We all know what it's like to carry a burden alone. It's scary, overwhelming and often filled with shame. While we live in a technologically connected world, some issues still remain taboo topics leaving many feeling desperately helpless and lonely.

Gratefully, over the past few years the stigma around mental illness has slowly faded and things are changing. We should applaud organizations like BELL Media, which have committed to keeping issues related to mental health on our radar. Their recent campaign Cause pour la cause is just what's needed but it's not enough.

It’s time for other community organizations to join in on this important discussion. For that reason, we are excited to share the work of some local church leaders in Laval and Montreal, who are committed to creating a safe place to dialogue more honestly about mental illness.

We are excited to announce the partnership of The One Eighty Church, Christian Direction, Evangel Church, World Vision and Salvation Army, who are all working together to sponsor a first Mental Health Seminar and discuss the role of the Church. On May 13th and 14th, our time together will be focused on how churches and other communities of faith can help people become more aware of mental health issues and opportunities to grow as it relates to mental health concerns. Our hope is to also provide a space for leaders to become more sensitive and thoughtful about teaching and addressing these issues in diverse religious settings.

Amy's Story
Our keynote speaker is Amy Simpson. She’s an award-winning author the book Trouble Minds, which documents how mental illness impacted her home in the most painful way. At 15 years old Amy found herself gripped by the complexity of this illness when her mother started acting differently.

Her story is hopeful but also a wakeup call for churches that tend to dismiss the possibility of helping, caring and walking with families through these tough times. The timing of Amy's visit with us coincides with a nation-wide focus on these issues, which has designated the month of May as Mental Health Awareness Month.

Amy's book is a powerful reminder of how mental health, at some point, touches all of us right at home. She's also a wonderful speaker committed to helping churches and religious leaders think differently about this important issue. You'll also be able to purchase her book at this event or you can purchase online if you'd like to read it before the event. Our hope is that you make the time to be with us as we take the first steps toward this important conversation.

Save the Dates and Register:

Saturday, May 13th: 9 am to 3 pm: All-day discussion to process the issues related to mental illness from a Christian Faith Perspective. *20$ charge and lunch is included.
Register at http://direction.ca/en/events/

Sunday, May 14th: 10:30 am to 12:00 pm: Join us for a church gathering at The One Eighty Church where Amy will share her story and how she grew through a deep struggle during her mother's complex battle with mental illness. No registration needed for Sunday.
For more info see: http://theoneeighty.ca/mentalhealthweekend