Kathleen B. Shannon: Religious Trauma

Adverse Religious Experiences, Podcast, Religious Trauma, Secular Grace, Spirituality
Kathleen B. Shannon on Religious Trauma
Click to play episode on anchor.fm

We throw around the term religious trauma but what exactly does the term actually mean?

On today’s show, my guest is Kathleen B. Shannon. Kathleen is a physiotherapist. She is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in Washington state and a Listened Professional Counselor in North Carolina. I asked Kathleen to be on the show to talk about religious trauma from an expert’s perspective.

What does psychology have to say on the subject and what does she sees in her practice?

We discuss Kathleen’s experience at bible college, religious trauma, outrage exhaustion and what Kathleen calls equanimity.

Kathleen’s advice for those deconstructing:

Find a space that is safe to ask the questions, preferably one where they will not give you the answers.

— Kathleen B. Shannon


Connect with Kathleen B. Shannon:


Shout outs:

I want to give Mandy Nicole (@ThatMandyNicole) credit for coining the term “Prayer Reflex.” Mandy coined the term after the recording of the show but it eloquently describes a feeling I was attempting to articulate in the episode.

Ryan Bell (@ryanjbell) for pointing me to A Great Big World’s song, “Say Something,” as perfectly describing the deconversion experience.


The intro points out that we recorded the conversation with today’s guest, Kathleen B. Shannon, before the passing of Rachel Held Evans on May 4th, 2019. The absence of mention of Rachel and her work would have felt awkward. So, I make a few statements about Rachel’s impact on the world of progressive Christianity and I read a statement from Kathleen about Rachel’s impact on her.

Rachel Held Evans’ family’s Go Fund Me page:



“Waves” track written and produced by Makaih Beats

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