PASTORAL CARE MINISTRIES
A Dissertation for Doctor of Pastoral Studies
Joel B. Santos
Statement of the Problem
This study will be focused on the developing an adequate program of pastoral care for small size Filipino evangelical churches. The following questions will guide us through us this study:
Scope and Limitations
The study will be limited to the problem of discovering and producing a proper method which a pastor can follow in the task of developing an adequate pastoral care program for his church. It does not seek to develop a program of pastoral care for a particular church. The method will specifically apply to small size evangelical church in the Philippines. Medium and larger churches in the Philippines are therefore not the primary focus of this study.
Definition of Terms
Developing Ė is the step-by-step planning and implementation of the program of pastoral care in the local church in accordance with the distinctive pattern in mind.
Program Ė is a clear, definite, well-thought, and systematically followed interrelated group of activities aimed toward accomplishing specifically set goals and objectives of pastoral care.
Adequate Ė is used to measure whether the program of pastoral care meets the various needs of the church members in a manner agreeable with the standards set by its own leadership.
Pastoral care Ė is both a dimension and distinctive aspect of the practice of Christian ministry which will convey active love and concern in response to specific needs of a person and/or group of persons. This aspect of ministry is designed to enable the recipients to proceed with normal spiritual growth and enjoy increasingly satisfying and productive Christian lives.
Small size Ė qualifies the size of local churches which are the focus in this study. It encompasses those which have a total church membership of one hundred fifty persons below.
Evangelical church Ė is an organized group of believers, independent of or belonging to bigger fellowships or denominations, who accept the Bible as the supreme and sole authority for Christian faith and practice. This group is committed to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, and is actively involved in the ministry of reconciliation of sinners to God through the proclamation of the Gospel of salvation in Jesus Christ and in the continuing discipleship of believers in the teachings of Jesus Christ.
Six basic assumptions underlie this dissertationís objectives:
The first assumption is that a real need exist for an adequate pastoral care program in small size evangelical churches in the Philippines.
The second assumption is that these small size local churches in the Philippines have available pastoral care resources to develop their own program. Thus, a proper method for responding fully to this need is necessary.
The third assumption is that there are small size evangelical churches in the Philippines which can use the method.
The fourth assumption is that there are pre-requisites to the task of developing an adequate pastoral care program for a local church. Unless these are present, the church will embark on the task.
The fifth assumption is that there are definite steps that must be taken in the task of developing an adequate program of pastoral care in the local church.
The sixth assumption is that one can know, with a strong degree of confidence, whether a program of pastoral care in the local church is adequate.
The Importance of the Study
With in the past two decades many evangelical church denominations and independent local churches have formulated and embarked an aggressive programs of evangelism and church planting all over the country in the Philippines. As a result, membership in many local churches has grown and the number of local congregations has increased tremendously.
Many members of the churches have expressed difficulty or inability to meet constructively the various pressures and crises of life. The result is that their growth and productivity as Christians are greatly impaired and their Christian witness is weakened and geophardized. If this condition persists, these local church will remain generally weak and will be unable to reach their full potential in realizing their God-ordained reason for being. The writer believes evangelicals would have healthier, stronger and more productive churches by providing them adequate program of pastoral care ministry. An aggressive program of evangelism, church growth, and mission should be supplemented by an adequate program of pastoral care in the local churches.
In personal conversation with fellow Filipino pastors, the writer has served that it is not due to a lack of "know-what" and "know-how" on the part of many evangelical pastors that adequate pastoral care is not provided for many of the church people. This situation prevails because a great number of evangelical pastors have not received adequate training in the area of pastoral care ministry. This study seeks to meet the need for more "know-what" and "know-how" in providing an adequate program of pastoral care.
Several areas of study were included in the literary research.
The first area of study included a biblical and theological study of the church. The churchís nature and identity, its mission and ministries, and the various types of ministers were studied. A special emphasis was placed on the distinctive role and function of the pastor of the local church. This part of the study was the basis for the over-all frame work in the design of a program of pastoral care in the local church.
The second area of study covered the definition of pastoral care. What are its distinctives? What is its scope? What are its goals? What are the means, forms,, methods, and techniques of pastoral care? What principles govern it? What personal qualities and skills does it require? How is pastoral care related to the various function of the pastor and to the individual and corporate ministries of the members of the local church? This section provided an infrastructure for the programs of pastoral care in the local church.
The third area of study deals with the social and behavioral traits of Filipinos based on cultural values and psychology. These traits influence their interpersonal relationships and affect positively and/or negatively their "care-giving-receiving" responses. These factors are vital dynamics of pastoral care ministry in this context.
Another important area of investigation was the identification of problems and needs. As well as resources, in the local church and in the wider community. Methods and techniques of gathering, classifying, analyzing, filing, and utilizing relevant data for pastoral ministry were included. This section determined the size, shape, and focus of the pastoral care program in the local church.
Also, an investigation was made regarding creative and dynamic ways of organizing and structuring relationships in the church in order to promote and enhance the genuine sharing of life (koinonia) among members. Ways and means of establishing and promoting good working relationships between the church and the various community resources were explored. The materials in this part of the study were aimed towards undergirding and facilitating the pastoral care program of the church.
The last area of study dealt with how to formulate objectives, define standards, and devise evaluation tools to measure the effectiveness of a church pastoral care program.
The literary resources of the libraries of Asia Baptist Graduate Theological Seminary in Baguio City and the Asian Theological Seminary in Quezon City, Metro Manila, were the chosen venues of this research. They were found by this writer to be sufficient for the materials needed in this literary research.
Survey Questionnaires for Pastors of Medium Size evangelical Churches in Metro Manila. The researcher formulated a survey questionnaire which was sent to 100 pastors of known small size churches in Metro Manila. The list of names and addresses of these pastors was procured from the various central offices of evangelical groups in Metro Manila. Care was taken to insure that the four cities and thirteen municipalities of Metro Manila were covered and that various representatives from major denominations which are members of the Philippine Council of Evangelical Churches (PCEC) and independent fellowships were included.
The survey questionnaire was designed to examine the theological soundness of the pastorsí understanding of the church and its mission, and the degree of their skills in pastoral care ministry. It also sought to gather relevant information which would pinpoint problems areas that must be dealt with in the development of a pastoral care ministry in the church. Almost all of the questionnaires were sent and returned by mail.
A Letter Introducing and Explaining the Survey Questionnaire for Metro manila Evangelical Pastors. The letter of introduction was sent with the questionnaire to prospective respondents. It introduced the researcher, explained the purpose of the survey, and gave brief instructions concerning the questionnaire.
Survey Questions for Competent Persons in Pastoral Care Ministry in Metro Manila. Another questionnaire was formulated and sent by mail to at least five known persons competent in the field of Pastoral Care Ministry who live in Metro Manila. Four of the names were selected from directory of the members and officers of Pastoral Care Foundation, Inc., Philippines, based on their qualifications as Pastoral Care practitioners. This questionnaire sought to gather the personal views and suggestions of these persons pertaining to the various issues related to the dissertation.
A Letter Introducing and Explaining the Survey Questionnaire for Competent Persons in Pastoral Care Ministry in Metro Manila. This was also written and sent with the questionnaire to the prospective respondents. It identified the researcher and described the purpose of the survey and gave brief instructions concerning the questionnaire.
All data gathered through the above-mentioned survey research was carefully compiled and tabulated. The interpretation, meaning, and significance of the data are referred to in the text. The other summary reports in tabulated form are included in the Appendices.
The Prerequisites For The Task of
Developing a Pastoral Care Program
For The Local Church
In all human endeavors one cannot successfully undertake a task without possessing the essential prerequisites: basic knowledge, adequate skills, and proper attitudes. These factors are seven more essential in the sacred and delicate task of the Christian ministry which deals with the human divine dimensions of life.
Among the essential preparations required of a Christian minister there are chosen as crucial for the task of developing a pastoral care program for the local church in the Philippine setting. These are: (1) Possession of a biblically and theologically sound understanding of the church, its mission and its ministry; (2) Acquisition of an adequate understanding of and skills in pastoral care ministryí and (3) A sharpened awareness and sensitivity to Filipino values and psychology. These will be discussed in this chapter.
Possession of a Biblically and Theologically
Sound Understanding of the Church,
Its, Mission, and Its Ministry
When does the Christian minister possess a sound understanding of the churchís nature, mission, and ministry? He has such an understanding only when he is able to give a clear articulation of the vital points of these topics in accordance with the teachings of the Holy Scriptures. These teachings should be interpreted according to sound hermeneutical principles.
The pastor must not only be able to define, but also be able to show the practical implications of the biblical concepts in the actual life and ministry of the living church. This is essential because it is the ground upon which the whole superstructure of the pastoral care ministry is to be built, as well as the compass by which the direction of the program is to be determined.
Of the fifty-one evangelical pastors who responded to the survey study which this writer conducted in Metro Manila, (see Table 1) 19, or 37.25% gave what is considered inadequate definitions of the church and 17, or 33.33% gave inadequate answers as to what the mission of the church is. Their answers were considered inadequate because they were hazy and lacking in the vital points of the doctrine of the church. A brief review of this doctrine is therefore appropriate and necessary so that it may serve as the point of reference for the succeeding parts of this study.
Pastorís Perception of the Church, Its Mission
and the Ministry of Pastoral Carea
No. of No. of
QUESTIONS ASKED Answers b Answers
1. What is your definition
of the church? 32 or 62.74% 19 or 37.25%
2. What is the mission
of the church? 34 or 66.66% 17 or 33.33%
3. What is the distinctive
role of the Pastor in
the local church 31 or 60.78% 20 or 39.21%
4. What is your understanding
of Pastoral Care Ministry
in the local church?c 29 or 56% 15 or 29.41%
This review of the doctrine of the church will be discussed as follows: (1) The being, nature and identity of the church; (2) The well-being and ministry of the church; (3) The mission of the church in the world.
The Being, Nature, and Identity of the Church
This point will attempt to answer the question, "What is the church?" What is its nature, distinctive being, and identity? By "being" is meant the essential properties that make up an entity enabling it to exist and manifest itself. "Nature" refers to the qualities of that entity, while "identity" is what which marks and distinguishes the entity from other. These words are used as interrelated terms and overlap each other.
The church is distinctively identified as being in relationship with God. The church is planned, created, redeemed, and upheld by God for his own glory (Eph. 1:3-23). God is the first and primary actor in this relationship. "Godís redemptive act is the starting point, followed by each manís response to Godís work. After these events, comes the corporate-human-divine fellowship." This prior divine action and consequent human response is inherent in the term "ecclesia"-a community gathered as a result of Godís redemptive action through word and deed.
It is important to remember that this God to whom the church owes its existence is a triune God. Dale Moody, former Professor of Theology at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, in discussing the nature of the church, stated that
. . . the church is that fellowship of faith created by the living God as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, to the praise of his glory. Apart from God, no other agency in heaven or on earth is adequate to create, continue, or complete this spiritual organism.
Stressed in this statement is the fact of the absolute dependence of the church upon God. It is only in him that the church exists, moves, and had its full identity.
There are various metaphors used in the Scriptures that indicate the churchís distinctive relationship to God the Father. These are: (1) The church of God (1 Cor. 1:2; 10:32; 15:9; 2 Cor. 1:1; Gal. 1:13; 1 Tim. 3:5, 15); (2) The People of God (1 Pet.1:3; 2:10); and (3) The Temple of God (1 Pet. 2:4-10); 2 Cor. 6:14-7:1; Eph. 2:11-22). As elaborated by St. Paul, these terms signify a call to the church for separation from ungodly and immoral living to devote its life and worship to the true and living God. This is regarded as basic in the relationship of the church to God. It is a relationship "made possible by our growing awareness of who God is by nature."
There are also figures or images, used mostly by St. Paul, showing a distinctive relationship of the church to God the Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. (1) The body of Christ is a term which emphasizes Christís headship of the church and the oneness and unity of all believers as well as the mutual interdependency of all believers. (2) The bride of Christ "is an idea rooted in the teachings of the Old Testament prophets" where Israel is depicted as the unfaithful wife of Yahweh. This figure is also found in poetic passages, as in Psalm 45. Paul also discusses this figure in Galatians 4:21-31, 2 Cor. 11:2-3, and Eph. 5:21-23. According to Dale Moody, roots of these relations are found in Godís intention for the family and the church as recorded in Genesis 2:24.
The church us further described as distinctly related to the Holy Spirit. It is in this relationship that distinguish it from other social groupings. It is appropriately called a fellowship of the Spirit. All its members are incorporated into it through receiving the Holy Spirit. Its ministries are exercised through the varied gifts of the Spirit. It is renewed and empowered through the infilling of Godís Spirit. And it employs the sword of the Spirit for its spiritual warfare (1Pet. 4:10; 1 Cor. 1:7; 12:4, 9, 30f; Rom. 12:6; Eph. 4:11; 5:15-20; 6:17; Acts 2:13; Heb. 4:12). It is by means of the Holy Spirit that God shares His life in the church. The Holy Spirit expresses Himself in and through the church and it is this supernatural working that makes possible a transformation that can come only from God (2 Cor. 3:18). Because of this, the church has the power to become what God designed it to be.13
Thus, the distinctive being, nature, and identity of the church is found in its relationship to the triune God. The full import of this is beautifully encapsuled in this summary statement by Dale Moody:
An exalted view of the living God leads to an exalted view of the "church of the living God," the pillar and ground of the truth (1 Tim. 3:15, A.S.V.). The mystery of godliness in Jesus Christ is the point from which to start both the understanding of God and of the "household of God" (Eph. 2:19). The highest point in our understanding of God is reached in the foundation of the Holy Trinity, and it is from this perspective that the true nature of the church is revealed.
The church is further identified as having a special relationship to all believers. Truly, the church is first and foremost identifiable in its relationship with God, but its nature and being is not fully and realistically grasped unless it is also seen as having a relationship to all human believers. This is implied in the previous metaphors discussed, such as "people of God, "body of Christ," and" fellowship of the Spirit." A community of people is spoken of in all of these concepts.
The church is a community of people. The community is composed, first of all, of individuals who are vitally related to God through faith in Jesus Christ and experiencing life in the Spirit. Secondly, it is composed of people grouped together (formally and/or informally) because of common faith and purpose in life. The relationship which all believers have to each other is spiritual as well as social. It is expressed in a local as well as in a world-wide dimension. Franklin Segler, Professor of Pastoral Ministry at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, is theologically sound and wise in making the distinction between (but not the separation nor confusion of) the seemingly conflicting aspects in the nature and characteristics of the church, such as the following: local vs. universal, spiritual organism vs. organization or institution, the heavenly vs. the earthly, and the ideal and perfect vs. the present imperfect state of the church. All these are integral to each other in the present state and being of the church of God.
The emphasis in the church as being a special relationship of all believers in Christ is seen in this mutual interdependency with and belongingness to one another in spite of plurality and individual differences. This fact is vital in the working out of relationships within a local church, between local fellowships, and in the wider circles of denominations both national and world-wide. As Paul reminded the various Christian fellowships in Rome, "So in Christ, we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others" (Rom. 12:5 NIV).
The church is identified as being in a definite relationship to the world. The church is still in the world (John 17:11). Its members belong to and are still part of the worldís social, economic, and political institutions. They are vitally involved in the affairs of the state. But the church is also distinguished from the world as being "not of this world" (John 17:14). The world referred to is the world in its fallen and sinful state, with its systems dominated and run by evil personalities who are opposed to the rule and will of God. It is this kind of world that the church must not be conformed to (Rom. 12:2), nor set its affections upon, for the things of this world are passing away (1 John 2:15-17). Furthermore, the church is described by its Lord as being "sent to the world" (John 17:18). It is sent to the world in the same way as its Lord was sent to the world. The church is to be on a redemptive mission as was its savior and master. Because of its link to the world, and because of its separation from the worldís evil and corrupting influences, the church is in the proper position as Godís servant to be an active co-laborer with Christ in his salvific mission in this world.
