METHOD OF TREATMENT
Biblical (also known as pastoral or ministerial) counseling methods are brief and will focus on solutions through biblical principles. It is the role of the biblical counselor to help the member understand the dynamics of their situation, the power of God in their lives, and to assist them in using their particular strengths to address these issues.
Regarding the nature of biblical counseling: As you talk about your thoughts, feelings, and experiences, we will work together as partners to gain the understanding and insight necessary for change to occur. As a Christian, the Bible and the Holy Spirit are our guides. Any goals for counseling and/or decisions you make to facilitate change are ultimately up to you.
This is a church-based ministry of New Song Church providing biblical counsel and prayer in individual and group settings. Our ministry is done by pastoral staff and lay-ministers herein referred to as “Ministers.” These individuals are not licensed as professional counselors or psychologists because they perform spiritual and biblical ministry and not secular or psychological counseling. If it becomes apparent that professional counseling may better address the member’s needs, the minister will immediately initiate an outside referral to a licensed professional counselor or psychologist.
GOALS, RISKS & BENEFITS
There is always a risk of emotional side effects from ministerial counseling. Oftentimes, symptoms worsen before they get better. Biblical counseling sometimes brings up painful emotions. The goal is to confront issues and emotions together and work through them with solutions and healing in mind.
Under all circumstances, sexual contact between a minister and ministry recipient is prohibited. If any minister suggests or attempts sexual advances, the ministry recipient shall terminate the session immediately and report the incident to the Executive Senior Pastor, or any other Elder not involved in the ministry.
RIGHT TO PRIVACY/CONFIDENTIALITY
All communication between the member and the biblical counselor becomes part of the Biblical Counseling Department records. Records are the property of New Song Church in accordance with legal requirements.
While most communication between a member and the biblical counselor is confidential, the following limitations and exceptions do exist:
- New Song Church or biblical counselor determines that the member is a danger to himself or someone else.
- New Song Church must report to the appropriate welfare agency if the member discloses abuse, neglect or exploitation of a child, elderly, or disabled person.
- The member authorizes, in writing, that New Song Church has permission to release records.
- New Song Church is ordered by a court to disclose information.
- New Song Church is otherwise required by law to disclose information.
- If member occupies a leadership or ministry position, New Song biblical counselor may disclose information to the person in authority over the member, in the event he or she deems it relevant to member’s fitness or ability to fulfill his/her position.
- Officially recognized church staff and lay-personnel may also have limited access to your pastoral file. Any other person seeking access to your pastoral file may do so only with your written permission. However, New Song Church cannot guarantee complete confidentiality with regard to the information received from you.
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- In marriage or family ministerial counseling, confidentiality belongs primarily to the relationship and not solely to the individual.
You should contact your primary physician, a local emergency room, or the local police department when necessary and appropriate. It is the member’s responsibility to seek the appropriate resources in emergency situations.
Any claim or dispute arising from or related to this Agreement, other than a claim for injunctive relief as otherwise provided in this Agreement, shall be settled by mediation or arbitration in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma County, Oklahoma, in accordance with the governing Rules of Procedure for Christian Conciliation of the Institute for Christian Conciliation. In the event that the Institute for Christian Conciliation ceases to exist during the course of this Agreement, arbitration under this section shall be conducted according to the rules of the American Arbitration Association. Judgment upon an arbitration award may be entered in any court otherwise having jurisdiction. The parties each agree to bear their own costs related to any mediation or arbitration proceeding.
By your signature below, you indicate that you have read and understood this statement, and any questions about this statement were answered to your satisfaction. You also indicate that if requested, you received a copy of this statement for your records.