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Dr. Robert W. Kellemen5 Stars Out Of 5May 27, 2005Dr. Robert W. KellemenUpdated after nearly 30 years, Kenneth Leech's "Soul Friends: The Practice of Christian Spirituality" was a prophetic book in many ways. Since his book and those of Richard Foster, spiritual direction, spiritual formation, and spiritual friendship have become common practices not only in Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Circles, but also in Protestant contexts. A major portion of Leech's work examines the relationship between counseling and soul friendship. Leech provides a helpful summary of the attempts in the past fifty years to integrate these disciplines. He also traces the history of spiritual counsel from the time of Christ to the present day. The bulk of his work focuses on prayer in spiritual friendship, or perhaps better said, prayer as spiritual friendship. For those wanting to sharpen their competencies in this aspect of soul friendship, Leech is quite helpful. For those wanting to develop a broad understanding of the varied components of spiritual friendship and how to practice them, other works might be necessary. Reviewer: Dr. Robert W. Kellemen is the author of "Spiritual Friends: A Methodology of Soul Care and Spiritual Direction," "Soul Physicians: A Theology of Soul Care and Spiritual Direction," and the forthcoming "Sacred Companions: A History of Soul Care and Spiritual Direction."
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