Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences – Copyright © 2014
FORMAT | ARTICLE
PAGES | 617-626
LANGUAGE | English
HOW TO CITE|Necula, R., Damian, S., Caras, A., SANDU, Antonio, & Vicol, M. (2013). The role of spirituality in the construction of the autonomy and responsibility of chronic diabetic patients. An orthodox priests’ perspective. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 92, 617-626. WOS:000347957500101. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sbspro.2013.08.727
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This article aims to identify the perceptions of Orthodox Christian priests about the role of faith and religious practices, of spirituality, generally, in the care of chronic patients. In treating chronically ill people, we consider that the concerted actions of those who care about the patient (family, friends) are very important, because they, together with the religious representatives, serve to stimulate the joy of life for the suffering persons and to restore their self-confidence. The chronic condition can cause distortions in the representation of concepts like world, time and necessity, which are seen from the perspective of a transfiguring ethos, transcending time, by the reference to a transcendent reality. Life can be understood as a drama, to which the individual makes specific expectations, both from himself and from their relatives.
In this paper, we aim to identify a Christian ethical perspective (Damian, S., Necula, R., Caras, A., Sandu, A., 2012) in the discourse of the priests, especially of those engaged in missionary work in hospitals, as well as specific healing rituals of Orthodoxy. In the context of this article, we have chosen a particular side of the chronic patient’s construction of the autonomy and the responsibility towards his own health, limiting ourselves to answer the question: What is the role of religion/spirituality and of the religious institutions in the social construction of autonomy and responsibility for the patient with chronic disease?Private interviews have been conducted with the patients and members of their families, medical specialists in diabetes, medical staff, social workers and focus groups with patients, members of their families, medical specialists in diabetes, family, doctors and orthodox priests. The research done within this study is based on the synthesis of these interviews and focus groups and the data were interpreted using inductive qualitative methodologies.