Spiritual Counseling

SERVICES I OFFERSpiritual Counseling

Prayer of St. Gianna Beretta Molla

Jesus, I promise You to submit myself to all that You permit to befall me, make me only know Your will. My most sweet Jesus, infinitely merciful God, most tender Father of souls, and in a particular way of the most weak, most miserable, most infirm which You carry with special tenderness between Your divine arms, I come to You to ask You, through the love and merits of Your Sacred Heart, the grace to comprehend and to do always Your holy will, the grace to confide in You, the grace to rest securely through time and eternity in Your loving divine arms.

a spiritual image of a woman standing on a jetty as the clouds open up and shine light from the heavens

Spiritual Counseling for Holy Living and the Treatment of Psychological Conflicts

It is very common to struggle with trust in God or to even have anger towards God because of deep psychological conflicts that have been left unattended.

The modern world is getting further and further away from the one and only true God, each, and every day, and spreading the lie that you can just pick and choose whatever religion that you want to follow, as if faith is like some sort of buffet. If you have found the Truth or, perhaps were even raised in the Catholic Church, you probably witnessed a lot of hypocrisy, and are seeing changes to the teachings in the Church that may make you question Truth even more. [1] Confusion doesn’t come from God; it comes from Satan. Yet, God allows it for our purification so that we can choose to respond to His grace and grow in love.

We have a responsibility, within our abilities and capabilities, to sort out what is true and to respond to the graces that God gives us. Spiritual counseling seeks to guide a person in ways that bring him or her closer to living a holy lifestyle. In spiritual counseling you learn to surrender yourself to total trust in God so that, no matter, what afflicts you, you can bring the pain before God and ask for the strength and courage to deal, in imitation of Christ, with what needs to be done in any moment. [2]

Many people find it difficult to make a total surrender to God because of unconscious conflicts.

Therefore, for all practical purposes, when I provide spiritual counseling, I use many of the same techniques that I use in psychotherapy to help you understand and overcome the fear that is an obstacle to the spiritual purgation necessary for living a holy lifestyle. The fundamental difference is that I also advise my clients to follow spiritual counsels, which include prayer, fasting, and a sincere study of the Catholic faith.

However, most people are not interested in what it means to do the hard work that many before us have done. You may be different. If you have any REAL interest in developing a desire to grow in love for God and, a healthy self-love, by integrating prayer, fasting, and a sincere study of the Catholic faith into your treatment, then you are free to read the spiritual counsels that were recommended to me, when I first studied under the tutelage of Raymond Lloyd Richmond, Ph.D.

If there is anything that you object, note the things to which you might object, and this will give you a clue as to the unconscious sins working under the surface of your conscious beliefs about yourself. All that has to be within you, is your desire to persevere and be willing to stop making excuses like, “my priest or my bishop doesn’t require it”. Growing in love is not about doing what is ‘required’. It’s about doing what is ‘good’ because it is ‘good’. Defining what is ‘good’ is not something that is arbitrarily defined by a matter of opinion, man’s law, or even Church law that has been changed over time to fit mine, someone else’s or even your hardness of heart (Mt. 19:8). God’s law does not change because God does not change.

Dr. Richmond is one of the most kind, loving men that I have ever known.

People often think that Raymond Lloyd Richmond, Ph.D. is ‘mean’ when they first read his websites. Fortunately, I didn’t have that experience. Perhaps, it was because I knew the difference between when a person is actually being mean and when a person writes something that looks a little ‘crazy’ to me because it’s so ‘different’ than what I’m used to seeing. I approached his websites with curiosity and a REAL interest in discovering the truth. I tested out everything on his websites, through my own analysis, prayer, fasting, and a sincere study of the faith. I even eventually hired him for one-on-one training for several years to ‘test-out’ and analyze his methods and beliefs, so that I could become a better Catholic and clinician.

It was only by the grace of God that I discovered what was true, what wasn’t, and when there was more to the truth. This is not to say that Dr. Richmond is ‘lying’ about anything that he personally writes on his websites, which I have followed his work and seen his edits for nearly a decade. I know his websites, almost, as well as he does.

I believe that Dr. Richmond is a very wise, kind, and loving man who loves God and who deserves respect and gratitude for the service that he provides to Christ and His Church. There are some external links on his websites that I do not support and some articles that I wish he would put back up, yet it’s his work, not mine, and websites are always a ‘work in progress’.

You may wonder if you have to follow all of the spiritual counsels.

Well, no, you don’t have to do anything. But your treatment will take less time and cost you less money if you follow his advice, and if you don’t ‘fight’ me, and the ‘parts’ of you that actually want healing, every step of the way. As the saying goes, “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.” [3]


[1] Recommended reading. Richmond, R. (1997-2022). Why go to church? It’s just filled with hypocrites. Catholic Psychology in association with A Guide to Psychology and its Practice. Retrieved on February 4, 2023, from https://chastitysf.com/q_whychurch.htm

[2] Richmond, R. (1997-2023). Spiritual counsels to develop love for God. Catholic Psychology in association with A Guide to Psychology and its Practice. Retrieved on February 4, 2023, from https://chastitysf.com/treatreq.htm. Copyright © 1997-2023 by Raymond Lloyd Richmond, Ph.D. Reproduced and adapted with permission by Raymond Lloyd Richmond, Ph.D. The material is copyrighted and may not be reproduced by any means.

[3] The origin of this expression is unknown, yet one of the earliest cited examples includes St. Jerome’s “Letter to the Ephesians”, which was written in Latin in 400 A.D. Noli equi dentes inspicere donati. This translates to: “Never inspect the teeth of a given horse.” The general message, however, is clear, “Don’t be ungrateful when you receive a gift, even if it’s not exactly what you expected, or wanted. It could be exactly what you need.” This also supports the reason why Confession and psychoanalysis were traditionally done without the person “seeing” the priest or the analyst and ‘why’ I advise the use of telephone work when I conduct spiritual counseling with clients. You will have a greater sense of anonymity and ability to be more vulnerable and honest in our work together with telephone, spiritual counseling.

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