A ministry with a mission for mental health
As Senior Pastor of House of Love Ministries Inc. in South Florida, Mattathias Johnson ‘05 developed a ministry branch dedicated to mental health advocacy within his church—Journaling Saves Lives.
Journaling Saves Lives has a mission to eliminate the stigmas and stereotypes that surround mental illness and mental health. The ministry hosts and facilitates mental health educational seminars and competency training all across the United States and serves as a liaison to connect individuals and family members with peer and professional resources that will contribute to their healing. They promote the daily use of healthy coping mechanisms and wellness tools that can serve as deterrents to mental health problems and aid in the recovery process for people who are directly and indirectly struggling with mental health issues.
“People are almost always looking for solutions to any problems they have in life and want to connect to whoever has the solution they need,” Johnson said. “We exist to let people know that mental health problems affect everyone everywhere no matter their race, ethnicity, or socioeconomic status and that there is no reason or need to feel ashamed.”
Johnson’s time at Malone helped to prepare him for the ways he currently serves his community.
“It gave me a great educational base that I have been able to utilize in several different fields and encouragement to stand strong in my faith as a believer in Jesus Christ even while working in the marketplace,” he said. “Malone helped me realize I don't have to separate my faith from my career and, in fact, my faith will help my light shine stronger while I serve as a professional.”
Since being established in 2016, Journaling Saves Lives continues to develop a community, a safe haven, and a resource point of contact for anyone who needs it.
“The most rewarding part of our work is seeing people access and utilize resources that help them move toward becoming healed and whole,” Johnson said. “In John 10:10 (NKJV) Jesus said, ‘...I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.’ Therefore, we believe being mentally and emotionally healthy and well is one major component of the abundant life that Jesus speaks about in that scriptural passage and it is our obligation to help people achieve that.”