chapter  3
20 Pages

Integrating Personhood in Community

Emma’s comments were not unique-the spiritually resilient adults we met

told numerous stories about their lives in spiritual community. They believed

they needed “to be with other Christians,” in fellowship with them. Emma did

not mean that she associates only with Christians-we found no evidence of

exclusionary attitudes in any of these participants. Rather, she was expressing

her need for close relationships with others in her community. A recent widow,

Emma longed for more than recreation, money, or even good health-she needed

what can only be discovered through profound, spiritual connections.