Health and Healing Highlights: Bright Spots of Hope
Each week, we’ll share interesting health and healing-related stories in the news. Following is a round up of articles about physical, emotional and spiritual health and healing that could be applied to health ministries.
AME Program Emphasizes Healthy Lifestyle
Within communities, churches often serve as an educational space, a refuge and renewal space. For the University of Florida, the African Methodist Episcopal Church is the launching pad for its Health-Smart Church Model Program. Currently in the implementation stage, the program is focused on ways to address obesity—and how to empower church leaders to establish supportive programs locally.
One of the most therapeutic aspects of the new VA outpatient clinic in Cape Coral, Florida, is its use of natural light. Designed around a “four-story glass curtain” the center’s physical structure compounds treatment and provides an added healing boost. How can you make more use of sunlight in your health ministry?
For 20 years, Kids Healing Kids has used music to send messages of healing and support to hospital-bound children. Today’s technology makes it possible for the performers to reach ailing kids regardless of geography: songs are recorded and shared via the Internet. It’s not just the recipients or even the performing kids who feel empowered—adult volunteers have also been transformed by the experience. “Music can make them happy, and I heard that if you’re happy, it can make you live longer,” said 10-year-old George Isles. “I feel like it’s helping someone with every word you sing.”
How inspiring! “Art by the disABLEd” exhibit at the Alliance for the Arts in Fort Myers, Florida, showcases work contributed by artists who suffer from a range of issues, including low vision, autism, mental illness, paralysis and multiple sclerosis. The artists aren’t necessarily trained. For Martha Scott, a recovered drug and alcohol addict who now suffers from macular degeneration, art is a way to learn. “we can get rid of things, like negative emotion. Painting also helps me with patience and with the idea that less is more.”
How can your congregation benefit from artistic expression?
Terra Hoskins contributes to the NEHM and NEAC blog on a freelance basis. Drawing from her background in sales, communications and Internet marketing, she helps organizations create an online presence and use the Internet to expand business. Follow Terra on her blog: http://terrahoskins.com/ and on Twitter: @terrahoskins.
* Photo by fdtate.