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Stellenbosch Theological Journal

On-line version ISSN 2413-9467
Print version ISSN 2413-9459


DAMES, G.A.  and  LOUW, Daniël J.. The professionalization of pastoral caregiving: A critical assessment of pastoral identity within the helping professions. STJ [online]. 2020, vol.6, n.2, pp.103-128. ISSN 2413-9467.

Pastoral caregiving within a clinical setting and the parameters of interdisciplinarity and a team approach to healing and helping, cannot escape the public demand for a professional approach to caregiving i.e. safeguarding the well-being of people and patients. In this regard, differentiation in terms of theory, paradigmatic conceptualization, and directives for a base anthropology, are paramount. To detect the identity of the pastoral caregiver within the parameters of the pastoral ministry and the Christian tradition of cura animarum, the research focuses on the theological paradigm for comfort and compassion. It is argued that the professional stance of caregivers is shaped by biblical hermeneutics. The theological characteristics of pastoral interventions and engagements are determined by the appropriate God-image of compassionate being-with as pastoral exemplifications of a theologia crucis, directed by a theologia resurrectionis.

Keywords : Pastoral care; professionalization; professional identity; psychologization; biblical hermeneutics.

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