Thursday, September 29, 2011
The Way to Hope
Starting the first Sunday of September our healthy gang of teens came back to church and it was a delight to see them reconnecting with one another. They are really a great group of human beings and the way they offer mutual support and friendship is a touching example to the rest of us. We are so blessed to have them in our midst.
I thought of them and the way they care for each other as I read an important four-part series on teen suicide in the Globe and Mail over the past few days. The stories of loss are wrenching, but there is also a call to hope based on vigilance and a funded practical strategy focussed on teen issues which lead to suicide.
As I read the first article on Saturday I pondered the community our young people have created, along with excellent leadership, in the life of St. Paul's. I know that they talk about God and finding the strength to face the day to day challenges. I assumed that no mention would be made of faith in the articles but that first one mentioned religion as a possible positive factor in the lives of young people, which encouraged me. So often we are portrayed as the problem rather than the solution.
Several of you have lost loved ones to suicide and bravely written about it; a spouse, a son, a brother, a father. Others have been touched by loss within your families or with friends. This challenging reality is not outside our faith community.
Have any of you read the Globe articles? Do you think we getting somewhere in addressing the old taboos of mental illness and suicide?