The Munus Triplex: Pastoral Leadership Paradigm for HIV Prevention Ministry in the African American Context

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Pastoral leaders in African American contexts often play a critical role in conveying messages about what is vital to black and brown people. Pastoral leadership has always been the driving force behind change within the Black Church, especially in times of community suffering. Health disparities such as the HIV epidemic in the Black community have created a crisis just as alarming as the COVID pandemic, and the key to addressing this issue will require pastoral leadership. This research aims to examine the framework of pastoral leadership through the theological model of the Munus Triplex and how it can be utilized and maximized within the congregational context to transform its culture into one in that is HIV competent and inculcated into the cultural fabric of the church.My thesis will focus on the significance of pastoral leadership in the areas of proactive and preventative HIV education, and how the pastor’s influence within the congregation can be best used to positively influence and generate outcomes leading to inclusive practices among members of the congregation in response to HIV stigmas. By examining the work of Christ through the lens of the Munus Triplex, we can ascertain some of the leadership competencies that constitute his roles as priest, prophet, and king. In turn, this can serve as a foundational model for pastoral leadership today. I will explore how each distinctive role of the Munus Triplex informs the pastor’s work towards affecting change within the congregational context. Based upon this work, I will propose a leadership paradigm approach for African American religious leaders to help them embrace their vocational responsibility to care for the whole person free of stigma and harmful theological rhetoric in response to the HIV epidemic.





Wiggins-Banister, Tarsha L. (2023). The Munus Triplex: Pastoral Leadership Paradigm for HIV Prevention Ministry in the African American Context. Dissertation, Duke University. Retrieved from


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