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Introducing the Pastoral Spiral Sandie Cornish. © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January 2007. What is the Pastoral Spiral? A pastoral theology method.

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Presentation on theme: "Introducing the Pastoral Spiral Sandie Cornish. © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January 2007. What is the Pastoral Spiral? A pastoral theology method."— Presentation transcript:

1 Introducing the Pastoral Spiral Sandie Cornish

2 © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January What is the Pastoral Spiral? A pastoral theology method developed by Joe Holland & Peter Henriot SJ to assist groups responding to social issues. A pastoral theology method developed by Joe Holland & Peter Henriot SJ to assist groups responding to social issues. Widely used by social justice workers around the world since the booklet Social Analysis was published by the Centre of Concern in Widely used by social justice workers around the world since the booklet Social Analysis was published by the Centre of Concern in A revised and expanded edition Social Analysis: Linking Faith & Justice was published by Orbis in A revised and expanded edition Social Analysis: Linking Faith & Justice was published by Orbis in Has roots in the ‘see, judge, act’ method of Cardinal Joseph Cardijn; the ‘hermeneutic circle’ of Juan Luis Segundo; the methodology of modern Catholic Social Teaching; and the spirituality of St Ignatius of Loyola. Has roots in the ‘see, judge, act’ method of Cardinal Joseph Cardijn; the ‘hermeneutic circle’ of Juan Luis Segundo; the methodology of modern Catholic Social Teaching; and the spirituality of St Ignatius of Loyola.

3 © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January What is the Pastoral Spiral? A flexible framework that can be been used for pastoral, academic or community action purposes. A flexible framework that can be been used for pastoral, academic or community action purposes. Known as the pastoral circle, pastoral cycle or pastoral spiral. Known as the pastoral circle, pastoral cycle or pastoral spiral. The moments are known as: The moments are known as: experience or contact;experience or contact; social analysis or simply analysis;social analysis or simply analysis; theological reflection or reflection;theological reflection or reflection; and pastoral planning or response.and pastoral planning or response. Not a closed circle: action leads to a new reality, new experience to the examined. Not a closed circle: action leads to a new reality, new experience to the examined.

4 © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January Four Questions The Pastoral Spiral leads us through four questions: The Pastoral Spiral leads us through four questions: What is happening?What is happening? Why is it happening?Why is it happening? What does it mean?What does it mean? How shall we respond?How shall we respond? These questions correspond to the four moments in the spiral. These questions correspond to the four moments in the spiral.

5 © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January Three Dimensions This method address the cognitive, affective and the effective. This method address the cognitive, affective and the effective. Experience and analysis help us to achieve better understanding – the cognitive Experience and analysis help us to achieve better understanding – the cognitive Immersion or contact in the experience moment can also help us get in touch with feelings – the affective Immersion or contact in the experience moment can also help us get in touch with feelings – the affective Theological reflection helps us to get in touch with deeper values – the affective Theological reflection helps us to get in touch with deeper values – the affective Planning for improved responses to issues and situations – the effective Planning for improved responses to issues and situations – the effective

6 © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January Experience Start with the data of human experience. Start with the data of human experience. Describe the problem: Describe the problem: What is the lived experience?What is the lived experience? What is happening to people?What is happening to people? Are we listening to the people most directly affected? Are we listening to the people most directly affected? See Judge Act Theological reflection Response Experience Analysis Can we / do we share their experience? Do we need to undertake exposure / immersion? Can we / do we share their experience? Do we need to undertake exposure / immersion? Experience

7 © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January Analysis Investigate the reality in a systematic and analytical way: Investigate the reality in a systematic and analytical way: What are the causes of the issue or situation? (These may be historical; political; economic; social or cultural) What are the causes of the issue or situation? (These may be historical; political; economic; social or cultural) What are the consequences? What are the consequences? How are these elements linked? How are these elements linked? Who are the key actors? (subjects; duty bearers; agents of influence; decision makers) Who are the key actors? (subjects; duty bearers; agents of influence; decision makers) See Judge Act Theological reflection Response Experience Analysis Experience

8 © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January Theological Reflection Reflect on the situation or issue in the light of the Gospel and Church teaching: Are Gospel values being upheld or denied? Are Gospel values being upheld or denied? How do the Scriptures speak to this issue or situation? How do the Scriptures speak to this issue or situation? How do the principles of CST speak to this issue or situation? How do the principles of CST speak to this issue or situation? What does Church teaching have to say about it? What does Church teaching have to say about it? Can the experience of the Christian community through time help us to discern this situation or issue? Can the experience of the Christian community through time help us to discern this situation or issue? See Judge Act Theological reflection Response Experience Analysis Experience

9 © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January Response Draw on reason, human knowledge and tradition: What should individuals, parishes, groups & agencies, the diocese/broader Church do? What should individuals, parishes, groups & agencies, the diocese/broader Church do? Does our action include: Does our action include: - Service of the poor or marginalized - Education or awareness raising - advocacy & transformation of causes - faith formation? See Judge Act Theological reflection Response Experience Analysis Experience

10 We Have Enough Information We can start with whatever information is available to us. We can start with whatever information is available to us. Making modest responses based on what we do know and understand can help us to avoid ‘analysis paralysis’. Making modest responses based on what we do know and understand can help us to avoid ‘analysis paralysis’. Our responses can continue to deepen as we gather more knowledge & experience, and analyze and reflect upon it. Our responses can continue to deepen as we gather more knowledge & experience, and analyze and reflect upon it. © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January 2007.

11 Going Round Again Our response will never be perfect or complete. Our response will never be perfect or complete. We need to evaluate our action and critically examine our methods. We need to evaluate our action and critically examine our methods. Has our action led to some change in the situation, ourselves, or our understanding of the situation? Has our action led to some change in the situation, ourselves, or our understanding of the situation? What is happening now? What is happening now? © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January 2007.

12 For Reflection & Discussion How do you currently go about your work for social justice? Does your way of working touch on the main elements of the Pastoral Spiral? How do you currently go about your work for social justice? Does your way of working touch on the main elements of the Pastoral Spiral? At their 34th General Congregation, the Society of Jesus decided that: At their 34th General Congregation, the Society of Jesus decided that: “…every Jesuit ministry can and should promote justice in at least one or more of the following ways: (a) direct service and accompaniment of the poor; (b) developing awareness of the demands of justice joined to the responsibility to achieve it; (c) participating in social mobilization for the creation of a more just social order”. (Decree 3, n 19) “…every Jesuit ministry can and should promote justice in at least one or more of the following ways: (a) direct service and accompaniment of the poor; (b) developing awareness of the demands of justice joined to the responsibility to achieve it; (c) participating in social mobilization for the creation of a more just social order”. (Decree 3, n 19) Does your action correspond to one or more of these categories? © Sandie Cornish, Australian Jesuits, January 2007.


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