My wife Caroline is a therapist and she walks with people who have experienced trauma. When I was an urban pastor, I learned firsthand how trauma impacts a congregation. Even now as I interact with those on the frontlines, I see a lack of understanding and training concerning trauma in the church world.
Traumatic events have the potential to affect people for life if unaddressed. Because of this, World Impact has partnered with the American Bible Society to provide Trauma Healing training. Our training equips church leaders with basic mental health and biblical principles to better respond to people who are suffering. Once trained and certified, facilitators run trauma healing groups in their congregations and community.
What an oddly perfect time for this program. We all are experiencing the common trauma of the pandemic. A crisis like this affects us in multiple ways from job loss, food insecurity, or isolation, all of which are traumatic to our mental health. While not ideal, we can thank technology for the capability to continue the program online, meeting in virtual groups.
Pastors and church leaders are gathering the tools to lovingly walk with their congregants and community through the healing journey. One pastor said, “This training and the book really gives the Church some tools to help people who are hurting or grieving.” Our trauma healing program is helping individuals heal and improve the overall community.