Christian Faith and Resilience: Implications for Social Work Practice

Main Article Content

Dr. Sandy Bauer
Caroline Campbell

Keywords

Christianity, Christian spirituality, resilience, social work practice, scoping review

Abstract

This scoping review was undertaken to understand the current intersection of resilience, Christian faith, and social work practice in the professional literature. Five prominent themes emerged that included characteristics of resilience, cultural and communal resilience, spiritual practices,  positive and negative spiritual/religious coping, and social work practice principles.


Implications for practice and research are discussed with an emphasis on building the knowledge and literature on Christian spirituality and resilience within the social work field beyond a conceptual understanding.

Abstract 178 |

References

REFERENCES
Ahles, J. J., Mezulis, A. H., & Hudson, M. R. (2016). Religious coping as a moderator of the relationship between stress and depressive symptoms. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality https://doi.org/10.1037/rel0000039
Alawiyah, T.; Bell, H.; Pyles, L.; Runnels, R C. (2011). Spirituality and faith-based interventions: Pathways to disaster resilience for African American Hurricane Katrina survivors. Journal of Religion & Spirituality in Social Work 30(3) 294-319. https://doi.org/10.1080/15426432.2011.587388
Allen, V. L. (2017). Learned optimism: A balm for social worker stress. Social Work & Christianity, 44(4), 83–91.
Arksey, H., & O’Malley, L. (2005). Scoping studies: Towards a methodological framework. 8 (1), 19- 32. doi: 10.1080/1364557032000119616.
Bade, M. K., & Cook, S. W. (2008). Functions of Christian prayer in the coping process. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 47(1), 123–133. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-5906.2008.00396.x
Bowland, S. (2011). Transcending the negative: Spiritual struggles and resilience in older female trauma survivors. Journal of Religion, Spirituality & Aging. 23(4), 318-337. doi: 10.1080/15528030.2011.592121
Brewer-Smyth, K., & Koenig, H. (2014). Could spirituality and religion promote stress resilience in survivors of childhood trauma? Issues in Mental Health Nursing. 35(4), 251-256. https://doi.org/10.3109/01612840.2013.873101
Cairns-Descoteaux, B. (2005). The journey to resiliency: An integrative framework for treatment for victims and survivors of family violence. Social Work & Christianity, 32(4), 305–320
Canda, E. R., & Furman, L. D. (1999). Spiritual diversity in social work practice: The heart of helping. Free Press.
Chan, C. S., & Rhodes, J. E. (2013). Religious coping, posttraumatic stress, psychological distress, and posttraumatic growth among female survivors four years after Hurricane Katrina. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 26(2), 257–265. https://doi.org/10.1002/jts.21801
Collison, E. A., Gramling, S. E., & Lord, B. D. (2016). The role of religious affiliation in Christian and unaffiliated bereaved emerging adults’ use of religious coping. Death Studies, 40(2), 102–112. https://doi.org/10.1080/07481187.2015.1077355
Dekker, J. (2011). Resilience , theology, and the edification of youth: Are we missing a perspective. Journal of Youth Ministry, 9(2), 67–89. http://static.squarespace.com/static/500ee7f0c4aa5f5d4c9fee39/t/53e91a07e4b0010022accfbc/1407785479147/Resilience,+Theology,+and+the+Edification+of+Youth...+Are+We+Missing+A+Perspective.pdf
Drumm, R., Popescu, M., Cooper, L., Trecartin, S., Seifert, M., Foster, T., & Kilcher, C. (2014). “God just brought me through it”: Spiritual coping strategies for resilience among intimate partner violence survivors. Clinical Social Work Journal, 42(4), 385–394.
Dombo, Gray (2013). Engaging spirituality in addressing vicarious trauma. Social Work & Christianity, 40(1), 89-104.
Edwards, B. & Wilkerson, P. (2016). The role of spirituality in fostering resilience in African American Children: Implications for social work practice. Journal of Cultural Diversity, 25(2), 49-53.
Ellor, J. W., & Mayo, M. (2018). Congregational and social work responses to older survivors of natural/human disasters. Social Work & Christianity, 45(1), 42–59.
Farley, Y. R. (2007). Making the connection: spirituality, trauma and resiliency. Journal of Religion & Spirituality in Social Work, Vol. 26 (1), 1-15. doi: 10.1300/J377v26n01_01
Foster, K. A., Bowland, S. E., & Vosler, A. N. (2015). All the pain along with all the joy: Spiritual resilience in lesbian and gay Christians. American Journal of Community Psychology, 55(1/2). doi: 10.1007/s10464-015-9704-4
