The Failure of Evangelical Mental Health Care

Treatments That Harm Women, LGBT Persons and the Mentally Ill

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About the Book

In the evangelical community, a variety of alternative mental health treatments—deliverance/exorcism, biblical counseling, reparative therapy and many others—have been proposed for the treatment of mentally ill, female and LGBT evangelicals. This book traces the history of these methods, focusing on the major proponents of each therapeutic system while also examining mainstream evangelical psychology.
The author concludes that in the majority of cases mental disorders are blamed on two main issues—sin and demonic possession/oppression—and that as a result some communities have become a mental health underclass who are ill-served or oppressed by both alternative and mainstream evangelical therapeutic systems. He argues that the only recourse left for mentally ill, female and LGBT evangelicals is to rally for reform and increased accountability for both professional and alternative evangelical practitioners.

About the Author(s)

John Weaver is an adjunct professor at SUNY Binghamton. He lives in Vestal, New York.

Bibliographic Details

John Weaver
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 328
Bibliographic Info: appendices, glossary, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2015
pISBN: 978-0-7864-9594-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1742-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments ix

Preface 1

Introduction 5

1. Deliverance Movement: History and Foundational Assumptions 27

2. The Complementary Mental Health Care of Charismatics: From the Sandfords to Sozo 62

3. Mission Without Mercy: Mercy Ministries and Deliverance 86

4. Jay Adams: The Beginnings of Evangelical ­Anti-Psychiatry and the Demonization of the Mentally Ill 106

5. Biblical Counseling: The Second and Third Generations 127

6. Patriarchal Counseling 159

7. Evangelicals and ­Ex-gays: The Failure of Praying the Gay Away 179

8. Integrationism and the Popularizers 208

Conclusion: Evangelicals and Mental Illness 248

Appendix A: A Christological Vision of a Mad Christ: Mental Illness and Jesus 255

Appendix B: Mercy Ministries’ View of the Body 261

List of Acronyms 267

Glossary 269

Chapter Notes 283

Works Cited 291

Index 311