“Why does God hate me?” “How can I believe in a God who has allowed my suffering?” These are just two of the difficult spiritual questions that survivors of child sexual abuse struggle with. In addition, survivors often have mixed feelings about the church, either because of perceived judgment and indifference, their own shame, or their discomfort with certain aspects of worship. Of the many after effects of sexual abuse, spiritual wounds are the least talked about, yet they are central to adult survivors who seek to heal and find faith and meaning in their lives. With grace and gentleness, this book seeks to answer survivors’ spiritual questions and address some of the common misperceptions that often developed when young victims attempted to understand what was happening to them. It explores the origins of their spiritual issues with clear psychological insights and guides survivors on a spiritual journey toward healing, wholeness, and a deeper relationship with God.
This book was born out of the author’s experiences working with survivors of child sexual abuse in therapy and spiritual direction. As a pastoral counselor, spirituality and faith were often a topic of conversation, and she came to understand how wounded these lost souls were regarding God and the church. Unfortunately, very few books about healing from sexual abuse addressed the area of a survivor’s spiritual life. It is hoped that Healing the Ravaged Soul will fill that void.
Sue Magrath is available to speak to groups and organizations about this important topic.
Reviews For Healing the Ravaged Soul
“Healing the Ravaged Soul is a helpful and informative manual for navigating the many facets of recovery from sexual abuse. The book is strengthened by weaving together spiritual and emotional dimensions that can come forth following childhood abuse. The ‘Healing Practices’ throughout each chapter offer practical ways to integrate information with personal experience. Although I have received individual counseling for almost two decades, I appreciated new insights and perspectives about myself as a result of reading the book. Sue offers a comprehensive and thorough examination of this difficult topic.”
—Jacquie Reed, abuse survivor
“With sensitivity, compassion, and understanding, the author shines a light of hope for those who as children have suffered the worst violations of body, mind, and spirit. She is not afraid to tackle the big theological questions and does so with honesty, humility, and insight. Survivors and those who accompany them will find in these pages refreshing images and rituals for healing and the restoration of wholeness.”
— Suzanne Seaton, MSW, Spiritual Director