The Ministry and the Well-Being of the Church
The concern here is the church being what God designed it to be. It should be in the best of health and in the process of growth and development to full maturity in Christ (Eph. 4:7-16). For this reason, a discussion of the well-being of the church cannot be separated from the consideration of its ministries, for they are mutually inclusive of each other. The ministry of the church is designed and aimed for the well-being of the church, and only when the church, as a body, as well, can it properly carry on its ministerial tasks. There are four important points to consider in this matter.
The churchís well-being and ministry is the product of Godís work in Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit. The church is, first, a recipient of Godís ministry before it is called and entrusted with a ministry. The priority and primacy of God work over that of manís service is a clear principle of the Scriptures from the beginning. This principle operated in the case of Adam (Gen. 1:26-31) and in the case of Israel (Exo.20:1-2). The same is true of the church. Godís work always precedes man and man is already a recipient of Godís work even before he begins to render service to God. A respected theologian of the church, in explaining the nature of the Christian ministry, pointed out the following:
The ministry of the New Testament church is in reality the ministry of Christ. The church ministers because of what Christ has done for it; but in another sense, it ministers as the continuation of Christís ministry.
This implies that the well-being of the church and all that it does in service to God and for mankind is all by Godís grace, through grace, and because of grace. No one can boast of his own work. Thus, even Paul, speaks of that which Christ has wrought through and by him (Rom.15:18).
Since the church shares in the life and ministry of its Lord, it is important that it conducts its life and ministry in the manner and spirit of Jesus Christ. In interpreting his ministry (Mark 10:45), Jesus associated it with Isaiahís image of the Suffering Servant. The same is used to describe the ministry of his followers (Mark 10:42-44). The church ministry refers to the whole Christian community. Thus, all members are to be ministeróin the "Servant way". How is this going to be realized? This is made possible by the fact that "as the body of Christ, the church is imbued by his Spirit and is continuing his ministry."
After tracing the involvement of the laity in the life and ministry of the church from Apostolic to modern times, Hendrik Kraemer, and Episcopalian theologian, noted that church revival and renewal movements have always been related to resurgence of lay involvement.
The universality of the ministry is a concept well established in the Holy Scriptures. All saints constitute "a royal priesthood" (1 Pet. 2:9), and all are made "priests unto God" (Rev. 1:6; cf. 5:10). All of the Christian life is to be offered as a priestly service to God (Rom. 12:1). And all believers are gifted to participate in the total service of the church (Rom. 12:4-8; 1 Cor. 12:4-12; Eph. 4:12).
Perhaps, no error has so detrimentally affected the life ministry of the church as the idea that church ministry if confined only within the church building on Sundays and discharged only by the so-called elite (professional) ministers of the church. A return to the New Testament teaching that the ministry is a shared function of all the people of God is essential to revitalization and increased fruitfulness in the church today.
The ministry of all believers should not be interpreted to mean that there is no officially ordained ministry in the church. The gifts of the Holy Spirit include. They are, however, not to be viewed as occupying a higher order of ministry but as representing the common ministry. They function as servants for and in behalf of the whole body of believers. The special relation and function of this officially ordained and "set-apart ministry" in the church was clearly delineated by a Japanese churchman:
What constitutes the ordained ministry is primarily the necessity which emerges among the people of God as they engage themselves in the church ministry.
The clergy is not a (distinct) constituency of the church but is a function, emerging from the people of God, to enable them to be and to engage in the ministry of the church. TheyÖ hold, therefore, a functional office and not a hierarchical status.
The church, however, should beware of two dangerous attitudes in relation to ordained leadership: (1) the appointed leaders assuming "the position of Lord over the flock rather than as an under shepherd of Christ," and (2) "the people refusing to recognize those appointed to serve among them as the leaders." The Scriptures give us appropriate instructions in order to prevent these attitudes from creeping into the church (1 Pet. 5:1-5; Heb. 13:7, 17; Acts 20:28-35).
The churchís well-being and ministry have a three-fold direction. First is the upward or God-ward direction which is the ministry of worship. The church is a worshipping community. As a redeemed society, it responds to Godís free gift of grace in adoration, thanksgiving, confession and dedication of life. Throughout the New Testament, the saints of God are enjoined to do these (Rom.12:1; 1 Pet. 2:5). The ministry of God worship is vital to the well-being of the church. Segler pointed this out by saying that "until the church has worshipped, it can do nothing else in Christís name. When it has truly worshipped, it is equipped to do all that God requires of its ministry." In worship, the church rediscovers its true being and identity, and through it, is able to build itself "into a vital body, which in turn shares its salvation" with the outside world. Therefore, it is of prime importance that the church makes provision for its members to express their ministry in worship.
The second direction of the churchís ministry is nurture combined with the ministry of pastoral care. This ministry is expressed in various ways and forms. The primary purpose is to help believers mature in Christ. This care of souls is at the heart of Christís ministry (John 10:7-16; 21:15-17). This care involves healing, sustaining, guiding, and reconciling. These are considered the four distinct functions integral in pastoral ministries of the church throughout history.
The third direction of the churchís ministry is outward or toward the world. This ministry is inclusive of the total witness of the church by words and deeds as it lives before the eyes of the world. It is by these that its claim to be the church of the living Lord is validated. Does its light brighten the darkness? And does its salt give its savior? The over-all effect of the churchís witness will determine to a great extent the accomplishment of its mission objectives.
The well-being and ministry of the church is of special concern to the "set-apart" ministry of the church. In Eph. 4:12, the apostle Paul made it clear that all Godís people are to be involved in the work of the ministry (diakonia). However, he also indicated that there are ministers in the church, gifted by the Head of the Church, who are designated through their leading and equipping gifts to have a distinctive ministerial role in the body (Eph. 4:11-16). The fourth group is of primary interest in the historical development of the church. They are identified with the remaining and continuing distinctive set of ministers found in every local shurch. These were later identified as elders, bishops, or pastors, which actually are the same position. This is evident in the following references: Acts 20:17, 29; Titus 1:5,7; 1 Tim. 3:1-7; 1 Pet. 5:1,2; and Phil. 1:1. Robert Saucy cited the following points as possible grounds for identifying the bishop or elder with the term pastor:
In Acts 20:28, the elders are instructed "to feed" the church. This term (poimano) means to act as a shepherd and is related to the term (poimen), which signifies as shepherd. Thus the elders were to act as shepherd to the church to pastor it.
The same instruction is given to the elders in 1 Pet. 5:1-2. They are to "feed" (lit. "shepherd") the flock of God or function as pastors.
A further indication that bishop and pastor are joined together in the same office is the reference to Christ as "the shepherd and bishop of your souls" (1 Pet. 2:25).
The term "elder," which meant first a senior, or elderly man (cf, 1 Tim. 5:1-3), denoted the dignity and authority which were associated with mature spiritual experience and understanding, while "bishop" refers to the function of the elder. The word literally means "an overseer," coming from epi, "over," and skopeo, "to look or watch." Thus, this was meant to refer to the position of one whose responsibility is to watch over the church. The term pastor also refers to the function of the elder as a shepherd of the church.
As the "set-apart" minister in the local church today, the pastor or elder is charged with the general oversight and care of the church. His distinctive functions are three-fold:
(2) Pastoral function. This entails the feeding and the care of the flock of God (1 Pet. 5:2, Acts 20:28). The pastor performs the many functions necessary for the care of the church. He provides spiritual leadership and guidance to his flock and protects them from all kinds of harm from within and without (Acts 20:20). "The guidance and protection are accomplished primarily through the ministry of the Word of God" by declaring to them all the counsel of God (Acts 20:27). The pastoral duties of the elder / pastor also require "the comfort and encouragement of those who are weak and discipline of the erring" ones (1 The. 5:14). Admonition is also included, but this is also is done with all tenderness, always seeking the restoration of those concerned and not their harm (1 Cor. 4:14).
The work of an elder-pastor is neither simple nor easy. It is described by Paul as toiling and laboring (Acts 20:35; 1 Thes. 5:13; 1 Tim. 5:17). According to Saucy, these terms (Greek word is kopiao) indicate "not simply the issue of work, but the cost associated with it, a toiling which results in weariness." The demand of the multiple responsibilities of the local minister is simply illustrated by Paul by comparing it to the life of a soldier, an athlete, and a hard-working farmer. It calls for steadfast devotion, endurance, and much patience and hope. Without the compulsion and sustenance of Godís love, the minister can easily become exhausted and overwhelmed.
These distinctive ministries of leading, modeling, and equipping through the above-mentioned functions of the "set-apart" ministry are crucial for the well-being of the whole body of believers. If these are discharged faithfully, each believer will in turn be able to do his-her share of the ministry. The whole community of believers will then be able to grow in Christian maturity.
The Mission or "Doings" of the Church to the World
Like its ministry to God and to the body, the mission of the church to the world is first and foremost the mission of Christ. This is expressed clearly in the following references: Lk. 19:10; Lk. 4:18-19; Matt. 28:18-20. It is an extension of what Christ has done. It is the body of Christ expressing Christ concern for the whole world. And it is not just " a special function of a part of the church. It is the whole church in action."
Mission as used in this study is to be distinguished from the ministries or functions of the church previously discussed. It is distinguished by its scope as well as its primary target and objectives. Mission is primarily done to those outside the church. It is directed to the unbelievers in the world who compose the mission field. It is Godís people seeking to make all mankind members of the people of God ( 1 Pet. 2:9; John 17:16,18).
Mission includes the ministry of evangelism which is the proclamation of the good news. It is a sharing of the glad tidings of salvation in Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit with the view and intent of persuading them to believe in Jesus, to submit to his Lordship and become responsible members of his church. When this is done in the community where there is an existing church, it would result in the growth of membership in the fellowship. When it is done in communities where there is no existing church, it should result in the formation and establishment of new congregations or fellowships of believers. Some call this " church planting."
Another aspect of the churchís mission to the world is the ministry of reform. This ministry of reform is to extend to all areas of life in this world: ecological, economic, social, political, religious, and others. The motivation for this concern is not only stewardship of human life and the rest of Godís creation but even more, as far as the people of God are concerned, acknowledgment of the kingdom of God which has already broken through this present world in the person and ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ. This rule of God is not only to be exhibited and demonstrates in the church. It must also be extended by the church to all spheres of life in the world. This joyful present reality of Godís kingdom is to be proclaimed and worked out as far as the curse is found.
This section has included a discussion of the doctrine of the church, its nature, ministries, and mission. The being, nature, and identity of the church is best understood in its distinctive relationship to God who is triuneóthe Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Each (without the exclusion of the others0 has a unique relationship to the church. This is seen in the use of various descriptive terms such as the "people of God", the "body of Christ," and the "community of fellowship of the Spirit." The church is further identified as having a special relationship to all believers, a community united in Christ and interdependently related to one another individually, and as a fellowship in a given locality as well as worldwide in scope. Also, the church is identified as having a definite relationship to the world. It is in the world, yet not of this world, but is sent on a specific mission to the world in the name and in behalf of God.
This section also noted the well-being and ministry of the church. This was viewed, first, as the product of the finished and continuing ministry of God in Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit who indwells the church. Secondly, it was shown as having been entrusted to the whole church, every believer being a bona-fide minister if God serving according to his/her gift. Thirdly, the church ministry is expressed and worked out in three directions, namely: upward to God in worship, inward to the body in nurture and pastoral care, and outward to the world in mission. Finally, the ministry for the well-being of the church is shown to be officially delegated as the special concern of the set-apart ministry by virtue of their leadership and equipping gifts. They are to serve in functions of administration, pastoral care, teaching, and disciplining, for the benefit of the whole body.
The mission of the church to the world has also been considered. This mission includes evangelism with a view to church growth and establishment of churches in new areas at home and abroad. It also includes service, doing all kinds of good works to mankind including the ministry of reform in order to make this world advance to wards the ideal of Godís kingdom.
Acquisition of an Adequate Understanding of Pastoral Care
An adequate understanding and development of skills combined with a proper attitude toward the pastoral care ministry comprise the second necessary pre-requisite for the pastor who would care program for his local church. The survey study results indicated that many of our evangelical pastors need to be enlightened more on the "what" and "how to" of pastoral care. Asked to share what they understand of pastoral care ministry, only seven, or 13.72% of the 51 respondents gave clear, specific and comprehensive answers, while twenty-nine, or 56.86%, showed a general understanding on the matter. Fifteen, or 29.41%, gave a very hazy, indefinite, or narrow view on the subject.
Five important points are selected for discussion in this study which should provide the pastors with a more enlightened view on this vital church ministry. These are: (1) the meaning of pastoral care ministry, (2) the various forms or ministerial tasks through which pastoral care is rendered, (3) the scope of the field of pastoral care ministry, (4) the principles by which pastoral care ministry is to be applied, and (5) the essential skills and qualities that a pastoral care giver should develop.
The Meaning of Pastoral Care
To elucidate this point, insights from several authoritative persons in this discipline will be drawn. Carol A. Wise defines pastoral care as: the art of communicating the inner meaning of the Gospel to persons at the point of their need." In its special meaning, Wise confines pastoral care to dealing with persons in critical situations of life, but, in an inclusive (broader sense) meaning, it applies to all caring relationships in which the full meaning and implications of the Gospel are brought to bear on the growth of persons.
One cannot help noticing the strong emphasis on the gospel. This is the source, motivation, and inspiration of pastoral care. This makes Christian caring unique from other kinds of human caring. It is definitely Christian. It is a grateful response to what God has done for us (1 John 4:19). It is a spontaneous response out of deep gratitude to God which is the bottom line for Christian ministry. As Robert Dale aptly puts it, "pastoral care is Christ-quality love in action. It is the kind of super-sensitive care that focuses on the real needs of others (Jn. 13:34-35)."
The divine and human orientation of pastoral care is beautifully entwined from the insights of William V. Arnold. Pastoral care is that Christian ministerial response "to all the demands of human life experiences in the life of the congregation and of the community." This response should be done "in a way that reflects accurately the nature of God and of us who are created in His image."
Underscored in this statement is the nee for a proper view of and the right attitude and conduct toward God and our fellowmen. It is of utmost importance that one does not distort or misrepresent God when acting in His name or in his behalf. Proper regard and respect that is worthy of one who was created in the image of God is important in our dealings with those whom we try to serve.
Another recognizing authority in this field, C. W. Brister, gives us a very helpful insight. Christian care, he explains, is " the helpful response to humanityís hurt and search for wholeness." This statement suggests that there is a need for skill in our responses to the peopleís hurt so that we can truly bring the needed help. It also points the direction to which caring must proceedógreater wholeness. Pastoral and Christian care-giving presuppose "a context of risky investment and of involvement in bold mission ventures because life matters." In its broadest sense, "it is not merely a religious duty; it is human obligation in the community of man."
From the biblical and practical perspective, however, "pastoral care is the mutual concern of Christians for each other and for those in the world for whom Christ died." The church itself is seen as a minister and the pastor as a servant of servants. The pastor fulfills his role as leader, teacher, and examples in the context of the churchís shepherding ministry. Godís people and true to their Calling when they serve each other and humanity is general as a community of identity, relationship, confession, worship, inquiry, and hope. In so doing, they incarnate Godís redemptive presence and life in the midst of human need (Jn. 17:15-26).
Pastoral care is to be viewed as a preventive as well as a therapeutic process, moving beyond the concept of a restorative ministry alone. It is "to cherish another person to the full range of his/her existence so that one acts willingly on that personís behalf." Pastoral "care implies both profound feeling and thoughtful action in behalf of a person, group, or structure affecting life." This ministry implies cooperative effort and it takes many forms.
