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Preview — Becoming a Healthier Pastor (Creative Pastoral Care and Counseling) by Ronald W. Richardson
Becoming a Healthier Pastor (Creative Pastoral Care and Counseling) (Creative Pastoral Care & Counseling)
Among the most helpful and widely acclaimed resources for addressing church conflict and the quality of church life is Richardson's groundbreaking volume Creating a Healthier Church (Fortress Press, 1996). His application of family systems theory to congregational life has enormously clarified its operative systems and especially its emotional system. In this sequel, Richa ...more
Paperback, 150 pages
Published December 1st 2004 by FORTRESS PRESS
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Good, basic description of the main components of systems theory and how the emotionally-mature minister can use systems theory to lead a congregation. It is written more from a counseling perspective, seeing the role of the minister as a "coach" rather than a pastoral leader. However, the close reader will agree with Richardson that many in the church have never really faced the reality of their psycho-spiritual condition. Without saying it (at least directly), Richardson argues that we all ope ...more
Very interesting indeed, I am unfamiliar with therapeutic models and schemes, and so I have nothing against which to benchmark this family systems theory. It seemed that it has some merit though, and the worked examples appeared to demonstrate consistency. There were also some very practical pastoral applications that were obvious and may prove helpful in the future. The most disappointing aspect of the book for me was that it did not reference scripture nor explore God's role in all the attachm ...more
An excellent, insightful book. Richardson clearly knows his stuff. He applies family systems theory to the work of the pastor and, contrary to conventional wisdom, says that the pastor's ability to be a healthy leader hinges on whether he/she has done the necessary work of being healthy in his/her own family. The book is full of helpful examples that are hard-hitting and realistic.
Although limited by a focus on Family Systems Theory (Bowen theory), this book is great for pastors who are interested in differentiation. The author argues that differentiation of self is the main way pastors become healthy. A concluding section on how to be a coach is also helpful.