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The presentation uses lecture and case study material to introduce the audience to the Catholic Christian Meta-Model of the Person and its application to clinical practice (Vitz, Nordling, & Titus, 2020). The Meta-Model provides an enriched vision of the person that is structured by the use of its eleven psychological, philosophical, and theological premises. These premises are the basis for the Meta-Model’s psychologically-based definition of the person:
“From a psychological perspective, the human person is an embodied individual who is intelligent, uses language, and exercises limited free-will. The person is fundamentally interpersonal, experiences and expresses emotions, and has sensory-perceptual-cognitive capacities to be in contact with reality. All of these characteristics are possible because of the unity of the body and unique self-consciousness, and are expressed in behavior and mental life. Furthermore the person is called by human nature to flourishing through virtuous behavior and transcendent growth; through interpersonal commitments to family, friends, and others; and through work, service, and meaningful leisure. From their origins (natural and transcendent), all persons have intrinsic goodness, dignity, and worth. In the course of life, though suffering from many natural, personal, and social disorders and conditions, persons hope for healing, meaning, and flourishing.” (Vitz, Nordling, & Titus, 2020, p. 21)
In its clinical application, the Meta-Model serves as a framework that enlarges the context of traditional case conceptualization (e.g., Sperry & Sperry, 2020) through the use of different levels of understanding the person, including: personal/individual, family and relational, vocational callings, and virtue-based flourishing. The framework also highlights many aspects of dignity and diversity in the case study, such as sex-gender, developmental stage, race and culture, religion/spirituality.
After introducing the Meta-Model, the presentation demonstrates its application by examining a case study. In doing so, it shows the benefits that the Meta-Model brings to diagnosis, case formulation, and treatment planning.
4 Objectives to be Learned During this Presentation.
1. Identify the eleven premises of the Catholic Christian Meta-Model of the Person.
2. Describe three major benefits that the Meta-Model bring to the psychological sciences and mental health practice.
3. Discuss five important levels of understanding the person that are utilized by the CCMMP framework to ensure the development of an enriched vision of the person, diagnosis, and treatment plan.