Date of Award


Document Type

Project Portfolio

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry (DMin)



First Advisor

Jeney Park-Hearn, PhD

Second Advisor

Holley Clough, DMin

Third Advisor

MaryKate Morse, PhD


What if Reformed pastors cared about every aspect of their humanity with the same passion they care about their doctrine? When we think about the health of the reformed pastor, we tend to think mainly in terms of our orthodoxy. From 2018-2022 I have witnessed the most orthodox of pastors fall into marital unfaithfulness, resign due to relational conflict, and suffer from burnout. All of this within the state of Utah, where there are only 7 PCA churches. Therefore, there is a need to bridge the gap between Reformed Theology and the emotional, spiritual, and relational health in pastors of the Presbyterian Church in America in the state of Utah.

The imbalance of the emphasis on doctrine stems from a misunderstanding of John Calvin’s famous statement on the knowledge of God and knowledge of self. Most see this knowledge as intellectual and doctrinal. Calvin, however, cared more about the emotional life of Christians than is often thought. He saw emotions as a vital part of what it means to be made in the image of God; not simply intellect and correct theology.

This insight is important for PCA pastors in Utah because being a healthy pastor in our denomination emphasizes orthodoxy; orthopathy is suspect. Belief is most important and little attention is given to other aspects of their humanity. My role is to help them put on their own “oxygen masks” so they can be of help to others. I am not asking them to de-emphasize their doctrine; I am asking them to put a greater emphasis on the other important aspects of their humanity. The project I have created is a three-day retreat that gives pastors the time and space to get away from the routines of pastoral ministry, and to focus on their emotional, spiritual, and relational well-being.

Included in

Christianity Commons