Themes from Workshops

Feedback from participants was gathered in several ways including action sociometry continua at the workshop, follow-up e-mails, and 47 telephone interviews conducted 1 – 6 months after the workshop.  The following themes and patterns emerged out of the feedback we received.

On the Readers’ Theatre Scripts:

  • Recognition of the challenges inherent in ‘pioneering’ new ideas from within an institution – insider/outsider issues even for those on the inside
  • Admiration and gratitude for those who had ‘pioneered’ the collaboration between spirituality and counseling in Scotland
  • Disappointment that there weren’t more multifaith stories and/or stories broader than Christianity shared

On the Workshops:

  • The importance of a safe community, acceptance, and belonging in exploring and sharing personal and collective experiences of spirituality and counselling
  • Significance of identity in these explorations
  • Importance of being nonjudgmental
  • Thought-provoking and inspiring
  • Desire for more time to share personal stories and talk with colleagues
  • Insightful learning opportunity
  • A sense of life’s journey and of how people grow and change
  • What a privilege it is to hear another’s story
  • Realisation that people bring their own prejudices, whether about counselling or about religion or spirituality
  • Some remaining skepticism and disappointment in the Christian religious language

On Their Own Counselling Practice:

  • Counselling as a spiritual practice of loving and caring for people
  • Connection with the word ‘call’ as something to do with meaning, purpose, and the ‘Life Force’, as well as something ‘religious’
  • The importance of intention and purpose in counselling and in spirituality