Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Mercy Ministries “MPOWERS” the Community

On March 5, 2009 Mercy Ministries hosted our first ever Nashville MPOWER seminar for local pastors and counselors. Mercy Ministries in St. Louis has hosted several MPOWER seminars in the community and have found them to be very successful. The goal of MPOWER is to equip attendees with a better understanding of the issues young people are facing today – two of the most prevalent issues being eating disorders and self-harm. We want church and community leaders to leave the seminar with both knowledge and practical tools that will allow them to address these issues head-on within their own churches, organizations, and spheres of influence.

MPower registrants sign in as they enter the main entrance
of the Nashville Mercy Ministries home.

At Thursday’s meeting, eating disorders and self-harm were discussed by two of our qualified Mercy Ministries’ counselors. They reviewed the signs and symptoms of these issues and explained the most common root causes of these struggles. Then the counselors discussed the Biblical approach to gaining freedom in these areas. They went over the Mercy Ministries counseling model and the steps in the healing process that Mercy has found to be successful for 26 years now. Then the counselors took time to answer questions from the audience. One guest that serves on the women's ministry team at her church found the seminar to be very helpful because she said, “It focused on a relationship with Christ as the central key to finding freedom to these life-controlling issues and it also provided the guests with practical and useful information about issues that many young people are dealing with!”

MPower attendees listen to presenters speak on eating disorders and self-harm in the Nashville home classroom

Two Mercy Ministries’ graduates shared their personal testimonies with the group. They talked about their past, the root of their struggles, their experience in the Mercy Ministries program, and how they are still walking in freedom today. A local counselor that attended the seminar said, “It was good to hear from the former residents about their experience with these issues. Hearing it from their perspective helped me learn and understand more about how girls end up broken and stuck in this bondage. It was great to see a graduate of the program still walking out her freedom!”

Mercy Ministries' home staff discusses the topic of "Forgiveness" with MPower attendees

If you live in the Nashville or St. Louis areas, your church or organization can host an MPOWER seminar. At each seminar, Mercy Ministries will provide a counselor and a graduate to share about major life-controlling issues that effect young people today. For more information about hosting an MPOWER seminar, please contact Whitney Cantrell at WCantrell@mercyministries.com. We would love to equip our local communities with the tools and resources needed to address these life-controlling issues that are so prevalent in today’s society.