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Bowen Family Systems Theory in Christian Ministry


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B Soc Stud., MSc., PhD. Jenny has been a scholar of Bowen's theory since discovering it in a post grad couple and family therapy program in New York in 1992. In 2004 she founded a training institute in Bowen family systems theory in Sydney Australia. Jenny has been providing training for many people interested in exploring systems thinking in both mental health and in ministry for many years. Her current professional interest extends from her doctoral research in involving parents in systems interventions in the treatment of their children's mental health issues. She is author of Growing Yourself Up: How to bring your best to all of life's relationships (2012, 2017). Jenny is married to David and has 2 adult children and grandchildren. She is actively involved in her church congregation and para-church programs. BA, B Social Work, M Couple and Family Therapy. Lauren is an Accredited Mental Health Social Worker and Family Therapist who lives in Canberra with her husband Andrew and their three children. Over the past ten years Lauren has worked in child and adolescent mental health services and private practice in Australia and Scotland, and is currently working at headspace Canberra and lecturing at Charles Sturt University. She has published articles with the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy and in 2019 she completed the Family Systems Institute's Graduate Certificate Program in Bowen Family Systems Theory and Practice. Since first encountering Bowen theory through her family therapy work, Lauren has found it a compelling description of the challenges we all face in life's relationships, with the ideas resonating across therapeutic, workplace and ministry contexts.


In this rich collection of essays, the authors critically connect their commitment to Scripture as authority for faith and practice with their experience of learning and living with a natural systems perspective on congregational and personal life, allowing the former to critique or enhance the latter at times.R. Robert Creech, Ph.D I am very grateful to the editors and authors for this rich contribution to the literature. Throughout many years of working with pastors and other Christian helping professionals, I have observed an alarming lack of informed wisdom when it comes to understanding systems in general and family dynamics in particular. This timely resource deepens the understanding and enriches the practice of Christians toward fruitful ministry.'Donald C. Guthrie, EdD, I see this as a resource to equip me to be a calmer and more thoughtful servant of God and others, through growing a better understanding of what is going on in, and around me.Caroline Spencer, Program Manager, Trainer, Evangelist, City Bible Forum AustraliaThis book's great value is its melding of the practical, theoretical, theological and personal aspects of Bowen family systems theory. It will be helpful to those in Christian ministry, both beginning practitioners of the theory and seasoned system thinkers alike.The Rt Revd Dr Richard Condie, Bishop of Tasmania, Australia.This volume has a variety of contributors who are well respected Christian thinkers who have reflected at a deep theological level to show the Bowen theory's strengths and its shortcomings and how it might be helpfully applied Christianly. I will certainly be recommending this collection of essays.Archie Poulos, Head, Ministry Department, Moore Theological College, Newtown, Australia.People from many theological perspectives and ministry settings can benefit from seeing how ministers seek to put Bowen family systems theory to work in a way consistent with their principles and beliefs.Margaret Marcuson, The chapters in this book reveal the complexity and layers of what it means to be relational and Christian. I will use it as a resource for growing my understanding of human functioning, relationships, how to face life challenges and for growing in my Christian faith.Veronica Peters BSc (Psych) MAPS, MAAFT Psychologist and Family Therapist, Faculty at The Family Systems Institute, Sydney, Australia

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