Sep 10, 2017

ICSA Event: Understanding Abusive Spiritual Systems and Relationships

Continuing Education Provider
October 14, 2017 | 9:00am- 4:30pm

Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Student Union Center, Room 220
October 14, 2017 | 9:00am- 4:30pm
6 CE Hours

This event will explore various aspects of what some term “spiritual abuse.” Spiritual abuse may be viewed as being situated within the broader umbrella of psychological abuse but is a unique and often unrecognized aspect of this broader phenomenon. The societal value placed on religion can sometimes hinder critical evaluation of harmful dynamics and coercive control within religious frameworks. However, ideally religion seeks to bring deeper meaning to one’s life, a sense of connection and community, provides a general guide of how to lead healthy, meaningful lives, and connects one to a higher being. This workshop will explore spiritual abuse and explore counseling interventions for clinicians working with those who have experienced abusive spiritual systems and relationships, and their loved ones.


Opening and Introduction to Spiritual Abuse (Ashley Allen, MSW, LMSW and Maureen Griffo, MEd)

Clinical Panel: Models of Treatment (Lona Bailey, MA, LPC-MHSP (Temp) and Pike Williams, LMFT)

Born and/or Raised in Spiritually Abusive Groups (Debby Schriver, MS)

The Degrees of Spiritual Abuse and Effective Treatment Modalities (Dylesia Barner, LCSW)

The Importance of Addressing Coercive Control in Former Members (Matthew Quinn)

Round Table Discussions (Lona Bailey, MA, LPC-MHSP (Temp), Pike Williams, LMFT, Debby Schriver, MS, Dylesia Barner, LCSW, Matthew Quinn, Maureen Griffo, MEd, Abbie Michaels, Rod Shrader, and Ashley Allen, MSW, LMSW)

Closing: Final Thoughts on Spiritual Abuse, Coercive Control, and Psychological Harm (Ashley Allen, MSW, LMSW)

Learning Objectives:

1. Attendees will be able to identify clinically relevant effects of spiritual abuse.

2. Attendees will be able to describe three models of clinical intervention with this population.

3. Attendees will be able to utilize effective skills for assessing spiritual abuse through guided table discussions.

4. Attendees will be able to identify the unique clinical needs of children raised in spiritually abusive groups.

Registration Fee (includes 6 CE credit hours awarded by NBCC and light refreshments):

Non-ICSA Members: $65.00 | ICSA Members including Institutional Members: $55.00

Additional Information:
Scholarships are available for those with financial need, e.g., unemployment, disability.

Contact ICSA:

Event Webpage:

Online Registration

Information on spiritual abuse:

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