In this issue
Something to ponder
Individualism appears to be in the ascendancy, to the neglect of the benefits of belonging and relating to others with care and consideration, observes John Eatock
APSCC’s 40th anniversary conference
Details of keynote speakers
Reflections on psychology and religion
Nicholas Gibson talks to Fraser Watts: psychologist, theologian and priest
Working with loss
Voluntary chaplain in a special school, Judi Hattaway shares her moving and insightful experience of accompanying pupils and staff as they face multiple losses
Andrew Peden considers the potential for conflict and creativity between Jung and Christian therapists
Trauma and spirituality: exploring a more holistic approach to recovery
Colleen Brown reports on a unique conference recently held in Belfast
The big silence
On 21 March a very varied group gathered at Campion Hall, Oxford. Chris Jenkins reports
Have too many Christian priests become divorced from their humanity, wonders Martin Kelly
Welcome from the editor
So much is happening in the world of APSCC at the moment that it is hard to know where to begin. Preparations for our conference in September are well under way and you can read all about it. The conference will be a chance both to celebrate 40 years of development and to look forward together while focusing on the practical difference spirituality – of whatever kind – makes to us and our work. I look forward very much to seeing you in Cirencester.
John Eatock, who has been working with us as BACP’s Lead Advisor for Counselling and Psychotherapy in Spiritual and Pastoral Care and has played a key role in our recent development, is retiring this summer. John’s contribution cannot be exaggerated, not only through his prodigious work but also his ‘encouragement’ to myself and the executive – at times, fairly forceful encouragement – but only when we needed it! John will be with us at conference and we will have the chance to thank him more personally.
Conference will also mark the end of my own time as Chair (strictly speaking it will be a few weeks later). It has been an enormous privilege to hold this post at such a time of growth and change. And I say that despite those frustrations which, at times, made me wonder why on earth I ever took it on! Thankfully the division is richly blessed with talented people. We have new members willing to be of service and, in the autumn, may well have to have an election again – a sure sign of health!
Many other divisions within BACP are, very understandably, putting a lot of time and energy into supporting members whose jobs are threatened by the current cutbacks. Although APSCC is not focused on a particular workplace setting, I am aware that we have members in every setting and have already heard of redundancies, short-term working and the loss of funding for carefully developed and vital services. It might be very helpful if some members could share these experiences through Thresholds and we can see what, in liaison with colleagues, might be possible in terms of sharing and mutual support.
Finally, a word of thanks to our contributors who continue to produce a wide range of fascinating pieces. This time we have articles on Jung, coping with bereavement in a special school, psychology and theology, and much more. And, as always, remember that if what you are looking for isn’t here, it is an invitation to get writing!
Chair, APSCC; Editor, Thresholds