Six New Things – Week of December 12, 2022

Healthy boundaries, personal awareness, self-care – all of these are essential to helping others. And we all need a little help, now as always, and perhaps more so. This Advent and Christmas, let yourself find the care you need so you can offer the care others need.


Anyone’s personal awareness will grow along with Simon the Hugger (Beaming), the lovable sloth who learns ‘the importance of …consent’ with regard to physical affection and respecting others’ boundaries.


Encourage tweens and teens in their personal and faith growth by pursuing 3 Big Questions That Shape Your Future: A 60-Day Exploration of Who You Were Made to Be (Baker), a devotional to ‘help teenagers answer the big questions of life and faith and grow their relationship with God and others’.


If it’s you as a faith leader who needs support, you’re not alone! Check out our LeaderWise-inspired Great Idea, What Are You Thinking About? for opportunities for self-care that might lead your whole congregation along a journey toward greater resilience and over-all mental health.

Also, consider The Listening Ear: Mental Health for Everyone as a place to share any inner struggles with a sympathetic ear. Wednesday December 21. Learn more here.

Find additional Care for Caregivers – for yourself or others – in our lib guide.


If addiction is a particular challenge for someone in your care, Why Can’t I Fix It?: The Questions We Ask When We Love Someone with Addiction (Skinner) may be extremely helpful.

Find further supports for caring for people with concerns around Mental Health & Addictions in our lib guide


If faith is the issue, remember, Life’s Too Short to Pretend You’re Not Religious (Broadleaf). This ‘Reframed and Expanded’ edition, ‘weaves in current themes’ as it ‘helps us acknowledge the content of our everyday existence’ so that we can ‘make peace with the idea of being religious [so] we can more practically envision an undivided life’.


No matter what your stressors or anxieties, let The Ministry Lab’s Psalm 148 Reflection provide you with some rest and your congregation with some renewal this Christmas / Epiphany Seasons. Take advantage of our free (for MN UCC, UMC, and PC(USA) congregations) video with beautiful music from Julia Bloom of Cabin of Love; stunning images from around the state (shout out to Fish Lake, Glenwood, Hackensack, Laporte, and Minneapolis!!!); the endearing voices of some of our congregations’ young ones, and a reflection from Rev. Emily Meyer.

Learn more and register for the link here. The video will be available by December 24 and accessible through Epiphany (until February 21).


Take care of yourself so you can take care of those who need you! Be well, dear colleagues.

FYI: Six New Things will be light next week; the week of December 26 we will not post. Blessed Advent!