A New Old Spirituality? A Qualitative Study of Clergy Spirituality in the Nordic Context

Edited by Tone Stangeland Kaufman

How do pastors live their spiritual lives, both as private persons and as professionals? How can their spirituality be characterized and understood? Drawing on in-depth interviews with Norwegian clergy as well as literature from the fields of Christian spirituality, practical theology, congregational studies, and the sociology of religion, this book offers a nuanced understanding of clergy spirituality. Tone Stangeland Kaufman identifies three locations and sources of spiritual nurture for pastors: the ministry itself (vocational spirituality), daily life (everyday spirituality), and spiritual practices located at the margins of daily life (intentional spirituality).   The participants in this study engage in classic Christian practices, yet approach them in a subjective and new way that also potentially revitalizes their spiritual lives. Hence, the author makes the case that their spirituality can aptly be described as "a new old spirituality." The book also seeks to nuance Paul Heelas's and Linda Woodhead's Spiritual Revolution claim, and thus engages in the broader spirituality vs. religion discourse. A New Old Spirituality is an exciting example of how qualitative empirical research can be used in creative ways to make a practical theological argument. It is a book for scholars, students, and practitioners. This publication is part of the Church of Sweden research series. 

Kaufman, Tone Stangeland, A New Old Spirituality?: A Qualitative Study of Clergy Spirituality in the Nordic Context, Pickwick Publications, Eugene, OR, 2017. ISBN: 9781532608438. 

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