Relational Ministry published

Gibson coverHistorically, the relationship between religion and psychotherapy has been more negative than positive. Are there inherent contradictions between the two, or can advances in the area of mental health care offer insights that are useful for the work of those in ordained ministry? This book presents an analysis of the relationship between ordained ministry on the one hand and counselling and psychotherapeutic practice on the other. It draws on extensive interviews carried out with current and former clergy in three churches (the Roman Catholic Church, the Church of Ireland and the Presbyterian Church in Ireland) in order to clarify why some have stayed in ministry and combined it with psychotherapy, while others have left and continue their practice as psychotherapists. The book explores possible links between the sense of ministry in these two important areas of human experience – religion and psychotherapy – and goes on to investigate how combining these might lead to a different form of ministry.

Available for purchase here.

Catherine Gibson began her career as a teacher and later trained in the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital in Dublin, where she qualified as a systemic psychotherapist. She holds a PhD from All Hallows College (Dublin City University) for her thesis on the relationship between psychotherapy and religion. She worked for the Health Service Executive for several years and is currently working in private practice in Dublin.

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