Citywide Restorative Justice Meeting Tomorrow
Nov. 13, 10:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Members of the Chicagoland Trauma-Informed Congregations Network Community of Practice will guide us in discussions centered on restorative justice at the intersections of trauma, faith/spirituality and the very real existence of divisions – including racism - among us.

Restorative Justice Practitioners from across the city, county and state will share updates on the restorative justice response to present realities, and community strategies for moving forward.

CTICN Planning Meeting on Nov. 19
Nov. 19, 9:00-10:30 a.m.

All are welcome to attend the Chicagoland Trauma Informed Congregations Network (CTICN) monthly planning meeting. The virtual meetings take place on the third Thursday of each month, from 9:00-10:30 a.m., to plan upcoming CTICN events.

Lifetime Experiences Help Older Adults Build Resilience to Pandemic Trauma
Courtesy Kaiser Family Foundation

Older adults are especially vulnerable physically during the coronavirus pandemic. But they’re also notably resilient psychologically, calling upon a lifetime of experience and perspective to help them through difficult times.

New research calls attention to this little-remarked-upon resilience as well as significant challenges for older adults as the pandemic stretches on. It shows that many seniors have changed behaviors — reaching out to family and friends, pursuing hobbies, exercising, participating in faith communities — as they strive to stay safe from the coronavirus.

“There are some older adults who are doing quite well during the pandemic and have actually expanded their social networks and activities,” said Brian Carpenter, a professor of psychological and brain sciences at Washington University in St. Louis. “But you don’t hear about them because the pandemic narrative reinforces stereotypes of older adults as frail, disabled and dependent.”

Trauma-Informed Resources for Children
The Advocate Children's Health Resource Center offers trusted information for parents, teenagers and children. It's online resources offer a variety of children's health topics, including childhood trauma-informed care.

Suggested eBooks: 

Related Articles:
Open Enrollment Resources
Kaiser Family Foundation has updated its Health Insurance Marketplace Calculator and its searchable collection of more than 300 Frequently Asked Questions about open enrollment, the health insurance marketplaces and the Affordable Care Act.

The FAQ database covers a wide range of topics related to obtaining or renewing Marketplace coverage, and has been updated to answer questions about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on this year’s open enrollment period, as well as recent policy changes that may affect women, immigrants, and non-traditional households. More than 180 of the FAQs in the collection are available in Spanish.
A new phone number for mental health emergencies coming in 2022
By: Kate Thayer, public affairs coordinator with Advocate Health Care

A new, three-digit emergency phone number dedicated solely to mental health will become a reality in 2022 – welcome news in a time when more people find themselves in crisis.

The creation of the number – 988 – is due to the National Suicide Hotline Designation Act, which became federal law last month after suicide prevention advocates pushed for a dedicated line for suicide and other mental health emergencies. It’s expected to go live summer of 2022.

Suicide rates in the country have been climbing in recent years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the mental health fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic adds even more concern.

“There’s definitely a need,” said Dr. Shannon Gritzenbach, medical director of outpatient behavioral health services at Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital. “People are feeling pretty hopeless. There’s so many heavy things going on in the world.”

Color Breathing Can Help Manage Stress
Color breathingBreathing exercises are one of the many relaxation techniques we can use to manage stress, reduce blood pressure and increase our vibration daily. They are fantastic for health and well-being. Many people do not breath properly, meaning the oxygen does not circulate around the body as well as it could. Oxygen is nourishing and essential to the body, helping to fight free radicals and boost your immune system. It can also help you to feel alert.

See additional breathing exercises, as well as meditation, resiliency and health and well-being resources here.
November is National Gratitude Month
November is National Gratitude Month, a time to acknowledge our blessings and learn how to live a more grateful life.

Feel free to share the bulletin insert and worship slide with your faith community:

Upcoming Events
Nov. 15, 6:30-8:00 p.m.

Sponsored by Advocate Aurora Health

Our rituals may look different this year due to the pandemic so we will discuss together ways in which we can stay connected to our families and honor our loved ones who have died during the holidays. Secondary losses and coping skills will also be discussed in this interactive presentation.
Nov. 17, 2:00 p.m.

