Member Care 101

Essential Foundations of Pastoral Care

From Dick & Larrie Gardner:

Many years ago when we were asked to develop and lead Member Care for a large mission, we knew we needed training. We already had a Bible school diploma, B.A. in Psychology, B.A. in Religious Education, B.A. in Bible, two Master’s Degrees in Counseling, and a doctorate in Missions and Counseling. We also had completed a translation of the Scriptures. But we knew Member Care was different—and we needed that specialized training.


“Essential Foundations of Pastoral Care”, is a four-segment basic member care training. Video is from the workshop offered at the 2015 PTM Conference. These sessions could be profitable for you even if you’ve served some time on the field. The staff providing the training are all experienced, highly-qualified member care workers. The mechanisms we’ll use include personal stories, case studies, role plays, table groups, and much more. You’ll hear about our mistakes and victories, the obstacles and pitfalls to be avoided, and the rich ministry of investing in lives committed to strengthening God’s people.

Get Access to the Full Online Course: $150

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dick larrie

Dick & Larrie Gardner 
International Personnel Consultants & Trainers for Wycliffe Bible Translators & SIL

ken mary

Ken & Mary Royer
Link Care Center Director of Missionary Care (Ken)
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (Mary)

steve karum

Steve & Patty Karum
Co-director of Member Care, New Tribes Mission


Darwin & Darlis Anderson, International Messengers
Perry Bradford, Barnabas International
Bev Feiker, Barnabas International
Dean & Bettyann Johnson
Roni Pruitt, Columbia University


  1. Objectives:
    1. Build bridges to your mission/church/ministry’s goals, staff, and missionary issues
    2. Develop a therapeutic community
    3. Equip with information, tools, resources, relationships, cautions
    4. Promote accurate self-assessment and commitment to learn and grow
  2. Topics to consider
    1. Accountability – to whom and for what?
    2. Coaching
    3. Dealing with difficult personalities
    4. Debriefing 
    5. Functioning as h/w team
    6. How to assess people and situations
    7. Peace-making 360
    8. Promoting growth, wholeness and holiness
    9. Starting well; developing credibility; building rapport quickly
    10. Thinking beyond the spiritual - understanding the intersection between Biblical and clinical care
    11. Understanding life beyond the curtain
    12. Understanding life in front of the curtain
    13. Understanding the receptor organization
    14. Walking beside the leader
    15. What are the limits of my experience?
    16. What are the pitfalls?
    17. What kind of mistakes have other newbies made and how can I avoid them?
    18. When and how and to whom do I refer when over my head?
    19. Working collaboratively with other disciplines and specialties
  3. Cautions
    1. Avoiding evangelical “agendas” (i.e., Theophostic counseling or prayer counseling), but keeping it Biblical
    2. Understanding authority (you have none)
    3. Understanding confidentiality
    4. Understanding reporting – to whom; how much?
    5. Other?
    6. Unloading your load- how often? To whom? How much?