It was at the Dennis H. Jones Living Well Network’s Mental Health Breakfast just one year ago when our own Shane Stanford sat in the audience listening to the keynote speaker Kay Warren. As Kay shared about the shame often associated with mental illness and how many suffer alone in silence, Shane realized that the role of the church must increase. He also knew that no one should have to whisper in church about struggling with any form of mental illness. And that moment gave birth to what we now know as our No Whispers initiative.
Fast forward just one year, and great strides have been made within our own congregation. In addition, No Whispers is now spreading out into the community. At this year’s “Mental Health Breakfast,” Shane led one of the key breakout sessions called “Mental Health in the Faith Community.” Speaking to a packed room, Shane shared the work that is being done through No Whispers and invited these pastors and community leaders to join in this movement by starting their own ministries in their own churches.
In addition to this speaking engagement, Shane has been appointed by Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell to serve a six-year term on the Health, Education, and Housing Facility Board. As one of nine members, the function of this board is to assist in the financing of health facilities, educational facilities and housing facilities for low and moderate income families, disabled individuals and the elderly.
As we continue to bring attention to these issues, Christ Church will also participate in Mental Health Month in May. The No Whispers Spring Conference is set for May 20, and several other information sessions are scheduled as outlined below. Please mark your calendar and be sure to share this information with others who might be seeking information.
Spring No Whispers Conference*
Dealing with Shame & Forgiveness
Saturday, May 20
9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Wilson/Ross 415-416
Join us as we continue our conversation on shame and redemption with Rev. Dr. Phil Jamieson, President of the United Methodist Foundation for the Memphis and Tennessee Annual Conferences. Also joining us is Rev. Lenn Harris Milam, an Ordained Elder in the Memphis Conference who is a Marriage & Family Therapist in private practice.
Discussion will focus on Dr. Jamieson’s book, The Face of Forgiveness: A Pastoral Theology of Shame and Redemption, and how we navigate our thoughts, feelings and actions in relationship to forgiven and redeemed people of God.
*For a preview of this event, join us for a Lunch & Learn from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. on Wednesday, March 8 in Seabrook Hall to hear Dr. Jamieson discuss “Am I My Brother’s Keeper: Christ’s Power to Heal Our Shame.” Cost: $6, includes lunch. Register at cumcmemphis.org/register.
Lunch & Learn: Save these dates!
Who says there’s no free lunch? Join us for lunch on the following Sundays just after Noon. We will meet in the Parlor for about an hour to discuss these important topics. Be sure to share & invite a friend to join you!
April 23: Savvy Financial Management
Our panel will address various stages of life where financial planning is key–newly married couples, couples with young children, families with students preparing for college and those facing the empty nest and beyond.
May 7: Information Session for Parents
This lunch & learn will help answer questions that WebMD can’t answer! Feel free to ask all kinds of questions while speaking with a child health care professional. Conversation will include questions related to behavioral, social, (social media too!) emotional and relational issues.
May 28: Caregiver Compassion: Dealing with Stress and Fatigue
For those caring for a loved one suffering from memory loss, dementia, Alzheimer’s, chronic illness or special needs, we will look at creative ways to diminish the effects of stress and fatigue.