Pro Deo Et Patria- An Army Chaplain

I am a chaplain in the US Army, serving in Iraq. I'm keeping a blog to share my thoughts and experiences while deployed. They are my thoughts and they don't necessarily reflect the opinions of the US Army! :)

Friday, August 06, 2004

Pastoral Care Training

We spent 10 hours yesterday receiving instruction on using the PREP system (Prevention, Relationship Enhancement Program). It's a premarital, and marital counseling program that has been develop with many, many years of research. It is not an Army program, but is used by chaplains in the Army, and we received about $1500 worth of training and material yesterday, for free. We will continue this training today, and, I think, Monday.

That brings me, again, to the subject of pastoral care, or counseling, training. As I add up the hours we spend receiving pastoral care training, it occurs to me that I will end up spending MORE time receiving pastoral care training than I did in seminary (not counting CPE). Typically, a seminary student has, I believe, 2 or 3 classes in pastoral care. I want to say I had three classes. That is about 36 hours of actually classroom instruction. So, a student at seminary might graduate with 72 to 108 hours in actually classroom teaching time for pastoral care. Well, when all is said in done, I will have received about that much in just 3 1/2 weeks here. Some of it is review; some of it is incredibly practical, and will easily enhance my counseling ministry. I'm thankful for that personally, but also know that this is a great side benefit for Church of the Cros as well!


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