Psychological Sciences for Ministry From Surviving to Thriving collage 1280x720

Psychological Sciences for Ministry

Fuller faculty explore the many ways that a deeper understanding of the psychological sciences equips ministry leaders to pastor, disciple, worship, and walk alongside others in every area of ministry.

“By drawing upon the best of the psychological sciences, our hope is that. . . you might have a few tools that will enable you to not just survive but to actually thrive in your ministry.”

Kutter Callaway
Kutter Callaway

Psychological Sciences for Ministry: From Surviving to Thriving

Kutter Callaway introduces this FULLER dialogues series on the psychological sciences, meant to equip ministry leaders to better understand themselves and to better walk alongside others. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Alexis Abernethy

The Worshiping Body: Uniting the Spiritual and the Physical

In the first of six videos on “The Worshiping Body,” Alexis Abernethy shares about how she was led to specialize in the areas of health and spirituality. WATCHTheology and Protest

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Alexis Abernethy

The Worshiping Body: Measuring Spirituality and Health Outcomes

In the second of six videos on “The Worshiping Body,” Alexis Abernethy talks about the relationship between religious coping and positive health outcomes. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Alexis Abernethy

The Worshiping Body: The Psychophysiology of Worship

In the third of six videos on “The Worshiping Body,” Alexis Abernethy talks about the transformative impact corporate worship has on individuals and communities. WATCHTheology and Protest

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Alexis Abernethy

The Worshiping Body: Purpose-driven and Performance-driven Leadership

In the fifth of six videos on “The Worshiping Body,” Alexis Abernethy considers how mirroring is at play in the context of worship and worship leading. WATCHTheology and Protest

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Alexis Abernethy

The Worshiping Body: Worship Leading As Mirroring

In the fifth of six videos on “The Worshiping Body,” Alexis Abernethy considers how mirroring is at play in the context of worship and worship leading. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Alexis Abernethy

The Worshiping Body: Worship As Caught More Than Taught

In the last of six videos on “The Worshiping Body,” Alexis Abernethy emphasizes the importance a life in God has in shaping one’s leadership and ministry. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Brad Strawn

Extended Cognition: Extended and Embodied Cognition

In the first of seven videos on “Extended Cognition,” Brad Strawn explains how human cognition is not limited to an individual esoteric mind or even to an individual’s own body. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Brad Strawn

Extended Cognition: Extended Cognition and Christian Community

In the second of seven videos on “Extended Cognition,” Brad Strawn says we cannot be spiritually robust without our connection with other bodies. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Brad Strawn

Extended Cognition: Jesus Touching and Healing Through the Body

In the third of seven videos on “Extended Cognition,” Brad Strawn considers the embodied and tangible nature of Jesus’ work and what it means for the ministry of Jesus’ disciples. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Brad Strawn

Extended Cognition: Embodied Cognition and Relational Pain

In the fourth of seven videos on “Extended Cognition,” Brad Strawn reflects on the ways healing can come through relationships and community. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Brad Strawn

Extended Cognition: A Puny Spirituality and an Unhealthy Theology

In the fifth of seven videos on “Extended Cognition,” Brad Strawn talks about how theological claims can be put to psychological tests and how psychology speaks to and informs our theology. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Brad Strawn

Extended Cognition: Response-Abled Grace

In the sixth of seven videos on “Extended Cognition,” Brad D. Strawn engages with the theological question of divine and human relationship and responsibility. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Brad Strawn

Extended Cognition: Know Yourself

In the last of seven videos on “Extended Cognition,” Brad D. Strawn says that who we are as people—our identities, backgrounds, personalities—deeply impacts the ways we minister. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Cameron Lee

The Church as Family System: Getting Unstuck

In the first of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee introduces the idea that understanding family systems helps us engage with problematic patterns that emerge in our churches. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Cameron Lee

The Church As Family System: Systems Theory and Patterns of Relationship

In the second of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee teaches about problematic patterns of relationship and how learning to identify our own behaviors can be a step in shifting such patterns. WATCHTheology and Protest

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Cameron Lee

The Church As Family System: With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility

In the third of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee discusses the responsibility that those with power have—as well as the importance of humility. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Cameron Lee

The Church As Family System: Flourishing From a Systems Perspective

In the fourth of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee talks about ways of taking responsibility for how we are in relationship with others. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Cameron Lee

The Church As Family System: Past Systems Informing New Systems

In the fifth of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee speaks about how our pasts inform how we behave in the churches and organizations we enter into. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Cameron Lee

The Church As Family System: Emotionally Healthy Church

In the sixth of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee speaks on the strength of the church’s witness when we are able to better navigate our differences. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Cameron Lee

The Church As Family System: Re-reading the Biblical Narrative Through Systems Theory

