Claiming a Substantive View of Presence: The Significance of the Pastor's Self

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Joel A. Jueckstock
Klye J. Vlach


The notion of "presence," or a "ministry of presence," is central to the practice of pastoral care and counseling, though many appropriations of this concept have the potential to minimize the impact of pastoral care giving, thereby leaving something to be desired for the one(s) receiving care. A substantive view of presence is claimed in light of historical trends within the discipline of pastoral care and counseling, and an incarnational view of presence. Two distinct models for pastoral formation, namely developing pastoral capacity and Internal Family Systems theory, are employed in order to explain how constricted development and self-awareness can be mitigated for the sake of increasing pastoral effectiveness. A case study is presented to demonstrate how these concepts benefit the practice of pastoral care and counseling.


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Author Biography

Joel A. Jueckstock, Maple Grove Hospital

Joel is currently serving Maple Grove Hospital as Supervisor, Spiritual Care. He is also an adjunct professor at Bethel Seminary, and in the final stages of completing a PhD in Pastoral Care and Counseling. Joel lives with his wife and children in St. Paul, MN.


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