Exploring what it means to be a pastoral companion.
© 2017 Michael Forster. All rights reserved. Bespoke Web Pages.
About Michael Forster
Michael finds the similarities between Rogers and the Jesus of the Synoptic Gospels breathtaking.
Both sought to enable people to grow and to change, not by judging and criticizing but by showing love and acceptance.
Both started from a positive view of the human spirit and its possibilities and enabled people to see themselves in new light.
Both have inspired people to become the best they can be, and better than they had imagined possible.
At other times in his life, Michael’s also earned his daily pie as (among other roles) a filling station attendant, a night security guard, an ice-cream vendor, an office clerk, a carpenter and joiner and a clarinettist/teacher. He’s spent his leisure time (and more of his money than he likes to think about) indulging his enthusiasms for woodworking and for cars & driving. He’s been a member of the Institute of Advanced Motorists since 1971 and recently celebrated turning 71 by passing their recently-introduced Masters test - described by them as 'the ultimate challenge for civilian drivers in this country'. So much, he says, for the stereotype of incompetent older drivers!
Michael was first published in 1992 when the religious publisher Kevin Mayhew Ltd accepted a collection of thirty hymn texts.
This led to commissions for further works in a wide variety of genres including children’s songs and stories, all-age worship, theology, and scripts for stage and radio that have been performed on four continents as well as on BBC Radio 4 and at the Royal Albert Hall.
As a Christian minister, he is passionate about the gospel of grace. He traces this back to his formative experience as a child and his remarkable home life characterized by unconditional love and clear boundaries. In later life, he and his wife, Jean, were to face personal tragedy, while his ministry in urban contexts, mental health chaplaincy and counselling would give him insights into a broad spectrum of human experience and potential. All of these experiences further underpinned his conviction that grace is the heart of the gospel.
As a chaplain, he became fascinated by the connections between this and the work of American psychologist Carl Rogers, which inspired him to train as a counselor and later to explore the connections in his own book, Being There: the Healing Power of Presence.