Ines W. Jindra


This article discusses the r e lationship between religious conversion and both the social
science of sociology and the profession of social work. After outlining the concept of religious
conversion from both a secular and a Christian perspective, I discuss how it has been treated
from a sociological perspective, and then review its connection and application to social work
practice, theory and research. Curiously, even though religion and spirituality are now often
discussed in social work, the concept of religious conversion has found almost no entrance into
the field, unlike in sociology. This paper documents m y effort to understand why this is the
case, and then explores arguments for and against the use of the concept in social work
practice, theory, and research.



religious conversion, spirituality, sociology, social work, spiritual competence, disciplinary differences