Foster M. L, Arnold E., Rebchook G., Kegeles S .M., Foster, M. L., Arnold, E., Rebchook, G., & Kegeles, S. M. (2011). “It’s my inner strength”: Spirituality, religion and HIV in the lives of young African American men who have sex with men. Culture, Health & Sexuality, 13(9), 1103–1117. doi: 10.1080/13691058.2011.600460
Francoeur, R. B., Burke, N., & Wilson, A. M. (2016). The role of social workers in spiritual care to facilitate coping with chronic illness and self-determination in advance care planning. Social Work in Public Health, 31(5), 453–466. https://doi.org/10.1080/19371918.2016.1146199
Goodman, Jr., H., & Stone, M. H. (2009). The efficacy of adult Christian support groups in coping with the death of a significant loved one. Journal of Religion & Health, 48(3), 305–316. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-008-9201-2
Greene, R., & Dubus, N. (2017). Resilience in action. NASW Press.
Grundmann, C. (2014). To have life, and have it abundantly! Health and well-being in Biblical perspective. Journal of Religion & Health, 53(2), 552–561. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-013-9706-1
Haight, W., L. (1998). Gathering the spirit at First Baptist Church: Spirituality as a protective factor in the loss of African American children. Social Work, 43(3): 213-221.
Harris, J. R. A., McKinney, J. L. G., & Fripp, J. (2019). “God Is a Keeper”: A phenomenological investigation of Christian African American Women’s experiences with religious coping. Professional Counselor, 9(3), 171–184. doi: 10.15241/jrah.9.3.171
Hays, K. (2015). Black churches’ capacity to respond to the mental health needs of African Americans. Social Work & Christianity. 42(3), 296-312.
Hendricks, T. K. (2016). Warrior faith: A Marine’s lesson in religion, health, and healing. Social Work & Christianity, 43(3), 109–123.
Kelly, M. S. (2007). Faith and rebellion: Protective and risk factors for the adolescent children of religiously observant Mexican-American immigrants. Social Work & Christianity, 34(3), 259–276.
Kim, P. Y., Kendall, D. L., & Webb, M. (2015). Religious coping moderates the relation between racism and psychological well-being among Christian Asian American college students. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 62(1), 87–94. https://doi.org/10.1037/cou0000055
Knabb, J. J., & Grigorian-Routon, A. (2014). The role of experiential avoidance in the relationship between faith maturity, religious coping, and psychological adjustment among Christian university students. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 17(5), 458–469. https://doi.org/10.1080/13674676.2013.840631
Knickmeyer, N., Levitt, H. M., Horne, S. G., & Bayer, G. (2003). Responding to mixed messages and double binds: Religious oriented coping strategies of Christian battered women. Journal of Religion & Abuse, 5(2), 29–53. https://doi.org/10.1300/J154v05n02_03
Manning, L. (2014). Enduring as lived experience: Exploring the essence of spiritual resilience for women in late life. Journal of Religion & Health, 53(2), 352–362. 10.1007/s10943-012-9633-6
Manning, L. (2019). Spiritual resilience: Understanding the protection and promotion of well-being in the later life. Journal of Religion, Spirituality & Aging, 31(2), 168-186. https://doi.org/10.1080/15528030.2018.1532859
McGuire, B. F. (2019). Resilience and interdependence: Christian and Buddhist views of social responsibility following natural disasters. Buddhist-Christian Studies, 39, 115–131. https://doi.org/10.1353/bcs.2019.0010
Meek, K. R., McMinn, M. R., Brower, C. M., Burnett, T. D., McRay, B. W., Ramey, M. L., Swanson, D. W., & Villa, D. D. (2003). Maintaining personal resiliency: Lessons learned from evangelical protestant clergy. Journal of Psychology and Theology, 31(4), 339–347. https://doi.org/10.1177/009164710303100404
Millett, M. A., Cook, L. E., Skipper, A. D., Chaney, C. D., Marks, L. D., & Dollahite, D. C. (2018). Weathering the storm: The shelter of faith for Black American Christian families. Marriage & Family Review, 54(7), 662–676. https://doi.org/10.1080/01494929.2018.1469572
Myers, D. R., Lawrence, S., & Jones, V. (2013). Will you care with me? Congregational responses with impoverished older persons. Social Work & Christianity, 40(4), 460–478.
Newell, J. (2020). An ecological systems framework for professional resilience in social work practice. Social Work, 65(1), 65-73.
Oman, D., Shapiro, S. L., Horesen, C. E., Flinders, T., Driskill, J. D., Plante, T. G. (2007). Learning from spiritual models and mediation: A randomized evaluation of a college course. Pastoral Psychology, 55(4), 473-493.
Oxhandler, H. K. Giardina, T. D. (2017). Social workers’ perceived barriers to and sources of support for integrating clients’ religion and spirituality in practice. Social Work, 62(4), 323-332. https://doi.org/10.1093/sw/swx036
