Reflection: It’s Good to Share...
Time and sharing are two aspects of spirituality. This is the topic of a little article which you can find on the Gratia Plena Counseling website blog. http://www.gratiaplenacounseling.org/its-good-to-share/
Your Help is Needed...
Say a Prayer. Please pray for the growth of Gratia Plena, for the clients served by Gratia Plena, and for Dr. Ken. As St. Paul said: “If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31.
Forward this Email. Think of two or three people who might be interested in our work. Encourage them to sign up for this newsletter, find our web site, and like us on FaceBook. We really appreciate this. We want to spread the word that Gratia Plena counseling is available for service.
Recommend a Board Member. We have a temporary board of directors which was for the purpose of incorporation and other startup needs. In the coming months, we will be forming one advisory board for operations and another board to spearhead fundraising. If you know of someone in the Houston area who might be willing and able to help, please email Dr. Ken a name for nomination.
Make a Referral. Because 26.2% of Americans will suffer from a mental illness in any given year, you may very well know someone in the Houston area who is in need of help. Please give them our web site information or phone number if they are not receiving treatment. We are always honored when someone recommends us to a friend or coworker. You might be the person to give them encouragement, to tell them that their life could be different.
Give a Donation. We very much appreciate your generosity. Lots of people like to wear pink or wristbands and celebrate their support of popular causes. It is certainly hip and cool to save the whales or the owls or whomever needs saving at the moment. Very few however seem to want to help ease the pain of mental illness or addiction. We’d like to see that change. Statistics show that the amount of personal suffering from psychological problems tops those of all other medical issues. Gratia Plena was organized and started to reach out to people who live with these challenges every single day. Addictions and mental illness interfere with people’s ability to work and go to school. They wreck marriages and families. They reduce the joy that could be part of life, and create spiritual roadblocks. You can be the difference with your donation today. In the next section below, there is more information about how to donate…
Dr. Ken will be in San Antonio for a week in June to participate in a 50 hour training course offered by the Texas Department of State Health Services. This is training for community leaders who will help train “recovery coaches” for peer recovery programs. At the federal level, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) says this about peer recovery: “Peer recovery support services help people become and stay engaged in the recovery process and reduce the likelihood of relapse. Because they are designed and delivered by peers who have been successful in the recovery process, they embody a powerful message of hope, as well as a wealth of experiential knowledge. The services can effectively extend the reach of treatment beyond the clinical setting into the everyday environment of those seeking to achieve or sustain recovery.” Dr. Ken is excited about being selected for this training and he looks forward to bringing this program back to the Houston area for implementation.
Well, we put out our first little video on YouTube on Mother’s Day, as a sort of gift to mothers and as a test of the process of making and posting a video. Some of you may have seen it http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFCsfoBfwXw. Releasing videos was something we had been planning to do, but this particular video was rather spontaneous and it was packaged quickly, as you could probably tell. We promise the next one will be better. Video is one of the most effective ways today to spread the word about one’s mission on the Internet and so we plan to make good use of this technology. We may shoot for the end of June for the release of the next video, so stay tuned.
Our Gratia Plena Counseling web site is now able to accept credit cards and bank drafts for donations and for service fee payments. http://www.gratiaplenacounseling.org/egiving/ We are in desperate need of funding to help offset startup costs, and also to help folks receive assessments and therapy when they are low on funds or without insurance. A $200 donation pays for a thorough assessment for someone suffering from depression or an addiction. A $50 donation covers our Internet service expense for a month. $30 covers an ink cartridge for the printer. A $10 donation provides an Alcoholics Anonymous “Big Book” for someone who cannot afford it. Any amount is helpful. You can specify if you’d prefer your donation to go toward service fees for a client, or if they can be used for our operating expenses. Remember, we are a nonprofit corporation here to serve the community. Donations are kept confidential. You will receive a receipt which you can save for tax purposes. We do pray for our benefactors.
Two Free Information Sessions for the Public:
Saturday, June 9th at 9:30am “Yes, Catholics Do Talk about Sex” (informal information and discussion about compulsive sexual behavior).
Saturday, June 16th at 9:30am “Pass the Rosary and the Rolls Please” (informal information and discussion about compulsive eating behavior).
Both sessions will be held at the Gratia Plena counseling office in Sugar Land and led by Dr. Ken. Call or email to register because space is limited. Parking is free.
Dr. Ken's Movie of the Month Recommendation:
The Way. This movie was released in 2011 without very much fanfare or advertising. It was written, produced, and directed by Emilio Estevez. It stars his father, Martin Sheen, but Estevez himself appears in a few brief scenes throughout the movie. At the beginning of the movie Estevez is accidentally killed as he begins walking the 500 mile “Camino de Santiago” (the Way of St. James), which has been a Catholic pilgrimage for over a thousand years. The route runs from a location in France to the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Spain. Sheen, who plays Estevez’ father in the movie, travels to France to retrieve his son’s body, but decides to make the walk himself. The theme of the movie is really more spiritual than religious. By following the four main characters on their journey, we get to consider different aspects of what it means to be transformed. It is worth noting that there is in one of the movie story lines a violation of Catholic teaching about the proper reverence for and burial of ashes after cremation. This movie would be safe for teens and adults, but due to marijuana use probably is not appropriate for kids. Overall, my wife and I really enjoyed the movie. It is a welcome relief from the big budget superhero and action movies. It deals with real people and real issues. This movie is available on DVD or through Netflix. Disclaimer: Gratia Plena and Dr. Ken do not receive any compensation or benefits from recommending books, movies, web sites, blogs, et cetera.