With the public health epidemic of alcoholism and drug addiction in the United States according to the U.S. Surgeon General https://addiction.surgeongeneral.gov/, an epidemic that is also showing up among the clergy and the people in the pews (and that includes growing numbers of women and older women), articles such as this one are needed to address how we deal with substance abuse in the church.
According to the U.S. Surgeon General only 10% of people who have addictions get help and 90% never get any help. This must change.
Many people with addictions are genetically predisposed to addiction and research has shown that childhood trauma (such as child sexual abuse) is one of the factors that causes people to numb pain and shame with alcohol and drugs.
There are other issues behind addictions as well: untreated mental illness (bi-polar, depression, and anxiety disorders to name some), adult trauma, grief and loss, and stress.
Other people are prescribed powerful drugs to help with cope with injuries and later find themselves addicted to drugs.
Many churches are uneducated about how to offer help and resources to those with addictions of all ages and their families. – by Velour
This weekend, NewSpring Church in South Carolina announced in their services that Perry Noble has been removed from his position as pastor due to alcohol issues. More information, including full statements excerpted below, can be found at their website here. According to the church’s statement, Perry’s posture towards his marriage, increased reliable on alcohol and other behaviors, were of continual concern. Due to this, the Executive Pastors confronted Perry and went through the steps of dealing with sin in the church as outlined in Matthew 18.
The rest of the statement explains that, in accordance with their bylaws, their process ultimately ended in his removal from leadership. In Noble’s own statement, he expresses his love for the church, asks for forgiveness, and shares that he is under the care of an excellent psychiatrist as he works through his present issues. He writes,
In my opinion, the bible does…
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