Case Study: Counselees and the Local Church
You are a Christian counselor in a parachurch organization. You receive requests from churches to counsel their members. Here are a few of those scenarios:
- You call a pastor to let him know that “one of his sheep” is seeking counsel from you. He says, “I don’t need to know what is going on with them. Fix them and send them back to me. I’m too busy to help.”
- You asked a pastor if he or another leader would come with one of their members. He says, “None of my people are qualified to counsel. Just do it and keep me posted on how it goes.”
- You helped a couple from a church, and soon after they began to realize their options for ongoing care are to pay you or find another church that could offer adequate, ongoing soul care for them.
- Biff and Mable come to you for counseling. Their coming to you may be a “red flag” that there is something wrong with their church. It’s like a patient leaving the hospital to find help from an exigent center.
Case Study Questions
- How will you navigate through the “sticky situations” of caring for somebody else’s sheep while seeking to lead them back to their local shepherd?
- When the pastor says he isn’t qualified to help, how would you respond to him?
- How will you walk a couple through the dilemma of staying or leaving a church that does not do soul care well?