Mind, Body, Spirit: Linking Lives for Health and Wholeness
The Faith Community Nurse Health Ministry Newsletter
September 2018, Volume 3, Issue 8
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Shining a Light on the Violence Around Us
October provides the opportunity to join community groups in shining a light on a commonly occurring type of violence. Domestic violence affects young and old, people of all economic classes, people of all nationalities, religions and races. Domestic violence is a pattern of behaviors used by one partner to maintain power and control over the other partner. Domestic violence includes behaviors that physically harm, arouse fear, prevent a partner from doing what they wish or force them to behave in ways they do not want. It includes the use of physical and sexual violence, threats and intimidation, emotional abuse and economic deprivation. These different forms of domestic violence/abuse can be co-occurring at any one time within the same intimate relationship.
In the U.S. physical abuse occurs frequently.
- 1 in 3 women experience sexual assault or domestic violence at some point in their lives
- 1 in 6 men experience sexual abuse before the age of 18
- Every 10-12 seconds a woman is battered by her significant other or husband.
- Every minute more than 1 woman reports being raped in this country. Keep in mind that this number is low because most rapes are not reported.
- 65% of victims who come forward say no one helped them.
- 3 to 4 women are killed by their lovers or husbands every day.
When we neither talk about domestic violence nor lift the victims up in prayer we are by omission supporting this violence, a violence that many abusers justify with selected quotes from the Bible.
By presenting information in our newsletters, on bulletin boards, and through programing we acknowledge this violence exists and supportive assistance is available. The variety of resources provided below will enable you to broaden the understanding of people in the congregation and the community at large.
Many Helpful Resources
- The FaithTrust Institute is led by Rev. Marie Fortune, a UCC minister. The website offers resources that will facilitate programing for Domestic Violence Awareness Sunday and other services.
- Worship Resources for Domestic Violence Awareness SundayCompiled by Yvonne DeVaughn (PDF)
- Liturgy for Domestic Violence Awareness Month Submitted by COSROW members (United Methodist Church of Wisconsin) – PDF
- Prayers for the Faithful and Domestic Violence Awareness Liturgy(Archdiocese of Chicago) – PDF
- Remembering Victims of Domestic Violence and Abuse(Presbyterians Against Domestic Violence Network) – PDF
- Liturgy for Healing from Abuse for Women(The Liturgical Commission of the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia) - PDF
- Across the country during Domestic Violence Awareness Month families and friends of victims gather to remember and honor the loved ones who have lost their lives at the hands of a person they once loved and trusted. Often faith communities and community organizations that assist victims work together to offer a joint service of prayer and remembrance. The publicity surrounding these events let those currently in relationships where possessive and controlling behaviors exist learn that there are people and programs available to help them.
With a goal of working together to end domestic violence and sexual assault the NO MORE website provides: Know the Facts, Supporting Survivors, How to intervene and Bystander training programs. This training prepares a person to intervene appropriately when active abuse is encountered so that the abuser will not punish the victim later. There is also a link to locate local organizations. Education materials are available through local groups.
- Take A Stand Against Domestic Violence is a request to bring attention to the issue of domestic violence for Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) as well as throughout the year. By taking a stand we remind the nation that there are countless people - victims and survivors, their children and families, their friends and their communities – that are experiencing spiritual, mental and physical challenges as a result of domestic violence. Standing up and explaining the extent of the violence is the only way to stop it. Materials to share are available
- The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence offers a Social Media Toolkit DVAM, 2018 that provides online resources, sample social media posts and shareable visual content.
Organize a Clothesline Project
The Clothesline Project is a visual display of shirts with graphic messages and illustrations that have been designed by women survivors of violence or by someone who loves a woman who has been killed. It originated in Hyannis, MA in 1990 when a member of the Cape Cod’s Women’s Defense Agenda learned that during the same time 58,000 soldiers were killed in the Vietnam War, 51,000 U.S. women were killed by the men who claimed to love them.
The purpose of the visual display is to increase awareness of the impact of violence against women, to celebrate woman’s strength to survive and to provide an avenue for each one to safely and courageously break the silence that often surrounds her experience by making a t-shirt for display.
Domestic Violence Hotline
Publicize The Domestic Violence Hotline1-800-799-7233, 1-800-787-3224 (TTY), 1-800-799-7233 (Spanish). This is a safe site that provides information and support 24 hours a day to those in an unsafe relationship and those who wish to help them. Information is available in English, Spanish, and many other languages.
"Be still and know that I am God." - Psalm 46:10
As caregivers of the spiritual, mental and physical health of others we often have a long list of things we “should” do each day. At times the list includes the many actions and interactions we want to accomplish. What may be lost is the opportunity to quietly just “be”.
A recent UCC Daily Devotional, Here I Am! written by Jo Deen Blaine Davis reminds each of us that what we may forget to schedule is “the most important thing: to be present for God and with God.” She suggests planning daily quiet times during which we experience the presence of God’s love. Then we can bring God’s presence with us as we encounter to those who come our way.
RESOURCES FOR OUR PRACTICE
Faith Communities are Saving Lives with Training in Mental Health First Aid.
More and more faith communities are bringing Mental Health First Aid trainings to their members in order to increase understanding about mental illness, raise awareness and save lives. There are two courses available: Adult Mental Health First Aid and Youth Mental Health First Aid. Read two explanations of how Mental Health First Aid training prepared a congregation and a pastor to become more knowledgeable and compassionate.
