Special Issue "Incorporating the Sacred in Counselling"

A special issue of Religions (ISSN 2077-1444). This special issue belongs to the section "Religions and Health/Psychology/Social Sciences".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 April 2021) | Viewed by 4660

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Kelvin Mutter
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
McMaster Divinity College, University in Hamilton, Hamilton, ON L8S 4K1, Canada
Interests: the interface of religion and spirituality with the practices of counselling and psychotherapy; the formation and maintenance of the therapeutic alliance; client receptivity to therapeutic interventions (e.g., therapeutic fit)

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Professional disciplines are characterized by a body of knowledge that is enlarged through reflection and research, a set of skills which are refined through practice and validated by research, and a set of common values–e.g., a code of ethics–that guide the professional. These characteristics suggest that the use of religious/spiritual (R/S) values and practices in counselling qualifies this practice as a sub-discipline within social work and psychotherapy, as well as other professions. The use of R/S interventions in counselling is evident in the variety of interventions employed and diversity of R/S traditions represented in the literature. In addition, it is noted there is an expanding body of research that examines the use of R/S interventions in therapeutic practice.

This issue aims to draw together current thinking and research related to the use of R/S interventions by clinicians with the intent of setting the stage for a deeper understanding of the rationale for R/S interventions–both in general and with respect to the use of specific interventions. Contributors are invited to submit theoretical and research essays on the use of specific R/S practices, the role of assessment in spiritually-integrated psychotherapy, meta-analyses of existing research on the topic, or the ethical use of R/S interventions. Contributions representative of any R/S tradition will be considered.

Dr. Kelvin Mutter
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Religions is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Biopsychosocial-Spiritual Model of Health Care
  • Holistic Care
  • Hope and Well-Being
  • Client Beliefs
  • Mental Health
  • Patient Religiosity and Spirituality
  • Religion
  • Spirituality
  • Therapist Beliefs
  • Counselling
  • Decision Making
  • Ethics, Integration
  • Psychotherapy
  • Social Work Practice
  • Spiritually-Integrated Counselling
  • Spiritually-Integrated Psychotherapy

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Article
The Value of Adapting Counseling to Client’s Spirituality and Religion: Evidence-Based Relationship Factors
Religions 2021, 12(11), 951; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12110951 - 01 Nov 2021
Viewed by 972
Abstract
There is a strong tradition of attention to relationship factors in the field of counseling. The research on the importance of the relationship and adapting to client factors continues to grow, supporting the importance of professional multicultural competence. The field of counseling, specifically [...] Read more.
There is a strong tradition of attention to relationship factors in the field of counseling. The research on the importance of the relationship and adapting to client factors continues to grow, supporting the importance of professional multicultural competence. The field of counseling, specifically within the United States context, has focused on Multicultural Counseling Competencies with more recent emphasis on social justice through the Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling Competencies. Within these competencies, spirituality and religion are mentioned as multicultural components to consider as potentially salient to clients. Yet, there has been less emphasis on ways to adapt counseling to a client’s spirituality and religion compared to other multicultural components of one’s identity, such as race, gender, and culture. Historically, a lack of training, fear of causing offense, or concerns about influencing clients, resulted in clients’ spirituality and religion being overlooked far too often in counseling. Despite this tendency, recent clinical evidence on relational responsiveness identifies the adaptation of counseling to a client’s spirituality and religion as highly effective. In this article, the authors discuss how adapting counseling to a client’s spirituality and religion, in relation to all multicultural factors salient to the client, enhances relational responsiveness and treatment effectiveness. The authors also discuss the implications for training, supervision, and practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Incorporating the Sacred in Counselling)
Article
Spiritual and Religious Support for Underrepresented First-Generation, Low-Income (UFGLI) Students
Religions 2021, 12(7), 548; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12070548 - 19 Jul 2021
Viewed by 777
Abstract
UFGLI students comprise 34% of the students enrolled in four-year universities. Unlike some students, UFGLI students face internal and systemic barriers throughout their educational experience and their struggles are often dismissed and disregarded. Working and raising a family while taking courses, minimal support [...] Read more.
UFGLI students comprise 34% of the students enrolled in four-year universities. Unlike some students, UFGLI students face internal and systemic barriers throughout their educational experience and their struggles are often dismissed and disregarded. Working and raising a family while taking courses, minimal support systems, and financial struggles require students to optimize their resources. We explore the issues of UFGLI students and the importance of their spiritual and religious supports using a literature review and a case study. Religious and spiritual identities are resources that should be explored and supported by staff at university counselling centers. Affirming UFGLI students’ religious and spiritual identities and understanding how religion and spirituality work in their lives can assist these students in their acclimation to and success at university. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Incorporating the Sacred in Counselling)
Article
Co-Creating Authentic Sacred Therapeutic Space: A Spiritually Sensitive Framework for Counselling Children
Religions 2021, 12(7), 524; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12070524 - 12 Jul 2021
Viewed by 1421
Abstract
Social work values client-centered holistic approaches of care, yet there is a lack of approaches addressing spirituality in counselling with children. Children’s spirituality and conceptualization have been disenfranchised. Children’s spiritual experiences, ways of knowing and perceptions are important to attend to when supporting [...] Read more.
Social work values client-centered holistic approaches of care, yet there is a lack of approaches addressing spirituality in counselling with children. Children’s spirituality and conceptualization have been disenfranchised. Children’s spiritual experiences, ways of knowing and perceptions are important to attend to when supporting them through an impactful life event such as trauma, grief, or loss (TGL). Parents may not fully understand or have the capacity to attend to their child’s spirituality. Counsellors appear to lack knowledge and training to attend to the spiritual needs and capacities of children. This article offers some research findings of children’s spirituality deemed to be vital for healing from TGL and counselling. It provides an understanding of some of the constructs and isolating processes described by children, parents and counsellors related to children’s spirituality in TGL. It also will present a spiritually sensitive framework specifically attuned to the spiritual dimension and creating spaces of safety and hope when working with children. The implications of not addressing the critical spiritual dimensions in practice for children are discussed, and recommendations for continued research and training for further theoretical development and future social work practice are offered. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Incorporating the Sacred in Counselling)
Article
Child Traumatic Stress and the Sacred: Neurobiologically Informed Interventions for Therapists and Parents
Religions 2021, 12(3), 163; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12030163 - 03 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 893
Abstract
Children experience trauma and adverse experiences at an alarming rate. The negative impact of traumatic experiences on a child’s developing brain is pervasive, adversely affecting one’s thoughts, feelings, behaviors, physiological reactions, and social relationships. Conversely, the nature, pattern, timing and duration of therapeutic [...] Read more.
Children experience trauma and adverse experiences at an alarming rate. The negative impact of traumatic experiences on a child’s developing brain is pervasive, adversely affecting one’s thoughts, feelings, behaviors, physiological reactions, and social relationships. Conversely, the nature, pattern, timing and duration of therapeutic experiences can change the brain in ways that support and cultivate therapeutic growth and healing. The purpose of this paper will be to review and expand on two prominent neurobiological therapeutic frameworks within the field of child trauma therapy: the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics and Interpersonal Neurobiology. We will discuss the ways in which trauma experiences are organized in the brain and how therapeutic and parenting interventions can address the key areas of the brain that are impacted. Further, this paper will expand on these frameworks to explore how the sacred (within primarily a Judeo-Christian monotheistic religious tradition) can be integrated within the therapeutic process—specifically through the themes of safety, relational connection, and meaning-making. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Incorporating the Sacred in Counselling)
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