Working Policy


HF 20 Methodologies
Three broad categories define the approaches to ministry to families facilitated by the department: education, enrichment, and counseling.

  1. Education—Substantial revelation concerning the divine purpose for families has been given. Practical principles which govern family relationships are found in Scripture and the Spirit of Prophecy. In the preparation of resources for family life education, the department centers its research and study on these primary sources and seeks to integrate biblical principles with helpful understanding and methodologies from other compatible mental health, behavioral, and social science sources.
  2. Enrichment—The department prepares resources in cooperation with the Church Resources Consortium and develops leadership in enrichment activities: experiential programs for married couples, families and singles groups, which enable participants to make relational gains together through sharing and interacting in various events and activities. Enrichment focuses directly on the family or group as a system in a process of enhancing relationships through better communication, deeper understanding, and an improved ability to resolve anger and conflict. In the absence of extended family, enrichment groups can function as a surrogate family. When enrichment activities are conducted among individuals who are part of the same local church, a spirit of community, support, and cooperation may be developed.
  3. Counseling—The crucial role and importance of the counseling profession in the lives of troubled families is recognized and appreciated. Many individuals and families are in such critical need as to require specialized work that is particularly tailored to assist them in resolving short- or long-term personal or relational crises and difficulties. The department encourages the referral of such individuals and families to professionally qualified counselors wherever possible. While the training of counselors is not within the purview of the department, it is recognized that the content and process of leadership development provided by the department may be useful to pastors and others who may be called upon to counsel. However, the limitations of pastoral and lay counseling must be fully recognized and appropriate caution taken.