The Essential Guide to Religious Traditions and Spirituality for Health Care Providers

Jan 2013
Order from the USA $199.00

This extraordinary compendium of religious traditions is invaluable to all healthcare providers. The user-friendly resource contains specific and detailed information on faith traditions vital for providing optimal spiritual care in a clinical setting.

A series of inspirational introductory chapters promote the importance of spiritual well-being as a vital component in whole person care, but the majority of the book forms a compilation of articles from a wide-ranging expert panel of contributors. Ideal for quick reference, the A-Z organisation from American Indian Spirituality to Zoroastrianism is presented in a clear and logical format, covering:

History and Facts
Basic Teachings
Basic Practices

Principles for Clinical Care
• Dietary Issues
• General Medical Beliefs
• Specific Medical Issues
• Gender and Personal Issues
Principles for Spiritual Care Through the Cycles of Life

Concepts of Living and Dying for Spiritual Support
• During Birth
• During Illness
• During End of Life
Care of the Body
Organ and Tissue Donation

Scriptures, Inspirational Readings and Prayers

'This book is suitable for all practitioners working in multicultural environments, and from a health visitor’s perspective it can expand on preconceptions of religion and explain some areas of belief that may not have previously been known. It breaks down different Christian denominations, as well as other faiths with more than one path (such as Buddhism). The book provides the undamental details relevant to all practices within health care, allowing the practitioner to fully explore these with dignity and respect. The information provided can allow health visitors to relay relevant information to families and cater advice accordingly to suit their religious/cultural beliefs and customs.'
Hannah Marriage, Student Health Visitor

'One of the best aspects of the book is the balanced exploration of spirituality in the early chapters, supported by relevant research. The advantages and disadvantages of spirituality are briefly explored...There is no doubt this is a well-written compendium providing healthcare practitioners with useful information about different religions.'
Phil Russell, lecturer practitioner bereavement service, The Rowans Hospice, Portsmouth, UK, Nursing Older People Journal 

'This inspiring American book is not an exhaustive account of all faiths, but I now know about belief systems I previously did not know existed... The authors summarise practices that may need to be adhered to at birth, during illness and at end of life. It would be ideal as a ward resource, or for reference in a library.'
Jill Hardman-Smith, Liverpool Care Pathway facilitator/Macmillan specialist sister, University Hospitals of Leicester, UK, Cancer Nursing Practice Journal

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Delivery costs

Zone Transit Time Cost for orders £50 and under Cost for orders over £50
UK 1-5 working days £3.50 £5.50
Europe 2-7 working days £13.00 £18.00
Rest of World 3-10 working days £27.00 £35.00

* Longer transit times should be allowed for South America, Pacific nations and Indonesia due to local circumstances.


• A user-friendly, comprehensive reference book on religious traditions
• Contains detailed and comprehensive information about multiple faith traditions pertinent to the clinical setting
• Systematically laid out for easy comprehension across all faiths
• Ideal for quick reference - A-Z compendium of faiths and a glossary of terms including section on 'special days'
• Clear and comprehendible explanations, especially when using terms from languages other than English.
• Authoritative – wide range of contributors that are experts in their field


Summary of contents

Preface • Foreword by Perry A. Pugno, MD • Foreword by Carl E. Lundstrom, MD • Reasons For and How to Use This Book • About the Editors • About the Contributors • Acknowledgements • Setting the Stage • Spirituality and Religion: An Overview of Three Families of Faith • Spirituality, Religion and Culture • Spirituality and Religion: Relevance in the Clinical Setting? • Spirituality and Religion in the Clinical Setting: Pros and Cons • Spiritual Care in the Clinical Setting: Assessment and Application • Agnosticism • American Indian Spirituality • Atheism • Baha’i Faith • Buddhism: General Introduction • Mahayana • Theravada • Vajrayana • Christianity: General Introduction • Anabaptist Traditions: General Introduction • Amish • Brethren in Christ • Church of the Brethren • Hutterites • Mennonite • Catholic Traditions: General Introduction • Eastern Rite • Roman • Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon) • Community of Christ • Jehovah’s Witnesses • Orthodox Christianity • Protestant Traditions: General Introduction • African American Baptist/Protestantism • African American Pentecostalism• African Methodist Episcopal (AME) • Anglican • Assemblies of God • Baptist • Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) • Christian Science • Church of God, Indiana • Church of God in Christ • Episcopal • Evangelical Covenant • Lutheranism • Nazarene • Pentecostalism • Presbyterian • Seventh-day Adventist • United Church of Christ • United Methodist • Unity • Quakers: General Introduction • Liberal Quakers • Pastoral Quakers • Confucianism • Free Thinker • Hare Krishna • Hinduism • Humanism (See Secularism) • Islam • Jainism • Judaism • Paganism • Scientology • Secularism • Shinto • Sikhism • Spiritualism • Sufism • Taoism • Unitarian Universalism • Vodou • Wicca • Zoroastrianism • Concluding Words • Special Days of the World’s Religious and Spiritual Traditions • Glossary of Terms • Sources Cited and Consulted


