Being involved with others as a clergyperson or spouse is stressful, because caring is stressful. In order to keep on caring, we have to ensure that our own lines of support are in place and functioning. At times, through internal or external pressures, we all may need special help in the form of counselling or therapy.

If you need help, it is available in terms both of people and of finance. There are several avenues you may take. You can see your area bishop or archdeacon. They have details of counselling services and may suggest that you use these to contact a counsellor. Alternatively, you can approach directly the Pastoral Care Adviser, the Revd Canon Beau Stevenson, The School House, Stanton St John, Oxford OX33 1ET (Tel: 01865 351635) Email, or Dr Elizabeth Mann, 2 Whittons Close, Hook Norton, Banbury, Oxon OX15 5QG (Tel: 01608 730327), who will put you in touch with a counsellor who could be matched to suit your particular difficulty or the approach to the difficulty you would prefer to be taken. Confidentiality is maintained in whatever pastoral or financial arrangements are made.

Counselling almost always needs to be paid for. Part of those costs can be met from diocesan trust funds and clergy charities or, where appropriate, met in full on a time-limited basis. This can be discussed with the bishop, archdeacon or Pastoral Care Adviser.

Consultation
From time to time, the help that is needed is in the form of consultation. The stress is coming from a particular situation in the parish that you may need to discuss with someone else for support, insight, and alternative ways of handling the situation creatively. You can approach your Parish Development Adviser for information about this.