Pastoral and Spiritual Context, as far as I am aware, the one for which European pastoral counsellors have been waiting." - Clinical Theology Association Newsletter. "There are many important issues to be drawn from this study of counselling including their affirmation of pastoral care within the life of the Church, the role of lay people and methods of training." - Crucible "It is eminently readable and clear and concise as its authordraws together the differing strands of thought and ideology which are the background and mainspring of modern pastoral counselling." - Methodist Recorder. "Lyall provides a helpful introduction for both lay people and clergy alike who are approaching the subject of counselling for the first time. Written in a highly accessible form, it will be a useful reference book for the person beginning their exploration of the complexity of the sphere of pastoral counselling." - British Journal of Theological Education"This book will be of interest to anyone concerned with issues of religionand spirituality in counselling...There are many important strengths to this book...this is an important text for everyone involved in the study, teaching and practice of Christian pastoral counselling in Britain. It offers both a useful survey of relevant material and an important perspective on pastoral counselling which merits attention." - Contact "I would strongly recommendthat this book be read. It is a useful tool in the understanding of counselling within the pastoral and spiritual contexts. By affirming the reality of profound issues of spirituality and transcendence even within our secular society Lyall does give a timely contribution to a debate energised by the emergence of alternative therapies, New Age and ecological concerns, all of which point to the living reality of spirituality and pastoral needs." - Counselling News.

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