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Sacred Spaces

Sacred Spaces, the e-journal of the American Association of Pastoral Counselors endeavors to include a variety of theological and human science perspectives as well as quantitative and qualitative research in addressing issues and topics relating to pastoral counseling. It is AAPC's hope to encourage students, clinicians, supervisors, and teachers to write scholarly and reflective articles on topics relating to pastoral counseling. Please review our submission guidelines here if you are interested in submitting an article.

The Editorial Board is seeking articles for future issues. If you have questions after reviewing the submission guidelines please contact one of our editors:


Sacred Spaces Editorial Board

Kathleen Greider, Ph.D.
Horace Griffin, Ph.D. Jaco Hamman, Ph.D.
Bill Harkins, Ph.D. Ryan LaMothe, Ph.D. Cody J. Sanders, Ph.D.
William Schmidt, Ph.D. Elizabeth Walker, Th.D. Bruce Vaughn, Ph.D.

Sacred Spaces is published annually. We wish to acknowledge James Hyde, Founding Editor, for his vision and leadership.


Current Issue - Volume 10 (2018)

It almost seems trite to acknowledge that there is too much suffering in this world. For theological educators, there are already plenty of case study materials to learn to craft and test theological commitments in practice in the most difficult of circumstances. Yet, human suffering and attending to the relentless conflicts and tragedies, births and renewals in our shared pasts and present experiences are part of our work. This is in fact the sacred starting point for theological educators, as well as pastoral caregivers. How are we called to teach into and from suffering? How do we learn about the promise of human flourishing? This special guest issue of Sacred Spaces takes up these timely questions to reflect on immersion pedagogies in theological education.

Sacred Spaces contain the views and opinions of their authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of AAPC.


Previous Issues

Volume 9 (2017)
This volume of Sacred Spaces, we are pleased to present a collection of wide-ranging essays that focus on the fruitful and transformative intersections between biblical interpretation and pastoral care. Whether singly or jointly authored, these essays model a dynamic, interactive reading of human situations and biblical texts in order to reveal the multivalent complexities of both. Drawing upon texts throughout the Bible and diverse psychological theories, the authors bridge the long-standing divide between the ‘classical’ and ‘practical’ disciplines.

    Volume 8 (2016)
    The articles in Volume 8 of Sacred Spaces illuminate several areas of concern for pastoral practitioners working with LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer) people in ways that build upon previous literature in the field. 
    Read a different way, these articles serve to set a new agenda for pastoral theological engagement with LGBTQ concerns.

    Volume 7 (2015)

    Sacred Spaces, Volume 7, provides articles from pastoral theologians and counselors who have spent considerable time and thought trying to integrate neuroscience research and pastoral practice. Their pioneering work represents the field's initial steps toward making use of the insights of brain science for pastoral care and counseling.

    Volume 6 (2014)

    We do not do enough as a society to care for children and their parents. Pastoral care providers, who tend to children and families, face many challenges in caring for children in this society. Sacred Spaces, Volume 6, is devoted to the topic of children and pastoral care and counseling.

    Volume 5 (2013)

    In Sacred Spaces, Volume 5, our authors reflect on concerns and maladies, exploring the etiologies and theoretical frameworks that surround these as we seek to approach each individual with “best practices” in pastoral care and counseling.

    Volume 4 (2012)

    In Sacred Spaces, Volume 4, our contributors take up Dr. Homer Ashby's concerns by recognizing the need for vision and healing for black people from past and present systemic racism and liberating lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgendered people of all races from current religious and social oppressions. The writers offer this scholarship as resources for pastoral counselors and others working with marginalized groups.


    Volume 3 (2011)

    In Sacred Spaces, Volume 3, prominent educators address Korean American topics and issues in pastoral care and counseling.

    Volume 2 (2010)

    In Sacred Spaces, Volume 2, AAPC continues to explore the diverse clinical and theoretical issues important to pastoral care and counseling. 

    Volume 1 (2009)

    In this inaugural issue of Sacred Spaces, are articles that address diverse clinical and theoretical issues. In addition, we have included the voices of two prominent contributors to the field of pastoral care, counseling, and theology.