Anxiety at any Age

 In Mental Health & Wellbeing

As of 2017, 1 in 5 of us experienced mental health challenges, including anxiety.  Currently, in Month 10 of the Pandemic, 1 in 3 of us report mental health distress and anguish. Research also indicates that we will go first to our pastor or other faith leader to speak about our emotional and mental pain, before we go to a  doctor, therapist, counselor, or social worker.  Holy Spirit and 7 other parishes in the Diocese have recently received a grant from the Association of Catholic Mental Health Ministers to begin or expand mental health ministries.  Along with Santa Teresa, St. Lucy, St. Nicholas, St. Simon, St. Thomas of Canterbury, and St. William, Holy Spirit will use funds to:

1. Reduce or eliminate the stigma of speaking about mental illness.

2. Increase the likelihood that parishioners will reach out to their faith leaders and other parish member when they need help.

3. Increase the likelihood that there will be a group of trained parishioners who feel equipped to provide prayerful companionship, emotional and practical support, and links to mental health and other community resources.


The first collaborative ministry event of the Mental Health Ministers in the Diocese of San Jose is to sponsor a free screening of ANGST: It Gets Better on Monday Feb 8 from 5:30 p.m.-7 p.m.

A highly acclaimed film, Angst addresses the causes, signs, and steps to take when you or someone you care for experiences anxiety.  The webinar is geared for students from age ten through college age but is also intended for parents, grandparents, great grandparents, god parents, teachers, principals, catechists, pastoral care and youth volunteers, and faith leaders, ordained and lay.  The screening will be followed by a panel discussion of mental health experts and ministry professionals:  St. Francis of Assisi Youth and Young Adult Minister, Kevin Bernaga; clinical psychologist and Diocese of Orange Mental Health Ministry Coordinator, Margery Arnold PhD; licensed marriage and family therapist, Ruth Auten LMFT; and President of the Nativity Schools in San Jose, Deacon Ruben Solorio.

Mark your calendar to watch and learn from ANGST followed by the panel discussion on Monday Feb. 8, 5:30 p.m.-7:00 p.m. Watch for registration information, order take-out, choose your comfy chairs and enjoy dinner and a movie together. Sharing this experience may very well change the way your family navigates the increasing stresses of our world.

Holy Spirit Church Pastoral Care is now forming a Mental Health Ministry Team. Please help. If mental health and the reduction of stigma and exclusion is important to you, contact Leah Harris Real change is possible with a community committed to honoring the dignity of every human being.

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