2014 Conference

Transformative Supervision

The highlights of the Conference were the formal Agreement we signed with Transforming Practices Inc., the Australian professional body with similar aims and objectives to APSE (which means we are now in a formal relationship with them), and launching Enriching Ministry – Pastoral Supervision in Practice (edited by APSE members Michael Paterson and Jessica Rose). To give a flavour of the rest of the Conference we asked three of those who attended for their views:

John-Francis Friendship writes:

Having not been able to attend Conference in 2013 I found myself both refreshed and re-energised by this year’s. Perhaps the fine weather and good food helped but it was the networking with others and the input from the speakers that was of particular benefit. The keynote speakers were Eveline Crotty and Peter Maher, past and present presidents of Transforming Practices (the Australian association for pastoral supervisors). They reminded me of the importance of reflective living. On our behalf Gill signed a Memorandum of Understanding with TP and we are now in a formal relationship with them. In the afternoon the small group I participated in, run by Michael Sean Patterson, proved both stimulating and challenging. Whilst we are only a small Association – perhaps because we are – I was reminded of the importance of supporting each other in our, often, isolated ministries. I was, therefore, grateful to be reminded that local Groups are beginning to emerge and have just booked a place on the SE Regional Group day on September 23rd – networking is of value!!

The Rev. Penny Graysmith writes:

I attended my first APSE conference with some trepidation. Having been attracted by the programme, I was daunted by looking at the website and the emphasis on counselling qualifications demonstrated by the majority of accredited members. As someone who has worked in pastoral ministry for many years but who is not a counsellor, I thought that, at best, I would be out of my depth, and, at worst, feel I should not have attended. In reality, the day was wide-ranging, friendly and inspiring in its desire to address theological as well as psychotherapeutic approaches. The workshop with Michael Patterson was especially helpful and stimulating as were lots of the ad hoc conversations. It appeared that APSE does want to network with those who are involved in pastoral supervision without being counsellors – and the day was full of riches of all sorts. Thank you.

Bob Whorton writes:

I always appreciate the APSE Conference and I think for me the value is in being with others who have a similar vision. Supervision is not the main part of my work, and the fires of enthusiasm can sometimes burn low. The Conference always fans the flames into life! Here are three things I took away with me:
1) A concern about APSE being a small organisation with an uncertain future;
2) Rich musings about ’containers’ – a water jar left by a woman at a well (John 4), containers breaking and being replaced or simply falling away – from the keynote address, and
3) The growing confidence in a theological approach to supervision which no longer needs to bow low to the psychological disciplines, but can treat them as other siblings.