Edited by Steven L. Jeffers, PhD, Michael E. Nelson, MD, Vern Barnet, DMin, Michael C. Brannigan, PhD


Pastor L. Henderson Bell • Reverend Natalie Mitchem •  Kara Hawkins • Jimm G. Good Tracks • Linda L. Graham • James A. Cates • The Rev. John Cochran • Emanuel Williams • Barb McAtee • David Edalati, MD • Michael Fuhrman • Samuel M. Brubaker • Guy McCloskey • Clark Strand • Kongsak Tanphaichitr, MD, FACP, FRCP(C), FACR, FAAAAI • Chuck Stanford • Teri Brody, MD • Robert E. Johnson, PhD • Paul Hura, MD • Rev. Jerry L. Spencer, MA, BCETS, BCECR, BCSM, BCBT & Diplomate in AAET • Rev. Mr. Quentin B. Jones • Philip G. Davis • Dr. Molly T. Marshall • Barry L. Callen, EdD, DRel • Kathryn “Kathy” Goering Reid • Wallace B. Smith, MD • Edward R. Canda, PhD • Marshall Scott • Tom Anderson • Kathleen Buckley • Anand Bhattacharyya • Arvind Khetia • Kris Krishna • Rod Janzen • A. Rauf Mir, MD, FACP • Mahnaz Shabbir • Christopher Key Chapple • Gulab Kothari • Dilip V. Shah • Dr. Sulekh Jain • Dr. Dilip Bobra • Naresh Jain • Anop Vora • Prakash Modi • Dr. Pravin Shah • James N. Pellechia • Rabbi Amy Wallk Katz, PhD • The Rev. John D. Kreidler • Robert J. Carlson • Dr. Judith A. Schwanz • Dr. Darius Salter • The V. Rev. Dr. Steven Voytovich • Caroline Baughman • Mike Nichols • Robert H. Meneilly • Chel Avery • Brenda McKinney • Brent McKinney • Nancy O’Meara • Michael Irwin, MD, MPH • William G. Johnsson • William R. Lindsey • Gurinder Singh, MD, MHA • Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa • Rev. Lelia E. Cutler • Batina Hinds • Peter Cunneen • Donald D. Davis • Kathy Riegelman, MDiv, BCC • Greg Heinsman, MDiv, BCC • Jeanne Hoeft, PhD • Amanda Caruso • Rev. Thomas W. Shepherd, MDiv • Dowoti Désir • Maneck Bhujwala • Khojeste P. Mistree • James R. Russell, PhD • Ervad Jal N. Birdy

Author Affiliation

Edited by Steven L. Jeffers, PhD, Michael E. Nelson, MD, Vern Barnet, DMin, Michael C. Brannigan, PhD, respectively Founder and Director, Institute for Spirituality in Health at Shawnee Mission Medical Center (SMMC); Physician, Shawnee Mission Medical Center in Merriam, Kansas; Lecturer in world religions at several universities and seminaries and religion columnist for The Kansas City Star; George and Jane Pfaff Endowed Chair in Ethics and Moral Values at The College of Saint Rose in Albany, New York and former Vice President for Clinical and Organizational Ethics at the Center for Practical Bioethics in Kansas City, Missouri