Thursday, October 3, 2013

Can the Atonement Heal Mental Illness?

Let’s admit it. The stigma of mental illness is real.  Over the years, I
have watched some love ones, close friends, and clients struggling
and repeatedly asked, “If the heal power of the atonement is real,
why am I still sick?”  So, forgive me if I go all ballistic and have a
soapbox episode in church meetings, or here on the blog. It’s too
close to home and I want those who have been reaching out will
get appropriate help.

The question here isn’t challenging the power of priesthood
blessings in connection with miraculous healings. I believe that it
happens according to God’s will and individual’s faith (Bible
Dictionary, prayer)
. However, the underling concern here is as if
spiritual healing is the primary or even sole option for treating
mental illness.

The factors are so tangled and let’s connect them with a help
professional for the best solution.  Come on, will you tell a buddy
who has been barely diagnosed with cancer to just pray for spiritual
Absolutely no!! Then why say that to a person with

The trick about mental illness is that the cause can be
psychological / developmental then creating physiologically
changes. These changes enhance or magnify the psychological
symptoms turning to a vicious cycle.  We will be totally jumping the
gun if we direct anyone to any other resources (special diets,
meditation, religious healings, etc…). Even for us who have
received training to assess and intervene take hours or even
multiple sessions to figure out how and what to help.

The Church has actively taken precaution to psychoeducate its
multi-national members due to varies cultural conceptions on
mental illness. We now have a training packet for new missionaries,
resourceful booklets for leaders including mission presidents.
Additional resources can also be found on the Church website
as you search for “mental illness.”

For those who bravely face it day by day or have overcome it, I
salute you! Your true understanding of the atonement stands as a
monument of faith and we are grateful for your valiant example .

Next week, we’ll dedicate the post to you who have experienced
traumatic events, excruciating trails including mental illness, and
injustice circumstances discussing on how the healing of the atonement takes
place. If you have come across any great quotes, stories during
General Conference, you are more than welcome to share it with us.

PS: Check out this article by Elder Alexander B. Morrison, of the
Seventy, and see how well you know about mental illness.


1 comment:

  1. Yes, yes, yes! I have many friends and family members who suffer from or who have suffered from depression. When they tried to ignore it or cover it up, it just got worse. This is so important for anyone who has these experiences to know (and anyone who knows someone going through depression)