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In the past, religion and spirituality sat relatively unexplored and untaught as
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In the past, religion and spirituality sat relatively unexplored and untaught as a practice topic in social work programs (Baylor University, n.d.). The reasoning was, in part, that acknowledging religion could lead to directly or indirectly offending the client. But to disregard religion was likely denying the identities of a large segment of the population.
Now, social workers are tasked with exploring religion and spirituality as potentially influential to the client’s well-being, experiences, and perceptions and to take this dimension into account in treatment. How would you introduce this sensitive topic with clients in your community, and how might you do so without favoring your own beliefs?
For this Journal, you consider how you might grow to better serve specific religious or spiritual populations in your community. You also envision what a conversation about religion with a client might look like.
Baylor University. (n.d.). Study: Why social workers aren’t discussing religion and spirituality with clients. https://www.socialworktoday.com/news/dn_072415.shtml
Identify the major religions represented in the community where you live and/or work. You can do this be searching online, observing the houses of worship in your area, and/or accessing the Pew Research Center link in the Learning Resources.
Imagine you are meeting with a client who is a member of one of the major religions you have identified in your community.
By Day 7
Submit a 1- to 2-page written journal or 4- to 5-minute video or audio journal in which you:
Describe your approach for discussing religion with a client in your community, including at least two questions you would ask. Justify your approach using the Learning Resources.
Reflect on your comfort and familiarity with religion and spirituality in general. In what ways might you develop to better serve the specific religious and spiritual populations in your community?
Use the Learning Resources to support your thinking. Make sure to provide APA citations and a reference list.
Chapter 11: Religion, Spirituality, and Indigenous Methods of Healing (pp. 301–339)