Perhaps the most important work a person can do for their vocation is to complete any ‘unfinished business’ from childhood, as this impacts the foundation upon which all further vocation and mission rests. This work includes the healing of wounds, the forgiveness of those who have injured or neglected us, the strengthening of one’s identity in what is good and true, and the integration of unhelpful emotional scripts set in place in early formation. These scripts, very common in most people, are often the reason we can say with St. Paul:
“I do not understand my own behavior; I do not act as I mean to, but I do things that I hate.” Rom 7:15
Common scripts in Western culture include perfectionism, self-criticism, affirmation seeking, conflict avoidance, the repression of emotions, compulsive thinking and behaviors, eating disorders, compulsive eating, many addictions, social anxiety, and various kinds of anger problems.
Marital couples typically seek out counseling for communication, conflict and intimacy problems. They might also be looking to fully reconcile and heal after a relational wound. It is very wise to be proactive with these types of problems as time almost never improves them and indeed, usually compounds them (much like putting off physical health issues or automotive problems). Unfinished work from childhood can also be the root of some marital problems.
Parents often contact for counseling due to behavioral problems occurring with a child. While these problems are always addressed, the initial emphasis of most parent work is aimed at strengthening the relationship of the child to the parent (as St. John Bosco says in reference to wayward children, “If you can get them to love you, you can lead them anywhere”). Many behavior problems in children evaporate entirely once a child’s heart is reconnected to the parent.
Both John Paul II and Benedict XVI have repeatedly called the Catholic faithful to learn to pray more deeply and to learn to hear the Lord in prayer thus allowing the Lord to be our strong Shepherd in this life. If we don’t know how to pray deeply, however, how can we hear his voice? And if we don’t know how to hear his voice, how do we teach our children to follow him securely in their own journeys?
For individuals, couples and even families with older children who desired to deepen their prayer life and learn to pray together, HFCS will offer periodic 6 week seminars answering the call of our Popes and innumerable saints to learn to pray and hear the word of God. The style of prayer to be introduced is the classic Lectio Divina method and will incorporate principles from St. John of the Cross and St. Theresa of Avila, as well as St. Ignatius of Loyola (all Doctors of the Church on spirituality).
Other areas of Expertise
Mr. Butler is also trained to work with those suffering from mood disorders such as depression, anxiety, shame and anger problems as well as with victims of trauma. He has worked to bring relief to individuals struggling with many kinds of sexual struggles including homosexuality, sexual addiction and pornography addiction.