Paiva, B., Carvalho, A., Lucchetti, G., Barroso, E., & Paiva, C. (2015). “Oh, yeah, I’m getting closer to God”: Spirituality and religiousness of family caregivers of cancer patients undergoing palliative care. Supportive Care in Cancer, 23(8), 2383–2389. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00520-015-2604-1
Pargament, K. L. (2002). The bitter and the sweet: An evaluation of the costs and benefits of religiousness. Psychological Inquiry, 13(3), 168-181. doi: 10.1207/S15327965PLI1303_02
Pattison, N., & Lee, C. (2011). Hope against hope in cancer at the end of life. Journal of Religion & Health, 50(3), 731–742. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-009-9265-7
Pérez, J., Rex Smith, A., Norris, R., Canenguez, K., Tracey, E., & DeCristofaro, S. (2011). Types of prayer and depressive symptoms among cancer patients: The mediating role of rumination and social support. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 34(6), 519–530. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10865-011-9333-9
Polson, E. C., Gillespie, R., & Myers, D. R. (2018). Hope and resilience among vulnerable, community-dwelling older persons. Social Work & Christianity, 45(1), 60–81.
Proffitt, D., Cann, A., Calhoun, L., & Tedeschi, R. (2007). Judeo-Christian clergy and personal crisis: Religion, posttraumatic growth and well-being. Journal of Religion & Health, 46(2), 219–231. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-006-9074-1
Saleebey, D (1997). The strengths perspective in social work practice (2nd ed.). Longman.
Shaw, A., Joseph, S., Linley, P. (2005). Religion, spirituality, and posttraumatic growth: A systematic review. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 8:1, 1-11. DOI: 10.1080/1367467032000157981
Smith, S., Blanchard, J., Kools, S., & Butler, D. (2017). Reconnecting to spirituality: Christian-identified adolescents and emerging adult young men’s journey from diagnosis of HIV to coping. Journal of Religion & Health, 56(1), 188–204. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-016-0245-4
Stanley, M. A., Bush, A. L., Camp, M. E., Jameson, J. P., Phillips, L. L., Barber, C. R., Zeno, D., Lomax, J. W., & Cully, J. A. (2011). Older adults’ preferences for religion/spirituality in treatment for anxiety and depression. Aging & Mental Health, 5(3),334–343. https://doi.org/10.1080/13607863.2010.519326
Sterner, W. R., & Jackson, C. L. (2015). The influence of spirituality and religion on coping for combat-deployed military personnel. Counseling & Values, 60(1), https://doi.org/10.1002/j.2161-007X.2015.00060.x
Sytsma, T. T., Schmelkin, L. A., Jenkins, S. M., Lovejoy, L. A., Lapid, M. I., & Piderman, K. M. (2018). “Keep the faith”: Spirituality as a contributor to resiliency in five elderly people. Journal of Religion, Spirituality & Aging, 30(4), 314–324. https://doi.org/10.1080/15528030.2018.1441095
Tan, S. Y. (2013). Resilience and posttraumatic growth: Empirical evidence and clinical applications from a Christian perspective. Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 32(4), 358–364. https://counseling4christians.com/Videos/HSCO%20Documents/Resilience%20and%20Posttraumatic%20Growth%20Article.pdf
Thaller, J. (2011). Resilience and resistance in professional identity making: Gleanings from the classroom experiences of devout Christian Social Workers. Journal of Religion & Spirituality in Social Work, 30(2), 144–163. https://doi.org/10.1080/15426432.2011.567115
Trammel, R. C. (2015). Mindfulness as enhancing ethical decision-making and the Christian integration of mindful practice. Social Work & Christianity, 42(2), 165–177.
Trevino, K., Archambault, E., Schuster, J., Richardson, P., & Moye, J. (2012). Religious coping and psychological distress in military veteran cancer survivors. Journal of Religion & Health, 51(1), 87–98. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-011-9526-0
Van Hook, M. (2014). Resiliency and spirituality: A framework for assessing and helping. NACSW Convention Proceedings, 1–12. https://www.nacsw.org/Convention/VanHookMResiliencyFINAL.pdf
Van Hook, M. (2016). Spirituality as a potential resource for coping. Social Work & Christianity. 43(1), 7-25.
Walsh, F. (2003). Family resilience: A framework for clinical practice. Family Process, 42(1): 1-18. http://www.celf.ucla.edu/2010_conference_articles/Walsh_2003.pdf
Westfield, N. L. (2001). Kitchen table banter. Religious Education, 96(3), 423–429. https://doi.org/10.1080/003440801317081442
Worthington, E. L., Rueger, S. Y., Davis, E. B., & Wortham, J. (2019). “Mere” Christian forgiveness: An ecumenical Christian conceptualization of forgiveness through the lens of stress-and-coping theory. Religions, 10(1), 44–1. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10010044