Pastoral counseling is a type of counseling which uses spiritual resources in conjunction with psychological counseling methods. Pastoral counseling may be provided by certified Pastoral Counselors, who are certified behavioral health professionals, and who also have religious and/or theological training. One organization that offers a certification for Pastoral Counselors is the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE). Certification by the ACPE typically requires a post-graduate degree from a seminary, at least a master’s degree in a mental health discipline, and extensive supervised clinical training. However, the State of Connecticut does not license or regulate pastoral counseling, and a counselor may describe himself/herself as a Pastoral Counselor whether or not he/she is certified by any professional association.
Although Pastoral Counselors bring a spiritual dimension to their practice, people seeking counseling do not have to belong to any religious or spiritual organization to be in counseling with a Pastoral Counselor.
TO FIND PROVIDERS IN CONNECTICUT’S COMMUNITY RESOURCES DATABASE:
SOURCES: Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE)
PREPARED BY: 211/jm
CONTENT LAST REVIEWED: January2023