Counselling in the Spirit: The Outworking of a Pneumatological Hermeneutic in the Praxis of Pentecostal Therapists

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This article explores pentecostal spirituality and its formative influence upon the therapeutic praxis of pentecostal therapists. Central to pentecostal spirituality is a posture of openness and receptivity to the ongoing work of the Holy Spirit in creation. For the pentecostal therapist, this posture informs the therapeutic encounter. In dialogue with selected pentecostal interlocutors, the author explores the phenomenological accounts of a number of self-identified Pentecostal and charismatic licensed mental health professionals concerning their experiences of the Holy Spirit in their provision of therapy. These accounts speak to the ways in which the clinicians’ pentecostal spirituality has formed in them a particular manner of interpreting and being-in-the-world; a pneumatological hermeneutic that becomes outworked in their clinical praxis. In reflection upon these accounts, practical and theological implications are offered for pentecostal counsellors, and others concerned with practical theologies of care and counselling.