The Gathering on Mental Health and the Church

You are invited to The Gathering on Mental Health and the Church, a one-day event designed to encourage individuals living with mental illness, educate family members, and equip church leaders to provide effective and compassionate care to any faced with the challenges of mental illness.

I found out about this event a couple of days ago and the thought of it both excites and scares me. It scares me because I have had very counterproductive conversations with people of faith over the years regarding the depression I have experienced throughout my life. Even people who have been healed of depression through their faith, perhaps even especialy them, have spoken to me in ways which were more hurtful than helpful, at least to the way my brain and perceptions were at the time. It excites me because it gives me hope that mental illnesses and disorders are being lifted up and examined within the context of faith and this is a huge opportunity for people of faith, professionals and laity alike, to educate themselves, examine how the way things have been done do more harm than good, and begin exploring new ways of relating and reaching out to people experiencing mental health issues.

This is a very important conversation. If you live in the Orange County, California area and can take Friday, March 28th off to spend the day attending this, low-cost event, please consider doing so. If you don’t have the $20, the website states scholarships are available. If you cannot physically attend, they will be live streaming the event. Even if you can only attend or view part of the event, I have a feeling it will be worth your time.

Find out more information at

Blog For Mental Health 2014



  1. Your spirit wins me over — over and over. Keep your eyes as open as your heart and you’ll be fine. The good news is you know what bu}{$i# smells like. Even better is you know what Love looks like…and how it walks out. Be wise. Be you. We’re counting on you. Dan


      1. Kina! Got your back? Always. We may have less light than we would like to show the way through the woods, but we do have Light. It lives inside each one of us. No one can touch it…not without our permission. Be ever so well this week. Little light? Little steps. You’ll be fine.


    1. I agree. Thhis is what the schedule looks like:
      07:30 AM Check In
      08:30 AM The Role of the Church in Mental Health
      09:30 AM Integrating Physical, Spiritual and Mental Health
      10:30 AM Break
      11:00 AM Helping the Helpers: Crisis Management for Church Staff
      12:00 PM Lunch (Free Lunch Provided)
      01:30 PM Resourcing the Church
      02:30 PM Break
      02:45 PM Workshops
      03:45 PM Break
      04:00 PM Workshops
      05:00 PM Dinner (On Your Own)
      07:00 PM Standing Together In Suffering

      This is what it says about the workshops being offered:
      The Gathering on Mental Health and the Church will offer 20 interactive workshops to encourage individuals living with mental illness, educate family members, and equip church leaders to care for those who are suffering. Workshop topics will include Depression, Stigma, Suicide-Risk Reduction, Church Counseling, Support Groups and Recovery Ministries, Bipolar Disorder, Eating Disorders, Addictions, and other topics to bring hope to the challenges of mental illness.

      Rick Warren and Saddleback Church have had a lot to do with changing how the faith community I’m connected to has changed and grown over the years. Since this event is a partnership with NAMI in Orange County, and NAMI is an organization of individuals who experience and are directly affected by mental health issues, I believe it is actually going to be constructive.


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