In the seventh of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee explains how family systems theory shapes the way we read and interpret the biblical text. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Cameron Lee

The Church As Family System: On the Danger of Avoiding Psychological Science

In the eighth of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee cautions us against closing ourselves off to things we may not want to believe but actually help us develop in positive ways. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Cameron Lee

The Church As Family System: Responding to Divisiveness and Polarization

In the ninth of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee reflects on how we might enable positive conversations across divides. WATCHTheology and Protest

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Cameron Lee

The Church As Family System: Agents of God’s Shalom

In the last of ten videos on “The Church as Family System,” Cameron Lee hopes that the psychological sciences might help equip us for the ministries to which God has called us. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Cynthia Eriksson

Trauma-Informed Ministry: Trauma As a Threat to Existence

In the first of six videos on “Trauma-Informed Ministry,” Cynthia Eriksson describes various kinds of trauma and reflects on our need to walk alongside each other in our suffering. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Cynthia Eriksson

Trauma-Informed Ministry: Key Elements

In the second of six videos on “Trauma-Informed Ministry,” Cynthia Eriksson outlines some guiding principles for trauma-informed approaches. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Trauma-Informed Ministry: Cultural, Historical, and Gender Dynamics

In the third of six videos on “Trauma-Informed Ministry,” Cynthia Eriksson considers the dynamics of trauma in the broader narrative of a person’s social and historical context. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Cynthia Eriksson

Trauma-Informed Ministry: On Resilience and Recovery

In the fourth of six videos on “Trauma-Informed Ministry,” Cynthia Eriksson reflects on the safe relationships and spaces in which people can find healing. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Cynthia Eriksson

Trauma-Informed Ministry: The Psalms As a Unique Part of Trauma Recovery

In the fifth of six videos on “Trauma-Informed Ministry,” Cynthia Eriksson looks at the lamentations in the Scriptures and how such expressions are part of our recovery and our relationship with God. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Cynthia Eriksson

Trauma-Informed Ministry: Self-Care Practices

In the last of six videos on “Trauma-Informed Ministry,” Cynthia Eriksson highlights practices for resilience and recovery. WATCHTheology and Protest

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Kenneth T. Wang

Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science: Stinky Tofu

In the first of seven videos on “Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science,” Kenneth T. Wang gives an introduction to empirical research using a well-loved tofu dish as an illustration. WATCHTheology and Protest

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Kenneth T. Wang

Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science: What Do the Data Say?

In the second of seven videos on “Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science,” Kenneth T. Wang explains how data analysis provides an objective approach to confirming, or disconfirming, hypotheses. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Kenneth T. Wang

Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science: Gideon As a Faithful Researcher

In the fourth of seven videos on “Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science,” Kenneth T. Wang notes how empirical science and our belief in God intersect as both involve a movement toward truth. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Kenneth T. Wang

Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science: Research As the Pursuit of Truth

In the fourth of seven videos on “Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science,” Kenneth T. Wang notes how empirical science and our belief in God intersect as both involve a movement toward truth. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Kenneth T. Wang

Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science: Understanding Human Emotions

In the fifth of seven videos on “Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science,” Kenneth T. Wang talks about how the psychological sciences help us understand emotions—beyond cognition, thoughts, and beliefs. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Kenneth T. Wang

Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science: On Being Empathized

In the sixth of seven videos on “Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science,” Kenneth T. Wang discusses empathy and the ways God empathizes with our human experience and emotions. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Kenneth T. Wang

Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science: The Importance of Humility

In the last of seven videos on “Pursuing Truth Through Empirical Science,” Kenneth T. Wang encourages humility as he emphasizes the reality that none of us are perfect of self-sufficient. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Kutter Callaway

The Cognitive Sciences and Belief

In the first of nine videos on “The Cognitive Sciences and Belief,” Kutter Callaway introduces the intersections and dynamics of cognitive science and religious belief. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Kutter Callaway

The Cognitive Sciences and Belief: Humans Are Not Blank Slates

In the second of nine videos on “The Cognitive Sciences and Belief,” Kutter Callaway talks about how humans are deeply embodied creatures who develop not only to exist in our environments but to thrive in them. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Kutter Callaway

The Cognitive Sciences and Belief: Maturationally Natural Capacities

In the third of nine videos on “The Cognitive Sciences and Belief,” Kutter Callaway explains the distinction between maturationally natural capacities and practiced naturalness. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Kutter Callaway

The Cognitive Sciences and Belief: Dual Process Cognition

In the fourth of nine videos on “The Cognitive Sciences and Belief,” Kutter Callaway highlights two systems of thought that form our religious beliefs. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Kutter Callaway

The Cognitive Sciences and Belief: Reflective and Non-reflective Beliefs

In the fifth of nine videos on “The Cognitive Sciences and Belief,” Kutter Callaway examines two kinds of belief related to our spiritual and religious thinking. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Kutter Callaway

