Introducing The Center and its Programs
Thousands of people have consulted with various professionals to determine their particular calling to ministry. We are particularly equipped to serve those who are beginning to explore a calling to ministry, those in the process of ordination and those wanting to do a mid-career "tune-up."
Pre-Ordination and Mid-Ministry Career Counseling is a process designed to help you shape the direction of your life and career, given your own capabilities and potential. The question for us is always "What is your best fit in life?" At key points in your life (early career, mid-career, nearing retirement) career counseling can help you take charge of your life in a firmer, more focused way.
The Center's Staff
The heart of the entire process is the quality of dialogue that takes place between you and your counselor, strengthened by the interpretation of selected testing instruments and input from the autobiographical material. Rigorous confidentiality is absolutely insured. No information about you will be released to any other person or agency without your written permission.
Counselors hold graduate degrees in theology and psychology and/or counseling. Their experience includes parish ministry, career counseling, pastoral counseling, clinical psychology, and education. All are licensed by the state in which they work.
The Center staff custom-designs programs that will help participants:
Analyze abilities and most satisfying achievements.
Identify personality characteristics leading to a better "fit" in work situations. If a major transition looms, career
counseling can help persons maintain perspective and avoid panic.
Develop a unique profile of strengths, weaknesses, motivations, values, and other factors that provide clues for
Organize career goals and lay plans for the future, including continuing education or study leaves, techniques to
deal with stress management and burnout, other ways to improve life and health, possible career changes, or pre-
These factors critically affect the level of satisfaction everyone feels in their chosen careers.
How the Programs Works
The Follow-up Individual Program is designed for those who have done a full vocational assessment process within the last five years (at The Center or any other certified assessment center) and need a follow-up session of only one day. This may occur when they may have postponed ordination for a few years, are required by specialized ministry certification committees (e.g., chaplaincy, pastoral counseling, etc.) or just want a quick check-in about their ministry fit and goals after a few years in ministry. The testing, written materials and interview process will be determined by the needs of each individual in conversation with The Center's counselor. Only a brief report is written as an adjunct to the full report previously written, if required in the individual circumstance.
The Mid-Career Individual and Pre-Retirement Programs focus intensively on one person looking for insight on the next next phase of their life, usually over a 2 day period. The Couples Program involves your spouse or partner, with joint career evaluation where dual careers are involved. For couples, The Center staff feels that involving the spouse is so crucially important that this option is made available at less than the actual cost. This is usually done over a 3 day period.
Candidates and Aspirants for church vocations participate in The Center's programs usually in the Standard Assessment Process, depending upon the requirements of their committees. The Individual, Couple and Group Programs are options you may explore to fulfill those requirements. Click here for more information on programs for candidates.
All clients work with one counselor who has reviewed preliminary materials (detailed autobiography, testing, medical reports, and references). The Individual and Couple's Programs may sometimes include an interview with one of The Center's consulting clinical psychologists to explore personal needs. The testing tools assess interests, personality, and values as they relate to ministry or other occupations. Mid-Career is a good time to assess how you want to fulfill your latter days of ministry. Transitional Counseling it is a good time to explore how you might want to focus the latter part of your ministry or after a difficult time in your ministry. Retirement Planning will help you anticipate, plan, and shape your own retirement and how you want to focus those years.
The Center's staff members provide Group Programs for Candidates seeking ordination through their denominations. These workshops will be offered as there is need.
Special Staff Programs can be arranged for a church staff to examine the way that they administrate, complete tasks, interact with people, create new ideas and work together on a team. These programs can be customized to fit your staff requirements and needs. Please call us to arrange a Staff Program specially designed for your particular needs.
Hear what other clergy have said about their recently completed work with us:
Thank you so much for the report and your candid insight into my wife and me. I think you captured us well and I take to heart your
recommendations. We'll see how the Lord leads, how much I can let go and let Him lead and how others take their responsibilities. I
appreciate this work that you're doing for Christ's Church. There are few places where clergy really get to be free and honest without fear
or concern for how things might be taken. I have appreciated that the most in this process, hard as it has been, and will be. I don't anticipate
any easy transition, with or without a new calling. I do anticipate many more years of healthy ministry, and want to do what I can to make
that a reality. Thanks for your help. (Clergy couple, 2010)
Your report looks great! I really do appreciate all your work and especially your patience. As for myself, it was a privilege to meet you and
receive such outstanding support from your organization. (Individual, 2011)
Thank you so much. The insights from those two days with you just keep hitting me, as I'm driving, or walking, or talking with one of our kids. I have begun a (new) book, I write in it all the little things I am doing to work on my self-care. I had not realized the extent of how I deprive myself on a daily basis... The experience of this evaluation with you was nothing like I expected, and incredibly valuable. Thank you for everything you've done for me, and for my wife. (Clergy couple, 2013)