Research project into spirituality




Project Information sheet


Auto/Biographical perspectives on interruptions to religious practice.

My name is Pat Eyres and I am currently studying for a PhD with Plymouth University. My research area concerns worship and religious practice from a multi-faith perspective.

I am, by profession, an occupational therapist and this discipline is aimed at helping people to fulfil their potential within their everyday lives – to help people to do all the things they want and need to do. Occupational Therapists help people with many areas of their lives, and this can include spiritual needs however the area of ‘specific religious practice’ is poorly understood by many therapists, especially when they are working with people from a culture and/or faith that is not their own. For some people religious practice is a very important activity in their lives. While a broad understanding of a different religion is obtainable from books or the internet, an understanding of the personal meaning of participation, fellowship and worship is much more elusive.


This research project will ask participants to discuss their experience of a time when illness or a problem of some sort, has meant they cannot participate in religious practice in their usual way. Participants will be asked to talk about this by exchanging emails with me. I will bring together all the aspects of the discussion into your ‘story’ that will be sent to you to approve. The stories created in this way will be analysed as part of my research project and may be used in any academic publications that arise from my research. All participants and their stories will be anonymous. This project has received approval from Plymouth University’s research ethics committee.

Participants can be of any age over 18. All participants will be asked to sign a consent form before the email discussion begins.

Anyone who volunteers can withdraw at any point without giving a reason, and without affecting your relationship with the University – your participation is entirely voluntary.


If you are interested in taking part please contact me by email at

Or if you know someone who you think would be interested to take part – please pass this information on to them.

I am very happy to discuss the project and what is involved in more detail, without any commitment on your part.

Thank you

Pat Eyres






Further information or queries can be directed to the Director of Studies Dr Katrina Bannigan at   or on tel no. 01752 587550