For much of the twentieth century, professional social work sought
to distance itself from its religious origins with the consequence
being that the role of spirituality in the lives of service users
tended to be sidelined. Yet it is clear that many people begin to
explore their spirituality precisely at times when they are trying
to make sense of difficult life circumstances or experiences and
may come into contact with social workers. In recent years, there
has been an increasing understanding that in order to be relevant
to the lives of people they work with, social workers need to go
beyond their material needs, but there is little understanding of
how spirituality can be sensitively incorporated into practice,
especially when either practitioners or service users have no
religious affiliation or there is no shared religious background.In
this pathbreaking volume Beth Crisp offers social workers ideas of
beginning conversations in which spiritual values and beliefs may
surface, allowing service users to respond from their own framework
and to begin to discuss the specific religious or spiritual
practices and beliefs which are important to them. She considers
spirituality in the context of lived experience, a perspective that
she argues breaks down any mystique and suspicion of explicitly
religious language by focusing on language and experiences with
which most people can identify. Such a framework allows exploration
of issues that emerge at different stages in the lifespan, both by
persons who are religious and those who do not identify with any
formal religion. Most literature on spirituality within social work
refers to the elderly, to those who are sick or have been bereaved,
yet, as Crisp points out, spirituality is important for people of
all ages and not just at seemingly exceptional moments.
Ashgate Publishing Limited
|Country of origin:
||Contemporary Social Work Studies
Beth R. Crisp
• Patrick O'Leary
||234 x 156mm (L x W)
||Electronic book text
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