Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Martin Luther University College

First Advisor

Peter VanKatwyk

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


This paper begins my personal journey toward developing a transformation model specifically geared to my approach to Christian pastoral counselling. The model seeks to integrate Scriptures with schools of psychotherapy without compromising either. The model explores my belief as a Christian that God sustains humankind; God plays an important role in health and, by extension, in Christian counselling. The idea for this paper came from my counselling practicum in a pastoral counselling centre where Scriptures were not used in the counselling program. Rogerian philosophy dominated the program with minor interventions from other psychotherapies. This paper looks at the response of psychotherapy and Scriptures to human nature with the understanding that a counsellor’s definition of human nature determines the school of psychotherapy chosen. Interviews at pastoral counselling centres and a literature selection signalled the use of the Scriptures in pastoral counselling to be contentious. At one end of the continuum writers contend that there is no place in counselling for Scripture; at the other end Christian writers believe that to use humanistic psychotherapy is borrowing from the Devil. Some counselling centres do not use the Scriptures in counselling; others use them when clients feel a need. Scriptural precepts form the philosophical base for the transformation model; the model uses the knowledge base and applications provided by schools of psychotherapy.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season