St. Luke's United Methodist Church
Sunday, April 21, 2024
A Missional Church

January is Mental Health Month

January is Mental Wellness Awareness Month, and in response to this we will start a new sermon series on faith and mental health beginning Sunday, January 14th.
Scripture calls us to love the Lord our God with all our heart, and with all our soul, and with all our strength, and with all our mind. Caring for our minds, therefore, is a spiritual practice. Yet many of us neglect mental health care as part of caring for our whole selves. Our faith gives us both tools and truths to help us care for our minds so that we can use them to love God, our neighbors, and ourselves.
Talking about mental health can bring up painful memories and experiences, so I wanted to share the topics I will be preaching on each week so that you know what is coming. The third week, in particular, will touch on suicide. If that or any other of these topics is not safe for you to sit with, please know there is no shame in opting out. If you struggle with anything I say, please reach out to me and take gentle care of yourself.
Each week we will talk about a different way mental health struggles can present themselves:
  • January 14 - God Cares About Your Mental Health | Psalm 139:1-13
    Our Mental Health is a key piece of who we are and how we interact with the world around us. Millions of people go about their daily lives with mental illnesses; that means their brains are not always in their corner. How can our faith help us calm, cope and center ourselves in God's truths about us?
  • January 21 - Out of Control: When Mental Illness Feels Scary | Luke 9:23-27
    Just like physical illnesses, some mental illnesses respond well to treatment and management, but not all. How do we pursue faith while living with a severe mental illness? How can Christians welcome and include neighbors with severe mental illnesses seeing who they are beyond the labels?
  • January 28 - We Are All Here: Navigating a Mental Health Crisis | Acts 16:25-34
    Sometimes mental illnesses spike into a full-blown mental health crisis, making us unable to function as we would want. What does out faith say to us in such a crisis? How can Christians support others in these different and critical moments? Note: This week will address suicide. If you or anyone you know is struggling with thoughts of suicide or is in a mental health crisis, please call 988 for the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline.
  • February 4 - Caring for Our Neighbors | Mark 5:1-20
    Most of us know and love someone who lives with a mental illness we don't share. How can our faith support us in supporting them? How can we offer empathy "from the outside," when we can never fully understand?
Mental health is an important topic for us to speak about in church -- especially because the Church has often been silent regarding these very real struggles. I hope you find this series meaningful, helpful, and hopeful. And, if any any time you find yourself needing to talk to someone, know that my door is always open.

Grace and Peach,
Rev. Colleen Bookter