Studium Theologicum Salesianum
Salesian Pontifical University : Faculty of Theology - Jerusalem Campus

International Conference on Pastoral Leadership

Jerusalem. 25 September 2013
The Academic community of Studium Theologicum Salesianum was enthralled by an insightful conference on “Pastoral Leadership - Psychological Dimensions of Growth and Deficitsby Rev. Fr. George Palamattathil, PhDClinical Psychology, University of San Francisco, USA; Director, Siloam – Transformational Leadership Resource Centre, India. The audience was composed of people from over thirty countries.

Beginning with examples of the leadership of Jesus, John the Baptist, Benedict XVI, Francis, Maxwell and others, Fr. George weaved a colourful insight into servant leadership that is called for in Pastoral Leadership.

The talk focused on the psychological dimensions of growth in leadership that stem from having adequately met the hierarchy of needs as proposed by Maslow. The shadows or dark side of leadership was shown to be linked to the deficits in the need satisfaction in the various phases of growth.

Deep insights into the role of the family, community, socializing etc., in order for the psychological needs to be met drew much attention from the audience. While money can be a means to satisfy physical needs, no amount of money can satisfy the psychological needs for safety, acceptance, effectiveness and self-actualization. These can be met only in and through others. Hence there is the need for education to socialization and genuine concern and compassion for others.

Pastoral leadership needs growing into Jesus, modeling our lives after him. The hymn of St. Francis of Assisi which says: “O Master grant that I may never seek so much to be consoled as to console, to be understood as to understand, to be loved as to love with all my soul” summarizes servant leadership that Jesus lived. Every pastor has to imitate the servant leadership of Jesus and find his happiness in giving. A very energetic question and answer session followed the lecture. The conference ended with every participant wanting more. Deacon Gabriel Colney ably facilitated the event as the master of ceremonies.

Pastoral Conference
Pastoral Conference
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