Karen A. McClintock, M.Div., Ph.D.

When Trauma Wounds

Pathways to Healing and Hope

When trauma wounds, victims are thrown into unexpected darkness and experience unfamiliar symptoms. Some trauma survivors draw upon a lifelong faith in God; others find themselves in a wilderness devoid of spiritual grounding. The recovery stories in this book offer diverse pathways to faith and hope.

How to heal from trauma and restore laughter, love, and faith

In When Trauma Wounds, psychologist Karen A. McClintock combines psychological approaches with faith resources to improve trauma recovery. Whether you are a trauma survivor, a caregiving pastor or church member, or friend to a survivor, this book will familiarize you with trauma symptoms and healing strategies.

Secure and trusting relationships heal many wounds. If you care for a trauma survivor, McClintock will help you create a sanctuary to shelter this wounded soul, to help them bear their pain and hold out hope for recovery–to offer victims of trauma the compassion they so badly need.

Each trauma victim has a story to tell. If you are a trauma survivor, healing from that trauma or working through repeated traumatic experiences may take days or years. But no matter how long your healing journey might take, it can begin right now.

Reviews of When Trauma Wounds

McClintock has done it again! Through her engaging style and personal story-telling, the author offers a deceptively simple introduction to trauma theory and how to help persons affected by trauma. Don’t let her clear, readable prose fool you into thinking this is just surface-level swim. This book is actually filled with deep psychological insight and a pastoral sensitivity honed over years of experience in ministry. A must read for all pastors.
Darryl W. Stephens, Amazon reviewer

Karen A. McClintock has written a book helpful for every pastor, caregiver, family member, and survivor of trauma.  Her explorations of real-life stories, combined with suggestions for concrete responses to traumas, provide a compelling invitation to hope, resiliency, and justice. 

This is a must-read in every seminary classroom and by every pastor.

Joretta Marshall, Brite Divinity School

When Trauma Wounds offers a comprehensive view of trauma and its powerful effects on health and well-being for individuals and society.  This book is a pleasure to read and rich with numerous personalized examples, narratives, and case studies. It reflects the sensitivity of a compassionate practitioner with a rich and diverse professional background in mental-health counseling and parish ministry.

Richard Riddoch, hospice chaplain and medical social worker
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From the Introduction

“On a Tuesday morning I was sitting at my office desk shuffling folders, preparing for the week ahead. My draft of the Sunday bulletin needed work, but ‘it’ll do,’ I thought, and pushed it aside to watch a noisy blue jay outside my window in the courtyard.  The sky was gray. In California’s central valley the f fog rolls in almost every fall morning.  By noon, however, I could count on sunshine.

As I was turning my thoughts toward a sermon on Jesus’ encounter with the leper, the phone rang. I heard a frantic voice on the other end of the line and couldn’t recognize it.

‘Hello Karen,’ she said, as if we knew each other. ‘I know this is very awkward, but my name is Sarah, and I work at Child Protective Services.  I have a situation I think you could best handle for us.  We have an eight-year-old girl whose father is inn prison and whose mother drove her car off the side of the road and died this morning.  I’m on my way to the school to pick her up.  I don’t feel comfortable telling her this news, and I’d like to bring her to you so you can tell her.’ 

I asked Sarah for the child’s name and realized that I had met her one morning walking toward our Sunday school classrooms with a friend.  She was the quieter of the two girls and looked as if she’d grown awkwardly taller ahead of her peers.  She was pale and slightly disheveled. She was the kind of kid you’d notice and grow curious about. 

Awaiting their arrival, I paced the floor for a few minutes and went to the bathroom.  I felt nauseous and took a few deep breaths before walking slowly back to my office…

This is still one of the hardest memories I have of my years as a local pastor.  I was not trauma trained…”

You can read the rest of this story and ways to provide care to trauma victims in the introduction to this book.

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