The Cognitive Sciences and Belief: Non-reflective Beliefs As the Default

In the sixth of nine videos on “The Cognitive Sciences and Belief,” Kutter Callaway explores the ways reflective and non-reflective beliefs are interrelated. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Kutter Callaway

The Cognitive Sciences and Belief: None of Us Are Purely Rational Creatures

In the seventh of nine videos on “The Cognitive Sciences and Belief,” Kutter Callaway talks about the common frustrations we might have about wanting to change people’s behaviors and reflects on finding ways to tap into people’s intuitive belief systems. WATCHTheology and Protest

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Kutter Callaway

The Cognitive Sciences and Belief: Counterintuitive Teaching

In the eighth of nine videos on “The Cognitive Sciences and Belief,” Kutter Callaway encourages those who teach or lead to distinguish between people’s different levels of belief in order to best walk alongside them. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Kutter Callaway

The Cognitive Sciences and Belief: Christian Ritual As Scaffolding

In the last of nine videos on “The Cognitive Sciences and Belief,” Kutter Callaway summarizes how understanding the cognitive sciences in relation to our faith helps ministry leaders in areas of teaching and discipleship. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Pamela Ebstyne King

The Science of Thriving: Saved For Something, Not Just From Something

In the first of seven videos on “The Science of Thriving,” Pamela Ebstyne King shares how the psychological sciences help us understand our narratives and identities—and how to thrive in them. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Pamela Ebstyne King

The Science of Thriving: Thriving As Engaging in the World, Others, and God

In the second of seven videos on “The Science of Thriving,” Pamela Ebstyne King reflects on the Christian’s participation in God’s ongoing work in the world. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Pamela Ebstyne King

The Science of Thriving: Relational Developmental Systems Theory

In the third of seven videos on “The Science of Thriving,” Pamela Ebstyne King explains how humans develop in relationship to the contexts we inhabit. WATCHHolistic Healing and Wellness

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Pamela Ebstyne King

The Science of Thriving: Developmental Systems in Ministry

In the fourth of seven videos on “The Science of Thriving,” Pamela Ebstyne King shares how understanding developmental systems for different groups helps us care more effectively for those we serve. WATCHTheology and Protest

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Pamela Ebstyne King

The Science of Thriving: Emotion Regulation

In the fifth of seven videos on “The Science of Thriving,” Pamela Ebstyne King talks about practices that assist in emotional regulation—and about how such regulation is important for us as we help others. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Pamela Ebstyne King

The Science of Thriving: Bridging the Nature-Niche Gap

In the sixth of seven videos on “The Science of Thriving,” Pamela Ebstyne King describes the constant gap between our human capacities and the world around us, as well as how we bridge these gaps with our capacities to learn and adapt. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Pamela Ebstyne King

The Science of Thriving: Optimal Development

In the last of seven videos on “The Science of Thriving,” Pamela Ebstyne King reflects on how the psychological sciences help us reach the ends that theology and faith identify. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Warren Brown

Complex Dynamical Systems: The Neuroscience of Human Personhood

In the first of six videos on “Complex Dynamical Systems,” Warren S. Brown introduces how neuroscience helps us have an embodied understanding of the nature of persons. WATCHMigration in Missiological Perspective

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Warren Brown

Complex Dynamical Systems: Persons As Complex, Relational Systems

In the second of six videos on “Complex Dynamical Systems,” Warren S. Brown describes people as complex systems that are organized in deep relationality. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Warren Brown

Complex Dynamical Systems: Embodiment and Social Histories

In the third of six videos on “Complex Dynamical Systems,” Warren S. Brown shares about how persons’ lives are built through continuous reorganizing and adapting in the face of new situations. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Warren Brown

Complex Dynamical Systems: Catastrophe As Regeneration

In the fourth of six videos on “Complex Dynamical Systems,” Warren S. Brown explains how certain catastrophes cause major reorganizations of ourselves and our experiences—and how the Christian life is one such reorganization. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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Warren Brown

Complex Dynamical Systems: On Avoiding Abstractions

In the fifth of six videos on “Complex Dynamical Systems,” Warren S. Brown cautions that overly abstract theological and philosophical discussions can become too disconnected from humans’ real and embodied nature and experience. WATCHDr. King’s Legacy and Lessons for the Modern Movement

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Warren Brown

Complex Dynamical Systems: Embodied Cognition and the Life of the Church

In the last of six videos on “Complex Dynamical Systems,” Warren S. Brown reflects on the church as a network of interactive persons informing and forming one another in a way that reflects the gospel. WATCHThe Mission of Health

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integration symposium

This series was produced as a resource for Fuller’s Psychological Sciences for Ministry class, a core integration class for all students of mission and theology. We are pleased to make these resources available for all.