Mental illnesses are complex, affecting each person impacted by them in a unique way. Thus, there’s always more to know about what it’s like to live with mental health conditions and how to come alongside those who must navigate the daily challenges of dealing with these illnesses.
Since 1949, when Mental Health America established Mental Health Awareness Month, May has been a time of special focus on increasing understanding of mental health challenges. As a faith-based organization serving adults living with severe mental illnesses, The Well Community particularly wants to help bring awareness to churches, clergy and lay leaders about mental health and faith during May. Continue reading
The following is posted with permission from the Sparks of Redemptive Grace website. This prayer guide is available for purchase as a booklet or e-book.
31 days, 31 ways, 2 pray 4 families
By Catherine P. Downing
“Pray for us.” 1 Thessalonians 5:25a ESV
Families who walk alongside their loved ones in the labyrinths of mental illnesses are often hesitant to ask for prayer. They might feel others will judge them or their loved one, offer uninformed advice or initiate the gossip chain. But friends who observe or are aware of their journey don’t necessarily need specific details to pray effectively.
Families ALWAYS need God’s provision for themselves and their loved ones in these areas: Continue reading
The Well Community was formed in 2002 as a faith-based organization. As such, we enjoy the fellowship and support of a number of area churches. Many are involved with The Well in a variety of ways. Their members volunteer; their pastors share messages; their worship teams lead worship; their Sunday school classes provide meals; their budgets include The Well. We are so grateful to them! Continue reading
May is Mental Health Awareness month. We want to help you become more informed, not only about severe mental illnesses faced by our members, but also about how the stresses of COVID-19 can impact your mental health and what you can do about it.
While the mental health ramifications of COVID-19 make this pandemic a crisis in and of themselves, there is a benefit hidden within this monumental challenge: Our society as a whole is becoming more aware of mental health on a personal level and more open to talking about it. As a growing number of people wrestle with their mental health—some for the first time—our culture is gaining understanding of what those living with mental illnesses face day after day, year after year. Below are key lessons that will help shape the future of the conversation around mental health for the better. Continue reading
Christmastime is a generally a season of joy, but for those living with mental illnesses, it can be laden with challenges. Many aspects of this time of year can make managing a mental health condition even more difficult. In the midst of the festivities, keep in mind these three ways that the Christmas season can be hard for those dealing with mental illnesses. Continue reading
The following blog was written by friend of The Well Community, Catherine Downing, at the invitation of Amy Simpson (author of Troubled Minds: Mental Illness and the Church’s Mission) and posted on Amy’s site October 2, 2017. It is written from the perspective of a family member of a loved one who lives with chronic mental health issues. Catherine describes one way her deep faith strengthens her in the journey. Continue reading
In our increasingly connected world, isolation and loneliness are becoming more and more common. But, they’re especially prevalent struggles for those living with mental illness, and they can have particularly devastating consequences: Both mental health challenges and lack of connection to others increase a person’s risk of suicide. Continue reading
Poverty touches every area of life for members of The Well Community. Program Coordinators Ericka Ruiz and Gemma Cardenas continually see how lack of resources tie the hands of those living with serious mental illnesses, preventing them from pursuing recovery. Continue reading
Faith communities are often the first places individuals and families turn to when faced with the challenges of mental illness, especially during a crisis. Churches have unique opportunities to minister, not only in times of acute struggle, but in the daily hurdles as well.
A 2018 LifeWay Research study found most pastors, family members and those living with acute mental illnesses agree that local churches have a responsibility to provide resources and support for these individuals and their families. But, knowing how to serve them in ways that truly bless them and affirm their value can be a challenge.
Thankfully, there are many resources that can help churches become more aware of mental illnesses and how to minister to those who struggle with these conditions. The following books and websites provide information and tools to help churches welcome those who deal with mental health challenges and provide practical assistance. Continue reading
Awareness of the truth about mental illnesses is a first step in learning to come alongside those whose lives are impacted by them. Although understanding and acceptance of these conditions are growing, much progress is required before those dealing with serious mental health challenges are met with support and friendship rather than fear. Below are six ways you can become an advocate for those living with mental illnesses by being able to help others gain awareness. Continue reading