November 28, 2017 (Jackson, Miss.) - Belhaven University's Institute for International Care and Counsel (IICC) has been awarded a $10,000 grant to bring four visiting scholar/educators on campus to address critical issues related to mental health from a Biblical perspective.
The award, made through the Teaching the Bible Grant program of the Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA), provides support for programs aimed at strengthening the teaching of the Bible at Presbyterian-related colleges and universities.
Dr. Bradford Smith, IICC's Director noted, Research conducted by our Institute and others show that a lack of biblical understanding of mental health among pastors and laypeople is a major contributor to the silence, fear, avoidance, and prejudice that often marks churches' lack of helpful response to those with mental health problems.
Over the next two years, a nationally known scholar/educator will come to campus each semester and deliver a community lecture, present a faculty workshop on applying biblical teaching to contemporary issues, and dialogue with students. Presentations will be developed into new online resources available for students and the global community.
The long-term impact of these scholar/educator visits will be significant for our students, faculty, and for the community of churches and other influencers with whom we partner, said Belhaven President Dr. Roger Parrott. We believe that bringing this level of scholarship to a biblical understanding of the mental health responsibility of the Church will have a positive influence across the state.
The first scholar/educator visit will take place in the Spring of 2018 and will focus on the question, Where is mental health in the Bible?