Navigating relationship complexities in ministry contexts

Our Systems in Ministry programs aim to promote systems thinking in diverse Christian ministry contexts that aids in the development of mature ministry workers who engage in fruitful and sustainable ministries. We do this by growing our understanding of ourselves amidst our relationship complexities while equipping others to do the same.

Systems in Ministry

Family systems theory is a great tool for ministry workers to use in their relationships, both at church and in their own families.

“To see things from a systems perspective requires getting out of a ‘cause and effect’ way of thinking to seeing how every person’s impulses are part of a circuit of reactions that flow like electric currents around relationships.” – Dr Jenny Brown

Our systems in ministry training features a collection of different activities – ministry modules, supervision groups and symposiums – that you can do as one-off events based on your interest or capacity, or choose a collection that meets your learning needs.

This year we are offering NEW structured Ministry Modules as lunchtime reading and discussion groups on topics relevant to ministry contexts; our popular systems in ministry supervision groups are continuing and new applicants are welcome; and our annual systems in ministry symposium. More information about each of these activities are below.

For those interesting in investigating family systems theory in more depth and its application to ministry coaching / supervision, pastoral care and ministry leadership, find out more about the Certificate in Family Systems Theory and Application.

Systems in Ministry

Our Systems in Ministry programs offer a range of opportunities – including ministry modules, supervision groups, and ministry symposiums – for those in ministry, lay leadership, pastoral care, chaplaincy, and other ministry settings to consider the application of systems theory to relationship dilemmas in their own context.

What is Bowen Theory?

Bowen family systems theory was developed by psychiatrist and researcher Dr Murray Bowen (1913–90). It is a theory backed up by a growing body of empirical research.

In recent years Bowen’s concept of ‘differentiation of self’ — which describes differing levels of maturity in relationships — has been shown by researchers to be related to important areas of well-being, including marital satisfaction, and the capacity to handle stress, make decisions and manage social anxiety.

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