Pastoral Care - Facts and Figures

How does pastoral care contribute to society? To begin to answer this question, we need basic information on who receives care, by whom and how is caring for souls evaluated by those who are cared for. Facts and figures that we currently lack. This projects provides basic insights from parishes.

The National Church Life Survey ( NCLS) is developed in Australia to examine ‘wellbeing, spirituality and church health’ of Christian communities. In collaboration with the Protestant Church in the Netherlands, the PThU started a project to implement the survey to study Dutch church life. Project-leader is Marten van der Meulen. For the Dutch survey I developed a series of questions on pastoral care to study the number of pastoral conversations in a congregation and the quality of these conversations.

In 2019 a pilot was run, collecting data from 30 congregations. A second round of the survey is in preparation. Currently we work on the interpration of the data collected during the pilot. The goal for the project is to contribute empirical insights to the field of pastoral care and to start the reflection on the contribution of regular parish care to wellbeing and spiritual health in society.

The results of this pilot study have been published in ‘ Pastoral Psychology’ (2021).

Theo Pleizier
Theo Pleizier
Assistant Professor of Practical Theology

My research interests include pastoral care, preaching, military chaplaincy and missional theology.