Project Documents

Date of Award

1999

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Jerry Moon

Second Advisor

James J. North, Jr.

Third Advisor

Douglas R. Kilcher

Abstract

Problem The adjustment that many SDA Indonesian pastors go through in the early years of their ministry and the feeling on the part of some ministers that they lack essential psychosocial support suggest the importance of designing a systematic support system. Therefore the dissertation addresses the following questions: (1) How do SDA pastors in the West Indonesia Union indicate their need of a support system? (2) What resources are available to meet the needs of Indonesian pastors? (3) What can the minister, the local church, and the hiring organization do to strengthen this support system?

Method The project is descriptive-prescriptive. Primary research focuses on a questionnaire and its findings. The study also reports a survey of literature dealing with systematic support systems. The literature survey includes theological reflections from Scripture and the writings of Ellen G. White, as well as psychosocial principles and practices drawn from a variety of other sources.

Results

The questionnaire indicates that 90 percent of respondents found human relationships to be helpful in a general way. But one-fourth felt they had no one they were comfortable confiding in regarding specific problems. Less than half had meaningful experiences with mentors or conference administrators. A majority of the pastors desired an expansion of support resources in the areas of mentoring (79 percent), support groups (60 percent), sabbaticals (73 percent), continuing education (83 percent), the ministerial director acting more as an advocate (63 percent), and deeper relationships with lay members (93 percent).

Conclusion

Several aspects of psychosocial support can be implemented with little financial outlay, such as enhancing the role and skills of ministerial directors, and forming district support groups for clergy and clergy families. Other support resources require more substantial funding and would need to be implemented as funds became available.

Subject Area

Seventh-day Adventists--Clergy--Indonesia; Clergy--Psychology; Clergy--Job stress

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