Faithful and Fractured

Responding to the Clergy Health Crisis

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Description

Clergy suffer from certain health issues at a rate higher than the general population. Why are pastors in such poor health? And what can be done to help them step into the abundant life God desires for them?

Although anecdotal observations about poor clergy health abound, concrete data from multiple sources supporting this claim hasn't been made accessible--until now. Duke's Clergy Health Initiative (CHI), a major, decade-long research project, provides a true picture of the clergy health crisis over time and demonstrates that improving the health of pastors is possible. Bringing together the best in social science and medical research, this book quantifies the poor health of clergy with theological engagement. Although the study focused on United Methodist ministers, the authors interpret CHI's groundbreaking data for a broad ecumenical readership. In addition to physical health, the book examines mental health and spiritual well-being, and suggests that increasing positive mental health may prevent future physical and mental health problems for clergy. Concrete suggestions tailored to clergy are woven throughout the book.

Contributors

RAE PROESCHOLD-BELL, Author

Rae Jean Proeschold-Bell, Author

Rae Jean Proeschold-Bell (PhD, Arizona State University) is associate research professor of global health at the Duke Global Health Institute and the Duke Center for Health Inequalities and Research in Durham, North Carolina. Her research focuses on the joint treatment of mental and physical health. She is coprincipal investigator of the Duke Clergy Health Initiative, which seeks to understand and improve the health of United Methodist Church clergy in North Carolina and designs interventions for clergy, including a two-year holistic health program called Spirited Life.

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Jason Byassee, Author

Jason Byassee (PhD, Duke University) is the inaugural Butler Chair in Homiletics and Biblical Hermeneutics at Vancouver School of Theology in Vancouver, British Columbia. He previously served as senior pastor of Boone United Methodist Church in the Western North Carolina Conference and taught at Duke Divinity School. He serves as a contributing editor to the Christian Century and is the author of numerous books, including Trinity: The God We Don't Know, The Gifts of the Small Church, and Praise Seeking Understanding: Reading the Psalms with Augustine.

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