Summing up the above insights, pastoral care can be defined as a sustained spirit, an attitude, and a skillful response of the Christian believer, motivated by the love of Christ and empowered by the Holy Spirit, to serve a fellow human being at his/her point of need in non-crisis or crisis periods of life. This is done in a manner that reflects Godís character in order to enable him/her to become what God, in his creative wisdom, intended man to become. This is carried on first in the context of relationship within the body of Christ and, secondly, by extension, to the rest of the family of mankind. In this ministry, the whole church is to be involved with the pastor equipping, leading, and modeling for the rest of believers. The aim of this ministry includes experiencing greater self-understanding, peace, freedom, fulfillment in service, and growth toward completeness of the image of God. These reflect the same goal that Jesus and Paul had in their ministry to fellowmen (Luke 4:17-22; 2 Cor. 1:1-7).
The Scope of the Field of Pastoral Care Ministry
The following groups of persons shall be included as recipients of pastoral care ministry: the children, the youth, the young newlyweds, the middle-aged regular church members, the senior members, the church officials, new church members, those without or outside the church, and others who are struggling with particular difficulties in the process of growth in life. Practically, all kinds of people who have needs and are struggling with problems are of special concern in the pastoral care ministry of the local church. An understanding of the vital issues and concerns for some of these groups are essential for the pastoral care giver.
Children. Pastoral care ministry for children begins when couples are counseled even before marriage. The matter of having children and the provisions for them should be discussed from the Christian point of view. The dedication of children to the Lord and their nurture in the Christian faith as they grow up are also crucial, for they prepare the soil for a fruitful and good harvest in the life of the child. An adequate program, the best of personnel and facilities devoted to the pastoral care of these "little ones" are good ways of expressing the kind of concern which Christ, our Lord, himself had for children. Pastoral care for children is a ministry which should be carried on in a way which will elicit from the children love and confidence in the church and its ministers. Concerning this ministry to children, Leon M. Adkins, a significant author on ministry to children, said that nothing is more satisfying than "personal involvement in the building of a life that reflects the radiance of our Chief Pastor, in helping carve Godís image in the child which remains till manhood." This is a view and an attitude that is required of anyone who would design a program of pastoral care for this important group.
Youth. There is a need to understand the youth of today and to minister to them with a genuine sense of urgency. Hoover Rupert, an evangelical pastor who is deeply involved in youth ministry, cited five focal issues in the effective pastoral care of youth:
(1) The need to help youth commit their lives to Christ. They must be pointed to the Master as the source of all that is best in life.
(2) The youth must be led to see the reality of Jesus for their lives. This call s for a vital faith which relates the life-style of Jesus to modern life. This includes helping youth to see the importance, meaning, and goal of education and also the tremendous responsibility of helping them in human relationships.
Young Newlyweds. Robert W. burns, an evangelical pastor-counselor, suggests "eight ways a minister may serve those who ask him to help start their home:"
In addition to the above, continuing family education dealing with enhancing relationships in the home and other problem areas should be carried on in the church through seminars, sermons, workshops, special lectures, and retreats. Of these are done, the problem of alienation or estrangement, separation or divorce, will be diminished if not prevented.
Middle-aged Church Members. There are dangers of which the middle-aged group must be aware and helped in order to avoid problems. These include: being self-satisfied with oneís past attainments and becoming stagnant and non-productive during this period of life. Structures should be developed to make it easy for adults with like experiences to share their own resources which have been earned in the crucible of maturing life.
New interests can be created and new ways and opportunities of investing God-given talents can be found. This particular group, if properly cared of, is a big resource in terms of personnel, skills, and support for the church ministries. They should be approaching the peak of their productivity. George A. Warner, Jr. says that our normal middle-aged people need the pastor "to give them perspective, to stimulate their wise investment of Christian love, to help them keep pounding with courage at the ever progressing gates of the kingdom of God."
Senior Members. Senior members belong to that period of life "which lies between full economic productivity, or the zenith of creativity, and death." This period of later maturity has two phases: (1) Senescence Ė the period between full productivity and senility; and (2) Senility Ė the period between the loss of the ability to contribute to society or to care for oneself, and death. This roughly covers sixty-five years of age and above, although most changes take place in the seventh decade of life for most people. It is possible however, for one to live productively even through their 80s and 90s if one is healthy and if proper care and guidance is given at this period of life.
Paul B. Maves discusses the following basic characteristics of this age group which should be taken into careful consideration in pastoral care ministry:
In view of these considerations, the primary tool for bringing a ministry of comfort, healing, and support to these precious souls is not just words but a relationship of acceptance, understanding, respect, and appreciation. Words and kind deeds, however, are the important symbols of relationships and must be used generously for fostering a relationship based on unconditional love.
Church Officials. In relating to fellow leaders in the local church, it is important that the pastor possesses the maturity, attitude, and skills that will enable him to work in harmony and cooperation with them. They should be treated with genuine respect, sensitivity, and gentleness. Treatment between the older and younger leaders should follow Peterís advice in 1 Pet. 5:1-3. Mutual care and consistently seeking after each otherís welfare, should be done in accordance with Phil. 2:1-8. David A MacLeenan describes church officials as "persons whom we may guide into a growing comradely adventure in Christian experience and leadership."
There may be instances when one has to deal with an official life Diotrephes, (3 John 8,10) and with others who are misfits or over-aged and whose effectiveness as a leader has long faded away. It is important that younger leaders who will replace these old and ineffective ones should be trained. One suggestion that may work is to appoint a survey commission to examine the entire congregation, its resources, responsibilities, methods, and personnel. After impartial hearings, careful research, and analysis, the report of such a committee can inaugurate reforms and stimulate progressive measures on an impersonal objective basis. A vital point of pastoral care program of the local church is the development of intelligent and mature Christian leadership among laymen.
New Church Members. One of the grave tragedies in the work of evangelism is the churchís failure to conserve the results of evangelism. The failure is often through lack of knowledge of the method and means by which people who have been brought to Christ may be absorbed and integrated into the fellowship of the church family. To remedy this problem, John Branscomb gave four practical suggestions worth adapting for our churches:
(1) Know where the people are. To accomplish this purpose, a religious survey or census should be conducted at least annually to alert the church of needs of the community. A church constituency roll should also be kept Such as Sunday school enrollment, church membership roll, and a visitorís list with their corresponding important data like addresses and telephone numbers.
(2) Go where the people are. A great number of people are willing to respond to personal attention. There are various ways to do this: Put them on your mailing list and send them your church literature; organized visiting teams, and train them in the art of personal visitation; make pastoral visits by pastoral staff, class committees, or other action teams.
(4) Help them grow in the family and religious experience. This objective may be reached through the following means:
Those without or outside the church. As W. Kenneth Pope points out, a church that ministers effectively to its own membership will also influence people outside its formal life. From the time of Christ and throughout its history, the church ministry has always extended beyond the Christian community not only in terms of evangelism but also in caring response to various human needs. Pope has identified the following groups of people that should be given special focus in the church ministry of care outside its fold:
By encouraging strong Christian laymen to become close to those whose faith has been almost put out, their flickering faith will be set aglow again by a contagion of an experience of friendship, interest, and activity from undertaking, friendly visits in their offices and homes, and sportís activities, the bitterness in an individuals can gradually be dissolved and his alienation from the faith overcome.
2. Public Officials. Perhaps better men would run for public office if they had more encouragement from the church, and they would probably follow Christian principles more consistently in their work if they had more understanding and encouragement form Christians. Public officials need to feel that the Christian ministry has a positive attitude toward them. A positive and supportive relationship with public officials will have lasting impact for good.
The church can organize special events particularly designed to reach and minister to these, remembering what the Lord said, "as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me" (Matt. 25:40, R.S.V.).
Considering the wide field that needs to be attended to in the ministry of Christian care, it is obvious that adequate pastoral care, in the broadest sense, cannot be provided by the Pastor alone. He must have the help of the congregation. Some of them should be selected and trained for various pastoral tasks. In some areas, only the pastor "can be the specialist in whenever is to be done." But general care can be done by t he average church members with basic training in pastoral care ministry. While pastoral care must first concern itself with the well-being of the church, "the Christian ministry must not forget its larger mission to the lost sheep of every kind." To win some, the church must be in a certain sense, "all things to all men," as St. Paul said (1 Cor. 9:22, R.S.V.).
The Various Forms of Ministerial
Functions which are Means and Avenues
of Pastoral Care Ministries
The following are ministerial functions: pastoral visits, pastoral counseling, pastoral preaching, pastoral teaching, worship, and results and religious ceremonies, such as weddings, Lordís Supper, baptism, child dedication, funerals, and others. Bibliography, referral ministry, church livelihood programs, and others are also useful means of pastoral care. In order to have a clear glimpse of the potentialities of these for pastoral care, a few are selected for discussion.
Worship as a means and avenue of pastoral care ministry. In the same survey study, earlier cited, and as Table 2 shows, only three of the fifty-one pastors included the worship service as a means of pastoral care. This is rather appealing because it is in the formal worship event of the church that all the functions of the minister as pastor, teacher, counselor, and administrator are merged together as one, his priestly role becoming the dominant image.
The pastoral element and dimension of worship are given emphasis from the beginning of the church. The early Church grew and built itself up through regular worship (Acts 2:42-47). Paul, also, in his pastoral letter to the Corinthian church, reminded them that "worship is primarily a corporate affair." Init, the body expresses and forms itself. All their liturgical activitiesóeating and drinking, praying, baptizing, speaking in tongues, and preachingóhad only one goal: building-up. If worship does not strengthen the community of believers, "it is not Christian worship (1 Cor. 1:2; 14:26)." Karl Barth, a noted church theologian, said:
It is not only in worship that the community is edified and edifies itself. But it is here first that this continuously takes place. And if it does not take place here, it does not take place anywhere.
Another church theologian who has reflected and written much on this vital issue has pointed out another good reason why worship is central in the Churchís upbuilding ministry. He said that
Ö in worship, all the communityís concerns meet and coalesce. Just as Christ gathered individuals into his new body of believers around a table, and just as the Spirit integrated diverse races and nationalities at Pentecost, so worship is always an integrative act of the community. Here word and deed, theoria and praxis, past and present, humanity and divinity meet.
Survey Results on methods, Training Programs,
and Involvement in Pastoral Care Ministry
in Metro Manila Evangelical Churches a
Number of Times Mentioned
Percentage of Membership who Regularly share in Pastoral Care tasks
Program to Educate, train and Involve members in Pastoral Care ministry b
1.Pastoral Counseling (formal
5. Preaching/Pulpit Ministry
6. Leadership Training
7. Helps to needy and distressed through groups/fellowship.
9. Pastoral Care Teams
11.Charity Fund Economic Dev. Program
1% - 5% - 6
6% - 10& - 8
11% - 20% - 11
21% - 30% - 7
31% - 40% - 4
41% - 50% - 3
51% - 60% - 2
61% - 70% - 5
71% - 80% - 2
81% - 90% - 0
91% - 100% - 0
Note: a. Total respondents are 51 pastors from 51 different local congregations.
For centuries, according to Jungmann, a Jesuit liturgical scholar, "the liturgy, actively celebrated, has been the most important form of pastoral care for church." It is in this experience that worshippers received healing, reconciliation, and sustenance for their faith.
In another book which he wrote on the same subject, Willimon pointed out clearly the distinctive contribution of worship in the care and upbuilding of the church. Not only does Christian worship influence the character formation of believers but it also plays a great role in equipping them for life and service. He said:
The identity, world, symbols and metaphors, imagination, vision, and tradition which that church receives through its liturgical life enable the church to be the church and enable individual Christians to engage in diakonia without forgetting why they are in service and whose service they are in. The memory and hope they receive in their leitourgia thrust them into, and sustains them within, their diakonia. Their diakonia provides the context and the need for their leitourgia until, in leitourgia or diakonia, worship or service, it becomes difficult for Christian to distinguish between the two.
When worship is properly understood and rightly done in the church, Christians are enabled to achieve greater meaning, balance, integrity, power, and joy for life!
To ensure that the corporate as well as the individual worship experiences of his church members become more effective means to achieve the above-mentioned ends, the pastor should learn to diagnose and analyze his peopleís worship. Paul Pruyser has identified seven variables that pastors might refer to in accomplishing this end. These variables should also become the focus of his concerns as he plans and leads his fellow believers in their worship events.
All of these are valid questions, the response to which, the Pastor must consider and attend to in designing the format, content, and objectives of the churchís formal worship event.
Preaching as a form and function of Pastoral Care.
Genuine preaching had been considered a "religious art par excellence" because Ö it calls for creative and redemptive thinking, feeling and reasoning, and presupposing. It demands from any preacher an ability to blend the media of communication (direct or indirect) with the "truth of personality" in such a way that the eyes of the blind may see, the ears of the deaf may hearken, and that tongue of the stammer may be able to speak plainly, and the paralyzed men take their beds and walk.
"Dynamic preaching is basically pastoral care in the context of worship. The preacher who has done his pastoral work diligently" knows his people. "He is fully aware that many come to the service of worship with a sense of guilt, anger, frustration, loneliness, and despair, while others have come with inquiring and growing minds and are concerned with the problems of life, of culture, and human existence." For preaching to be pastoral and genuine, according to James W. Clark, a recognized evangelical pastor and an author in homiletics, it has to address the personal needs of the audience.
All preaching is preaching to personal needs, if it is really preaching and not the delivery of an essay or a general address to nobody in particular or mere vocal muscle flexing. It is the transmission of Godís truth through a person to a person.
Edgar N. Jackson conducted a survey study in the United States wherein he asked 4,000 respondents what people want from their pastor through his sermons. Fifty percent "indicated a concern about immensely personal matters such as the futility of life, insecurity in personal relationships, a haunting sense of loneliness, problems that involve marriage and proper control of sex drives, the effect of alcohol, false ideas of religion and morals, a feeling of inferiority, the problem of suffering as well as the problem of illness, and the feeling of guilt, and frustration." Based on this writerís own survey of the pastorís observations of their peopleís problems, the category of problems encountered and enumerated falls in these same areas. (See Table 3)
As described by Robert D. Dale, a pastor and an author of several books on church life and ministry, pastoral preaching is bringing theology and the Bible into focus on the felt and real needs of persons in the pews. It "sees and feels needs, moves to Scripture for instruction, and concludes by bringing the peopleís situations to redemptive wholeness in the event of the cross."
Survey Results on Pastoral Care Problems
In Metro Manila Evangelical Churches
Five Most Common Problems
Of Church Members Mentioned
Most Serious Problems Dealt
With by Pastors for The Past Year a
distress) - 38
employer-employees - 32
maturity - 24
Vices - 14
ment crisis - 10
Spouses - 3
Sex - 3
Prostitution - 1
The family - 26
NOTE: a. Others mentioned which are of deep concern are: growing number of unmarried single ladies, lack of education, doctrinal errors, traditional practices, and persecution from unsaved loved once.
Jesus always "viewed persons pastorally" (Matt. 9:35; 10:42), feeling and identifying with their issues about life and bringing his resources to bear on their needs. So does the preacher with a shepherdís heart.
Preaching, in the context of the worship of Godís gathered people, is no doubt the most crucial public function of pasturing. It is, therefore, very important that the pastorís sermon on this occasion be pastoral not only in content but also in its approach and tone. It should be delivered from a warm, compassionate, and loving heart. Above all, it should be aimed and should actually contribute toward health, growth, and maturity of the believers.
Pastoral calling as an avenue of pastoral care delivery. To the pastor, pastoral calling should not "be viewed as an appendix to the ministry." It has an inseparable relationship to his preaching and counseling tasks. It is here where he can gain valuable insights into the innermost lives of his people. Through it, opportunities are opened to know the questions they ask and the problems they face and to discern their hopes, fears, and aspirations, as well as the manifold crises in life and how they cope with them. Indeed, oneís ministry is never complete if it is done on Sunday morning only, no matter how inspiring and helpful that may be. If there is to be a wholeness in his church and ministry, it is imperative that the minister find a way to integrate words with deeds, and link preaching, counseling, and worship with pastoral visitation. Of course, this need can not be done by the pastor alone. Members, individually and by teams, given the necessary training and motivation, can be involved fruitfully in this ministerial task.
