Carrie Doehring

Carrie Doehring

Professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling

Contact Information

Phone: (303) 765-3169

Fax: (303) 777-0164



B.Mus., McGill University
M.Div., McGill University
M.Th., Wilfrid Laurier University
Ph.D., Boston University


“What makes pastoral counselors and caregivers unique among the helping professions is that we draw upon our theological education to understand our own spirituality, and the spirituality of those we counsel. In contrast, spiritually-oriented practitioners who do not draw upon a formal theological education face the limitations of being theologically naïve when they counsel spiritually or religiously committed clients. We risk being as naïve as them, if we do not intentionally draw upon our theological education. We are theologically accountable not only to our communities of faith and/or the religious organizations that endorse our practices; we are theologically accountable to our religious and spiritual traditions which, for centuries, have been in conversations that inform the work we do and ‘whose we are’. It is this theological accountability that makes us pastoral counselors and spiritual caregivers, and distinguishes us from spiritually oriented therapists who are not theologically educated and credentialed as spiritual and pastoral caregivers and counselors.”

Carrie Doehring joined the Iliff faculty in 2003, having taught for eleven years in the masters and doctoral programs at Boston University’s School of Theology, and in the Counseling Psychology and Religion Ph.D. Program in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. She is a licensed psychologist in Massachusetts and Colorado, and a diplomat in the American Association of Pastoral Counselors. At Iliff, she advanced to full professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling in 2015.

At the 2009 annual meeting of the American Psychological Association in Toronto Canada, Carrie Doehring was awarded the Virginia Sexton Mentoring Award by Division 36 (Psychology of Religion).

Carrie Doehring was ordained in the Presbyterian Church in Canada in 1978, and became a minister in the Presbyterian Church, USA, in 1991. She has worked in congregational ministry for nine years, full time in Ontario, Canada, and seven years part-time in Boston, Massachusetts.

Her book publications include Internal Traumatization (University Press of America, 1992) an empirical study of women’s images of God and their history of childhood abuse, Taking Care: Monitoring Power Dynamics and Relational Boundaries in Pastoral Care and Counseling (Abingdon, 1995), and The Practice of Pastoral Care: A Postmodern Approach (Revised and Expanded) (Westminster John Knox, 2015).

Representative courses:

Pastoral care and violence
Pastoral care and life cycle transitions
Multicultural issues in pastoral care
Research methods in religion and behavioral sciences
Clinical practice: Theological and psychological perspectives
Coping with stress: Psychological and theological perspectives

News & Awards

  • The Times and Democrat – February 18, 2011
    Chaplains try a new path to deal with PTSDDan Elliott
    The Associated Press
    DENVER – A Colorado theology school is teaching Air Force chaplains to consider the religious beliefs of servicemen and women to better help them cope…
  • – January 31, 2011
    Chaplains try a new path to deal with PTSDAssociated Press, Dan Elliott
    DENVER – A Colorado theology school is teaching Air Force chaplains to consider the religious beliefs of servicemen and women to better help them cope with post-traumatic stress.