This acclaimed, influential work applies the concepts of systemic family therapy to the emotional life of congregations. Edwin H. Friedman shows how the same understanding of family process that can aid clergy in their pastoral role also has important ramifications for negotiating congregational dynamics and functioning as an effective leader. Clergy from diverse denominations, as well as family therapists and counselors, have found that this book directly addresses the dilemmas and crises they encounter daily. It is widely used as a text in courses on family systems and pastoral care.
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Edwin H. Friedman, until his death in 1996, worked for more than 35 years in the Washington, DC, metropolitan area, and was in great demand as a consultant and public speaker throughout the country. A family therapist and ordained rabbi, Dr. Friedman was well known in the fields of mental health and pastoral education for his motivational style and his unique blend of systems thinking, humor, and common sense. He offered acclaimed workshops for mental health practitioners, clergy, business leaders, and others.Review:
"Friedman uses his unique position as family therapist and rabbi to explore ways to be an effective agent of change in a group. He shows how ceremonies and rituals, as developmental markers in the lives of families and organizations, can be transformed into systemic interventions that spur healing and growth. In the footsteps of Murray Bowen, Friedman moves seamlessly between a leader's self-differentiation as a person and his or her role within families and other systems, giving each their due. For family therapists, Generation to Generation is a pioneering text that illuminates the relevance of personal spirituality and religious life to the functioning of healthy families."--James L. Griffith, MD, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, The George Washington University
"Generation to Generation provides a needed corrective to the general tendency in ministry to focus on the individual. I have found the text to be useful in my Youth Ministry courses to remind Catholic missionaries that the family is the domestic church. While we may see the individual in front of us, Friedman widens our vision so we may see the larger context of the individual at home and in the congregation. Insightful and grounded in reality, Generation to Generation is a valuable resource for those intending to minister to others."--Biff Rocha, MA, Department of Theology, Benedictine College, Atchison, Kansas
"When [this book] was originally written, learning about the emotional side of congregations was not part of the curriculum in most seminaries. Now it is the gold standard in this area, and Generation to Generation is a text many clergy carry with them each day....Just as the book’s title suggests, Friedman’s ideas continue to be passed down to today’s generation of leaders."--from the Foreword to the Paperback Edition by Gary Emanuel, PhD, and Mickie Crimone, MS, APRN
"Well written and lively...required reading for pastoral counselors of every persuasion....Any therapist will find here new techniques for bringing about changes and will enlarge his or her conceptual framework of the human dilemma." --Jay Haley
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