The Materiality of Presence: Psycho-Theological Entanglement of Objects in Disaster Pastoral Care

Basic needs and material conditions undergird the responding practice of pastoral care in disaster situations. In the midst of trauma, disaster care unfolds in relation to material things, in all of their manifold reality-messy, fleshy and fluid. The urgency of such pastoral care in the public space...

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Bibliographic Details
Published in:Journal of pastoral theology
Main Author: Johannessen-Henry, Christine Tind
Format: Electronic Article
Language:English
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Published: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group [2016]
In:Journal of pastoral theology
Year: 2016, Volume: 26, Issue: 3, Pages: 195-214
Further subjects:B Pastoral care practice
B disaster response
B Public Theology
B Empirical Study
B Trauma
B ethnography
B material objects
B Sacrament
Online Access: Volltext (Resolving-System)
Description
Summary:Basic needs and material conditions undergird the responding practice of pastoral care in disaster situations. In the midst of trauma, disaster care unfolds in relation to material things, in all of their manifold reality-messy, fleshy and fluid. The urgency of such pastoral care in the public space of disasters may seem far from ecclesial roots. This paper scrutinizes how the physical aspects of such pastoral care accentuate a spiritual presence in both psychologically and theologically grounded ways. Through communal acts between victims and professionals, the traumatic scene is transformed, reflecting contours of the Sacrament. Based on an empirical study of Danish Lutheran ministers who participated in tsunami response work in 2004, and inspired by trauma theory, depth psychology and classical theology, this paper presents a theoretically grounded and spiritually open framework for embodied pastoral care. Finally, this article calls attention to the usefulness of such thinking in preparing for crisis management.
ISSN:2161-4504
Contains:Enthalten in: Journal of pastoral theology
Persistent identifiers:DOI: 10.1080/10649867.2017.1294042