|By Prof. Dr. Theol., Tor Johan Grevbo
Diakonova University College, Oslo, NorwayPost Conference Ressources
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For the last nine years I have worked full time as chaplain in a local hospital alongside of my academic career, an experience with noticeable impact on what I am going to present. Pastoral care – and especially when adding counsel(l)ing to it (PCC) – contains a variety of dimensions in historical and contemporary context. I will mention seven of these, and also give a brief overview of the main strains of PCC on the international scene of today. I end this part by summing up my own position, which I call “viatoric pastoral care”, founded on a concept of “critical plurality of perspectives”. The same basic attitude will accompany my understanding of our secular societies in Northern Europe, emphasizing some factors of post-secular character.
Equipped with this framework, I will try to examine – constructively and critically – the best international research on health and faith known to me, focussing on
– the importance for health care and pastoral care in Nordic context
– the impact of American culture and religiosity
– some problematic philosophical and theological implications.
I will close by presenting my own multi-factor spirituality model, adopted by the Norwegian health-care officials (2007). In doing this, I will also give voice to my own experience as pastoral care-giver, and comment on some empirical research in the specific field of PCC and tasks waiting to be executed here.