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With the increasing popularity of Christian lay counseling programs come questions and concerns about ethical sensitivity to issues of competence. Ten guidelines are proposed for assessing the competence of lay Christian counselors: (1) are they not living in blatant sin, (2) are they and their families spiritually and emotionally healthy, (3) do they understand and use Scripture wisely, (4) do they represent themselves accurately, (5) do they refer when appropriate, (6) do they practice within their level of training, (7) do they request help for their own problems, (8) do they maintain current awareness of pertinent new developments, (9) do they use care when speaking in public, and (10) are they sensitive to human diversity. Implications for the emotional and mental health of the church are discussed.


Originally published in the Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 15, 29-37.

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