Mental Illness and the Church: Righting the Wrongs -- Two Sermons

September 9 — Isaiah 35:4-7a, Psalm 88, Mark 7:24-37

September 16 — 1 Corinthians 12:12-26, Psalm 116:1-9, Mark 8:27-38

Saint Augustine had declared that what separated men from beasts was the gift of reason; and so the loss of reason reduced man to a beast. From this position it was easy to conclude that the loss of reason was a mark of God’s disfavor; His punishment for a sinning soul....Melancholia was, in this view, a turning away from all that was holy. Furthermore, deep depression was often evidence of possession; a miserable fool contained within himself a devil, and if that devil could not be exorcised from him, why then he himself must go.
— Andrew Solomon in The Noonday Demon
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Sermon for 3/13/16: You Have What You Need -- Lessons from the Sermon on the Mount

Matthew 7:13-29

Scripture readings follow the alternative lectionary posed by Brian McLaren in his book, We Make the Road by Walking (reference and library).

African Daisies, Cambria 2016

African Daisies, Cambria 2016

Sermon Notes

I spent a whole lotta time thinking about this interview of Dr. Jerry Weichman by Dr. Drew Pinsky.  He covers many issues related to mental health in adolescence.  I found that much of what he says about life in those years still applies to adults and his vision of the healthy person seems to resonate with much of the words Jesus offers in the Sermon on the Mount albeit, a very different context. If you have a teenager in your life, this interview at the following link is worth listening to and learning more.

Questions of the Week

What verses do you struggle with in the Sermon on the Mount?  How do you make sense out of Jesus' no nonsense spiritual admonitions in these final verses?