Doctor of Ministry

Year Approved


First Advisor

Friesen Smith, Katie


The Researcher observed posts on social media from deaf pastors sharing their experiences of personal and professional struggles with suicide, depression, and mental health challenges with their close circle of pastors, colleagues, and congregation. These are tremendous burdens for both Deaf and hearing pastors. The scriptures cited for this research were 1 Kings 19, Psalm 23, and Mark 7:31-37; these Scriptures provide the theological basis that God provides self-care. The recipients became healthier emotionally, mentally, physically, socially, and spiritually. The recipients were able to recover and minister to their respective congregations and communities. The Researcher conducted a qualitative case study on a small cohort of Deaf pastors. The Researcher created the research instruments, a Pre-Survey, and a Post-Survey, consisting of 30 multiple choice questions presented in English and ASL. Both surveys are fully accessible, linguistically and culturally. An 8-week curriculum moderated the Cohort activities. The Researcher conducted Individual interviews and facilitated two group discussions via Zoom. The Pre-Survey was administered before the Cohort, and the Post-Survey was administered after the Cohort. The first finding is that accessible education on self-care provided the pastors with positive reinforcement and improved overall well-being. The second finding is that consistent self-care and social contact, either in-person and through accessible technology, provides pastors with healthy, supportive, emotional, and social care for their overall well-being.

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

Document Type

Doctoral thesis

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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License.