Sponsored by the HHS Partnership Center

Families often look first to trusted individuals in their community for reliable information on how to respond to today’s critical health issues – including COVID-19 and a future vaccine. This webinar training, offered by The Partnership Center and taught by a leading expert in health literacy, will provide Community Health Workers, Faith Community Nurses, Promotoras de Salud, and other trusted front-line health communicators with the latest information on COVID-19 vaccine development and the clinical trials – and why it is so important that community members participate in this life saving process.
Nov. 18, noon-1:30 p.m.

The world is experiencing COVID19, racial injustice, loss, and grief. Ministry leaders are on the front lines navigating these layers of suffering. What support do they need as they care for their congregation and communities? Join our conversation to learn from leading ministers and health practitioners who are currently serving during these pandemics.

We will also discuss the importance of caring well for one’s self amid these challenging times. We hope our conversation together will remind us that God has provided a community to share our burdens and to offer each other hope.

Panelists include Notable Chicago Civil rights leader Rev. Ira Acree (Greater St. John Bible Church), Rev. Ancy Post (Metro Church, Englewood, NJ), Dr. Alfonso Belmonte (Pediatric Hospitalist, New Mexico), and Rev. Dr. David Sutton (NPTS).
Nov. 20, 7:00 - 8:00 p.m.

Sponsored by Advocate Aurora Health

Join in this webinar to learn ways to practice self-care. Within this one-hour session you will be provided with effective, & empowering strategies to implement and integrate in your life, to help alleviate frustration and anxiety. Bring your questions!

Dec. 3, 7:00 PM - 8:30 p.m.

Sponsored by the Interfaith Mental Health Coalition South Suburban Mental Health Cluster.

A workshop designed for all who are dealing with pandemic stress as well as those supporting them, including parents and guardians, community leaders, educators, and faith leaders of all religious faiths.

HIV/AIDS Clergy and Lay Leadership Virtual Summit
Dec. 5, 10:00 a.m.-noon

"Breaking the Silence of HIV/AIDS Amidst COVID-19: We're in This Together."

Sponsored by McCormick Theological Seminary

More information to come!
Exploring Grief Groups
Lake Forest, Ill.
7:00-8:30 p.m. on Mondays through Nov. 30

North Shore, Ill.
7:00-8:30 p.m. on Thursdays through Dec. 10

Are you or someone you know grieving the loss of a family member, partner, or friend? If so, find comfort and support in free virtual Exploring Grief Groups. The groups provide a confidential, educational and nonjudgmental environment. They encourage attendees to cope with their loss and continue to find meaning in their lives. These groups are facilitated by professional counselors.

To register for Lake Forest group, contact Denise Kitanovski at 847-446-6955, ext. 22 or

To register for North Shore group, contact Joellen at 847-446-6955, ext. 19 or

  • Tuesdays through Jan. 12, 2021
  • 7:00-9:00 p.m.

Sponsored by Grace Lutheran Church, River Forest, Ill.

GriefShare is a special weekly seminar and support group designed to help you rebuild your life after losing a loved one. Our group is led by caring people who have experienced grief and want to help you through the difficult days ahead.

To register, call 708-366-6900 or email

  • Wednesdays, through Dec. 30
  • 6:00-7:00 p.m.

Sponsored by Advocate Aurora Health

“What’s Next?” is a weekly resilience program that combines evidence-based scientific studies with encouragement from faith-based resources. Participants will gain tools to:

  • build resilience amid the difficulties of life
  • learn from their experiences
  • use the knowledge they gain to nourish themselves and the world around them

Attend any or all sessions. LaShondria Purnell, RN, a faith community nurse with Advocate Aurora Health, facilitates "What's Next?" and looks forward to learning alongside you.

  • Tuesdays from 8:30-9:00 a.m.
  • Thursdays from 6:00-6:30 p.m.

Sponsored by Advocate Aurora Health

The Prayer Support Line allows us to come together in unity to release our burdens, receive comfort and express our gratitude to God for holding us close during this pandemic.

The Prayer Support Line is a place where we can join with others in prayer for health, healing and spiritual care with the expectation that God will meet us and provide us with encouragement.
Wishing you and your loved ones a blessed Thanksgiving and joyful holiday season!