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Freedom Song: Faith, Abuse, Music and Spirituality

A Lived Experience of Celebration


June Boyce-Tillman

This book is an autobiographical account of the development of an authentic interiority. It charts the way in which the Christian faith in which the author was enculturated was refined by her lived experience of music, abuse, forgiveness, interfaith dialogue, gender and vocation (into teaching and priesthood). The author describes how music and spirituality can create a route into forgiveness by creatively transforming («mulching») childhood abuse into celebration. Her work challenges established therapeutic models and suggests a variety of alternative tools, including created ritual.

The volume is set out as a series of meditations on the themes contained in the Lord’s Prayer; it can be read in separate sections, as well as in its totality. The author’s life is perceived as a crystal that can be viewed through various lenses, illustrated by different styles of writing. These include narrative accounts written in a personal style; hymns, songs and poems that condense her thinking around a theme; and more academic reflection, using other people’s writing and experiences to understand her own.

CONTENTS: Prelude: Trying to Be Good - Our: Belonging - Father: A Distant Beloved - Who Art in Heaven: Death of a Friend - Hallowed Be: Indigenous Traditions - Thy Name: A Woman’s Place - Thy Kingdom Come: The Dignity of Difference - Thy Will Be Done: The Vocation to the Priesthood - In Earth: Ecotheology - As It Is in Heaven: The Liminal Space - Give Us This Day: Gratitude - Interlude: On Not Becoming a Woman - Our Daily Bread: Food - And Forgive Us Our Trespasses: Forgiveness - As We Forgive Those Who Trespass Against Us: A Good Friday Thing - And Lead Us Not into Temptation: Motherhood - But Deliver Us: A Box Full of Darkness - From Evil: Re-Balancing - For Thine Is the Kingdom: A Vocation to Teaching - The Power: The Birthing - And the Glory: Affirmation - For Ever and Ever: To the End of My Days - Amen: The Interior Castle - Postlude: Mulching Experience.