How to Become a Christian Marriage Counselor
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Christian marriage counselors use their foundation in the Christian religion to provide mental help with traditional psychological methods. These marriage counselors are often qualified to counsel people on issues such as marriage, family, occupation, and psychological disorders using a faith-based approach. There are a series of steps Christian marriage counselors can complete to become an exceptional marriage counselor. If employed by a church, the institution often gives you the power to counsel people. These steps are not required many places, but they will ensure you are the best Christian marriage counselor you can be.
Earn a bachelor's degree in psychology and a minor in religious studies--whether theology, ministry or philosophy--from an accredited university. Your foundation should be mainstream mental health practices. A psychology degree will give you the necessary tools to proceed with your pursuit of becoming a Christian marriage counselor. A minor in religious studies will give you a framework from which to expand when you get to post-graduate studies.
Participate in a psychology-related internship, whether at a conflict-resolution center or counseling center. Learn the ins and outs of the industry, fully immersing yourself in the profession.
Earn a master's degree in Christian marriage and family therapy from either a seminary or university that has an accredited religious family therapy program. A master's in marriage and family therapy will integrate what you learned in your undergraduate studies with Christianity and teach you how to provide practical advice from a faith-based approach, with a specialty in marriage and family issues.
Complete a Ph.D. program in psychology if you think it's necessary. A doctorate will further dive into the human mind and help you better understand the anatomy of the brain, human behaviors and conflict resolution.
Begin a Christian marriage counseling practice either through an agency or a church. If you counsel through a church, you probably won't be able to charge your clients, so your salary needs to be enough to financially sustain you and your family. If you counsel in an independent practice, your rates are more flexible.
Mitchell Holt has a bachelor's degree in print journalism from Abilene Christian University and has been freelancing since 2009 with work published in various newspapers and magazines like "BostonNOW" and "The Abilene Reporter-News." Holt also writes sales copy for small businesses. His clients include The Kyle David Group, ITNewton, 18 Vodka, RoboQuote and more.