November is National Donor Month with one Sunday designated as National Donor Sabbath. 115,000 men, women and children await lifesaving organ transplants. Another person is added to the waiting list every 10 minutes. 22 people die each day because the organ they need is not donated in time. The site Donate Life provides information, answers to the most frequently asked questions, and provides a way to register to become a donor. The donation of one person’s organs may save up to 8 lives. A donation of corneas restores sight to 2 people. A donation of tissue could heal the lives of 75 people.
Jesus was a Donor writes Dwight Lee Wolter in a recent UCC Daily Devotional. “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friend.” (John 15:13) He explains we can lay down our life for our friends after our death through organ donation. He suggests a way we can lay down our life for our friends before our death is through blood donation.
National Donor Sabbath is observed annually two weekends before Thanksgiving. During National Donor Sabbath, faith leaders from many religions, donor families, transplant recipients, and donation and transplantation professionals participate in services and programs to educate the public about the need for the lifesaving and healing gifts passed to others through transplantation. Materials are available from the site above and your local State Team Leader of Donate Life.
RESOURCES FOR OUR ONGOING PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
Healthy Boundaries 101 (2018)
Offered by the FaithTrust Institute this online course Healthy Boundaries 101 (2018) begins October 15th, 2018. This five-week course allows participants to examine the complex roles and situations of ministry in a thoughtful, reflective way. This course will equip clergy and spiritual teachers (FCNs, pastoral counselors, child/youth pastors, classroom teachers and lay leaders) in understanding the importance of healthy boundaries in ministry and to critically discern the complexities of boundaries in pastoral relationships.
Week I: Live session introduction; Power, Vulnerability, and Healthy Boundaries
Week II: Dating, Friendships and Dual Relationships
Week III: Transference and Touch Boundaries
Week IV: Emerging Issues in Maintaining Healthy Boundaries; Personal Needs and Self Care
Week V: Final Assignment
- Learn about Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF) (Free Continuing Ed.) Did you know that Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF) is the most deadly tick borne disease in the U.S.? Each year, 3,000-5,000 cases of RMSF and other spotted fever rickettsioses are reported in the U.S. including 5-10 deaths and substantially more severe cases. Effective treatment is available, and severe and fatal cases of RMSF can be prevented through early recognition and treatment. The CDC has developed a toolkit with resources that can be used to make your parishioners more aware of these ticks and the effective of early treatment.
Insurance Board Webinars
The Insurance Board has provided a number of free webinars to assist us in our work with other staff, church leaders, and the congregation as a whole. Webinars remain on the site after the initial date and continue to be available for viewing.
Connect through this link https://www.insuranceboard.org/online-learning/
Sept. 29th WISE Congregations for Mental Health Conference, Offered by the UCC Mental Health Network. This one-day conference offers: ways congregations can address mental health concerns, share stories from persons affected by mental health issues, learn practical steps to engage in a mental health ministry, learn about the WISE (Welcoming, Inclusive, Supportive, Engaged) Covenant, and network with those who are on the journey to address mental health challenges. It is being held at South Congregational Church, UCC, 41 Central Street, Andover, MA 01810.
Flyer and Registration Information
Nov. 1st – 3rd Widening the Welcome 2018: Living, Learning, Leading offered by the UCC Disabilities Ministries in collaboration with the NY Conference. Workshops will bring attendees enlightenment in various areas including: Accessibility & Inclusion (A2A), Advocacy, Christian Education, and more. It is being held at the Niagara Falls Convention Center, Niagara Falls, NY.
Registration Open Now.
DATES TO PUT ON YOUR PLANNING CALENDAR
Some of these dates provide the opportunity to integrate your health ministry activities with other activities in your church such as advocating for a just wage, working with the building and grounds committee addressing access issues, collaborating with the Christian Education committee regarding the health needs of students with medical or behavioral issues, etc.
Sept. 16th Just Peace Sunday
This year the theme is “Wisdom Cries Out!” based on Proverbs 1:20-33. A Just Peace falls within the realm of our health promotion activities because it has a positive effect on all involved. Just Peace is not a destination, but a path requiring awareness and constant vigilance to resolve existing and developing conflict in ourselves, our families, our communities, our institutions, and our world.
Worship, learning, and craft resources are available
Oct. 14th Access Sunday and Disabilities Awareness Week
An occasion when all the UCC will join together in celebrating the gifts of persons with disabilities and the strides that the church has made in being more whole through being more accessible. It is also a day that we, the church, acknowledge the journey yet to be taken with our sisters and brothers with disabilities. Information and resources available.
Oct 19th - 21st 27th Annual National Observance of Children’s Sabbath® Celebration, “Realizing Dr. King’s Vision: Ending Child Poverty” Ideas for how to begin conversations with other congregations and community groups so that you might partner together are available.
Nov. 11th National Donor Sabbath
Donor families, transplant recipients, and donation and transplantation professionals participate in services and programs to educate the public about the need for the lifesaving and healing gifts passed to others through transplantation, while also encouraging people to register their decision to be an organ, eye and tissue donors.
Dec. 1st World AIDS Day – Materials available in October
Dec. 10th Human Rights Day – Advocating for all God’s children
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Contact: Peggy Matteson