NASHVILLE, Sept, 2023 — Christian Care Ministry (CCM), the operator of Medi-Share, the nation’s leading healthcare sharing community, has partnered with the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC) to create the world’s first faith-based mental health and wellness network.
Taking the stage at the 2023 AACC Know Hope World Conference last week in Nashville, CCM President and Chief Executive Officer Brandon Harvath delivered a heartfelt and biblically based appeal to more than 7,000 leaders in the mental health field. He was joined by AACC President Dr. Tim Clinton to announce a new initiative to strengthen and equip the Church in addressing the ongoing mental health crisis.
Featured in image: Brandon Harvath, President/CEO, Christian Care Ministry (left) and Dr. Tim Clinton, President of AACC (right)
“Together, we want to empower a network of counselors, coaches and helpers who are clinically distinguished and distinctly Christ-centered to reclaim the biblical mandate to care and provide for our brothers and sisters in Christ by connecting needs to resources,” said Harvath.
As the mental health crisis has escalated in recent years, mental health professionals are sounding the alarm. Recent studies have shown that young people, especially teens, along with pastors and healthcare workers, are experiencing increased levels of depression, anxiety and suicidal ideation.
“As two organizations deeply rooted in faith and compassion, our partnership with CCM signifies a pivotal moment in mental health care,” stated Ben Allison, CEO of AACC. “We are merging our strengths to address the pressing needs of our community and ensuring that care and guidance are provided with a Christ-centered approach. In this united effort, we reaffirm our commitment to bring light, hope, and healing to those facing mental health challenges.”
Many people find safety and comfort in their local church, often seeking out a faith leader before they engage with a mental health professional. If sufficiently equipped, the Church can play an essential role in addressing the crisis by providing people with a safe and supportive community, education and mental health resources to restore their hope. Yet, pastors everywhere are collapsing under the weight of the needs of their congregations, dropping out of ministry at an alarming rate, and suffering from the burdens of depression, divorce and discouragement.
“When pastors are suffering, you know that the church is suffering,” said Harvath. “Pastors need help, their families need help and the church needs help. The enemy would love nothing more than to muzzle the Church when in fact we must rise up and be heard, to be the salt, truth and light that all mankind desperately needs.
“It’s time for us to join together and create the nation’s first faith-based mental health network, with one voice, worthy of being called Christian. It is CCM’s privilege and honor to come alongside AACC to address the mental health crisis in a practical, biblical manner, just as the members of the first church did in the book of Acts.”
The initiative will officially launch in the Spring of 2024. To sign up and receive more information, visit https://www.medishare.com/cfn/aacc.
About Christian Care Ministry
Christian Care Ministry (CCM), a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) association of churches, based in Melbourne, FL, operates the Medi-Share program, a Christian healthcare sharing organization that provides an affordable alternative to health insurance for faith-based consumers. Now in its 30th year of sharing, Medi-Share serves nearly 400,000 members across America and has earned accreditation from the Independent Healthcare Sharing Accreditation Board. To date, more than $7 billion dollars in medical bills have been shared and discounted.
About the American Association of Christian Counselors
The American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC) is the largest and most diverse Christian Counseling association in the world. The AACC’s mission is to equip the entire community of care, including licensed professionals, pastors, and lay caregivers, with biblical truth and psychosocial insights so they can minister to hurting persons and help them move to personal wholeness, interpersonal competence, and mental stability. The AACC accomplishes this mission through its widely attended events, its educational programs, and materials available via Light University and the AACC’s publications.
A. Larry Ross Communications