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Ministry and Spiritual Care

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image of Journal of Empirical Theology

Abstract This article presents an empirical exploration of the attitudes of spiritual caregivers in health care institutions in the Netherlands towards ministry and their professional goals. Ministry can be classified into ministry per se and the position and modes of operation of spiritual care. A distinction is made between an immediate professional goal (communication on worldviews) and an ultimate goal (contribution to spiritual health). We examine the effects of beliefs about ministry on the professional goals, while controlling for relevant population and institutional characteristics. Attitudes towards ministry have the greatest impact on the ultimate goal of spiritual health. They also have a substantial impact on one immediate goal: the experiential-affective goal. The broader concept of worldview or spiritual competence and its relevance to the goals of spiritual care needs further research.

Affiliations: 1: Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre The Netherlands


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