Pastoral counseling, a vital form of pastoral care ministry. The nature of pastoral counseling differs from other types of counseling in terms of the ministerís religious training and orientation, goals, professional role, the use of religious instruments, and the context of Christian community in which the ministry is carried out.
Donald Capps, a recognized practitioner and writer in Pastoral Counseling, mentioned the following steps that should be taken in the structure of the counseling session:
Pastoral counseling may be done formally or informally, structured or unstructured, on short-term or long-term basis depending on the nature of the problem, state of the counselee or counselees (as in group counseling), and the competency of the counselor.
Referral. Another important method of pastoral care is referral. Wayne E. Oates calls referral the ministry of introduction and cites Barnabas as a New Testament examples of one who engaged in this form of ministry. Likewise, Paul made full use of this method. His letters are full of introductions and intercessions in behalf of others. The whole letter of Philemon is a good example of this.
The minister does his work in a context of varied people who are also professionals in serving people. In the city, one can readily find many ministers who have "gifts that differ" from of himself. Examples of these are employers, businessmen, teachers, lawyers, and medical doctors, psychiatrists, and social and clinical psychologists. All these can be tapped as resources in helping meet specific needs of his church constituents. Pastors should have the maturity to recognizer their limitations and to be willing to refer people who seek their help to professionals who cal do better than the pastor in helping with their particular needs. This also means that the pastor should develop him own referral system by contacting, establishing rapport, and maintaining good working relationships with various resource persons and agencies.
Bibiotheraphy. A useful form and means of pastoral care is bibliotheraphy. Some members, on occasions, may be beyond the churchís immediate reach in its regular forms of ministry, e.g. when someone goes abroad. At such times, there is a need for ministering to these people through carefully chosen books, magazines, and other Christian literature.
C.W. Brister, suggested other opportunities when Christian books and literature may be utilized for pastoral care:
Effective use of bibliotherapy necessitates that the churchís library should be
built-up continuously with careful selection of resources to meet various needs. On specific occasions , giving good books as presents through pre-arranged church budget provisions may be done. Another way is to set up and arrange a program of "Book for Loan" among the church members. A survey of available books which are usable for this ministry needs to be made especially among the members who have their own family libraries.
C.W. Brister recommends the following criteria as a guide for the ministerís selection of books for gifts or loan:
Pastoral Letter. Another oft-forgotten means which can be used effectively by the church in its pastoral care ministry is the sending of pastoral letters. This was used by the Apostles, the Reformers, John Wesley, and others. Aside from this, other media such as cassette tapes, radio, and video tapes can all be used creatively for pastoral care purposes. An urban pastor can make use of other ways and means to provide supplementary spiritual care for his flock.
Principles Which Govern the
Ministry of Pastoral Care
There are five general principles that should give direction in the delivery of a pastoral care ministry.
The Essential Skills and Qualities
of Pastoral Care Givers
Gerald Egan, in his excellent and well-received book, The Skilled Helper, identified basic skills, as well essential qualities, which are relevant to one who engages in pastoral care ministry. These basic skills are applicable to any of the various tasks of pastoral care, especially in relation to helping people deal with their personal problems.
Stage 1: Problem clarification. The skills needed are attending, active listening, and responding. The basic quality needed is genuine respect for the helpee.
Stage 2: Setting goals based on dynamic understanding. The skills needed are as follows: (1) the ability to integrate data; (2) challenging skills which enable the helper to help the one being help to develop new, more objective, more useful perspectives on the problem-situation; these include informing, sharing, advanced accurate empathy, confrontation, and helper self- sharing, as well as immediacy (here and now) of the helper-helpee interactions; and (3) goal-setting skills. The qualities require are openness, sensitivity, unconditional acceptance, and objectivity.
Stage 3: Facilitating action. Skills needed are as follows: (1) program development skills which include helping helpees identify program possibilities, and helping them to choose programs; (2) facilitating action skills which include two phasesóhelping them in their immediate preparation for action and providing challenge and support during the action phase; (3) evaluation skills which are applied to the quality of preparation, quality of programs, and quality of goals. The qualities needed for these skills are supportive patience, flexibility, hope, and trust.
The above-mentioned skills and qualities of relating reflect in many ways those one can find in Jesus Christ, who is the supreme model of pastoral ministry. These he displayed in his dealing with people to whom he ministered.
J T. Hollans, in his interesting study of Jesusí ministry, made the following observations:
Jesus did not hesitate to touch people, showing his closeness, he was approachable. "People felt free to share with him their feelings, needs, concerns, and thoughts, no matter how inappropriate or trivial" they may have been (Mark 9:28; John 12:22; Matt. 19:13; Luke 2:34; 10:40).
He openly welcomed people, not to destroy or embarrass them with words, but to bring direction and reassurance, as well as to stimulate them to renewed efforts (Mk.10:35; 14:30; 37; Matt. 17:17; 19:14; Mk. 4:40).
All these were the solid bases upon which J. T. Holland made his conclusions that Jesus Christ, in his life and ministry, possessed and demonstrated, more than any other, the qualities of empathy, warmth, and unconditional regard, genuineness, and faith.
These are the same qualities which modern psychologists, such as Truax and Carkhuff, regard as essentials to effective psychotherapy. These qualities stand out on almost every page of the Gospel narrative. Could this be the reason why his presence was good news to the people who first knew him and why, after all these centuries, Jesus remains the model for ministry par excellence."
This section included the elucidation of the following issues in pastoral care ministry: What is pastoral care ministry? Who are to be the recipients in this ministry of the local church? What are the various forms and means through which pastoral care is delivered? What principles should guided the implementation of this ministry? What are the basic skills and essential qualities that should be possessed and developed by pastoral care givers?
Pastoral care was defined as a consistent caring attitude and skillful response of a loving person who is devoted to serve his fellowmen at a point of his needs. This is carried on in a manner that reflects Godís character in order to enable the helpees to experience a blessed life and to become what God designed man to be. This ministry is carried on, first, in the community of Godís people, and secondly, extended to the rest of the family of mankind. The whole church is to be involved in pastoral care ministry with the pastor as equipper,, leader, and model for the rest of the believers.
The focus of pastoral care in the local church encompasses all the various age groups, including children, youth, young adults, middle-age, and the senior adults. The concern is to provide adequate care for all to enable them to keep growing up through their respective developmental crises as they journey from one stage of life to the next. Specific individuals, families, and groups who encounter difficulties which are serious and of emergency nature are given prior attention, more extensive, and professional care.
Pastoral care is a ministry that can be exercised through various means. The worship service, preaching, counseling, pastoral calls, teaching and prayers are all valid means in conveying caring helps to people. The use of referral, religious literature, tape recordings, and letters are also media which can be used with much benefit if employed wisely.
For good response and results in the lives of the recipients, pastoral care ministers should develop the skills of listening, analyzing, and program development. These skills are basic to helping people communicate, understand, and take proper steps toward the solution of their own problems. The productive use of these skills is further enhanced if pastoral care givers demonstrate in their relationships the Christian qualities of compassion, genuine respect, openness, and generosity. These character traits are the evidences of an intimate personal relationship with the Lord Christ who is the pastoral care giver par excellence.
Sharpening of Awareness and Sensitivity to
Filipino Values and Psychology
It is not enough that one has good intentions to insure effectiveness in the ministry of pastoral care. It is crucial that good intentions should also be carried out in a way and manner that is understood and accepted by the recipients. Furthermore, this should be done without compromise of oneís personal integrity. The Christian minister can do this, according to William V. Arnold, when he
Ö responds to other persons in a way that takes them seriously at two levels. The first is the level of who they believe themselves to be and the value which that belief attaches to them. The second level isÖ that we care for persons in terms of who we believe them to be according to our theological understanding and the regard in which they are held according to that belief.
When this is applied to the Filipino situation, it means that Christian ministers should respond to the Filipino taking into serious account how he regards himself as a person and how he wants account to regard him. Also, the Filipino needs to be dealt with according to the gospel of Jesus Christ which not only reveals his fallenness but also affirms his true worth and dignity as created in the image of God. Furthermore, he must be regarded as one having great possibilities under divine grace since he, too, is called to share in the glorious destiny of Godís children and to be co-inheritor in the kingdom of God (Eph. 2:11-22).
Assuming that the Christian minister has obtained a sound theological view of man, the focus of this investigations turns on the following points: How do Filipinos regard themselves? What are some of the basic values that influence the Filipinoís social behavior? What other traits do Filipino have which greatly influence the process in their seeking help from others, professional or otherwise? A heightened awareness and sensitivity to these areas of concern will greatly aid the Christian minister to more effectively deliver pastoral care to the Filipino.
The Self-concept of the Filipino. One of the few experts among contemporary Filipinos in the fields of management and Human Resource Development is Dr. Tomas Q. D. Andres. Based on his studies of the Filipino, he claims that, generally, Filipinos have a negative view of themselves. He explained that this negative self-image of the Filipino has developed due to his long and consistent exposure to the negative features of his values such as pakikisama, barkada, hiya, bata-bata system, and others. This negative outlook is further reinforced by his social experience. The Filipino lives with negativism in the form of gross inefficiency, graft and corruption, abuse and misuse of power, poverty, and disturbing national realities. He points out that the root of this negativism of the Filipino in his values is the inferiority complex imposed upon him by his colonizers who injected into his consciousness a low view of himself. The so-called golden values (gratitude, obedience, loyalty, and discipline) were not only given undue emphasis but also subtly distorted so that they became gold to his exploiters but not necessarily to him. This subtle and cruel deception, according to Dr. Andres, eroded the Filipinoís self-regard and confidence.
While one may not accept as fully adequate Dr. Andresí explanation of the cause of the negativistic outlook of the Filipino, one can at least agree that his observation of the negativism of Filipinos has validity. An example of this Filipino negativism is the tendency to favor the underdog because he identifies himself more easily with him. Another instance is attributing his success to luck, good fortune, chance, or the will of God because, in his constant search for an authority figure to take care of him, he believes that he cannot really take care of himself. These are indicators that the negative holds a strange fascination to the Filipinos.
Negative outlook and self-regard of the Filipinos has deep significance and broad implications in the ministry of pastoral care. One implication is that the Christian minister needs to reeducate the Filipino to take a more realistic view of himself. While the Filipino needs to acknowledge his weakness and limitations, he must be led to realize that he, too, has his giftedness and potentialities that need to be exercised and developed more fully. This negative self-image is a specific point in the Filipino personality where the Christian gospel needs to be applied so that he will be transformed into a more confident, secure, and positive-looking individual. Moreover, this marked Filipino trait would also mean that he is sensitive and resentful towards an imposing and domineering way of dealing with him but open and every receptive to one which gives genuine respect. The Filipino, according to Dr. Andres, is a person who goes along with respectful persuasion (pakikiusap). Thus, it is better to inspire rather than super-ordinate or command him. In order to win him, it is more effective to express confidence in him and give him assurance. The Filipino reacts to a suggestion positively. In consonance with this Filipino traits, the author suggests that the "suggestions-reason" approach is a better way of dealing with him
The primary values of Filipinos. Values are defines as "things, persons, ideas, or goals which are important to life; anything which enables life to be understood, evaluated, and directed. These are ideals and principles by which man lives." Inline with this definition, Filipino psychologists and social scientists have recently reevaluated the so-called values of the Filipinos which were identified in the past. They make a clear distinction between these and they termed as the Filipino paninindigan, which closely approximates the English words "commitment" and "conviction". The claim that what has been previously identified as social values among Filipinos are not really as important as his paninindigan. Some of the more enduring paninindigan (commitments) of the Filipinos are identified as follows: paggalang at pagmamalasakit (respect and concern), pagtulong at pagdamay (helping), pagpuno sa kakulangan (understanding and making-up for limitations or shortcomings), pakikiramdam (sensitivity and regard for other), gaang-loob (rapport and acceptance), pakikipagkapwa (human concern and interaction as one with others).
The same author, and others, further argue that it was the superficial view and token use of Filipino concepts and local language that led previous writers to the identification of some supposedly Filipino national values which only led to the distortion of Philippine social reality and to furtherance of the lack of education of the Filipino. The following are some of the examples examined:
Utang na Loob (gratitude). This has been pointed out before as the key concept of Tagalog interpersonal relationships. It is pointed out, however, that it is just one among many psychosocial concepts related to the theoretically fertile concept of loob (inner self/feeling) like sama ng loob (bad feelings), lakas ng loob (inner strength/ courage) to cite a few. Samonte, another recognized Filipino Psychology writer, is cited as one who made a thorough study of this concept and has filled three pages just to list its varied applications. To argue that utang na loob is a Filipino values is therefore misleading and dangerous. It would be interesting to contrast the social implications of sama ng loob, kusang-loob (free will), or lakas ng loob to that of utang na loob.
Pakikisama (going along with others). Again, this is pointed out as just one among many levels and modes of interaction in Filipino indigenous psychology. Others are: pakikitungo (interaction with), pakikibagay (in consonant with/in accord with), pakikipag-palagayan loob (being in rapport/understanding/acceptance with), and pakiki-isa (being one with). Santiago, another author cited by Enriquez, explained that these concepts are into only seen as interrelated modes of interpersonal relationships, but also as levels of interactions which ordinarily range from the relatively uninvolved civility in pakikitungo to the total sense of identification in pakiki-isa.
More accurately then, these authors reasoned, it is not pakikisama as a value that is more important but pakikipagkapwa (co-equal relationship) as a Filipino value. If pakikisama is stressed, what value or self-image does that create for the Filipino? It will only promote the negative traits of docility, conformity, passivity, and Western orientation. Pakikipagkapwa, however, is both a paninindigan and a primary value. It includes all the other mentioned modes and levels of interaction such as pakikisama and pakikisalamuha.
In a manner of speaking, Enriquez pointed out, the Filipino is never alone, he has a companion from birth till death. For instance, the Filipino child was nurtures with games more than toys. He deals with people and learns to relate with others at an early age. Should the Filipino get sick, he is cured physically with drugs and medical aid but socio-psychologically with fruits beside him which he may not even eat. More important to him is the fact that he has peopleófriends and relatives.
Pakikipagkapwa has a much broader and deeper implications. It includes accepting and dealing with the other person as an equal. Equivalent roles, status, or incomes with others is not sought for but the Filipino may demand and implement the idea that he treats others as magkapawa-tao (fellow human beings).
If Enriquez and his colleagues are accurate in their reevaluation of Filipino values and clarification of his paninindigan, there is much ground to make the conclusion that the basic and core value of the Filipino is embedded in his concept of pagkatao (human selfhood). All others such as social acceptance, economic security, and social mobility are just peripheral and are to be seen simply as scaffolding through which his pagkatao is affirmed, enhanced, and firmly established.
Observable dominant features of Filipino Social behavior. The Filipino, as an individual, cannot be fully understood apart from the society to which he belongs. He is being shaped by his society and he, too, contributes in the shaping of his society. He does this in terms of behaviors which are symbolic of his efforts to preserve the meaning as well as to attain the purposes and goals of life. Manuel Flores Bonifacio, a recognized Filipino sociologist, identified and described some of the dominant features of Filipino social behavior which, according to him, are governed by symbols that are the creation of his culture. These are as follows:
Quite often the degree of privacy the Filipino has from others corresponds to his degree of distance from or closeness to others. The more distant one is from a group, the more likelihood that physical separateness is emphasized. But then one may be branded as suplado (anti-social), mapag-mataas (haughty or proud), matapobre (aristocratic), or parang ibang tao (alien), hindi tagarito (not of us).
