Mental Health: A Guide for Faith Leaders

American Psychiatric Association Foundation, 2016.


This web resource offers a professional yet succinct overview of mental health issues, written in lay language, and summarizes the basics about common mental illnesses, suicide, diagnosis, treatment, the connection between mental and physical conditions, recovery, wellness and building resilience while also addressing the many ways in which faith leaders can provide support for people with mental illnesses.


booklet; two-page "Quick Reference on Mental Health for Faith Leaders"

Recommended Audience

Clergy and lay leaders

Practical Applications

  • Learn how to discern between spiritual problems and mental illnesses after reading the two-page "Quick Reference on Mental Health for Faith Leaders".
  • Provide support for people in your congregation with mental illnesses by welcoming, including, making referrals, or helping them accept treatment while they are in crisis.

About the Contributor

Carole Wills

Carole Wills is a retired church musician and volunteer for NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness. She was a mental health advocate, educator, community organizer, and affiliate leader at the national, state and local levels. Her NAMI FaithNet work focused on equipping faith communities and faith leaders to welcome, support and include people living with serious mental health conditions.

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