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The local congregation should be a safe and welcoming place for the healing of wounded people, where they are accepted as they are and find others who will walk with them on their journey. In tandem with other community facilities and mental health professionals, church communities can make a positive difference to those living with mental illness and the families and friends who support them.

(Rev Dr Paul Walton, Called to care: Thoughts for congregations, Uniting Church in Australia Queensland Synod 2015)

Booklet: Thoughts for congregations
This booklet explores ideas and strategies to help congregations become inclusive and welcoming of people with mental health issues and their families. The Bible study will assist congregations and community members to reflect on their approach to people with mental health issues.

Bible study: Thoughts for congregations
“While few of us can play the harp, what could we do for people with mental health issues?”This topical Bible study is designed to open up conversations about mental health issues in your faith community. It was written to accompany the booklet Thoughts for congregations.The resource contains a Bible reading, a reflection, prayers and questions for group discussion.“There is much history surrounding the church and mental illness. There are some attitudes and beliefs that need to be challenged and addressed through theological discussion.” Synod Research Officer Sue Hutchinson

“It was great to have a resource to start the conversation, and that’s all we needed. We had good, honest and open interaction, with some people sharing their own experience. We learned that it is easy to give advice but often more important to take time to listen, to be respectful.” Uniting Church Bible study facilitator