Johnson, however, noted, that in an urban setting, one can find not only Filipinos who are uneducated, tradition-bound, spirit-oriented, and personalistic but also individuals who are highly educated, independent, sophisticated, and modern. Among the later group, one would find exceptions to Bonifacioís description of Filipinos as being "submissive." In view of this, one must minister to Filipinos according to their unique and diverse needs by finding where the individual is, both culturally and intellectually, because of the effects of social change.
Personalism is attributed to the kinship system, which is the dominant feature of the social structure. In this context, one is seen as belonging to the whole group. Intrusion and privacy may also be understood from this perspective. The malas and suerte show that the Filipino is not oriented to manipulate directly his own potentials and those of the social environment. Submissiveness is traced to two fundamental sources: (1) the need to conform to adult authority, and (2) the problems of restrictions imposed on the childís exploratory behavior. Both of these are considered basic orientations which are transmitted symbolically to the Filipino child during his early socialization.
Other observable Filipino traits which affect the dynamics and process of pastoral care. An evangelical Christian psychology and counseling professor at the University of the Philippines, in an article she wrote entitled, "Christian Counseling in the Philippine Setting," identified the following traits.
In view of the above observable traits of Filipinos, the following cues are given which should be integrated into the dynamics of pastoral care: 1. Get to know your helpees in the context of group life; develop empathy for them in the context of their difficulties and sufferings.
2. Master the use if non-verbal, symbolic communication. 4. Be at home in operating in the natural as well as supernatural realm, skillfully using available human and divine resources. 5. Develop a quiet, well-poised, faith-inspiring spirit by keeping in touch with yourself and God.
Generally speaking, people are alike in that the problems that confront them are common to every race and nationality. People, the world over, need to make important decisions regarding family difficulties, interpersonal relations, emotional crises, spiritual problems, and a host of adjustments that are necessary in life. How people react to these problems and attempt to solve them varies from people to people depending on their education, upbringing, and means. Yet, the various cultural factors that shape the way in which they must meet difficulties are of crucial importance. Thus, the call to the Christian minister to sharpen his sensitivity to the Filipino distinct way of seeing, feeling, and behaving is in order.
This investigation has focused on some of the various factors that make the Filipino respond uniquely to lifeís situations. It is pointed out that the Filipino generally regards himself and his environment from a negative point of view. This results in low self-esteem and consequently, a lack of confidence in his ability to mobilize his God-given resources in order to solve his problems. Because of this overdeveloped inferiority complex, the Filipino is generally supersensitive to personal affront and resents any attempt to dominate him. His inner insecurities force his fragile ego to build up defenses in order to maintain self-respect. It is surprising to uncover the truth that the bedrock upon which his values and paninindigan (convictions) are anchored is the preservation and enhancement of his pagkatao (human self-hood). This is evident in his pursuit of social acceptance, economic security, and social mobility. Moreover, his peculiar social behavior could be seen as arising from that core value of pakikipagkapwa sa kapwa niyang tao (human concern and interaction as co-equal and one with his fellowmen). In all these, one theme stands out; the Filipino needs and wants, above all else, genuine respect for his pagkatao. He calls for unconditional acceptance of his worth and dignity as a co-equal human person. He desires a warm, loving regard that gives him the needed freedom to attain fulfillment in life. To anyone who will consistently demonstrate this to him, the Filipino, in like manner and degree, gives his wholehearted response.
The Major Steps in Accomplishing the Task of
Designing and Developing an Adequate Program
of Pastoral Care in the Local Church
When the Christian minister has the three essential prerequisites discussed in Chapter two, namely: (1) possession, (2) an adequate view of pastoral care ministry, and (3) a heightened awareness and sensitivity to Filipino values and social behavior, then he is ready for the task of designing and developing a program of pastoral care of his local church. There are seven major steps that must be taken to accomplish this. These steps constitute a process which must not include shortcuts but should be followed consistently if the job is to be done well. The process requires clear vision, high motivation, and hard work. If the process is followed conscientiously and each step is accomplished thoroughly, the result will be satisfactory.
Discover the Problems and Needs as Well as the
Available Resources in the Church and Community
The pastoral care ministry should respond to specific problems and needs of the churchís constituency. This is done adequately through the proper mobilization and use of all resources available to the church. Hence, the first major step in the task of designing and developing an adequate program of pastoral care in the church is the identification of needs and problems as well as the discovery of resources available to respond to them.
Identifying the Problems and Need of the Church
Just as an individual person needs a thorough medical check-up so that a total health program can be prescribed for him, so also must the total body of believers in a local fellowship undergo a thorough check-up so that a comprehensive program to enhance its well-being can be designed and developed. The whole constituency should be looked over carefully, that is, individually, by families, by various groupings, and as a collective body. The total needs of the human personómental, emotional, physical, social, moral, psychological, and spiritualóshould be considered. Any existing deficiencies or problems in any are of life which are felt and/or discerned should be noted and then compiled. The church should have a master list of its problems and needs which can be up-dated from time to time.
Various means and methods can be employed to accomplish the aforementioned task. Some of them are discussed briefly below.
The whole exercise should generate great interest and create expectancy in the church since it will lead to a discovery of where the church truly stands. Knowing its own weaknesses and strengths, disclosure of the areas where it is hurting and ailing, and knowing its own resources can heighten its desire and strengthen the church resolve to pursue the fulfillment of its potentials.
Discovering and Applying the Resources
In the Church and in the Wider Community
The same means and methods of discovering the needs and problems of the church can also be used in this case. The resources available to the church include people in the church itself with their varied abilities, gifts, training, and skills as well as their material means. It is recommended that the local church should make a regular inventory of its ministry resources. Other resources which the local church can tap to meet its needs are those within the denomination, wider fellowships, or associations with which it is affiliated, including parachurch groups.
Government and civic agencies which are established for the purpose of responding to specific human needs should also be counted as resources for the church. All these are part of Godís general providence for the protection and support of manís life and should be taken advantage of as God given resources which the church can legitimately utilize. Other community resources may be identified and located through radio and television announcements, newspapers, telephone directories, magazines and periodicals, inquiry with well-informed persons, referral from various helping professions, and ocular investigation by the interested party.
To facilitate the use of all the data gathered in the task of designing and developing the pastoral care program, the following are recommended:
A Sample of a Resource List Form
Name of resources:
Persons, Institutions, Agencies
Type of Services Offered
Address and Telephone Number
Person to Contact
When the pastor has sufficient data on the church needs, problems, and resources, he is ready to determine the size, focus, and direction of his churchís pastoral care program. In doing this, he needs to be guided by the following principles:
Establish and Maintain Good Working Relationships
With Resources in the Community
While the local church should give emphasis to the development and utilization of its own resources for its needs and ministries, it is to the churchís advantage to establish and maintain good working relationships with other community resources. This is in accordance with the divine design of interdependence of the human family. It is one way of affirming the churchís solidarity and identification with the human race; a principle of ministry which the event of the incarnation signifies. Furthermore, it must be recognized that only when the full resources of the church are united with the full resources of human society can the problems of individuals or of society be dealt with adequately.
The resources in the community which the church can utilize may include in the various helping professions such as physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses, lawyers, social workers, and others. It may also include institutions, agencies, and organizations such as hospitals, community health centers, specialty diagnostic and treatment clinics, drug abuse rehabilitation centers, orphanages, homes for the aged, professional organizations, and others.
When the pastor has identified and carefully selected the community resources with which he would like to establish a working relationship, he can take the following suggested steps:
It is observed that the church minister generally tends to shy away from relating with other professionals in society. In view of this,
Öit is important that the pastor remember that these specialists are not somehow better or more educated than he. They are resources who, for the most part, are anxious to help in a way that continues to recognize the valid role of the church and the pastor. Furthermore, they often stand in need of pastoral care themselves. If too easily intimidated by these professionals, you can miss out on marvelous opportunities to learn, to teach, and to care.
The pastor has an acquaintance with the community, and a view of individuals within that is distinctiveÖ
Ö the value of knowing the languages of the other professions lies in being able to "translate" back and forth, not giving up our language in favor of their. Effective translation lays the ground for gaining respect and friendship to meet both personal needs and professional responsibilities.
In order that the Christian minister will be protected from pitfalls and avid possible embarrassment, and in order that he may be guided in developing a healthy and mutually beneficial working relationship with community resource persons, the following principles should be observed carefully:
The ministerís commitment "to seek the finest help available for his people, and to function in those roles which he can do best as a minister prompt his participation in a larger fellowship of concern." This provides him opportunities to meet persons in other helping professions. Through this sharing, the minister gains valuable resources for himself and his constituency and also extends the same to others. By expanding his ministry beyond the bounds of the church, the minister is extending the gospel into the world.
"In the present condition of urban churches, there is an increasing need to view the Ďparishí as a geographical (as well as religious) community and to extend pastoral care ecumenically to the community-at-large." In sharing the pastoral resources of the church with the community and in relating community resources to the church, the following should serve as guidelines:
Require the church to be fully cognizant of the complex of groups and agencies that comprise the power structure of a community. It will cooperate with some of them, use the resources of others, and stand in judgment upon the practices of still others.
Be personally acquainted with those who are in charge of them. "The church should view community agencies as being available to meet the special to supplement the ministry of the church." This should be seen "as enlarging the services that the church can render to persons."
Be acquainted "with the exact services and limitations of each one, together with referral procedures."
The church minister who will lead his church in a pastoral ministry within the broader perspective and wider structure of community will read benefits not only for himself but also for his congregation. One study discovered five main benefits to the church from ministry involvement in an inter-church and/or inter-community structure.
1. The churches were drawn into the community, and became visible institutions, serving, and speaking for ht needs of the whole community, not just their parochial interests. 2. The community was drawn into the lives of the churches and the community issues became issues of concern for the congregation. 3. The churches were provided with an effective instrument of social action. 4. Inter-personal relationships within the churches were affected, and dialogue among the members was stimulated. 5. Interdenominational and interfaith cooperation was encouraged and an ecumenical spirit was fotered. The linking of support systems for manís life and well-being allows and provides the church the means to widen the spheres of its redemptive influence.
Discover and Utilize Creative Ways of Building
Relationships in the Church
The being and nature of the church as a community if believers are clear hint of the vital place of relationships in its life. The dynamics and quality of relationship in the church determine whether the believers, individually and corporately, are weal and ailing or are made strong and healthy. Stephen B. Clark, a Catholic pastor-priest, is right when he indicates that one of the main goals of pastoral efforts in the church today is to "build basic communities (local fellowships) which make it possible for a reason to live a vital Christian life." To accomplish this goal, the church needs leaders who have the ability to create an environment centered in Christ and conducive to the promotion, reception, and nurture of Christian principles and values. He defines environment as a "stable, on-going pattern of interaction involving human beings."
The vital role of a supportive and nurturing environment in the formation and developing of Christian personality is based on the following three sociological principles:
The church, it must be recalled, is a community of redeemed persons. As such, it is called to be a redeeming agency to fallen society. This mission is primarily carried on through redemptive interpersonal relationships with the world. "The Scriptures are clear that love for God is to be shown through love for persons. The New Testament testifies to the validity of personal relationships s a means of witnessing to the Christian faith and of strengthening it." Godís greatest treasure-His love-is lodged in the Christian believer through the Holy Spirit. Thus, as the earthen vessel of Godís love the Christian is called to transform all relationships by manifesting Godís kind of love (1 Cor. 13:1-13). Speaking of this redemptive relationship which the church should experience as well as exhibit to the world, Alvin J. Lindgren made this insightful statement: "Personality is formed through our relationship with others; it is deformed through personal relationships of negative nature and is reformed or transformed by the grace of God acting through creative relationships with persons."
This redemptive personal relationship should be experienced and exhibited by the church in an ever-widening circle and on three levels simultaneously: (1) between the pastor and his people, (2) among members themselves, and (3) between church members (including the pastor) and the community. The church constantly strives to provide the atmosphere of Christian love and supportive fellowship that is conducive to the formation of Christian personality, it enhances not only the quality of its life but also makes its life more attractive to the world.
The following are some of the various ways of building redemptive and caring relationships in the local Church:
Aside from sociological reasons, there are at least two theological reasons for grouping people for mutual care and ministry: (1) the priesthood and/or pastorhood of all believers and (2) the variety of the gifts of the Spirit and interdependency of the body of Christ.
Dale suggests the following various ways of clustering people into compact groups:
1. Prayer-share groups. This is a growth-oriented group which meets weekly to study a book or a biblical passage on prayer and pray for the concerns of the participants. They can also function as a confessional group in which the members "share problems, offer mutual support, and explore possible solutions." If such a function is performed there must be complete confidentiality and prayerful support. Groups of this kind can strengthen interpersonal relationships and help build the fellowship of the church. Their ministry need to be confined within the group alone. Groups should encourage to reach out beyond themselves by sponsoring and leading in edifying activities for the whole congregation like prayer retreats, seminars, and others.
2. Ministry groups. Under this ministry-oriented group, several groupings can be formed. The following are some examples:
a. Deacon Family Ministry Plan. In this ministerial strategy, a deacon is assigned to minister directly to five to eight family units. Through this means, the pastor is able to expand the pastoral care of the church by using laypeople to extend a personal ministry to specific families. These "little flocks" or "shepherding groups" can strengthen the tie between the church and its homes as deacons offer spiritual nurture, share information about church programs, and give support during crisis times.
b. Emergency Care Groups. Groups like this are formed and equipped to responds promptly when any emergency arises among any of the members of the church. An example of an emergency situation is when a parent is incapacitated by illness or injury to such an extent that continuous care is required. During times like these, the group can offer assistance with house work and other family responsibilities. This care cluster can do a lot to relieve a family or single member of distress and assure stability and smooth transition in times of sudden calamities.
The formation of caring clusters should be based on the actual priority needs of the church. The Christina minister should continue to be alert to discover areas of need to both individuals and groups. He must look for needs no one is serving or needs being met inadequately. Here is a proper focus for a vital ministry.
The creation of pastoral care clusters within the church demands pastoral alertness and creativity. Existing groups, whether formally organized or formed spontaneously, can be utilized for caring ministries. These groups can greatly expand the pastor ministries of a church. When they minister effectively in love, the church, individually and corporately, will grow and bound in love.
From the beginning and throughout the history of the church, the small group has proved to be potent in the renewal and revitalization of church life and ministry. The proliferation of small groups in the church, however, does not necessarily guarantee improvement in the quality of church life. Creative and productive functioning of small groups can only tale place when they are properly directed and managed within the context of the collective life of the whole body to which they belong. To help the pastor provide dynamic leadership to small groups in the church. Alvin J. Lindgren explains three very crucial points related to them.
(1) To provide a matrix of understanding and supporting Christian fellowship as a necessary atmosphere for personal growth; (2) To expose the individual member to the claims of the faith in a deep and personal way; (3) To enable persons of varying interests and abilities to find avenues through which they can personally serve Christi and the church; (4) To enable the church to extend its ministry to the world; and (5) to serve as a training ground for Christian decision-making in daily secular life.
c) A common understanding of the basic purpose of each group and the responsibilities of each group member must be clearly worked out and understood at the outset. An opportunity to withdraw gracefully should be offered at this time to those who are not in full accord with the purpose and disciplines agreed upon the group contract for membership.
2. Methods and means which the church can employ to promote deeper sharing of lives (Koinonia) and strengthen the bond among the believers: (1) Put out a church paper and/or newsletter. (2) Construct church bulletin boards where interesting news on what is going on in the life of the whole church constituency is shared. (3) Celebrate significant events with the whole church. Carl S. Dudley identified four kinds of events worth remembering and celebrating as follows: events that mark the passage of time, moments of personal transition, events recalling the identity of the particular congregation, and events initiating or commemorating the churchís expanding ministry to the community.
