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Mental Illness

The ministry can be lonely. It can become even lonelier when ministers battle emotional and mental illnesses, such as depression. During those times, ministers cannot afford to cut themselves off from those who can help them. […] Read More

The number of persons with a severe mental illness (SMI) in U.S. jails is growing, requiring treatment services most jails are unprepared to offer, according to a report by The Pew Charitable Trusts released on Jan. 24. “Although the central purpose of jails is to detain people who engage in criminal behavior and pose a […] Read More

The biblical texts related to unclean or evil spirits, like a recent lectionary gospel passage from Mark 1:21-28, are often avoided. Yet, it’s important for us to spend some time discussing and reflecting on these passages because we are not comfortable with the idea that there are unclean spirits or evil spirits that not only […] Read More

People struggle with mental illness all around us. Though we may be shocked to hear the statistic that one in five will experience a mental illness in a given year or that 10 million adults in the U.S. live with some type of serious mental illness, we struggle to recognize how our personal world is […] Read More

Last Sunday in worship, I mentioned the parable of the lost sheep found in Luke 15:1-7. This is the story where the shepherd leaves the 99 sheep to go find the one that strayed. I commented that this is what God is like – a seeker after lost things. On Monday, I came across a […] Read More

Contrary to popular opinion, the Christmas story is not all sweetness and light. Lost in our usual Christmas shuffle of gift-giving, carol-singing and candle-lighting is the sobering tale of the “slaughter of the innocents” recorded in the Bible. According to Scripture, King Herod, who some scholars surmise suffered from paranoid personality disorder, ordered the slaughter […] Read More

A marred Christmas and a marred New Year. Merry has been stolen from Christmas, Happy from New Year’s. As much as we might desire or long to celebrate the birth of God among us, the violence in Newtown, Conn., does not proclaim birth to us, but miscarriage, death, loss and grief. As I come to […] Read More

WASHINGTON (RNS) A coalition of mostly conservative religious organizations is urging Congress to amend a proposed bill that would bar them from making personnel decisions based on religion if they receive government funds to treat mental illness and substance abuse. In a letter sent Wednesday (Aug. 25) to every member of Congress, evangelical charities, the […] Read More