Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion

2020 Edition
| Editors: David A. Leeming

Family Therapy and Pastoral Counseling

  • Loren TownsendEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-24348-7_9161

Every religious tradition attends to family life through sacred texts, codes of behavior, community memory, and practices of spiritual care. These organize gender roles, sexual practices, intergenerational relationships, and how power and resources are allocated. How a religious tradition understands “family” is dependent upon its history and its perceived social problems, social and economic structure, and local mores. Historically, religious and spiritual care of families has taken the shape of moral instruction to reinforce a tradition’s ethical vision for family life. This pattern changed in the early twentieth century, particularly for Jewish and Christian traditions in Europe and North America [The pastoral counseling movement emerged primarily as a North American Christian and Jewish phenomenon in the twentieth century (Townsend 2009)]. New knowledge from social sciences provided religious leaders with expanded knowledge about families that informed religious care of families....

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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Louisville Presbyterian Theological SeminaryLouisvilleUSA