Through meaningful "get-togethers", relationships become more personal and close. The webs of relationship which are established through all these means are channels or grooves through which the renewing, revitalizing, and enriching nutrient of Godís grace can flow freely toward the upbuilding of every cell that makes up the body of Jesus Christ.
Embarking on a Continuing Program of Education the
Members in the Ministry of Christian Care
The design and development of a pastoral care program that will adequately meet the needs of the local churchís constituency should include the proper education of all members in the ministry of Christian care. This educating task of the pastor is a vital and integral part of his equipping ministry. This was discussed earlier in this study as a New Testament strategy to achieve the state of wholeness, vitality, and preparedness of the church to fulfill its ministry task. This is the chief task of the clergyman. All his work is to this end. Robert Raines aptly stated this point by saying that "the function of preacher, prophet, priest, evangelist, counselor, teacher, and administrator find their proper places in the pastorís broad role as equipper."
In its broad sense, equipping includes evangelizing (Acts 18:25), educating (Acts 18:26; Eph. 4:11-12; Matt. 28:19-10), and engaging-involving the believers in ministry (Acts 18:28). All of these are essential steps in the process of fitting the church members for all the demands of life and ministry. Evangelizing will make sure that each one is vitally related to the Lord Jesus Christ. Educating insures that everyone possesses sound knowledge of the Christian of life. Encouraging provides the proper compulsion to minister, and engaging gives opportunity for practical demonstration of Christian faith and love through words and deeds towards oneís fellowmen.
There are various means and methods which the pastor can employ in the program providing basic equipping for the suggestions are as follows:
Develop Competent Pastoral Care
In the Church
The Biblical Basis for Team Ministry
A cursory study of the Biblical record would indicate several outstanding examples that show the need, wisdom and beneficial results of team ministry in the community of Godís people. In the Old Testament, Moses, the great leader of Israel, implemented the wise advice of Jethro his father-in-law. To ease himself of the great burden of leadership and to provide more adequate care and prompt attention on the peopleís needs, he chose and appointed capable men to serve as his partners in the formidable task of leading and caring for the whole assembly of Israel. It should be noted that the members of this leadership team were given responsibilities according to their level of competence. Some were in charge of units of a thousand, others of a hundred, and still others of fifty or of ten (Exo. 18:13-27). This principle of team work was also applied effectively by Nehemiah in his great project of rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem (Neh. Chaps. 3& 7).
Jesus, in order to adequately minister to the needs of the multitudes, called, and trained the twelve disciples and seventy other evangels. To these men, he shared his ministry. This is a shining model of teaching ministry in the New Testament. Following this example, the early Christian churches also had ministerial teams (Acts 6:1-7; Acts 14:23; Acts 13). There is an indication that a team of Christian workers is found in the church in Philippi (Phil. 1:1), as well as in the church in Rome (Rom.16). There is sufficient ground for is to conclude that team ministry was practiced in most, if not all, congregations in the early history of the Christian church.
In addition to the above cited examples, the nature and being of the church as an organic community possessing varying gifts for ministry points definitely to the necessity of forming and developing ministerial teams to share with the pastor in the pastoral care task in the local church.
Selecting the Members of the Team
The development of competent pastoral care team (s) in the local church would require, first of all, the proper selection of the members for the team. This is crucial step and should be approached prayerfully and done with great discernment and wisdom. Spiritual, mental, and social qualities described in Acts 6:3-5, 1 Ti,. 3:8-13, and 2 Tim. 2:2 should take precedence in the consideration of a prospective candidate. Past experiences as well as evidence of the gifts and potential abilities to engage fruitfully in a caring task among the members should also be noted among the interested volunteers. As a guiding principle, it is best for the first team to be composed of mature believers who already have shown commitment by prior consistent participating in caring ministries in the past. A member of the pastoral team should be: a growing Christian, a loyal church member, a faithful server of others, a good learner, an enthusiastic leader, a peacemaker, and a people-lover. Furthermore, he should be a person who loves for others, a cooperating worker, an example in stewardship, and a people-developer. Having a good Christian witness in their own homes is another important qualification which the pastor would want to include for membership in his p pastoral care team.
Recruitment and Training of the Team
A strategy for systematically enlisting volunteers for the ministry of pastoral care (as well as for any ministries of the local church) includes the listing of all workers needed for this ministry. "The list is circulated to the members of the church at least once a year. It is updated and posted outside the church office so that it is in clear sight anytime people come to the church." Announcements are also inserted in the bulletin or newsletter requiring persons to sign up for the various tasks. From the company of volunteers who are given basic training and assigned to specific pastoral tasks, a special group will be selected for advanced training in pastoral care ministry.
More in-depth training for his select team can be provided by the local church by tapping various resources including those within the wider Christian community like Bible institutes, Bible Colleges, and seminaries. The church may provide scholarships to selected personnel who will take courses in pastoral care in extension and summer programs of ministerial schools. The church could also sponsor, with other churches, seminars and workshops on specific from para-church groups engaging in specialized ministries in Metro Manila.
In addition to taking general courses in pastoral care ministry, pastors and laymen can also undergo an intensive training on a regular semester (15 weeks) basis or a summer program in Clinical Pastoral Education (C.P.E.) which is offered in the following institutions: Makati medical Center, St. Luke Medical Center, and San Lazaro Hospital. This program is being directed by the Pastoral Care Foundation, Incorporated.
Whatever level of training that may be envisioned for the church pastoral team, it is important that it will be customized, that allowance for individual differences in aptitudes be made. Training involves a two-part process, namely: (1) general instructions and information and (2) more personalized attention dealing with specific details of the particular job.
Other ingredients that are essential in a training program include the following: (1) interpersonal relationships, (2) provision for a practicum-apprenticeship or supervised training in an actual job situation, (3) follow-up training or on-the-job assistance in trouble spots, (4) opportunity for feedback for trainees, and (5) knowledge of and link with additional resources for information regarding: who can help and where to go when problems on specific concerns arise. Howard J. Clinebell, Jr., identified five similar ingredients found among effective patterns of ministerial training which are also applicable in the development of a competent pastoral team in the local church as follows: "conceptual tool enrichment, case supervision, skill practice, self-awareness experiences, and pastoral teaching and supervision."
Involvement of the Pastoral Team
As competent ministers of the church, the pastoral team can assist the pastor in all his pastoral functions such as planning and leading in worship, teaching groups, care of new members, counseling people with common problems, pastoral visits in homes, hospitals, and social welfare centers, and being on call for crises that arise in the congregation, and among many others. They may be appointed to take pastoral charge of individuals, groups, families, members located in a designated geographic area, or specific age groups. They cal also be assigned to deal with specific problems and respond to particular needs according to their area of concern and personal competencies. As a whole, they can serve as the "good Samaritan group" committed and ready to give help to persons who are in need in the church and in the wider community at all times.
In assigning responsibilities to the members of the pastoral team, a few significant points need to be underscored. D. W. Johnson suggests the following:
Set Up a System of Pastoral Care for the Pastoral
Team and for Yourself as the Pastor
An adequate program of pastoral care in the local church should include a provision of pastoral care to the primary church care-givers themselves. In fact, this should be a top priority because care-givers are able to care for others only to the extent and degree that they themselves are cared for.
Caring for care-givers was ordained by God from the very beginning. This is evident in the way God cared for man even before he created him and prior to his charge that man will exercise rule over his entire creation. He saw to it that all is necessary to enable man to accomplish his task was sufficiently provided. It is clear from Biblical revelation that manís wholeness and blessedness is tied closely to the ultimate goal and purpose of his being which is to bless and glorify God.
Godís program of care for man, as seen in original creation, includes meeting his physical, intellectual, emotional, moral, aesthetic, social, and religious needs. Godís gave man abundant food to eat, a clean and wholesome living environment, a fitting partner in life, a challenging and fulfilling task, a regular time for rest and celebration, and perpetual access to communication with hi Makes (Gen. 1,2).
Godís special concern for caregivers is further evident in the way he made special provisions for the life of his chosen servants. This is seen in the Old Testament in the case of priests, Levites, and prophets. Jesusí caring ministry to his disciples is another superb example of this divine concern. Paulís own example and admonitions further establishes this high and continuing interest of God in this matter (1 Tim. 5:17-18; Heb. 13:7; 1 Pet. 5:5; Gal. 6:6).
Not only is it Godís will that pastoral care be provided for care-givers; it is also necessary to point out that man is Godís partner in carrying out this purpose. God, having already given the general provisions, has left to man the taking of the initiative to order his life in a way that he enjoys the well-being divinely intended for him and for his fellowmen. In the church, the pastor takes the leading role in the general care of the whole church. This is also true of the special care for his co-workers in the team as well as for himself and his own family.
Pastoral Care for the Team
As the chief pastor of the local church, the pastor must see to it that he faithfully discharges his shepherding role to this care-group of local church workers. All the various forms of pastoral care discussed earlier should be exercised to his group, individually and to their families, as well as to them collectively. In all their ministry activities, a healthy supportive caring atmosphere should prevail. The pastor should lead this group in the exercise of the ministry of affirmation which involves generous servings of stimulating strokes, caring compliments, and verbal and non-verbal support.
This group should be developed as the model for all caring groups in the local church. Adequate pastoral care for this group should include the following: (1) Proper and adequate training for their specific ministry; (2) materials along with moral and spiritual support to enable them to accomplish their tasks; (3) protection from too much stress that harms health and relationships; (4) opportunities for continuing growth as persons and increase in ministerial skills; (5) proper esteem and regard for their ministerial role by the pastor and the whole church, and (6) knowledge and link to all resources that enhance their personal life and their loved ones and increase their capability to cope with all demands of life and ministry.
Pastoral Care for the Pastor
The most crucial part of an adequate pastoral care program in the local church is pastoral care for the pastor himself. This is its nerve center.
The pastor must take care of himself first.
He must use the resources of his body, mind, and spirit in the work of the ministry. He can never get away from himself. And so his strengths and weaknesses show up in every encounter. His management of his inner life has a direct bearing upon those many relationships that bind him to others as pastor, preacher, and counselot.
It is disconcerting to observe "that often even the basic emotional needs of the pastor are neglected in the variety of concerns that surround" him both in his preparation as well as practice of the ministry. It is unfortunate that a considerable number of church members still entertain the wrong notion that the pastor does not need much help from them. As a representative of God, they regard him as being supported out, somehow from some unknown source. It must be pointed out, however, that Godís provisions for the care of his ministers, as a general and normal rule, resides primarily within the community of His people. As a member of the church, the pastorís care and support must come from within the church itself.
The grave misunderstanding of the pastorís need of help, however, is not to be blamed entirely upon the members. Part of the blame rests on the pastors themselves who tend to hide their real needs and personal struggles from the members of the church. This attitude is due to erroneous role expectation that often includes the idea that they should be above the need of care. The church falsely reasons that, if the pastorís relationship with God is sound, then care is not needed. This notion often results in tragic situations where the church minister is overwhelmed and decides to quit.
In a training conference for ministers in the United State, whenever expected to give pastoral care to pastors, two reasons surfaced as behind the lack of supportive attitude toward the clergy and their families. They are as follows: "(1) denial by pastors that they or their families were having difficulties, and (2) distrust in pastors to share conflicts, pain, or burn-out for fear of jeopardizing mobility."
All of these observations point to the urgent need to reeducate pastors and congregations alike on proper understanding and attitudes regarding their care0giving and care-receiving roles.
There is a need to be reminded that human persons (man and woman) are created as relational beings. All of them are not only reliant upon God but also dependent upon one another fro support and sustenance. In this regard, pastors, as co-partners with church in its ministries, need encouragement to be more effective care deliverers by allowing others to care for them. Like Jesus, the great high priest, by being open and in touch with his own weaknesses and infirmities and by allowing others to see his struggles, ministers will be better equipped for the role of helping others (Heb. 4:14-16).
In fact, "it is the very experiencing of grace and forgiveness that enables the healer, though wounded, is equipped to engaged in sensitive healing" (cf. 2 Cor. 4:8-15). This experience affords one to be the "channel of grace to those who intend to do right but find themselves Ďovertaken in trespassí (Gal. 6:1)." As in Simon Peterís experience (Lk. 22:21; cf. 1 Jn. 2:1; Heb. 7:25), when one is able to experience the grace that restores, his sensitivity to failure is sharpened and this will make him more fit to care for his brother and sisters (John 21: 15-17).
Some of the critical issues which should be the focus of concern in the care of church pastors have been pointed out as follows: (1) the pastorís self-image and professional identity; (2) the need to succeed, especially when the emphasis is shifted to becoming rather than on being, resulting in professional jealousy and fear of failure; (3) the pastorís personality problems such as perfectionism, trouble with lay people, danger of over familiarity, transference of trauma, difficulties with men, and/or opposite sex; (4) the pastorís needs for harmonious family life (the trouble spots included here are the neglected wife and neglected children, among others); (5) the need to be a leader in the faith with its dangers of self-deception and escape into legalism; (6) the loneliness of the ministry because of lack of real friends, experiencing isolation in the midst of people (this shows the need of the evangelical minister for a "father-confessor" and the value of being a part of a caring group); (7) conflicts over the devotional life; (8) struggle for time; and (9) living the balanced life.
In all these, the congregationís emphatic understanding, genuine acceptance, and consistent support of their ministerís person and role are crucial to the pastorís well-being. Their regard fro him as a fellow traveler in the journey toward greater wholeness in life is a key factor that enables him and his family to meet with fortitude and overcome all the demands and challenges of life.
In addition to the support and care which the pastor received from his congregation, he himself must take definite steps to set up a system of care for the maintenance of his well-being for his own sake and fro the sake of his family, the church, others, and God.
Brooks Faulkner, a researcher and writer in there are of pastorís problems, recommends the following steps for the self-care of the church minister:
a. Intimate friends. They give immediate support without judging or disapproving. They are good listeners, loving, affirmative, and are trustworthy. Blessed is the pastor who has number of this kind of friends.
Establishing and Follow Proper Administration
Of the Church Program
The development of a pastoral; care program in a local church is not an end in itself. It is only a means to a given end. But, in order for it to become an effective means to reach that end, it must be properly administered; otherwise, it will only become a futile exercise.
The proper administration of any church program involves three essential elements. First, there should be a proper perspective and attitude towards the function of administration. Second, there should be knowledgeable of the definite steps to be taken in the process of administering a program. Finally, one must have the basic administrative skills to pursue and attain effectively the programís objectives.
A New Perspective on Church Administration
A study by Niebuhr and Blizzard was cited as having identified administrative activities as being the most time-consuming of all ministerial functions and the least rewarding from the point of view of church ministers. Perhaps it is this attitude prevailing among many pastors. That explains why many of them either shy away for their administrative duties or conduct them without much diligence. A new perspective on church administration must be adopted of improvement in this ministerial function is to be seen. The new perspective should be one that not only redefines but also reconceptualizes it in a way which is different from the traditional view which is so laden with organizational and promotional work. Lindgren, proposes a new perspective on church administration which, if adopted and applied, can bring a dynamism much needed for this ministerial function. He described this dynamic view of church administration as follows:
"The involvement of the church in the discovery of her nature and mission and in moving in a coherent and comprehensive manner toward providing experiences as will enable the church to utilize all her resources and personnel in the fulfillment of her mission of making known Godís love for all men."
When viewed from this new perspective, church administration can be exciting. It can be the source of significant change, exciting experimentation, and meaningful ministry. It is a rewarding ministerial function and is certainly interrelated to all other functions.
