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Facing Feelings in Faith Communities

William M. Kondrath

Facing Feelings in Faith Communities is based on a simple premise: We have emotions because we need them. God created us as affectively competent beings, William Kondrath argues, to help us understand our world and to give appropriate signals to people around us about what we are experiencing. When we express our feelings clearly, other people can more easily respond in ways that are helpful to us, thus enhancing our relationships and the work we might do together. Kondrath also recognizes that unfortunately, for many of us, our emotional software was infected early on with viruses (early familial and social conditioning) that distorted the way we responded to natural stimuli. Because we are underusing or misusing our emotional capacities, we are missing out on the opportunity to express our full humanity.

Fortunately, we can re-program our emotional software.
Facing Feelings in Faith Communities helps us restore our emotional systems to their original state, or at least invites us to imagine how we would live differently if our emotional expressions were more nearly congruent with the situations and events we encounter. Kondrath invites us to explore six feelings—fear, anger, sadness, peace, power, and joy—through poetry, meditation on an evocative drawing, as well as through his own analysis of each feeling.

Congregational Resources for Facing Feelings is a companion collection to this book. For more information, click here.
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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers / Alban Books
Pages: 200Size: 6 x 9
978-1-56699-434-7 • Paperback • August 2013 • $21.00 • (£13.95)
978-1-56699-520-7 • eBook • August 2013 • $20.00 • (£13.95)
William M. Kondrath is a consultant for VISIONS, Inc., a multicultural consulting and training organization; an executive coach; and coeditor of the Journal of Religious Leadership. He is the author of God's Tapestry: Understanding and Celebrating Differences and Liberating Leadership: Practical Styles for Pastoral Ministry. Visit his website at www.billkondrath.com.
When faith communities neglect feelings, it can result in confusion, miscommunication, and hurt. This practical and insightful book helps individuals and congregations build affective capacity leading to greater wholeness, healing, and possibility.
Ian T. Douglas, Bishop, Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut

Kondrath beckons his readers into places of the soul through the portal of feelings. We don’t just use our emotions to guide our thoughts, they are capable of doing jobs cognition fails to do. Integrated feelings, he says, are essential in congregational life and personal wellness and he guides the reader in thoughtful and satisfying engagements with them.
Karen A. McClintock, author of Shame-Less Lives, Grace-Full Congregations

We have been waiting for this book for a long time. The very idea that faith communities might become emotionally literate and affectively competent is almost too powerful to contemplate. It is not just a dream. It is the fulfillment of a religious vocation.
Christopher Lind, Senior Fellow, Massey College; Executive director, Sorrento Center

This book is packed with insightful strategies worth using immediately. Kondrath reveals how skillful awareness of our own emotions and feelings as leaders, and nurturing that in others, strengthens the way faith communities serve together.
Lisa Fortuna, Priest, Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts