DO JUSTICE

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More Than Integrity and Transcending Politics

The Bible’s command to do justice is clear. The concept of “justice,” however, is not explicitly defined, leaving many of us to adopt limiting or political definitions. However, we don’t need to generate our own definitions. As God often does, he models justice throughout Scripture, primarily through Jesus. He fed the hungry, healed the sick, stood for truth, and challenged people and structures that oppressed others. In other words, He treated people with the love and respect due them as beings made in God's image, addressing whatever kept them from the fullness of life (shalom) that God intends for us in every sphere.

 

Every believer needs this biblical definition of justice, and must answer God’s call to “do justice." When we do this, when we disadvantage ourselves to love and serve others by doing justice, people want to know our Jesus and praise our God (Matt. 5:16).

 
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DISABILITY

 

CHURCH IN ACTION PODCAST EPISODES

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As Joni Eareckson Tada (CEO of Joni & Friends) points out in this episode, church families aren't whole without their brothers and sisters living with disability. That said, churches often believe they don't have the budget to create an inclusive environment for those living with disability, or are unsure of where to begin creating a church culture of inclusion. Join us as we discuss how to create that loving, godly culture, and make a place at the table for our entire church family. Listen here!

READING RESOURCES

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A Place of Belonging: Including Individuals With Significant Disabilities in Faith Communities

For congregations striving to be a place of inclusion and belonging for their entire community, the theological call to welcome people with disabilities introduces a host of questions. This article presents a framework for reflecting on the practices and commitments of local congregations that contribute to belonging within a faith community.

RESOURCES FROM JONI & FRIENDS

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Podcast for Training and Empathy

Liz Babbitt from Joni & Friends New England's office shares about, "Grandparenting a Child with Special Needs" in this podcast episode. Don't forget to check out the other Joni & Friends podcast episodes!

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Courses in Disability Ministry

These introductory courses and certifications for special needs children's ministry through Joni & Friends are invaluable. Find "Welcoming People with Disabilities" below along with additional training!

VIDEOS

Berea Webinar Featuring Liz Babbit

Berea's Children's Ministry webinar series features Liz Babbit of Joni & Friends New England, sharing about how their ministry aids special needs families.

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MENTAL HEALTH

 

CHURCH IN ACTION PODCAST EPISODES

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Guarding the Mental Health of Pastors with Sean Bowen

In 2021, 38% of pastors seriously considered leaving ministry (Barna Group). Join us as Sean Bowen, Executive Director of Barnabas Ministries, (which serves more than 1,000 pastors globally) shares how pastors can effectively guard their mental health while serving their church families, and how church families can support their pastors' mental health.

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OTHER PODCASTS WE RECOMMEND

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Equipping Churches in Trauma Healing

Nicole Martin shares how the Trauma Healing Institute has equipped pastors and laypeople to facilitate Trauma Healing groups, and to experience God’s healing in their lives and the lives of others.

COUNSELING CENTERS AND PROGRAMS

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Boston Counseling

Biblical Healing 

For counseling in the Greater Boston area, we recommend connecting with the Boston Center for Biblical Counseling. They do an excellent job of offering gospel-centered, clinically informed counseling. 

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Vermont Counseling

Consulting and Training for Churches

For Vermont-based churches in need of consultations, counseling training for individuals and groups, and (of course) counseling, we recommend reaching out to the Christian Counseling and Educational Foundation New England (CCEF) in White River Junction, Vermont.

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John 17:23 Groups

To Encourage and Equip Pastors

Pastors (in New England especially) are barraged with challenges in their ministry. John 17:23 groups help fortify pastors to navigate that, creating spaces for them to connect, to be encouraged, and to be equipped.

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Hope for Mental Health

Mental Health Ministry Starter Kit

This mental health ministry program from Saddleback Church has been used by churches nationwide, including Walnut Hill Community Church based in CT. If you'd like to learn more about implementing this program in your church, reach out to Lucy Houghton - Director of Care Ministries at Walnut Hill Community Church!

READING RESOURCES

Four Models of Counseling in Pastoral Ministry

This article by Tim Keller identifies the four main spheres of counseling, walking through the similarities and differences between them, and how we can engage biblical principles in modern-day counseling. 

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VIDEOS

Mental Health in the Church

Just under 50% of adults in the United States will struggle with mental health at some point in their lives. Though prevalent in our culture, mental health is often left out of discussions when it
comes to faith and the church. In this message, Ashley Pitkin breaks down the stigma and shares the power of hope and community in this complex conversation.

Trauma Informed Ministry

Heather Thornburg - Chief Program Officer at Amirah Inc. - shares the underpinnings of a trauma informed ministry in this video of her speaking at Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary. 

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CROSS-CULTURAL AND RACIAL HEALING

 

READING RESOURCES

Building the Peace of Christ

Our reconciliation to God through Christ has brought us peace with Him, yet it also calls us to become agents of peace in the world today. This Bible reading plan is from the Lausanne Movement.

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VIDEOS