Amid COVID and Racial Unrest, Black Churches Put Faith in Mental Health Care

January 22, 2021

News Type:  Weekly Spark, Weekly Spark News

Kaiser Health News

As COVID-19 and racial inequity take a toll on Black communities, faith organizations are playing a key role in promoting mental health. Some Black churches are adding mental health professionals to their staff or inviting them to give presentations to members. In Black faith communities across the country, some leaders are speaking more openly about mental health and learning how to help those at risk. A program by the Behavioral Health Network of Greater St. Louis is training faith leaders in mental health, suicide prevention, and substance use. “The pandemic has definitely put us in a place where we’re looking for answers and looking for other avenues to help our members,” said Carl Lucas, pastor of God First Church and a program graduate. “It has opened our eyes to the reality of mental health needs.”

Spark Extra! Check out suicide prevention competencies for faith leaders.