July 8, 2021
Dear Friends in Christ,
As I mentioned several weeks ago in an earlier message, I have established a mental wellness workgroup of professional counselors, psychiatrists and diocesan staff members to develop resources and strategies to better support our communities as they cope with the emotional aftermath of the pandemic. I write today to provide you with a brief update on those efforts.
First, to assist those who may be in need of help, the workgroup has compiled an online list of resources at www.archbalt.org/help-is-here. The resources include a variety of options that can be searched by geography, type of service and level of cost, in the hope that individuals can use the resources to identify services that suit their individual needs.
Once again, I encourage you to reach out for help if you are struggling, and to recognize that the pressures we have all been under during this past year may have impacted you in ways that are only now becoming clear. You are not alone in your struggles, and seeking the support you need is an important step in achieving the strength and resilience necessary to restoring our lives to a healthy balance.
Secondly, the archdiocese is launching a program to provide as many of our pastors and parish and school staff training in Mental Health First Aid (MHFA). This internationally recognized program equips participants with the skills to recognize when a person is in need, to respond appropriately and to help connect them to appropriate resources. We are currently establishing a cohort of instructors to provide the training, and ask that if you would like to join this effort and are a certified MHFA instructor or are interested in becoming one, to contact Mary Ellen Russell at email@example.com.
Finally, as we return to worshipping together in person as a community of faith, I pray that your encounter with the presence of Jesus in the Eucharist and the companionship of the body of Christ will awaken in you a even deeper appreciation of the peace and joy that the practice of our faith brings to our lives.
May God bless you and keep you in His love.
Most Reverend William E. Lori
Archbishop of Baltimore
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