- DOXOLOGY Collegium Fellow
- Senior Pastor of Christ Lutheran Church, Platte Woods, MO
For the pastor, visitation can be burdensome and time consuming. Yet, the seelsorger knows that the care of souls often takes place in the hospital room, at the kitchen table or some other location apart from the Divine Service. This topic will address the struggles of visitation in the modern age, the purpose of intentional individual care, strategies to carry out faithful visitation, and sanctified encouragement for this challenging task. This presentation includes 1 ½ hours dedicated to the topic of pastoral visitation and 1 ½ hours on the use of prayer with blessing.
- Session One “Visitation: Pastoral Care DELIVERED!”
This session includes a biblical exegesis of visitation in the Old and New Testament. Secondly, we will identify and discuss various struggles and encumbrances which make pastoral visitation difficult today. Thirdly, the “how” of visitation will be addressed. This will include a discussion on suggested tools and strategies. Lastly, encouragement from the likes of St. Paul, the church fathers and our Lutheran fathers will grace our ears. Pastoral visitation can seem like drudgery and a waste of time. Our Lord encourages visitors through demonstration not demand.
- Session Two “Visitation: The Role of Prayer with Blessing in Pastoral Care.”
The introduction of this session focuses on relationship and conversation as God enters our need by giving us words to pray. In this session we will see how our prayers come full circle from the Divine Service into the difficulties of our daily lives. With prayer, pastors may also make use of the Gospel blessing. Pastors are given the unique privilege to dispense blessings during the Divine Service (at seven separate occasions). Yet, blessing can also be used during pastoral visitation as a means of pastoral care. Pastors can teach others to bless as well. This session will also give practical guidance to the use of blessing within various pastoral care situations.
Those who suffer with progressive cognitive depletions require a unique pastoral approach. What makes the care of these souls even more difficult is that no two cases are ever alike. So, how does the seelsorger minister to the spiritual needs of these valued children of God? What need is there for pastoral care for those suffering with Alzheimer’s/dementia, especially victims in the later stages? What tools can caregivers implement to adequately communicate the Gospel? Pastors and caregivers are increasingly faced with these and other challenges as the population of both the churches we serve and society as a whole grow older. This topic includes 1 ½ hours discussing the need and the challenges pastors face and 1 ½ hours on the implementation of tools and strategies for pastoral care within the parish.
- Session One “Pastoral Care for Those with Cognitive Impairment Disease: The Need and the Challenge.”
The introduction of this session will flesh out the growing concern our churches are faced with as our population ages. The need for pastors to sharpen their skills and build their tool kit for these inevitable pastoral encounters will be demonstrated. There will be a review of what the pastor can expect through the three progressive stages of cognitive depletion. Also, theological and social implications will be discussed as families and pastors face challenges from a world that often devalues the cognitively impaired. Lastly, challenges such as the world’s assault on personhood and how to establish meaningful pastoral care connections will serve as bridge between theory and practice.
- Session Two “A Pastor’s Guide for the Care of Persons with Alzheimer’s/Dementia.”
This session will describe effective methods for serving the cognitively impaired member through the three stages of memory depletion. Matters such as the role of ritual, liturgy, music, Holy Communion, and many other practical strategies to establish connections will be discussed. This session will also be devoted to conversation, as many of the participants will have situations they may wish to discuss in order to address specific needs.