Mental Health Symposium to Be Held at North Park University

CHICAGO, IL (August 13, 2014) — The first-ever annual faith and health symposium at North Park University will focus on “Being Present: A Faithful Response to Mental Illness.”

The symposium for healthcare and ministry professionals as well as lay leaders will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on November 8 in Anderson Chapel.

The event will include a series of workshops and a keynote presentation from John Swinton and a lunch presentation from Amy Simpson on supporting families living with mental illness.

Swinton is professor in practical theology and pastoral care at the School of Divinity, Religious Studies, and Philosophy at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland. He has a background in mental health nursing and healthcare chaplaincy and also serves as an honorary professor and researcher at Aberdeen’s Centre for Advanced Studies in Nursing.

Simpson edits Christianity Today’s and is senior editor of Leadership Journal. She has written extensively on mental health issues, including the award-winning book Troubled Minds: Mental Illness and the Church’s Mission.

For more information, visit the event website, email, or call 773-244-6214.




  • This sounds like a much-needed and timely event. Will the workshops also address access to care as well as cultural issues that impact the understanding, treatment, and discussions surrounding mental illness?

  • I’m glad that NPU is hosting an event that addresses our Christian response to and care for those with mental illness. These are often neglected and misunderstood people in the church. However, I’m a little mystified by the lead-line of the article billing this the “first-ever annual faith and health symposium at North Park University.” To my recollection there have been at least a couple, if not several, faith and health symposia held at NPTS. Is it not part of the university? Couldn’t this history have been acknowledged?

    • Steve, Thank you for acknowledging our history. You are correct that North Park has held several different conferences or symposia on faith and health over the last 13 years. From 2001 – 2008 we were doing a pre-Midwinter connection bi-annually and have done two other conferences in the past three years. We, being the seminary and school of nursing, chose to name this as a first annual symposium for the purposes of reclaiming what we hope will be a yearly event addressing themes that connect faith and health and indicating a more robust annual event.

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