Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants


The Theraputic Relationship: Context and Means of Forgivness


School of Social Work


College of Community and Public Service

Date Range



This presentation will focus on the client social work relationship as the context and the means by which change occurs; specifically forgiveness of self, others, and God. Forgiveness is important in repairing damage within interpersonal relationships and for individual physical and mental health. An individual's faith perspective can play an important role in the forgiveness process. The social workers sensitivity to the client's beliefs, faith, ritual, and community of belonging may have an impact on the client social worker relationship and the context and the means by which forgiveness occurs. This workshop will examine the beliefs of forgiveness in several religions and discuss case examples within the therapeutic process. The following is the outline for this paper and presentation: Abstract; Key Words; Introduction; review of the literature on forgiveness in several faith perspectives; review of the literature on self forgiveness; review of the literature on the complexities of forgiveness in the therapeutic process; discussion of disguised case examples reflecting forgiveness and the connection of faith or ritual in the therapeutic process. LEARNING OBJECTIVES: Understand Christian, Jewish, and other faith perspectives on the ideals of forgiveness Understand self forgiveness Understand the complexities of forgiveness for clients within the context and means of the therapeutic relationship Understand when forgiveness can place the victim in repeated harm from the perpetrator Understand what forgiveness is not Understand the social workers counter transference and the impact on the client regarding forgiveness Discuss case examples to provide insight into the change process involved with forgiveness in the therapeutic encounter

Conference Name

North American Christians in Social Work National Convention 2010

Conference Location

Durham North Carolina

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