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In Living Color: An Intercultural Approach to Pastoral Counseling
By: Emmanuel Y. sell ipad singapore

Lartey details how we can use an integrationist method pertaining to different cultures (A group of people that celebrate similar traditions/ customs and have similar belief/ value systems) in conjunction with our own personal beliefs. Interculturality is the heart of the text as it combines the basic principles: Contextuality, multiple perspectives, and authentic participation (Lartey, E, p. 33). Lartey discusses the definitions and roles of pastoral counseling and how these are related/ create today’s pastoral care in the context of counseling as a profession.

Lartey discusses the various definitions of pastoral care which have included such definitions as “Consisting of helping acts done by representative Christian persons, directed toward the healing, sustaining, and guiding and reconciling of troubled persons, whose troubles have arisen in the context of ultimate meanings and concerns” (Lartey, E. p.21) as referenced by Clebsch and Jaekle 1967. Transcendence is discussed in the context of characterizing pastoral caregivers and how we view the world. Transcendence is defined as “More to life than what meets the eye” (Lartey, E. p. 26).

Interculturality is the perspective that the author asserts as vital to using in our counseling practices. This view point contends that there are three principles known as contextuality, multiple perspectives, and authentic participation. Contextuality explains how we take into consideration that every piece of behavior and every belief must be observed within the framework within which it takes place (Lartey, E. p. 33). Multiple perspectives asserts that we may observe the same issue and still have varying opinions on a particular issue per our individual experiences. Authentic participation observes and respects the view- points of other people and recognizes both the strengths and weaknesses in every approach.

In Chapter 3, different models of pastoral care are discussed. Different models include pastoral care as therapy, ministry, social action, empowerment, and social interaction. The implications of pastoral care in therapy are of improper functioning in the bodies, minds, and spirits of people and how we as counselors aid in the removal or correction of suffering and dysfunctionality of people’s live. (Lartey, E. p. 55).

Pastoral care in ministry is discussed in context of acts of service in the forms of communication skills and sacramental rites put into action to direct and guide individuals. Pastoral care carried out in the form of liberation theology is another model of pastoral care. This model of study engages in the core belief of the poor and needs being oppressed by social systems. Liberation theology is a socially active vehicle that is used to liberate the oppressed. “The theologian first commits him or herself to being in a particular place and engaging with others in a particular place and engaging with others in work that aims at liberating the oppressed” (Lartey, E. p. 114).

This book discusses the various roles of pastoral counseling such as ministry, social action, therapy, and empowerment. The different roles that we play as counselors including healing, sustaining, guiding, reconciling, nurturing, liberating, and empowering in the context of an intercultural approach are of great resource for the counselor today. Lartey summarizes how the needs of the oppressed and needy are important; however, this must be evaluated in the context of one’s personal beliefs, their culture, and other implications of other societies influence upon those cultures.

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