A Comparative and Theoretical Study of Moments of Deep Encounter in Therapeutic and Pastoral Relationships

UoM administered thesis: Phd

  • Authors:
  • James Tebbutt


AbstractUniversity: The University of Manchester Candidate: James Neal TebbuttDegree Title: Doctor of Philosophy Thesis Title: A Comparative and Theoretical Study of Moments of Deep Encounter in Therapeutic and Pastoral RelationshipsDate: 2014This thesis presents a comparative and theoretical meta-study of a beneficial phenomenon experienced in some therapeutic and pastoral relationships, which I describe as a 'moment of deep encounter'. The phenomenon is distinguished and defined, the research aims and approach described, and the research's underpinning theoretical frame explained. The relevant data, being various deep-moment accounts and insights already existing within some pertinent areas of the literature, were analysed through a qualitative, three-stage meta-study. The development of some thematic coding, to identify and thematically analyse relevant data, is explained, and the collated thematic findings set out. These were then compared and critiqued through a meta-analysis, the findings from which were themselves meta-synthesised into an explanatory framework in order to map and relate various deep-moment experiences, perspectives, and understandings.The study identifies the patterns of occurrence of moments of deep encounter, their constituent aspects and the factors involved in their facilitation, some pertinent boundary issues and relevant theoretical perspectives, and the nature, relationship and cogency of various competing interpretations. Methodological, theoretical, and practical contributions are set out; the study is evaluated; and future research suggested.As far as I am aware, this research provides a larger overview and deeper analysis than any previously undertaken regarding moments of deep encounter. Moreover, such moments provide a lens into wider issues of theory and practice. The research invites a greater awareness of the beneficial effects of moments of deep encounter, greater attentiveness to their constituent aspects and characteristics, and greater openness to their interpretive possibilities, so as to enhance therapeutic and pastoral practice.


Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • William West (Supervisor)
  • Julian Edge (Supervisor)
Award date31 Dec 2014