Stages in the Process of
As a dynamic process, church administration is comprised of observable, interrelated aspects which can be isolated, identified, and studied so that the whole process can be altered helpfully by changing what is going on in any given stage in the process. The following chart (see Fig. 2) shows the progressive process through which a proper administration of any church program should follow. The left column described the six different stages while the right column shows the corresponding responses which are either positive or negative. The maximum involvement of the laity in each stage of the administrative process in a democratic atmosphere will encourage positive responses
Chart Showing the Administrative Process
POSITIVE OR NEGATIVE RESPONSES TO DYNAMIC DEVELOPMENT STAGES
1. Clear awareness of purpose
1. Commitment to purpose vs. satisfaction with status quo
2. Recognition of situation needing attention
2. Concern for specific needs vs. traditional program business
3. Planning, determining the best of all alternatives
3. Creative autonomy vs. dependent acceptance or resistance.
4. Organizing ,coherent use of all available resources
4. Release of power vs. institutional activities and wheelspinning or hostile opposition
5. Implementing and stimulating responses
5. Committed involvement vs. response to pressure, inertia or rebellion
6. Evaluation what is going in and the ends achieved
6. Growth and insight vs. success rationalization or obsolescence
While an autocratic approach will like produce response that will be negative.
The Qualifications Required for
Dynamic Church Administration
The following are the specified areas where the church administrator must be competent in order to administer properly and effectively the programs of the church:
In this chapter, the actual task of designing, developing, and administering an adequate program of pastoral care in the local church is considered carefully. Seven major steps which constitute the whole process in accomplishing the task were discussed in detail. These steps in their logical order (not necessarily in chronological order) are as follows: (1) discovering the problems and needs and the available resources in the church and the community; (2) establishing and maintaining good working relationships with all resources; (3) finding and using creative ways of building fruitful caring relationships in the church; (4) embarking on a continuing program of educating the whole membership of the church in the ministry of Christian care; (5) developing a competent pastoral care team to assist in pastoral tasks; (6) setting p up a system of pastoral care for the pastor and the pastoral team; and (7) administering the church program properly and effectively.
When viewed as a whole, the carrying out of these major steps are, in themselves, considered a pastoral administrative task. It is a Christian ministerial function that is aimed toward effecting a significant change and enabling the church of Jesus Christ to move toward actualizing its ultimate mission of increasing the love of God and of men on earth. To accomplish these steps with this definite aim in mind is a good way to serve and to glorify God and to help mankind.
Recapitulation, Pastoral Concerning,
Restatement of the Problem, Its
Importance and Method of Resolution
The problem which this dissertation attempted to resolve centered on the specific question, "How can pastors of medium size evangelical churches in Metro Manila design and develop an adequate pastoral care program for their respective local churches?"
This problem was chosen for careful consideration because of the following important reasons:
What is needed is the commitment, knowledge, and skill to identify, develop and manage these resources so that problems and needs of members are promptly and adequately met.
The research methods employed to arrive at the solution to the problem include the following:
All of the information gathered from these various sources was analyzed, organized, and presented herein as a solution to the problem set forth in the beginning.
Prerequisites for the Task
Based on the Biblical and theological understanding of the ministerial task being considered, and considering the results of the two surveys, the first hypothesis was proven as valid that the church pastor must have the following prerequisites if he is to design and develop a pastoral care program that is adequate for his congregation. These prerequisites are as follows: 1) a sound theology of the church and its ministry: 2) an adequate understanding of pastoral care, and (3) an updated understanding of Filipino personal and social psychology with sensitivity toward the proper way of dealing with him. All of these are considered to be essential ingredients in doing the ministerial task properly.
Theology of the Church and Ministry
Understanding Pastoral Care Ministry
Filipino Personal and Social Psychology
The Filipino prizes above all else the full acceptance and genuine respect (pagtanggap at paggalang) of his "pagkatao" (selfhood) and longs for the right and full freedom (karapatan at kalayaan) to seek and attain fullness of life. However, he seeks not for these things alone by himself and for himself but always in relation with and for his fellowmen (kapwa-tao). He is noted to be group-oriented.
With strong conviction, one can conclude that the Filipino, given the proper understanding of his life situation, would readily respond positively to a genuine Christ-like quality ministry. It is essential that this truth is always remembered and observed in the ministry of pastoral care.
The Major Steps for the Task
The research has also validated the second hypothesis that some essential steps must be taken in order to design and develop an adequate pastoral care program in the local church. Seven major definite steps were identified as necessary for the task. They are reiterated briefly as follows:
The first major step in the task of designing and developing an adequate program of pastoral care involves the discovery of the needs and problems existing in the church as well as finding the resources available to meet these needs. The resources to be tapped by the local church should include those in the wider community.
The second major step in the task of providing adequate pastoral care for the local church is the establishment and maintenance of good working relationships with the various resources in the community. The pastor should take the initiative to form friendships and ministry partnerships with individuals and organized groups in the various helping professions in private, civic, and religious agencies as well as those in government agencies. This gesture is definitely Christian and is beneficial to the pastor and to the church at large. This move is also in line with the churchís mission to serve in various spheres of life in the world.
The third major step (preceding or simultaneously taken with the second step) in the task of developing an adequate pastoral care program in the local church is the employment of various strategic methods of building a network of redemptive and caring relationships in the church. Several of these strategies and how they may be adapted and implemented were discussed. Central and common to those strategies of the formation of, providing creative leadership for, and management of small groups designed for growth and ministry. The use of small compact groups has proven to be proven to be effective and productive in achieving renewal and revitalization of church life and ministry from the beginning of and throughout church history.
The fourth major step which is integral to the task providing adequate pastoral care in the local church is to embark on a continuing program of educating the whole church constituency in the ministry of Christian care. This will be carried on under the leadership of the pastor with the assistance of faithful and competent members of the church. Preaching, teaching, training, and personal modeling by these men, of the what, how, why, and when of Christian care are the effective methods in accomplishing this task.
The development of competent pastoral care team(s) among the members to assist the pastor in the various pastoral tasks in the church is another vital step that must be included in the program of providing adequate pastoral care in the church. This step involves the proper selection, adequate training, and effective involvement of the team members in the various pastoral ministry tasks.
Setting up a system of pastoral care for the pastoral care team members, including the pastor himself, is of utmost importance in the program of adequate pastoral care in the church. Primary church care-givers must first be recipients of Christian care themselves. They must have the proper knowledge, attitudes, and skill for taking care of themselves both individually and collectively. Furthermore, they should be able and willing to encourage, engage in, as well as receive pastoral care for and from others. Provisions to take care of the well-being of the church minister and his family should be made by the church as well as by the minister himself.
Proper administration of the program of pastoral care in relation to other on-going programs in the church is another crucial part in the task providing continuing adequate pastoral care in the church. To handle this effectively, one must have a proper perspective on the nature, place, and purpose of administration as a ministerial function in the church. One must also have the knowledge and skills to go through the administration process which involves the principle of maximum involvement of members throughout the following stages: 1) determining of the churchís purpose; 2) identification and prioritizing of needs; 3) the formulation of program objectives and goals; 4) the discovery, development, organization and dynamic utilization of available resources toward the attainment of the set objectives and goals; and 5) the evaluation of the manner and degree to which the objectives and goals have been reached.
In addition to the above, other important qualifications of a good church administrator were also enumerated and discussed.
The Evaluation of the Churchís
Pastoral Care Program
The evaluation of the pastoral care program of the local church is the only means of determining whether it is adequate or not. This was the third hypothesis. However, it became clear through the research, that this should not be considered as a separate step but an integral part of the administrative process. How to properly conduct this aspect of the administrative task is discussed in Appendix G.
CONCERNS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Based on personal observation and the results of the survey, several concerns have emerged. These concerns and corresponding the environment, structures, and incentives needed by evangelical pastors in Metro Manila to facilitate their pastoral care ministry to their respective churches.
Evangelical Pastorís Fellowships
The formation of evangelical pastorís fellowships in Metro Manila should be broadened and multiplied. Their purpose and objectives need to be more clearly defined and their program of activities improved. It might be more profitable if they address themselves more to their own pastoral care needs as well as those of the churches they serve. This would provide balance to the already strong emphasis on evangelism and church planting.
The Pastoral and their Families
A more extensive study of the needs and problems of pastors and their families among evangelical churches in Metro Manila is needed urgently. This may be conducted by denominations as well as, in a wider scale, involving the whole evangelical community including professional Christian workers in para-church organizations throughout the metropolis. A feasibility study toward formulation of a cooperative program which involves the discovery, development, and sharing of available resources for the adequate care of evangelical ministers and their families in Metro Manila may also be done. If this step is taken and the result is satisfactory, it can be used as a model for the rest of the evangelical churches in the Philippines to follow. This is not an easy job but an attempt to achieve this objective should be made. Perhaps the Philippine Council of Evangelical Churches (P.C.E.C.), World Vision, Philippines Inc., Philippine Crusades, Inc., or other church related agencies could initiate and sponsor this project.
Bible Colleges and Seminariesí
Pastoral Studies Emphasis
The pastoral-practical aspects of the Christian ministry should be given more attention in the training of church workers in evangelical ministerial training schools in Metro Manila and elsewhere. In connection with this, there should be sufficient courses (requires and elective) in pastoral ministerial studies available to students who are preparing themselves to serve as pastors in local churches.
Moreover, the schools themselves should provide a good model of pastoral care for their students. The caring attitudes and capabilities of future pastors of evangelical churches will be shaped and developed decisively by the manner and degree which they are personally exposed to and molded by a caring environment in their days of preparation for the ministry.
Associations or Fellowships of
Evangelical Christian Professionals
It would be good if evangelical Christian professionals in Metro Manila such as physicians, psychologists, lawyers, social workers, educators, and others belonging to the helping professions would form themselves into associations or fellowships. Among the many benefits that would be gained if this move were taken is the facilitation of making the link and partnership between churches and these various professional groups in pastoral care and other Christian ministries to the church and the wider community. Perhaps the first move would be the formation of professional fellowships within the local churches, then within church denominations, and, finally, linking all these fellowships within the evangelical community in Metro Manila.
Directory of Evangelical Churches, Parachurch Groups,
and their Ministry Resources
The preparation, publication, and distribution of a directory of evangelical churches, para-church groups, and their ministry resources is another worthy project. This would be a ready and effective tool in the hands of church workers in the discharge of their personal duties. It makes possible, among other things, the speedy and direct contact and cooperation among Evangelicals in responding to various needs, especially in emergencies when the tapping of other resources beyond the local church or group is urgently needed.
Establishment of Christian Guidance-Counseling Centers
in at least Four Strategic Places in Metro Manila
These envisioned ministry centers, to be located one in each of the eastern, western, southern, and northern parts of the Metropolis should be staffed primarily with Christian professional psychiatrists, pastors, and counselors who are highly qualified academically and experientially in the various areas of pastoral caring. These centers should be committed to provide specialized pastoral care ministry from a distinctively Christian approach and shall carry out their ministry with the primary patronage of the evangelical community. They should, however, open their services to all who would avail of them. In addition to serving their clients directly, each center should also provide the ideal setting for the training of pastoral care ministry interns as well s being referral centers for pastors and other local church-based pastoral care practitioners. The establishment and development of these centers may be undertaken by Christian and/or humanitarian foundations both local and foreign with the partnership of the whole evangelical community. The rapid rise of various and complex problems of people living in a megapolis like Metro Manila points clearly to the need for such centers. That this vision will be caught by many concerned Christians so that they will work toward its realization in the not too distant future is the fervent hope of this writer.
In Pastoral Care Ministry
The conduct of seminars/workshops in pastoral care ministry for evangelical pastors should be held periodically. This endeavor may be initiated and sponsored by denominations, councils, para-church organizations, or by the pastorsí fellowships themselves. Resource persons needed for this program may be recruited from specialists in this ministry from evangelical Seminaries and from successful practitioners in this fields including those form the leaders and members of the Pastoral Care Foundations, Philippines, Inc. Prevailing issues in pastoral care ministry from among the churches may be the focus of study and inter-action during these times. If this program is undertaken, pastoral care ministry consciousness among pastorals will be heightened and their knowledge and skills for this vital ministry will also be regularly updated.
General Information From Survey Questionnaires Sent
to Competent Persons in Pastoral Care
Ministry In Metro Manila1
NAME OF RESPONDENTS
QUALIFICATIONS OF RESPONDENTS IN ACADEMIC AND PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE
Asst. Supervisor in C.P.E., trained for 30 months under Rev. Narciso C. Dumalagan in C.P.E. programs at St. Lukeís Hospital, Makati Medical Center and Sto. Tomas University Hospital. He also headed Pastoral Care Department of Sto. Tomas Hospital from June 1980 to March 1981. He is at present, the Chaplain of San Lazaro Hospital.
2. Rev. Antonio B. Gomowad
Has training and experience in hospital chaplaincy, C.P. E. supervisor, parich ministry and Lecturer in Pastoral Care. He is chaplain and C.P.E. program coordinator at St. Lukeís Medical Center, Quezon City, for the past 3 years.
3. Dr. Stewart W. Deboer
M. Div., M.A., M.SC., Ed. D., Pastor for 25 years (20 years chaplain U.S. Navy, pastorate 5 years), Faculty, Asian Theological Seminary for 10 years lecturing in Counseling and Pastoral Ministry, President, A.T.S., 1979-1986.
4. Rev. Narciso C. Dumalagan
Certified Clinical Pastoral Educator. Has 20 years of clinical pastoral care ministry and supervisor experience in hospital setting. Serving with Pastoral Care Foundation, Inc. (P.C.F.), in Makati Medical Center as its Executive Director and C. P.E. Supervisor, M.M.C.
Table 4 (Continued)
ANSWERS TO QUESTION NUMBER 1
IN THE QUESTIONNAIRE
1. Fr. Prass
Solid foundation in spirituality, philosophy, theology, and scripture. He must have, at least 3 months (1 quarter) in Clinical Pastoral Education.
2. Rev. Gomowad
Aware of the indigenized existing models and forms of pastoral care in the locality. Conscious of his "catalystic role," oriented to community, share collegial authority. Ability to appropriate foreign technical models of pastoral care into local language and thought forms. Ecumenical exposureóactive promoter of unity among people who are usually divided "religiously."
3. Dr. DeBoer
Ability to care, listen and hear people in their needs. Discernment and creativity. Has the ability to define needs and create practical solutions, is open to changes. Recognize personnel and organizational impediments to curriculum development.
4. Rev. Dumalagan
Intensive training in supervised clinical pastoral care education, studies in group process and personality dynamic courses. Openness to a variety of human and spiritual problems and the ability to integrate or incorporate religious values with their social sciences.
TABLE 4 (CONTINUED)
ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS NUMBER 2
IN THE QUESTIONNAIRE
1. Fr. Prass
Filipinos are extra-ordinarily responsive to spiritual caring when dispensed sincerely, wholeheartedly, and lovingly.
2. Rev. Gomowad
Positive: Inherently communal, strong kin consciousness, sensitive by nature, deep means of communication other than words, respect for mystery, capacity for patience, eager to learn, mystic, strong faith.
Negative: Group exclusivism (perhaps a result of deprivation), lack of technological systems to articulate and evaluate our thoughts, works, culture etc. lacks individualization, limitations of resources (expertise, economic) which makes the pastoral care person a "Jack of all Trades," and clients not getting the right referrals.
3. Dr. DeBoer
Positive: Event rather than time oriented.
Negative: Authority and status conscious. Congregations look to authority for answers and pastors are directive and advice giving without requiring their people to think through themselves what their real problems are and help them to find their own solutions.
4. Rev. Dumalagan
Problems with authority figures lack of ministry to time structure, obedienceóresident conflict, tendency to suppress feelings for the sake of S.I.R., too low self-esteem, indecisiveness.
Table 4 (Continued)
ANSWERS TO QUESTION NUMBER 3
IN THE QUESTIONNAIRE
1. Fr. Prass
Oneís personality must be developed to the optimum-integrated through prayer, study, training (C.P.E.), guidance (supervision-spiritual direction). One must be deeply aware of his emotional and spiritual strengths and weaknesses and be able to mange them appropriately.
