Awareness Commemorations (May and October 1-7)
May is Mental Health Month
Did you know that one out of every four families experiences mental illness? When your parish gathers, nearly everyone there will know someone who has a mental illness of varying severity and length. Because of the stigma attached to it, few will come forward, but it is there.
Resources for parishes for Mental Health Awareness Month are listed below. Some are as simple as a prayer for the Prayer of the Faithful during Mass, or informational articles ready for printing. Others including prayer services and informational programs call for some planning. There is something for every parish that can help to give hope to those who live with mental illness.
Resources are listed below whenever possible they are in both Spanish and English.
A community of faith is a community of prayer. As Catholics we have an obligation to pray for one another , and through our prayers affirm our relationship as Brothers and Sisters in Christ.
Including the concerns of persons with mental illness, their families and those who care for them, is an important way of showing care and support.
(In Spanish and English)
Click here for Prayers of the Faithful for Mental Health Awareness.
St Dymphna is the patron saint of persons with mental illness; Read more about her life and legacy.
(In Spanish and English)
(Art by Louise Udovich
Click here for more information about St. Dymphna.
These bulletin and newsletter articles will help to educate parishioners and encourage parishioners to welcome persons with mental illness, and reach out to family members.
Click here for the bulletin articles.
Welcomed and Valued
The Resource Manual features 90+ pages of information, perspectives and tools to assist in the ministry with people with mental illness.
The Bilingual DVD (English with Spanish captions) features in depth looks at people with mental illness and how they participate in parish life.
Work of the Network
Join in the work of the National Catholic Network on Mental Illness to learn from people around the country who are helping parishes to welcome persons with mental illness and their families.
(In Spanish and English). To learn more about the Network's activies, click here.
Learn about local resources and how to use them effectively.
Most local community mental health agencies are interested in connecting with community groups. Find out how to contact your local agency and ask them to come and share information at a parish staff meeting, general parish meeting or other group. Ask about the best way to help someone find help or to make a referral.
Click here more information from faith based organizations concerned about mental illness within church communities follow the links below.
National Alliance on Mental Illness: NAMI.org
NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness.
Click here to go to the NAMI website.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): samhsa.gov
SAMSA is the agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that leads public health efforts to advance the behavioral health of the nation. SAMHSA's mission is to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America's communities.
Click here to go to the SAMSA site.
Personal Stories: Learn first hand about mental illness and its effect on persons and families
Read the stories of a mother (Click Here) and son (Click Here)
Watch families speak of their experience, in Spanish.
(Testimonios - Testimonies)
Mental Illness Awareness Week: October 1 - 7, 2017
National Day of Prayer: Tuesday, October 3, 2017
One out of every four families in a parish will have to cope with the effects of mental illness. Find out some simple ways your parish can reach out to them.
In 1990, the US Congress passed a resolution designating the first full week in October “Mental Illness Awareness Week” (MIAW). Its purpose was to give recognition to the work accomplished by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and similar organizations to educate and raise awareness about such conditions as depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia.
One special highlight has been the designation of the Tuesday of MIAW as a day of prayer for mental illness recovery and understanding (this year it is October 4). People of all faiths take part in diverse prayer services across the country, where our religious traditions add their voice to MIAW’s effort to raise awareness and loving support for people whose lives are affected by mental illness.
NCPD has developed a variety of resources for your use. Prayer services, reflections, personal stories, and links are some of the tools you will find. It is our hope that within each of our dioceses, the Catholic Church will in some way be a part of the 2016 observance of Mental Illness Awareness Week.
LA SEMANA DE CONCIENCIA DE ENFERMEDADES MENTALES
Del 4 hasta el 10 de OCTUBRE de 2016
Una de cada cuatro familias en una parroquia tiene que luchar contra los efectos de enfermedades mentales. Averigüe unas maneras sencillas en que su parroquia pueda ofrecerlas ayuda.
