Clergy--Psychology

Spiritual abuse in church leadership: finding a way through

Author
Stacey Davis-Agee
Abstract
Literature addresses how spiritual abuse manifests itself in the church, the impact on those wounded by the abuse, and how to find healing. This study was designed to explore how associate pastors experience restoration from spiritual abuse by a lead pastor. The study utilized a qualitative research method, semi-structured interviews with six pastors, and the constant comparative method to analyze the data. The research examined associate pastors' experiences of contentious relationships created by their lead pastors and their journey towards resolution. The study concluded that healing and recovery are possible with the support of safe individuals and when they learn language to identify and acknowledge their experiences.

Pastoral shame lifting

Author
Travis J. Marshall
Abstract
Shame contaminates the health and wholeness of all systems and relationships the shamed participates in. Knowing that a pastor will inevitably experience shame, what practices must come into regular church life process for shame resilience to become the norm? Hidden shame experiences and even more shame triggers lurk in pastoral offices everywhere, and so how can pastors become aware of their shame and experience the process of healing? These questions and more will be explored through the areas of vulnerability, empathy and the sacrament of the Eucharist so that pastors may experience shame-lifting and the process of healing from shame, both personally and in their church communities.

Empowering American Baptist Pastors of Pastoral-Size Churches to Develop Psychological and Theological Resilience in an Age of Disestablishment

Author
Michael Wayne Oldham D.Min.
Abstract
Mainline churches no longer enjoy the status of being the "established" religion in today's culture. The implications of this disestablishment have left churches and pastors feeling frustrated, powerless and often hopeless. This project is a case study of how a combination of video chats and incremental learning resources increased the psychological and theological resilience of American Baptist pastors who serve in pastoral-size churches. This study showed that this process was effective in helping pastors develop a renewed sense of hope and direction for their ministry and might be used in other mainline as well as evangelical denominations. This project will focus on the role of the pastor as the key leader in their church.

From Rut to River: Coaching Pastors in Stuck Situations

Author
Laura A Cunningham
Abstract
Maintaining pastoral resilience for ministry while serving a congregation struggling with change has been a dilemma for mainline church pastors. This project focuses on executive coaching for pastors at risk of becoming "stuck," losing energy of momentum in congregational ministry. This report explores executive coaching theory, considering how working with a coach can help a pastor out of a rut and thus regain energy for ministry. It uses narrative methodology to describe the impact of coaching on two pastors in Hudson River Presbytery in order to show how coaching may benefit pastors in similar situations.

An Investigation of Self-Care Practices and Principles Among the Pentecostal-Apostolic Clergy

Author
Chelsea A Hall
Abstract
The perspectives and practices of self-care among Pentecostal Apostolic (P-A) clergy from United Pentecostal Church International, Worldwide Pentecostal Fellowship, and independent organizations, were investigated through a convergent-parallel mixed-method design. Analysis of self-reported survey data with triangulation of biblical, theological and psychological literature reviews produced four principles of self-care essential for P-A clergy. Self-care must be holistic, focused on personal not congregational well being, practice active non-judgmental self-awareness, and accept personal limitations. Self-worth resides in God's acceptance, not ministerial success or failure. Participants reported embracing the necessity of self-care without adequate practice and displayed a fragmented understanding of the concept and concept application.

The Whole Servant Leader: Leading from the Inside Out

Author
Jewel D Williams
Abstract
This project addressed the need to understand what internal attributes are necessary for the servant leader to exhibit Patterson's seven virtues successfully. The examination of the lives of pastors, leaders, and lay leaders defined as servant leaders based on Patterson's doctoral work, helped in the development of an attribute-driven virtue-focused servant leadership development model. The findings revealed that the necessary steps to the development of the attributes within the leader were: a dependency upon God, having mentors or coaches, building self-awareness and self-development, creating the right environment, and teaching the leader about service.

Homophobia in some African American Churches in the DMV

Author
Mason K Nurney
Abstract
The problem investigated was homophobia in some African American Churches (AAC) in the Washington, DC metropolitan area (DMV). The researcher used three data streams -- scriptural, contemporary and case studies -- to determine possible causes for homophobia in the AAC in the DMV. The data revealed that leaders acting on what they have been taught frame their ministry paradigms in ministering to LGBT people. These influences are deeply embedded into the culture of the AAC and the psyche of the AA pastor. From the data collected the researcher created a rubric scale of church leaders, as well as fourteen recommendations the AA pastor can use a reference guide to minister to LGBT members in their congregations.

Clergy in crisis: running the race towards healings using crisis intervention and pastoral presence

Author
Denise A Currie-Lowe
Abstract
The context of research was a two-day teaching and interactive workshop at New Bethel AME Church in Lithonia, Georgia. The problem in question was to determine the reasons why clergy face burnout within their context of ministry. The workshop included teaching clergy and lay the definition of crisis, types of crisis, and discussed methods of healing, to include pastoral presence. A mixed methodology of qualitative and quantitative surveys was used to conduct and analyze responses from participants cross-sectionally and longitudinally. The hypothesis tested if crisis workshops are taught, then the levels of clergy burnout and crisis would decrease.

A qualitative study examining how pastors learn emotional intelligence in their ministry leadership context

Author
Michael V Phillips
Abstract
Abstract: Research shows that pastors face difficult challenges in the course of leading congregations and often are not equipped to negotiate those challenges. While there may be numerous ways that pastors can prepare and learn to navigate these challenges, one essential skill, that the literature and interview data confirmed, is the development of emotional intelligence. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore how pastors learn emotional intelligence in their ministry leadership context. The key identifiers for learning EQ were: mentoring, critical reflection, self-care, strong marriages and a robust desire to learn emotional intelligence.

An Exploration of the Extent to which the Teaching of Bowen Family Systems Theory Enhances the Self-Understanding of Wounded Ministers

Author
Perry Riley
Abstract
Bowen Family Systems Theory provides a solution for emotionally wounded ministers that are striving for greater self-understanding. The central argument of Bowen's Theory is that unresolved issues from an individual's past are rooted in each person's family system. Bowen's Theory focuses on the need for ministers to understand the importance of managing their family conflicts and congregational stress. The results led to lowered anxiety and better functionality in almost every aspect of wounded ministers' lives, thus producing a greater emotional maturity. Ministers who will work on modifying how they function will become the most effective church leaders and pastors.
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