Lay Counselling Training


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Eight Reasons to Enrol in this Training Program 

Specifically for You!
Convenient & Affordable
Online Study

Presented by Dr Mervin,
a distinguished

Equipping you for Service
in your Church
and Community
Counselling Theory
and Caregiving Praxi

Personal Self-Enrichment
and Spiritual

Prestigious One-Year
Certificate Program
(6 core courses & 4 electives)

Christ Centred, Biblically
Based, and
Psychologically Sound
Interaction with Instructor
and Fellow

Paraklesis Certificate ProgramLearn more about
the Certificate Program

...Read more about the program now!

Course Descriptions & OutcomesExplore the Course
Descriptions & Outcomes

...Read more about the different courses now!

Be a Helping Hand ...

Counsellor Training is for You ...

  • If you are compassionate about the needs of others
  • If people often seek you out for help
  • If you want to serve as a caregiver/counsellor in your church and/or community
  • If you have a teachable spirit and willing to learn new skills
  • If you are prepared to grow and develop
  • If you are already in a care-giving ministry and need specialised training...

This program is for You!

Why Paraklesis Counsellor Training is for You

1. Equipping you as a Lay-Counsellor, Caregiver, & Helper

The Paraklesis Counselling Program is specifically developed for you if you want to equip yourself as a counsellor, caregiver, and helper. If you want to be better prepared for serving as counsellor in your community or church, this training will empower you for your ministry. 

2. Who is the training for?

The training is especially suited for all lay counsellors - pastors, elders, youth workers, community care providers, NGO workers, and anyone who would like to be better equipped.

Professional counsellors (psychiatrists, psychologists, psychotherapist) often do the program or take specific courses if they are interested in the integration of psychology and theology and a spiritual integrated approach.  

3. Christ Centred, Biblically Based & Psychologically Sound

The training is faith based and presented from a Christian perspective, integrating sound counselling-psychology principles. The program is specifically for all lay-counsellors who want to be involved in a caregiving ministry in their church or community. Although it is faith based, it is also a good training program for individuals who want to be community care-givers, serving at NGO's or non-profit organisations in a secular environment.

4. Personal & Spiritual Enrichment

The training will not only enrich you as a person, but it will contribute to your own personal and spiritual growth as a Christian. We also believe that this training program can be used by the Holy Spirit to equip you for the ministry of counselling in the church and your community. In so doing we want to contribute to building up the local church into the full statue of the body of Christ.

5. Enhancing your Life-Skills & Wellbeing

If you feel that you need spiritual enrichment, more life-skills, and encouragement to grow to a more mature person - this is the right program for you. The Paraklesis Certificate Training Program will help you discover realities about your own life, about your family of origin, and about your present relationships. It will also give you the tools to have a more spirit-controlled committed life, and overall wellbeing. Those involved in ministry and caring will be equipped to serve well, and to minister more effectively.

6. Presented by Dr Mervin van der Spuy

Dr Mervin is a well known and distinguished counsellor-educator. As Professor of Counselling Psychology he trained professional psychotherapist - masters and doctoral students. As psychopharmacologist he has more than 30 years of counselling practice experience. He served as vice-president of the International Association of Christian Counsellors, and was the founder president of the Association of Christian Counsellors in South Africa. 

7. Prestigious Certificate Program

This certificate is fully accredited by the Department of Higher Education in South Africa and presented as an official e-Learning Higher Certificate in Christian Counselling by SATS. In North-America, the same courses are available to you as part of the Paraklesis Counselling Programme. 

Explore the Certificate Programme or jump to the Course Descriptions

Certificate Program

The Paraklesis Christian Counselling Certificate Training Program consists of a core curriculum of six modules (semester courses) and four electives (modules for specific ministry areas). 

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Course Descriptions & Outcomes

Using E-Learning technology and the Moodle platform, online courses engage the learner in active participation (discussion forums, quizzes). 
View the course lists ...

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Ready to Sign-up for Online Counsellor Education?

Explore Additional Training Opportunities ...


Advanced clinical, theoretical and practical,  training available for counsellors and psychotherapists. Online supervision also available for lay and pastoral counsellors. 

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Paraklesis seminars, workshops, lectures are presented at various venues and at conferences. The "Gos-Pill" Truth about Prozac and You!, Boundaries for Dummies, Couples, & Kids; etc.  

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Personal Growth

Free self-help tools available for personal growth and development. Affordable downloadable Paraklesis Handouts/Exercises available to augment your personal counselling experience.

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