Pastoral Care & Chaplaincy Concentration

M.Div. with Concentration in Pastoral Care & Chaplaincy

Opportunities and Outcomes

An academic concentration in pastoral care and chaplaincy may be essential for a broad-range of ministry preparation. This concentration provides both a broad overview and some in-depth engagement with the ways that spiritual care can make life-changing differences in the world.

  • Persons called to congregational ministries will frequently minister to those who are in crisis, who are suffering both life-cycle and traumatic, and who need and expect effective care and counsel.
  • Persons called to public ministries (such as chaplains in hospital, college, work-place, and military settings) require in-depth knowledge and skills in crisis intervention, life-cycle support, and relationship change.

Students will have their pastoral imaginations engaged and expanded as they integrate their Biblical and theological studies with pastoral care methods in service of the spiritual well-being of those within their care.


This degree provides the basic academic preparation for pursuing professional certification required for many chaplaincy positions, such as the Association for Professional Chaplains.

This degree also provides a strong base for students with a spiritually-integrated focus who are interested in pursuing degree programs in licensed counseling specialties such as marriage and family therapy, mental health counseling, and social work.

This plan of study will utilize both academic courses and practical engagement with suffering persons to prepare highly competent care providers.

Concentration Requirements

Required courses provide 15 hours of credit toward the 75-hour M.Div. These include:

  • Introduction to Pastoral Care (offered at least once each year)
  • Clinical Pastoral Education (offered continuously in a variety of settings and formats including distance education)
  • 2 additional courses in Pastoral Care and Counseling (Applied Clinical Ethics encouraged)

All Pastoral Care and Chaplaincy students are strongly encouraged to include pastoral and spiritual care related assignments in non-PCC courses (Bible, theology, and Ethics, for example). The course professor and Steven Ivy can be consulted on how to focus assignments in this manner.

All Pastoral Care and Chaplaincy students are strongly encouraged to complete their Benediction capstone project with pastoral care and counseling themes and practices as their core focus.

Anticipated elective offerings:

  • Fall 2020 – Pastoral Care with Children, Adolescents, and Families
  • Spring 2021 – Pastoral Care and Counseling: Personality Theory & Abnormal Behavior
  • Fall 2021 – Pastoral Care with Small Groups: Dynamics and Techniques
  • Fall 2021 – Applied Clinical Ethics
  • Spring 2022 – Pastoral Care: Death, Dying, and Grief
  • Fall 2022 – Psychology and Theology of Family: Theory and Techniques
  • Fall 2022 – Psychology of Religious Experience
  • Spring 2023 – Marriage and Family Counseling and Therapy