Developing the Spirituality in Recovery Framework: The Function of Spirituality in 12-Step Substance Use Disorder Recovery

Document Type


Publication Date



A large portion of substance use disorder recovery research has incorporated the study of mutual-aid 12-Step programs and faith-based programs. However, spirituality as a centerpiece of substance use disorder recovery, as an actionable or operationalized means of transformative change, is not well studied. As many individuals in recovery point to spirituality as the chief means by which they have overcome their substance use disorder, this represents a significant gap in the current literature. Though spirituality is difficult to operationalize and measure, several previous studies have examined aspects of the role of spirituality in the recovery process. This current article puts forth a theoretical framework in which leading articles involving spirituality in recovery are synthesized in order to inform a functional, theoretical model of change that can be utilized in future research design.

Journal Title

Journal of Humanistic Psychology

Journal ISSN


Digital Object Identifier (DOI)