2. Rev. Gomowad
The pastor will have to be committed to the persons in the community at the same time trying to meet the demands of his task. Because of the inherent community spirit, the pastoral care person will have to function intimately. Learns to use resources he finds in the community, and most of the time literally offers only himself and his faith and trust in the capacity of his people to heal (by Godís grade).
3. Dr. DeBoer
Both pastors and laymen need to develop their self-esteem. Recognize that no single theory is comprehensive enough to account for the complexities of daily life. Pastors need to be eclectic in their approach.
4. Rev. Dumalagan
The emphasized preference for smoother inter-personal relationship at the expense of truth and honesty with oneís own feeling suggest either of two possibilities: (a) dependent personality and/or (b) lack of assertiveness and sense of independence toward peer ship.
Obedience to pleas "big papa" to perpetuate oneís good boy/girl image or resistance and rebellion may lead to false guilt. Lack of self-affirmation or appropriate self-calm. This could indicate fear of assuming personality. One might prefer to internalize it rather than having it known.
Table 4 (Continued)
ANSWERS TO QUESTION NUMBER 4
IN THE QUESTIONNARE
Physical: A person disciplines to take reasonable care of bodily health through sufficient exercise, proper nutrition, and temperance in food, sex, and leisure.
Mental: Well-planned reading, study program in the pastoral and behavioral fields. Moral: Keeper of Godís commandments especially to love. Social: relating in free, warm, natural manner with all. Spiritual intimate union with God. A person given to genuine prayer. Walk the fine line of "decached involvement."
2. Rev. Gomowad
3. Dr. DeBoer
Integration of spiritual, theological, and personal dimensions for ministry. This would require knowledge of Scriptures and theology and a skill in evangelism, counseling, management, and specking/teaching depending on the personís gifts and talents. More time needs to be spent in the area of admissions and selection. Laymen need to be helped to use more effectively what they already know and helped to develop their gifts and talents rather than taught what they do not know.
4. Rev. Dumalagan
Note: 1. For this particular survey questionnaire, see Appendix B.
MAJOR DIFFICULTIES IN THE DEVELOPMENT AND
IMPLEMENTATION OF PROGRAMS IN THE
LOCAL CHURCH AS INDICATED BY THE
Major Difficulties Enumerated
Number of Times
NOTE: 1. See Appendix E, c.7.
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A Letter of Introduction and Explanation of The Survey
Questionnaire For Competent In The
Field of Pastoral Care In Metro Manila
Phil. Baptist Theological Seminary
19 Tacay Road, P.O. Box 7
Greetings in the love and fellowship our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ!
I am a Missionary of Philippine Missionary Fellowship, Inc. (on study leave) presently enrolled in a distance education of Evangel Christian University of America. As part of the requirements for my doctoral program, I am working on a research project, "Designing Adequate Pastoral Care Program For Small Size Evangelical Churches In Metro Manila." It is my intention that in the near future, the results of this research will be incorporated in a course on pastoral care in every Bible School in Metro Manila.
The effort toward this purpose arises from the awareness that an adequate pastoral care program is essential for a richer and more productive life and ministry for our local churches. Knowing your active involvement in this area of Christian ministry and of your competence and rich experience as a practitioner in this field, I am confident that you can give valuable insights related to this project.
Related to this concern, I am requesting you to answer the enclosed survey questionnaire. The answers need not be lengthy.
Enclosed is a stamped envelope already addressed which you will use in returning to me the completed questionnaire. I would greatly appreciate it if you could mail it back within ten days after receiving it.
Thank you very much for sharing with me your valuable time. May God return his richest blessing to you and your ministry.
Pastor Joel B. Santos
Survey Questionnaire To Competent Persons In Pastoral
Care Ministry In Metro Manila
Letter Of Appreciation For The Competent
Persons In Pastoral Care
I want to express my deep appreciation to you for sharing with me your precious time in answering my survey questionnaire. I gained many valuable insights from the information you gave. It has greatly helped me in deciding what specific areas to focus on in my research.
Above all, I am grateful for your friendship. I cherish it and sincerely hope that the personal and working relationship which we began shall endure into the future.
Yours in the Lordís service,
Pastor Joel B. Santos
A Letter Introducing And Explaining The Survey Questionnaire
For Metro Manila Evangelical Pastors
Evangelical Christian Church of Manila
1811 P. Guevarra St., Sta. Cruz, Manila
Dear Pastor _______________,
Greetings in the name of our Lord!
I am a Missionary of Philippine Missionary Fellowship, Inc. but presently enrolled at the Distance Education program of Evangel Christian University of America. I am now pursuing a research study on: "Developing An Adeqaute Program Of Pastoral Care For Small Size Evangelical Churches In Metro Manila."
In this connection, I am seeking your valued assistance in this important endeavor. You will greatly help me by answering the enclosed survey questionnaire. I strongly urge that you answer all the questions. There will be no right or wrong answers. All will be useful to provide me with the insights needed in resolving the research problem.
Enclosed is an addressed and stamped envelope you may use in returning to me the completed questionnaire. Please return it by mail or send it through the same person if it was hand-carried to you. I would greatly appreciate it if you could send back this research material within two weeks after receiving it.
In advance, I express my sincere thanks to you for your valuable help. Your partnership with me in this task will be cherished and long-remembered.
Your fellow-servant in Christ,
Pastor Joel B. Santos
Survey Questionnaire For Pastors Of Small Size
Evangelical Churches In Metro Manila
1. Name of church pastured ___________________________________________________
( ) Diploma level
( ) Bachelor check Degree level
( ) Masteral Degree level
( ) Doctoral Degree level
( ) Yes, we have.
( ) No, we donít have.
( ) We want to have one.
( ) not enough time to do it.
( ) lack of know-how in this area.
( ) finding and organizing resources.
( ) administering the program.
Please add others:_____________________________________________________
7. Please identify other problems already encountered in the implementation of other programs of ministry in your local church in the past:
The Neighborhood Family Group Plan
Another approach to building relationships and a good strategy to provide adequate pastoral care ministry to churches in an urban setting where members are usually scattered in different areas of the metropolis is the neighborhood family group plan. A description of this plan and the guidelines on how it will be implemented is herein provided.
The church membership is divided into neighborhood geographic units of approximately five to eight families per unit in order that individual and family needs can be promptly discovered and more effectively met.
What Situations Might Indicate
Use of this Plan?
How to Start the Plan
Possible uses of the neighborhood family group plan are as follows:
The effectiveness of the plan depends on the following:
The Evaluation of the Pastoral Care
Program of the Local Church
The work of the pastor is not completed even when he has succeeded in designing and developing a pastoral care program for his congregation. The primary concern is not just having a pastoral care program in each medium size evangelical church in Metro Manila per se, but in making sure that the pastoral care program in a given church is truly adequate. It is in this context that the crucial function of evaluation as a pastoral task is clearly understood. Evaluation is the means by which the adequacy of a church program is properly determined.
There are four fundamental issues must be takes into account if one is to accomplish this vital ministerial task satisfactorily. The first fundamental issue is the clarification of the terms, "evaluation" and "adequate". What do there terms mean? The second fundamental issue is the discussion of the reasons for church program evaluation. What is evaluation an essential ministerial activity of the church? The third fundamental issue is the enumeration and description of the prerequisites to doing church program evaluation. Without meeting these prerequisites, one cannot carry out evaluation in a proper way. The fourth and final issue is the exposition of the qualities that characterize a good and profitable church program evaluation. When all of the above mentioned issues are utilized in the dynamics and structure of oneís evaluation activities, the purpose and desired result for evaluating the church pastoral care program are achieved.
Definition of Terms
Evaluation. The term "evaluation" is used in this study precisely in relation to the pastoral care program of a local church. It is the ministerial task of examining objectively the actual state of a program and properly judging it in accordance with a previously determined standard. The judgment includes the observation and measurement of the manner and degree, as well as discovering the reasons for the programís conformity or non-conformity to the standard.
Adequate. "Adequate" is a descriptive term qualifying the actual state or conditions present in the church program when it is found to be conforming satisfactorily with the of set standard through a proper evaluation. Satisfactory conformity of the program is related to three essential aspects in the standard. These are as follows:
Comprehensiveness of the program. The comprehensiveness of the pastoral care program in a local church is satisfactorily met when there is provision for the pastoral care of all the carious age-groups in the churchís constituency. Furthermore, it is seeking to meet their total individual and collective needs by using properly all the resources that are available.
Efficiency of the program. The efficiency of the program is evident when needs are discovered and met within a prescribed time reference. This would involve the setting up of a network of individual and group relationships in the church and community which permits the early detection of developing problems, emergencies, and crises, and the smooth and successful mobilization of resources to respond to them.
Effectiveness of the program. The program is considered effective when difficulties and problems of the church constituency are being resolved and when the various needs are actually being met. The pastoral care program is effective when the well-being of individuals, families, and groups is consistently maintained. Furthermore, the believerís capacity and ability to grow and increase in maturity even in the midst of problems are being strengthened through it. Stability, vibrancy, and increased productivity in the life and witness of the church membership are indicative of an effective pastoral ministry.
Why is Evaluation Essential to the Church?
There are four reasons that make evaluation essential to the life and ministry of the church.
Evaluation Is an Activity that
Definitely Gives Glory to God
As Godís people, the churchís ultimate aim is to glorify God. This means that the churchís activity should always be geared toward pointing men to the perfections and excellencies in Godís being and character so that men are attracted and moved to acknowledge him as the highest and most central of all values it patterns its being and doing according to Godís revealed character.
One of the excellent characteristics of God revealed in the Holy Scriptures which is worthy of the churchís emulation is his consistent act of reviewing, evaluating, and passing judgment upon his works. Although God is perfect in his plans and works, it is noteworthy that nothing is taken for granted in his sight. In the creation narrative, one finds that God takes the time, again and again, to examine the products of his creative power and declares them as "very good" (Gen. 1:3-31). In one instance, God saw that the state of affairs, as far as Adam is concerned, was not adequate. He responded promptly to correct it and made the whole matter exceedingly good (Gen. 2:18-25). This discerning and evaluating activity of God is consistently carries on throughout the Biblical record and from it we also know that God intends, at the end of this age, to make a thorough judgment upon all manís activities and to render a just assessment in accordance with the gospelís provision and intent (Rev. 20:4-15).
In the light of Godís continuing evaluation of the state of affairs in human history, one can understand Godís providential interventions in order that his perfect and good will in all of creation might be achieved. Therefore, as Godís partner in accomplishing his purpose on this earth, the church cannot ignore its responsibility to evaluate its actions so that steps can be taken to make them conform more and more to what is good and pleasing in Godís sight.
Evaluation Is an Evidence that
The Church Takes Seriously Its
Accountability to God
As the minister of God on earth, the church is always accountable for all that has been committed to it by its Lord. Faithfulness by diligence in all things that it does will be rewarded with great honor and blessing but unfaithfulness by sloth and carelessness on its part will be exposed and justly condemned with great embarrassment and loss (Matt. 25:14-30; 2 Cor. 5: 9,10).
Evaluation Is an Effective Means
To Good Stewardship
Evaluation can pinpoint the specific problem areas in oneís operation of a program. Through it, the strong as well as the weak points of church life and ministry are ascertained. Discovery, development, maintenance, and utilization of available resources for the ministry program can be maximized if proper evaluation is consistently executed. This results in greater satisfaction and profit for the church.
Evaluation Is a Means to Growth
And Increased Productivity
The church is meant to bring about change and transformation of its environment. While doing this, it is expected that the church itself will be renewed, reformed, and revitalized continually. But these can only be experienced by the church if it unceasingly applies to its own self, under the direction and power of the Holy Spirit, the divinely supplied grace and truth to rectify its errors. Its imperfections and blemishes are exposed only through an honest scrutiny of all its activities in the presence of God. Without undergoing this self-examination, the church can become blind and ignorant of its true condition and can easily be deceived into believing that it is healthy and rich when, in fact, it has become sick and bankrupt before God (Rev. 3:14-19).
What are the Prerequisites fro Effective Evaluation
Before anyone can begin evaluation of a local church program, there are certain prerequisites that must first be met. These prerequisites are as follows:
Formulate the Goals and
Objectives of the Program
Objectives are statements of the results one would desire when the program is implemented. These objectives become goals when the time, degree, and manner of achieving the desired results are clearly defined.
The formulation of program goals and objectives must be done prior to the act of evaluation. In fact, this would be accomplished at the beginning when one is starting to design and develop the church program. The objectives and goals set the direction and determine the steps to be followed in the program implementation. These become the basis for later evaluation.
The characteristics of properly formulated objectives and goals for a church program are as follows:
Define Performance Standards
This is concerned with the clear specifications of the quality, quantity, and the time element involved in the production of the desired results in the program. A detailed description of what is considered excellent, very good, good, satisfactory, and poor performance in all tasks in the various aspects of the program implementation should be made. This will lay the basis for a proper rating of achievements in the various tasks within the program. It will help the evaluators see the week as well as the strong points in the programís operation. Achievement of high standard of excellence in the specific concern of this prerequisite.
Prepare Suitable Evaluation Tools
The evaluation of a local church program requires the proper preparation and skillful use of evaluation tools. The tools will include such things as maps, well-formulated questionnaires, membership records, summary reports of survey studies, ministry report forms, charts, and other relevant documents as well as facilities needed to do the work of evaluation. Very crucial to the evaluation task is the proper recording, classifying, and filing of all the data related to the program.
Designate and Train Church
The formation, designation, training, and involvement of an evaluating team should be included in the over-all ministerial training program of the church which embraces all members in accordance with their interests and abilities. However, it is important that the pastor provides the leadership for this group. He should be the chief interpreter and instructor of this team as far as the meaning and significance of this ministerial task are concerned. He should see to it that it will be carried on for the sole purpose of benefiting the whole church. The job description, the purpose, the mechanics, as well as its philosophy should be understood by the team before they set out to do this work.
Qualities of a Good Program Evaluation
A good church evaluation will exhibit the following qualities:
It is Objective. The evaluation findings are the results of accurate observations based on the available data gathered. It is the product of comparing facts concerning the present condition of the program with the prescribed standard for it.
It is comprehensive. The evaluation is applied to all the various significant aspects, elements, and factors of the program such as personnel, organization, dynamics, policies, supports, goals, and objectives, among others.
It must be systematic. It is carried on according to set procedures established beforehand. There is a definite purpose in the sequence of activities which are done in an orderly and efficient manner. The quality and quantity of information that is sought are well understood, and the method and manner by which they are obtained are both instrumentally and ethically sound and acceptable.
It must be done regularly. Evaluation is not a one time, once and for all activity. It should be done at least yearly, if not twice a year. Better still if it is an ongoing process throughout the year.
It must be welcomed by the church. Resistance to evaluation is understandable since it poses a threat especially to the immature and insecure persons. But the threat is lessened if the church is properly educated on the Christian perspective and practice of evaluation. This responsibility rests upon the pastorís shoulders. A sermon or Bible study dealing with the Biblical basis, nature, purpose, and benefits of evaluation would be of help.
The findings of the evaluators should be written, classified, and appropriately disseminated to the whole congregation. Areas of concern needing prayer, careful study, and disciplined involvement, should be shared with everyone and items for praise, thanksgiving, and celebration should be conveyed to the whole church assembly as well.
The evaluation finding and recommendation should be properly acted upon by the leadership of the church. It is not enough that the good things and the defects of the program and the reasons for them are identified. These should provide incentives for more diligent efforts to make the program of ministry reach a state of excellence that will glorify God and bring greater blessings to man. When the evaluation findings and recommendations are implemented and when improvements in the church life and ministry begin to take place, then one can say with deep assurance that the church is well on its way to becoming what God intended it to be - a growing and productive church.
Criteria Used in Determining Adequate Answers to
Questions Concerning the Pastorís Perception
of The Church, Its Mission and the
Ministry of Pastoral Care