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Groups that Foster Spiritual Growth tend to: 

  1. Encourage self-confidence.
  2. Encourage people to think, ask questions, doubt, and disagree.
  3. Encourage members to take charge of their spiritual growth while providing them with support and guidance.
  4. Encourage tolerance and openness to other religious beliefs.
  5. Respect members’ rights to own their histories and emotions.
  6. Allow members to interpret any mystical experiences they may have without imposing the group’s meaning on the experience.
  7. Allow members to choose their level and type of involvement.
  8. Not use coercion, shame and manipulation.

Porterfield, Kay Marie. (1993). Blind Faith: Recognizing and Recovering from Dysfunctional Religious Groups Minneapolis, MN: CompCare Publishers

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