Paraklesis Counselling Certificate Program

Explore the following topics before submitting your application

1. Online E-Learning

- What you need to know 

5. Workload

- How much work will it take?

2. Program Outcomes

- What you will achieve

6. Reading Material 

- Textbooks and Readers

3. Program Composition

- Core curriculum and electives

7. Timetable

- When courses are presented

4. Program Procedure

How the course is presented

8. Evaluation

- Exams, Assignments and Grading


To equip people for their ministry as Pastoral and Lay Christian Counsellors and contribute to the growth of the body of Christ into maturity

We  believe that this program can be used by the Holy Spirit to equip you for the ministry of counselling and care-giving in the church and the community.  In so doing, we want to contribute to building up the local church into the full statue of the body of Christ.  If you feel that you need spiritual enrichment, more life-skills, and encouragement to grow to a more mature person you're doing the right course.

The modules (courses) in this counselling program will help you discover realities about your own life, about your family of origin, and about your present relationships, it will give you the tools to have a more spirit-controlled and committed life. Above all, it will equip you for your ministry of counselling. Those involved in ministry and caring will be equipped to serve well, and to minister more effectively.

Is the Paraklesis Counselling Training Accredited?

Yes and no!

Yes, the program is presented at the South African Theological Seminary as a Higher Certificate in Christian Counselling (HCCC) and fully accredited by the Higher Education Board of South Africa. In agreement with SATS, Paraklesis is allowed to market and present the program in North America. 

The program presented online on the Paraklesis Webpage is not an accredited program – it is presented as a self-enrichment training program for lay counsellors (pastors, youth workers, other caregivers, and community care workers) who want to further enrich and equip themselves for their ministry.  The in-house Paraklesis Counselling Certificate Program is presented to those who complete ten of the counselling training modules (courses) successfully.

The Paraklesis Training Program is equivalent to one-year study of an undergraduate study program and is presented at the same academic standard and with the same academic rigour and evaluation. 

Receiving the Paraklesis Certificate is a prestigious honour, indicating that the student-counsellor has met the outcomes and is qualified to be a lay counsellor.


This course has been absolutely amazing. I have loved every second of the studies and have learned so much about myself and caring for others. Thank you Dr Mervin.

Annie (Student-Counsellor)

I thoroughly enjoyed doing this program and I would highly recommend it to anyone wanting to be involved in the counseling ministry. To me this program fills the gap between Clinical Psychology, which often overlooks a person’s spirituality and the Church, which may disregard psychological principles. An unexpected bonus was my own spiritual and psychological growth as a result of doing this program.

Selma (Counselling Student)

This course has great content and is wonderfully constructed with the lectures and the discussion forums … it has given me loads of insight to all the factors we need to look at when evaluating someone’s struggles.

Michelle (Counselling-Student)

Thank you so much Dr. Mervin!  I can not thank u and God above enough for the direction and help you have been able to provide over the last months.

Wendy (Student-Counsellor)

Thank you very much for your presentation on psychopharmacology. The workshop was very interesting and informative. It helped me realise more about the part I play, as a counsellor, in guiding client’s in the right direction … I appreciated it very much …

Professional Counsellor

I have really enjoyed this program and this course. It has been very tight, time wise, but very interesting and enlightening – to be able to be aware of the different mental and personality disorders, and their etiology …  I pray will be such a help in being able to understand people with and without mental disorders better … remembering why they are the way they are, and very importantly, to give them the care and love they so need.  To be Jesus to them …

Bettie (Student-Counsellor)

We are here to come alongside people with mental illness, and as we hold out our hand to them with compassion, we rely on the Holy Spirit to work in their lives, and we do not need to be casting out evil spirits or do any demonic warfare. As was mentioned in our notes, we need to seek to do no harm.

Bea (Student-Counsellor)

At first I wanted to study a counselling course to better the service that I provide to the patients I see, but have come to realise that studying this course is also enriching my own life and is spiritually equipping me to make a difference in my community and living out my purpose.

Dietitian (Student-Counsellor)
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