Rev. Dr. Brian Smilde

Rev. Dr. Brian Smilde

Pastoral Counselor - M. Div, D. Min

Life can be busy, complex, distracting, painful, unnerving, and stressful. I am passionate about helping people know and live out of their true identity as beloved children of God, resulting in peace and calm in the midst of life’s challenges. Both my vocation as a pastor and my personal life, where I wear many hats, give me a unique perspective into joy, suffering, faith and healing.

Counseling approach:

My experience as a caregiver in the church has allowed me the opportunity to help people experience recovery and healing from various painful or traumatic life experiences. I understand that you have current life circumstances that may feel overwhelming, out of control, and complex. Along with that, many people have deeper wounds that also need attention. My care-giving approach offers safety to people so that they can pursue emotional, mental, and spiritual well-being. I position people for transforming encounters with Jesus so they experience Jesus in life-changing and soul nurturing ways.

As a Christian, I believe that you are created uniquely and amazingly. This informs how I view you and work with you. However, I respect you may have different spiritual beliefs and I will not force my beliefs on you. You get to decide what role spiritual beliefs and practices are involved in your healing.


  • Trauma
  • Vocational stress/anxiety/pressure
  • Identity
  • Pre-marital and Marital
  • Anxiety, depression

Focus areas:

  • Abuse (sexual, spiritual)
  • Burnout
  • Life purpose/belonging
  • Relationships

Treatment Approaches:

  • Trauma-informed
  • Experiential
  • Mindfulness
  • Healing Care/Formational Prayer

Professional Background

Brian is a graduate of Western Theological Seminary (M.Div.) and Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (D.Min.). His dissertation was on the spiritual healing of traumatic events. He has served two congregations as a long term, settled pastor in the Reformed Church in America for 23 years and now serves a church as a specialized interim minister in the United Church of Christ. Brian is also passionate about serving his family, and his community through coaching and mentoring.


Certifications/Extra Trainings: