Today’s guest is Sarah Griffith Lund, a minister and author who has focused her life’s work on breaking the silence about mental illness. In her moving memoir entitled “Blessed are the Crazy,” Sarah tells her story of growing up in a family struggling with serious mental illness, and of finding blessing in the midst of her at times harrowing journey; and in her book “Blessed Union” she broaches the subject of mental illness in the context of marriage. When Sarah heard about this podcast, she got in touch with me to suggest that we talk about the connections between the Psalms and her work with mental illness – and I’m so glad she did. With her generous and gracious spirit, Sarah talks me through the stark realities of mental illness today, made even more extreme because of the pandemic, and how the themes of the Psalms speak to that life experience shared by so many. In our conversation, we talk about walking through the valley of the shadow of mental illness, sitting at table with mental illness, and finding ways to speak into the silence about mental illness. I felt grateful for Sarah’s gentle but firm reminder that we simply cannot stay silent when lives are at stake. There is some heavy content in this episode, so please do ensure that you have proper supports in place if needed, or listen to a previous episode – I’d recommend Episode 2 on building up habits of resilience in our daily lives.
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More about Sarah:
The Rev. Dr. Sarah Griffith Lund is passionate about loving her family, God, and being part of faith communities. She is an ordained minister and has served as pastor to churches in Brooklyn, NY, Minneapolis, MN, and New Smyrna Beach, FL. Rev. Dr. Lund served as Regional Minister in the Florida Conference of the United Church of Christ and as a Vice President for Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, IN. She holds degrees from Trinity University (BA), Princeton Theological Seminary (MDiv), Rutgers University (MSW), and McCormick Theological Seminary (DMin). Rev. Dr. Lund received the Dell Award for Mental Health Education at the 30th General Synod of the UCC. She currently serves as Minister for Disabilities and Mental Health Justice on the national staff of the UCC and as senior pastor of First Congregational UCC of Indianapolis, IN. Sarah is the author of Blessed are the Crazy: Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness, Family, and Church (Chalice Press, 2014) and Blessed Union: Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness and Marriage (Chalice Press, 2021). Sarah blogs at www.sarahgriffithlund.com.
The music in this episode is by Celtic Psalms (Kiran Young Wimberly & The McGraths). You can purchase mp3s directly through www.celticpsalms.com
You can find our published scores, CDs and mp3s through GIA Music
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How’s your spirit these days? I’d like to ask you the question I ask my guests. It’s a question that’s not always easy to answer – it takes time, space, and intentionality to be able to really listen to our spirits and God’s Spirit in our lives.
If you feel drawn to set aside that time, I wanted to let you know that I’m leading an online Quiet Day (to suit trans-Atlantic timings) on the 12th of June, 2021. Follow this link to book on Eventbrite. I would love to share that quiet space with people like you. There will be music and prayer, meditation and reflection, silence and sharing. It’ll be a beautiful time, good for my spirit as well as yours.
I’d love to hear from you. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or send a message via our Facebook page to share with me how the Psalms have lifted your spirits. If you send an audio file, I may just include it in an upcoming episode!
Whatever it is that brought you here, I’m so glad you’re with us. – Kiran