Mental Health Sunday
Celebrating who we have been created to be means we embrace all of who we are, even if that includes imperfections, illnesses, or foibles. Mental illness continues to stigmatize in our culture, but HCUCC honored the struggle and the gifts of those who face mental illness on a daily basis.
In a worship service of solidarity, support and sustaining grace Oct. 12, speakers’ personal stories transformed abstract concepts into real illustrations of courage and hope. They showed portraits of persons full of love, passion, creativity, hope and faith. As a community of faith, we symbolically and directly called people by their names, not by their illness. We are not Post Traumatic Disorder Syndrome, we are not depression, we are not schizophrenia; we are Mary, Pat, and Seleste. We are God’s creations.
Wanting to de-stigmatize Mental Illness, the entire worship service emphasized the facts surrounding mental illness, the challenges living with a mental illness, the types, signs and symptoms of various mental illnesses and the hope and faith found within those living with a mental illness.
After the service, some responses included the following:
- “I need to be reminded of the challenges for those living with mental illness because I just don’t know how they survive.”
- “I hope our society continues to take the stigma away from mental illness.”
- “Thank you for sharing your story. I had no idea of the challenges you face.”
- “We need to hear more of these stories so that we are more aware of the facts.”
For more information regarding mental illness, our faith and mental illness, check out the following websites: