Ultimately healing and survival depend on existential categories: on vision, for example, on hope, on the imaginative capacity, on the ability to transcend the anxiety of those about us, and on a response to challenge that treats crisis as opportunity for growth. – E.H. Friedman Generation to generation: Family Process in Church and Synagogue. New York: Guilford, 1985.
CURA VITAE is a theology of life and of healing from the perspective of Christian spirituality. It aims to encourage a paradigm shift in pastoral care by enabling caregivers to understand and deal with the existential issues raised by the crisis of illness.
The author argues that without the necessary equipment and preparation, illness is easily experienced as an unbearable burden. This in turn deeply affects the patient’s coping ability and potential for healing. However, where there is adequate existential understanding and the appropriate development of skills to deal with illness, it may be an opportunity for growth in life and faith. Central to these skills is the patient’s framework of meaning, perception of life and understanding of God.
CURA VITAE is a comprehensive and magisterial work, the fruit of much study, research and experience. It provides a serious and challenging theological perspective on a range on issues relating to illness, death and healing. It is also a practical guide for caregivers.
The author deals with major issues such as sickness and health in an African context, HIV/AIDS, cancer and heart disease. He also provides an extensive and up to date bibliography for further reading and research.
CURA VITAE is a powerful tool for ministers and other pastoral workers. It also provides vital reading on the existential issues raised by illness, death and healing for all healthcare professionals.