Social Work

Date of this version


Document Type



social work practice


The history of spirituality and the social work profession is marked by ambivalence, even avoidance. This paper expands the definition of social work practice to include a spiritual dimension. The authors suggest that this dimension is not new, but its importance has not been sufficiently articulated. The spiritual dimension of practice includes consciousness of and attention to the client's search for meaning. Both the helping relationship and many of the issues that clients bring are spiritual in nature. A simple framework to help practitioners identify spiritual issues is presented and illustrated by a case example.

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Social Thought

Citation/Other Information

Graham, M.A., Kaiser, T., & Garrett, K. J. (1998).Naming the spiritual: The hidden dimension of social work practice. Social Thought, 18 (4), 49-62.

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Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.