En 1990, el Congreso estadounidense pasó una resolución que designó la primera semana completa de octubre como “Mental Illness Awareness Week” “La Semana de Conciencia de Enfermedades Mentales” (MIAW por sus siglas inglesas). El propósito es reconocer el trabajo realizado por la Alianza Nacional sobre Enfermedades Mentales (NAMI por sus siglas inglesas) y por organizaciones semejantes para enseñar y despertar conciencia sobre condiciones como la depresión, la depresión bipolar y la esquizofrenia.
Un evento destacado ha sido la designación del martes de la Semana de Conciencia de Enfermedades Mentales (que este año es el 4 de octubre) como un día de oración para comprensión y recuperación de enfermedades mentales. Creyentes de todas creencias tomarán parte en diversos servicios de oraciones por todo el país, en la cuales las tradiciones religiosas agregan sus voces a los esfuerzos de MIAW para despertar conciencia y apoyo cariñoso para las personas cuyas vidas están afectadas por enfermedad mental.
NCPD ha desarrollado una variedad de recursos para su uso. Servicios de oración, reflexiones, historias personales, y vínculos son algunas de las herramientas que van a encontrar. Es nuestra esperanza que dentro de cada una de nuestras diócesis, la Iglesia Católica pueda hacerse parte de la observación de la Semana de Conciencia de Enfermedades Mentales de 2016.
Below are Resources for Mental Illness Awareness Week
Reflecting on St. Therese of Lisieux, and Families Coping with Mental Illness,
by a Mother of an Adult with Mental Illness -
Click below to read
Prayer Service for Mental Illness Awareness Week
Use this prayer service with a group or join in the group that will pray it on the phone October 4 at either 3:00 or 7:00 pm eastern time. This will be an opportunity for those who live in places where getting a group together is not possible and for those who have trouble leaving the home. To participate, call 1-800-791-2345 and at the prompt dial conference code 5219#. Call 202-529-2933 if you are experienceing difficulties.
We invite thosee unable to join us to pause at that time and pray the 1st Glorious Mystery, The Resurrection, as a sign of our belief that through Christ suffering is redeemed.
Click below for the Prayer Service program (available by September 27.)
The NCPD’s Mental Illness Network will come together at 3:00 pm and 7:00 pm Eastern on October 4th, for a 30-minute prayer service via telephone.
See also page 60 of the Welcomed and Valued resource Manual available at Amazon for “Prayers and Reflections”.
For more resourcs on Mental Illness click below.
|Chicago Achdiocese Mental Illness Ministries||Link|
|Mental Health Ministries||Link|
|Pathways to Promise||Link|
|Theological Framework of the Council on Mental Illness||Link|
|NCPD Board Resolution||Link|
|(Click here for instructions on how to pray the Rosary)|
Some suggestions for that day and week:
For one of the regularly scheduled masses on the National Day of prayer, request that the mass intention be for people with mental illness and their families. Meet afterwards for discussion.
Prayers of the Faithful for people who have a mental illness and their families.
Click here. See also Welcomed and Valued page 57.
In addition to the above, during Mental Illness Awareness Week parishes can offer the following:
- Homilies about mental illness and recovery that emphasize the spiritual component to recovery (pg 55)
- Presentations on mental illness and recovery to Church groups (use “Welcomed and Valued” video and resource manual)
- Presentations on justice issues related mental illness to Church groups (pg 53)
- List where mental health services are available in your area
- List of advocacy ideas for improved mental health services (see topics in “Welcomed and Valued”)
- As part of Respect Life activities include mental illness issues
- Publish bulletin articles about mental illness and recovery (pg 36)
- Start a support group for people with mental illness (pg 91)
History of the event: Click here.
Sample bulletin article: Click here
Article by Tom Lambert, "An Inclusive Church is Like a Stain Glass Window" .
See this article in the West Texas Catholic newspaper. Click here.