Integrating Spirituality into Psychotherapy

Integrating Spirituality

Kenneth I. Pargament

Friday, June 14 2013


10 Buick Street, 18th floor

This one day workshop is designed to provide psychologists, counselors, clergy, and chaplains with a framework for understanding and addressing spirituality in psychotherapy.

9:00-10:30 Session 1: Why it Makes Sense to Integrate Spirituality into Psychotherapy

The first section will provide a rationale for why it makes good sense to integrate spirituality into psychotherapy.  We will examine some of the reasons for the tension between religious/spiritual and healthcare communities and then, drawing on research, challenge some of the common stereotypes and misconceptions about the roles religion and spirituality play in health and well-being.  To engage spirituality in psychotherapy, we have to understand what spirituality is, how it develops and changes, and how to distinguish healthy from less healthy spiritual expressions.

10:45-12:15 Session 2: Understanding the role of Spirituality in Psychotherapy

The second section will offer a framework for understanding and evaluating spirituality.  We will illustrate some of the rich and varied ways religion and spirituality can serve as resources to people facing significant problems and some of the ways in which religion and spirituality can be sources of struggle in and of themselves.

Lunch – A buffet lunch will be provided for all registrants between sessions 2 and 3.

1:45-3:15 Session 3: Assessing Spirituality in Psychotherapy

This session will present a multi-level model of spiritual assessment that ranges from initial questions to more intensive assessments of various domains of religion and spirituality.  We will underscore the importance of the therapists’ own religious and spiritual background and willingness to learn about their clients’ religious worlds.

3:30-5:00 Session 4: Addressing Spirituality in Psychotherapy

The final section will illustrate some of the ways practitioners can draw upon spiritual resources to facilitate the health and well-being of clients. In addition, we will examine how therapists can respond to clients undergoing spiritual struggles, including feelings of punishment by God, religious alienation, and spiritual doubts and confusion