Pastoral and Spiritual Care in Suffering, Grief and Loss

For practitioners who want to further their professional development, or those who would like a taste of theological study, Whitley is offering their semester two 2020 unit ‘Pastoral Care in Suffering, Grief and Loss’ for audit, at the special rate of just $350!*

Unit Description

In this unit, students will consider the human experience of suffering, with particular reference to loss and grief, developing potential spiritual and pastoral care responses. Participants will be introduced to spiritual, theological, cultural and scientific resources to better understand the nature of suffering alongside the complex effects of short and long term, complicated and uncomplicated grief and grieving. 

Along with theoretical information, participants will be able to acquire tools and skills for spiritual guidance and pastoral care in a variety of settings, and be equipped to share these with their faith communities, their families and the larger communities in which they offer ministry.

This unit is ideal for people in pastoral care roles, or those wanting to gain a greater understanding of pastoral care in a congregational or clinical setting.

Unit Name

Pastoral and Spiritual Care in Suffering, Grief and Loss

Unit Code

Undergraduate: DP3004W Postgraduate: DP9004W

Unit Outcomes

Key abilities students can expect to develop in the course of this unit include:

  1. Describe the cultural, theological and clinical processes of grieving, mourning and bereavement associated with life transitions, loss, death and dying;
  2. Identify the factors involved in safe ethical pastoral care for others;
  3. Articulate theological insights and personal frameworks of meaning, that inform the practice of pastoral spiritual care for those who are suffering;
  4. Develop strategies of care that adequately attend to the grieving processes of individuals and congregations, including the use of appropriate rituals and community supports.
  5. Demonstrate the capacity to integrate theology and practice in pastoral and spiritual care.

For more information about this unit, and how to enrol, complete the form below.

Meet the Lecturer

This class will be convened by Francesca D. Nuzzolese. Francesca is a pastoral theologian, psychotherapist and trauma care consultant. Her chief vocational commitment is to create educational and therapeutic spaces, where individuals and communities can experience growth and fulfillment, healing and wholeness. She has two decades of experience teaching in higher education, training and consulting with NGOs on trauma care, and counseling individuals and communities in vulnerable predicaments. Francesca holds a Doctor of Theology in Pastoral Theology and Counseling, and international training in psychotherapy, psychodrama and chaplaincy. She currently offers spiritual and clinical care to individuals, communities, and organizations who are impacted by the trauma of trafficking, dislocation, and exploitation in its many forms. She is the founder and director of a not-for-profit organization (Bethelifeline), which offers spiritual retreats and professional care to activists, frontliners, professional caregivers and volunteers, who are often at risk of burnout, compassion fatigue and secondary trauma.

*What does ‘auditing’ a subject mean? It means you can attend classes, download study materials and participate in classroom activities without the need to fulfill the assessment requirements to earn credit towards an academic award. For a small fee, this extraordinary opportunity provides professional development and further learning. Please note that you cannot claim academic credit for completion of a unit as an audit participant, either in the current study period or retrospectively. The $350 special offer is for semester two, 2020 classes on an audit basis only. Offer expires 17 July and price thereafter will be $500.