I am currently working on a new group for troubled, depressed, and anxiety-ridden people who can get together to discuss their problems and woes with one another. And afterward to pray for each member. Certainly this is not simply a Catholic problem, but we are aided by so much in our tradition. As someone who suffers from crushing and sometimes debilitating anxiety, sometimes the best remedy is to speak with someone who understands and suffers the same way. Panic attacks are just an everyday reality that many do not understand. Sometimes just talking about the things that trouble me helps me to come up with solutions. I’ve also found great use of rout prayer and scriptural meditation to drown out the worries and “what-ifs” that intrude in my mind. The group will offer no fixes or solutions, but might just be an oasis of just 90 minutes every two weeks to offer peace of mind among friends. Just time and space to vent with fellow parishioners who just need support of others like them.
St. Dymphna is the patron saint of depression and anxiety. She has been a tireless friend and patron to me especially and her intercession has been nothing short of miraculous. The story of how she came into my life is pretty unbelievable and perhaps I'll post it some day. I'm hoping for the program to take root and help those who are so troubled these days. Just turning on the news can send one into a downward spiral. I'll keep track of our successes and failures and report them here from time to time.
St. Dymphna, pray for us!