Original Research

A three musketeering approach to pastoral care: Reflections on collaboration between pastoral care, narrative therapy and positive psychology

Alfred R. Brunsdon
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 35, No 1 | a865 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v35i1.865 | © 2014 Alfred R. Brunsdon | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 May 2013 | Published: 09 June 2014

About the author(s)

Alfred R. Brunsdon, Department of Theology, North-West University, Mafikeng Campus, South Africa


In the current times of change, deconstruction and ever-growing relativisation, pastoral praxis finds itself in methodological limbo. Pastoral practitioners currently face the challenge of effectively reaching postmodern people through the pastoral process. This challenge is intensified by the innate tension between revelation and experience in pastoral theology as well as the philosophical migration from modernism to postmodernism, which necessitates an on-going rethinking of pastoral praxis. This research investigates a collaborative approach between pastoral care, narrative therapy and positive psychology as a possible method for dispensing pastoral care. A broad outline of these approaches as well as their underlying philosophical frameworks is contemplated in order to evaluate their suitability for a pastoral collaboration. Markers for a collaborative model are suggested where the narrative and positive psychology are employed as strategies in a so-called three- musketeering approach to pastoral care.


Collaborative pastoral care; Practical theology; Narrative; Positive psychology


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