About Us

Bridges includes highly respected scholars and practitioners who seek to explore the interaction of religious faith, spirituality, and moral values in the professions related to psychology and education. They collaborate in these efforts through research, discussion, and teaching. Bridges promotes these efforts by sponsoring and conducting research studies, scholarly publications, and educational conferences concerning topics with a spiritual focus.

Background and Rationale for Bridges

On November 15 and 16, 2012, the Consortium for Spiritually Centered Psychology and Education at Brigham Young University sponsored a think tank for researchers and practitioners with interests in bringing spiritually integrated therapies into the healthcare mainstream. Twenty-nine outstanding researchers and practitioners attended the think tank representing seven academic institutions and twelve mental health treatment sites from around the United States. During the think tank, the participants agreed to create a practice-research network (PRN) dedicated to bringing spiritually integrated treatment approaches into the healthcare mainstream. We named the practice-research network Bridges because its mission is to build bridges between spiritual and secular approaches to psychotherapy and to help bridge the research-practice gap in the healthcare profession. We believe that a PRN devoted to mainstreaming spirituality into healthcare practice is a vital step in securing the future relevance, availability, and efficacy of spiritually integrated treatment approaches. We think a productive PRN is especially important for the advancement of spiritually integrated psychotherapies, which have often escaped the attention of mainstream empirical research agendas and funding.

Spiritually Integrated Psychotherapies JTF Grant Project

In 2016, the John Templeton Foundation (JTF) awarded Professor P. Scott Richards at Brigham Young University, the Director of Bridges, a $3.57 million dollar grant to conduct a large, collaborative research study about the processes and outcomes of spiritually integrated psychotherapy. The project is a “practice as usual” study of spiritually integrated psychotherapy with 21 different collaborating research teams in North America, Israel, and several additional countries. Below are the names, pictures, and professional information about the Bridges JTF grant project leadership team. For information about each of the collaborating research teams who were funded by the grant and participating in the grant project, please go to the “Grant Projects” page on our website.