Pastoral Carer and Companion Workshops

In loungerooms, cafes, churches and home offices… through Zoom screens, Whatsapp messages and calls… people are listening, asking questions, allowing silence, crying, laughing and praying with candidates and intercultural workers all around the globe.

Baptist Mission Australia highly values the large community of people who provide support, friendship, care and prayer for our intercultural teams. You are a vital part of our community and make an important contribution to mission. 

We want to support and equip you in your roles by facilitating regular workshop for you to listen, learn, reflect and grow in your capacity to provide excellent pastoral care. We’ve invited guests to share their expertise, learnings and experiences during the webinars, as well as provide opportunities for carers and companions to interact.

Register below to receive the Zoom link for the workshops.

Workshop Registration Form

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Aug 29: Discipline of Suffering: Redeeming our Stories of Pain

Workshop topic: Discipline of Suffering: Redeeming our Stories of Pain

When: Thurs 29 Aug, 7:00-8:30pm AEST 
Facilitator: Dr Katherine Thompson

The Discipline of Suffering is a transformative book that challenges the narratives we create during times of pain and suffering.

Unlike other books on this topic, the book offers practical strategies and life skills to reconstruct one's life amidst brokenness. It encourages Christians to confront personal challenges and embrace suffering as a catalyst for spiritual growth and a deepening faith in God.

Through real-life stories, the book provides hope, inspiration, and a safe space to explore difficult questions. It equips readers with the necessary tools to navigate through suffering and find meaning, leading to healing, resilience and a stronger faith.

Whether you seek healing, resilience or a renewed sense of purpose, The Discipline of Suffering is your guide to redeeming your story and finding meaning in the midst of adversity.

Dr Katherine Thompson
Katherine works in the area of mental health as a therapist, lecturer, author and researcher. She is passionate about supporting people especially youth with mental health challenges to live their best life and seeks to encourage people in ministry to thrive in their role. She currently divides her time between her work as a Mental Health Social Worker and therapist in private practice, and as a senior lecturer in Mental Health and Wellbeing at Melbourne School of Theology and Eastern College Australia.

Katherine has published in the areas of youth mental health, Christ-centred mindfulness, and cross-cultural mission, and the integration of psychology and faith. She is most content when outside in nature connecting to God in quietness through his creation.


More Information for Companions and Pastoral Carers

Pastoral Care Hands
If you are a Companion or pastoral carer of a Baptist Mission Australia team member, then you will be on their pastoral care 'hand'! 

What does this mean? 

It means that a team member in preparation or intercultural team member recognises that you might provide friendship, relationship, care and support to them on their mission journey. So, they’d love you to be part of their pastoral care ‘hand’. This metaphor helps people recognise up to five people who form their pastoral care network. 
You and the intercultural team member or team member in preparation will best determine how the relationship will work.
Some people might set up a Signal, WhatsApp or email group to communicate with their ‘hand’ as a group. They might use this to share prayer needs, concerns and celebrations. They might set up a regular Zoom gathering to share needs and pray together. Or, they might communicate with each person in different ways at different times. 

Your role is to provide care, prayer, support, encouragement and celebration. You might  increase your involvement in times of stress and vulnerability, for example, poor health, transitions, when there are few team members, times of team conflict, etc. 

There is no expectation that you report anything back to Baptist Mission Australia. You are to hold your information and stories with respect, integrity and confidentiality. However, you may encourage the intercultural team member to seek additional support when appropriate. You may also seek a team member’s permission to raise any concerns with Baptist Mission Australia leadership if necessary.

If you have any questions or queries, please contact Jane Norman on 

THANK YOU for your contribution to God’s mission in this vital way. 

companion guidelines    

If you have any questions or queries, please contact Jane Norman on