Ron Lively, M.Div., M.A. (M&F) – Founder

Welcome to Pastoral Counseling Institute (PCI).

Our mission is “Training and Mentoring for Pastoral Counseling”.  

Our goal is to provide training and mentoring for Pastors, Shepherding Elders and Ministry Students.

We use the website domain of PCIMentors.com as we focus on both training for brief pastoral counseling and then on mentoring for those who wish to receive ongoing continuing coaching while they implement their training.  We are offering continuing education for the busy pastor and elder.  Our training and mentoring is also beneficial for ministry students who wish to be better prepared to counsel when they become pastors or counselors. We expect to have several mentors assisting to train and mentor those who request our services.

Our PCI Brochure will answer most of your questions.  Click HERE to download this two-sided brochure.

So…Why? Who?  What?  Where? When?  etc. about PCI?  Here are some answers to those questions.

WHY?  87% of pastors (those ordained and responsible to the Church for serving as a pastor / shepherd of their congregation) surveyed say they were not adequately trained for the average of six to eight hours of counseling they provide weekly for their members.  Yet, 42% of people will turn to their Pastor first for some initial and basic “soul care” as they seek help for their struggles.  PCI is established to offer some training and mentoring services for short-term or brief counseling using a proven model called Strategic Pastoral Counseling (SPC) written by David G. Benner.

WHO? My name is Ron Lively from Franklin, TN (actually we live in Thompsons Station just south of beautiful and historic Franklin which is about 30 miles south of Nashville, TN – another one of a kind city known as Music City).   Click HERE for my BIO.   My main work that offers some proven experience in the counseling field was serving as the national director for Marriage & Family Ministries for the Christian Medical & Dental Associations (CMDA) while also serving as a regional director / chaplain of physicians, dentists and students for several years.  In that role, I trained three medical couples to lead the six sessions for each weekend marriage enrichment retreat offered nationally using the curriculum I initiated and wrote for a marriage enrichment retreat “for doctors – by doctors – about doctors”. I understand that the curriculum is still being used by CMDA today.  After that, I served with the Navigators learning more about discipleship and mentoring.  I now seek to offer this kind of training, equipping and coaching (training) for pastors who simply didn’t have the time or resources or the vision to get properly trained for some strategic and effective counseling that fits their unique role and time demands of a busy schedule.  In this process, the teacher or trainer learns with those being trained.

WHAT?  Pastoral Counseling Institute has been launched to help train pastors and shephers for strategic / brief pastoral counseling.  I will add a Definitions tab on this page soon for a list of concepts soon.  Pastors are in essence a broker of the healing resources of their local church.  It is not satisfactory that they should immediately refer all counseling cases to “professional counselors” in their church or network.  A pastor should be competent and comfortable meeting with a member in need of some immediate attention to help them  get refocused in their relationship with a loving,  sovereign and forgiving God as they then prepare together to refer that person to someone for long term therapy if needed. PCI also seeks to help build a pastor’s referral network of trustworthy professional counselors.

WHERE?  This will depend on the situation but it is envisioned that the majority of the training offered by PCI will be by conference calls or via Skype. There will possibly be some live training sessions but the main focus will be individual Skype or phone training sessions.

WHEN?   This will depend on the schedules of the mentor / trainer but it seems likely that one hour sessions once per week for six weeks with required reading assignments will be the best format.  However the schedule can be spread out if necessary.

Payment?  At this time, the plan is to accept suggested fees via our PayPal account for our training sessions.  This will be explained more fully on the Pay tab.  PCI is being offered by Healthy Initiative Ministries (HIM) which is an approved 501(c)3 non-profit organization.  We will consider requests for discounted fees if essential.   Receipts for the fees above the cost of the service will be provided annually.  We expect to offer training for African pastors for a reduced fee if funds are provided through donations for these services.  

Click on our tabs to learn more.


Your advice, suggestions or questions are certainly welcomed and appreciated.

In and for Christ,


Ron Lively, M.Div., M.A. (M&F)
2750 Hanover Drive
Thompsons Station, TN  37179
rlively@pcimentors.com or ronwlively@gmail.com