Rediscovering Confession: The Practice of Forgiveness and Where it Leads, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Rediscovering Confession

The Practice of Forgiveness and Where it Leads, 1st Edition

By David A. Steere


296 pages

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Rediscovering Confession is about recovering the experience of confession, in danger now of becoming a lost art. It identifies four elements present in psychotherapy and confession: a state of heightened self-awareness, a growing realization that our predicament points in some meaningful direction beyond itself, the necessity to make a relevant response to our situation, and a potential for spiritual encounter that accompanies the process. Each chapter contains a section devoted to practice, with exercises for individual contemplation and experimentation, guidelines for forming a confessional partnership, directions for conducting discussions in a study goup, and ways to organize a small confessional group.


Rediscovering Confession is a profound reflection on the long neglected art of confession. It is, at once, a wide ranging exploration of the history and types of consciousness and a practical, step by step, guide to recovering this lost spiritual discipline. Follow the path it lays out and you will find that, in truth, confession is good for your soul. - Sam Keen, author of Fire in the Belly, Hymns to an Unknown God, Sightings, and more

In this thought-provoking book, Dr. Steere admirably and courageously raises awareness of the necessity to bring back the almost lost art of "confession." He does with confession what Karl Menninger did with sin. Readers are invited to move beyond childhood experiences and formulate mature ones in their ongoing pilgrimage of spiritual growth through confession of sin and faith. - Pat Otwell, DMin, author of Guide to Ministering to Alzheimer’s Patients and Their Families

David Steere has retooled the ancient wisdom of confession into practical applications for pastoral counselors and professional therapists seeking to incorporate spirituality into their work with clients and greater community. I found my own theology expanding and relaxing as I bathed in the stories that modeled responsible confession and reconciling relationships. This book is a gem for developing "the person of the therapist. - Kenneth A. Burr, MA, LMFT, Marriage and Family Therapist, pastoral counselor; author of Coming Out, Coming Home: Making Room for Gay Spirituality in Therapy

"Rediscovering Confession is both thorough and readable…Steere's writing is organzed and creative…an excellent book for chaplains…Rediscovering Confession would be a welcome addition to the libraries of chaplains, ministers, social workers, and "ordinary" folk involded in any form of intimate exchange." - Mary Stubbs, MDiv., D.Mus., in Chaplaincy Today

"David Steere uses the context of psychotherapy and the paraidgm of confession to illustrate a new application of [an] ancient practice. Steere is successful in acheiving his objective of rediscovering the lost art of confession. His intentional focus on the spirituality of confession as a practice distinct from self-awareness and self-disclosure is an important contribution to psychology and psychotherapy. The practitioners, researchers, ministers, and students for whom this book is written will indeed benefit from Steere's treatment of confession." - Anthony C. Holter in PsycCRITIQUES Vol.55, Release 22

Table of Contents

Honest Confession. A Full Confessional Experience. Some Classical Confessions: Augustine and Patrick. More Confessions: Tolstoy and Vonnegut. The Trouble with Adam. The Confessional Relationship. Women in Confession: Julian of Norwich and Margery Kemp. Contemporary Women Confessors: Karen Armstrong and Elaine Pagels. The Enneagram. The Truth of the Matter. More Confessions: Bill Wilson and Recovery. Predicament and Presence in Practice. Forgiveness and Confessional Relationships. Changing Our Mind. The Compassionate Community.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychotherapy / Counseling
PSYCHOLOGY / Mental Health