Counseling Department


Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


John Thomas

Primary Subject Area

Religion, General; Psychology, General; Psychology, Behavioral


Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Free Lifestyle, Christian Conversion, Christian Virtues, Relapse Recovery, Spiritual Disciplines


Christianity | Counseling Psychology | Psychology | Religion | Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion


Interviews were conducted with graduates of a northeastern evangelical Christian-based treatment program to discover insights regarding the role that the phenomenon of Christian spirituality played in their recovery. Eight themes were extracted from three periods of time in the participants' lives as they related to the phenomenon of Christian spirituality: prior to treatment; during treatment; and after treatment. These themes revealed that the participants lacked resiliencies to overcome alcohol dependence themselves. All participants reported that critical aspects of Christian spirituality, such as regeneration and cultivation of a divine-human relationship through lifestyle exercise of Spiritual Disciplines and diligent application of the fruit of the Holy Spirit and Christian virtues worked to transform them during and after treatment.