Resources, Web Pages, and Internet Links for Faith Communities
Updated January 2006
Faith communities and NAMI affiliates provide resources for persons of faith to help congregations in their understanding of mental illnesses. These resources are offered to those in the faith community to be supportive and compassionate to persons who have mental illnesses. The faith community is a sleeping giant that is awakening to its important role of support and advocacy.
If you know of resources that have been designed specifically for faith communities on the subject of mental illness, please e-mail this information to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will print selected resources in each issue of the Advocate.
American Association of Pastoral Counselors
9504A Lee Highway
Fairfax, VA 22031
Established in 1963, the mission of the American Association of Pastoral Counselors is "to provide and promote theologically informed, spiritually sensitive, ethically sound, and clinically competent counseling and consultation as an extension of the ministry of faith communities; provide professional formation and credentialing for those who seek to integrate theology and psychology into their practice; and to advocate the well being of persons and communities." This site lists Internet resources for psychotherapists; click on "Links/Resources."
Anabaptist Disabilities Network
ADNet, the Anabaptist Disabilities Network
P.O. Box 959
Goshen, IN 46527-0959
Established in 2002, the mission of AdNet, the Anabaptist Disabilities Network, is "to provide encouragement and resources to congregations, families, and persons with disabilities as they identify and embrace their God-given gifts and abilities in ministry to each other and to the larger church." Go to http://www.adnetonline.org/Resources/Print to order books on mental illness written for the Christian faith community.
"Creating a Caring Community with Persons with Mental Illnesses"
This Web page features the synopsis for the VICOMIM 10-hour course, "Creating a Caring Community with Persons with Mental Illnesses," which has been taught every year since 2000 and was designed for clergy and laity of any faith community. The outline of the course includes the names of textbooks used and the foundation of this ministry provided by the United Methodist Church. The course is taught in Blackstone, Virginia, every February and carries a 1.0 continuing education unit. For course dates, e-mail Vicomim@excite.com.
Episcopal Mental Illness Network
5125 Stonewall Road
Little Rock, AR 72207
The mission of the Episcopal Mental Illness Network is "to seek out and support, through prayer and action, consumers, families and/or service providers in the Episcopal Church whose lives are affected by major psychiatric disorders; to help Episcopalians, clergy and laypersons, become aware of the nature of these illnesses and the special needs and gifts of those affected"; and "to reduce the stigma and misconceptions that prevail and to remove those barriers which frequently prevent persons with psychiatric illnesses and their families from participating in the full life of the Church." Resources for faith communities are listed under "Take Action!"
FaithCep (of NAMI-Indianapolis)
This Web site provides detailed information about books, videos, study guides, and other organizations that provide mental health resources for faith communities. Established in 2002 in Indianapolis, Indiana.
FaithNet (of NAMI-CA)
FaithNet NAMI is a network composed of members and friends of NAMI.
It was established by NAMI Orange County in 1994 and co-sponsored by NAMI California on November 1, 1997, for the purposes of (1) facilitating the development within the Faith Community of a non-threatening, supportive environment for those with serious mental illness and their families; (2) pointing out the value of one's spirituality in the recovery process from mental illness and the need for spiritual strength for those who are caretakers; (3) educating clergy and congregations concerning the biologic basis and characteristics of mental illness; and (4) encouraging advocacy of the Faith Community to bring about hope and help for all who are affected by mental illness. FaithNet sends out an e-newsletter to all those who sign up for their "e-mail network" with the latest news concerning faith communities and mental illness.
Faith Ways (NAMI-Minnesota)
The mission of Faith Ways is to "support congregations as they build inclusive communities by providing resources about brain disorders." Contact: Mary Jean Babcock, NAMI-Minnesota, at 1-651-645-2948, ext. 107.
Lutheran Candlelighting service for mental illness
The All-Lutheran Candlelighting for Mental Illness will be held during the month of October. On the Sunday of their choice, all evangelical Lutheran Church of America congregations are asked to light a candle and say a prayer for people with mental illnesses and for their families. A bulletin insert form has been prepared for Lutheran congregations to use for the candlelighting service.
Mental Health Ministries (Web Site for California-Pacific Conference of the United Methodist Church)
Established in 2002 in San Diego, California, the mission of this ministry is to educate clergy and lay persons for the purpose of decreasing the stigma associated with mental illnesses in our faith communities. The ministry has created 10 videos that are suitable for faith community groups on the subject of mental illness. Two of these videos have won Telly Awards. Study guidebooks suitable for small groups are available to accompany some of the videos. The Web site offers a downloadable worship bulletin insert suitable for interfaith communities. The site also features Web links to other groups.
National Organization on Disability’s Religion and Disability Program
National Organization on Disability
910 Sixteenth Street, N.W., Suite 600
Washington, D.C. 20006
Founded in 1989, the Religion and Disability Program is "an interfaith effort, urging national faith groups, local congregations and seminaries to identify and remove barriers of architecture, communications, and attitudes." The Web site features publications, articles, events, audio clips, news articles, pictures, and Internet links.Pathways to Promise
5400 Arsenal Street
St. Louis, MO 63139
Phone: 314/ 877-6489
Fax: 314/ 877-6405
Established in 1988, Pathways to Promise is an interfaith technical assistance and resource center that offers liturgical and educational materials, program models, and networking information to promote a caring ministry with people with mental illness and their families. These resources are used by people at all levels of faith group structures, from local congregations to regional and national staff. This Web site provides an events calendar on which any faith community group in the United States may post an event pertaining to mental illness. For resources, go to http://www.pathways2promise.org/resources/ptpmatls.htm.
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) National Health Ministries
100 Witherspoon St.
Louisville, KY 40202
1-888-728-7228, ext. 8011
This Web site features educational books, videos, and posters about mental illness for the Presbyterian community and others.
Sharing the Hope, Sharing the Healing
Sr. Ann Catherine and her brother John Veierstahler created this Web site to share stories of persons who are recovering from mental illness, in order to educate the general public and help overcome the stigma of mental illness. Sr. Ann has bipolar illness herself.
United Church of Christ Mental Illness Network
Established in 1992, the Mental Illness Network is a network within the United Church of Christ. The Web site provides resources for worship service, order forms for printed resources for faith communities, a section on newsletters, and a description of helpful books.
Virginia Interfaith Committee on Mental Illness Ministries
This Web site provides a variety of resources for faith communities. On the first page, in the left column, is a double-sided bulletin insert for "Mental Illness Awareness." Click on "Resources" and find lists of books, newsletters, complete worship services, audiotapes, videotapes, sermons, and messages all devoted to the topic of mental illness. This organization sends out a monthly "For Your Information" with the latest information on faith communities and mental illnesses. Established in 1995 in Richmond, Virginia.