Pathways to Promise Webinars

Special Edition Webinar:

Topic: Creating a Rule of Life

Webinar Speaker: Rev. Robin Sandbothe and Ircel Harrison

Webinar Description 

Join authors Robin Sandbothe and Ircel Harrison who recently published Creating a Rule of Life:  A Transforming Church Resource with Pinnacle Press for a discussion about their book.
A rule of life provides a framework or pattern for a group of believers to walk alongside and encourage each other and pursue those practices that lead to spiritual health and faithful service.

      Harrison is Coaching Coordinator for Pinnacle Leadership Associates and supplemental associate professor in Missional Theology at Central Seminary in Shawnee, Kansas.   He is a certified coach with the International Coaching Federation and author of several books and articles related to coaching and church development. He can be contacted at

      Rev. Robin R. Sandbothe is the Director of Seminary Relations at Central Baptist Theological Seminary where she has served for the last 22 years. Ordained as a Baptist minister, Sandbothe is also currently the co-pastor for Englewood Baptist Church in Kansas City, Missouri. She has a particular interest in the discipline of spiritual formation. Sandbothe has recently joined the team of Pinnacle Leadership Associates. She can be contacted at

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      Topic: Suicide: Prevention, Attempts & Recovery

      Webinar Speaker: AJ French, President & CEO of Gift of Voice

      Webinar Description 

      Talking about suicide can be difficult, but not talking about it can be deadly.

      This webinar will:

      1. Identify language which invites authentic discussion about suicide prevention, attempts and recovery.
      2. Recognize vulnerability to suicide.
      3. Be proactive and responsive to self and others.
      4. Acquire and share resources for prevention and recovery.

      AJ French is the President & CEO for Gift of Voice, a mental health and trauma recovery training center operated by people in recovery. She also serves the Illinois Mental Health Planning & Advisory Council (IMHPAC) and the Protection & Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illnesses (PAIMI). IMHPAC & PAIMI are both federally mandated councils. French is considered a subject matter expert in mental health recovery, having participated in a White House briefing on suicide prevention and an interfaith discussion with the U.S. Surgeon General. With a heartbeat for policy and advocacy, her recent work includes systemically addressing suicide prevention during COVID-19. She authored a letter to the Federal Communications Commission and obtained organizational signatures, strongly urging the FCC to provide free phone minutes and broadband connections so persons experiencing poverty could maintain connection.  French is often sought out to deliver hope at national conferences, theological seminaries and for individuals who are incarcerated. Last year, she presented “How to Stay Well While You’re Loved One’s in a Cell” for the InterNational Prisoners Family Conference. She periodically writes mental health commentaries for various newspapers and magazine publications. 

      AJ lives in Madison County, IL and is a member of The Bridge Free Methodist Church.

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      Topic: 4 Ways Your Community Can Live Grace Vigorously

      Webinar Speaker: Brad Bloom, Founder and Publisher of Faith & Fitness Magazine and Shout! Outdoor Lifestyle Magazine.

      Webinar Description 

       To bring greater mental wellness support to those in your community you must empower members of your church or organization to literally be active and abundantly imbue life with grace.

      1. Start and grow a fitness ministry.
      2. Venture and become immersed in the depth of communion.
      3. Facilitate and elevate rest.
      4. Discover and celebrate beauty.

      Full Webinar Description

      Brad Bloom is the founder and publisher of Faith & Fitness Magazine and Shout! Outdoor Lifestyle Magazine. He is president of Lifestyle Media Group, a ministry that develops content to help people to live life physically and spiritually fit. 

      He has done family ministry from an early age. He has produced documentary films, educational videos and print and media content throughout the U.S. and the world. 

      His work in both media and the Christian faith are steeped in a deep calling to bring greater strength to people. He says, “Communication is about offering a compelling and persuasive perspective. Faith is meant to be passionate. God is the defining difference. We must be life to others.”

      Brad, his wife and family live life vigorously in coastal Virginia.

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      Topic: Including Families of Kids With Common Mental Health at Church

      Webinar Speaker: Dr. Stephen Grcevich, President & Founder Key Ministry

      Key Ministry

      Since 2002, we’ve provided knowledge, innovation, and experience to the worldwide church as it ministers to and with families of kids with disabilities. While expanding our service to churches, we find ourselves called to a new phase of ministry in which we seek to help families impacted by disability to become connected with local churches where parents and children can worship and grow in faith alongside other Christ-followers.

      Our ministry was founded to help churches minister to families of children with hidden disabilities. We find ourselves uniquely called and positioned to serve churches seeking to become more intentional and effective in ministry with children, teens and adults impacted by mental illness, trauma, and developmental disabilities and their families.

      Bio: Dr. Stephen Grcevich (MD, Northeast Ohio Medical University) serves as the President and Founder of Key Ministry.

      He serves the primary vision caster and spokesperson for the ministry and plays an important role in Key’s efforts to develop collaborations both within and outside the disability ministry movement with church leaders, other like-minded organizations and the professional community.

      Dr. Grcevich is a regular contributor for Moody Radio Cleveland and the ERLC (Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention) and is frequently invited to speak at national and international ministry conferences on mental health and other disability ministry-related topics.

      His first book, Mental Health, and the Church was published by Zondervan in February 2018. In addition to his ministry work, Dr. Grcevich is a child and adolescent psychiatrist who combines nearly thirty years of knowledge gained through clinical practice and teaching with extensive research experience evaluating medications prescribed to children and teens for ADHD, anxiety, and depression.

      He serves on the faculty of Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED) and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, has been a presenter at over 35 national and international medical conferences and is a past recipient of the Exemplary Psychiatrist Award from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      Bridges to Care and Recovery

      Bridges to Care and Recovery is an initiative of the Behavioral Health Network. The mission is to mobilize clusters of churches in North St. Louis City and North County to support the behavioral health treatment and recovery of congregants and other community members with behavioral health disorders. Bridges to Care and Recovery is part of an overall mission of extending the system of care for people challenged with behavioral health disorders.

      Speaker Bio:

      Rose Jackson-Beavers is Project Manager for the Bridges to Care and Recovery program. Rose is a former social services administrator and adult educator. She has more than 25 years of experience working with families and their children in five federal programs including Head Start, CCDP, Healthy Families and Healthy Start, and the Triple P Program. She also has 13 years of work experience in Settlement Houses. Rose brings this expertise to community connector programming and behavioral health-friendly church development.


      Speaker Bio:

      Tamela Strayhorn is the Program Coordinator for the Bridges to Care and Recovery Program. She has ten years of experience in developing and implementing educational services, providing case managment and therapeutic services for children, young adults, families, and individuals with disabilities. Tamela has also developed innovative concepts and collaborated with various organizations, colleges, universities, businesses, churches, and school districts to assist in improving and increasing success in the programs offered.   Tamela was raised in the “Bootheel” of Missouri and received her Bachelor of Science from Southeast Missouri State University and her Master of Science from Kaplan University, both in Criminal Justice with an emphasis in Psychology.

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      The Opioid Crisis: Acknowledge. Apologize. Activate. A call to action for faith-based communities

      Many families across the country are being impacted by the Opioid Crisis, which is not a new phenomenon to communities of color. For years, minorities have been disproportionately affected and more likely to be criminalized. There is a call to action to change cultural dynamics of substance use and understand it as a treatable chronic disease. Faith based communities are crucial in helping to increase access to treatment and recovery services. 

      Speaker Bio:

      Kanika A. Turner, MD, MPH has served as a board-certified Family Medicine physician at Family Care Health Center since August 2017 and Associate Medical Director of the Carondelet site since March 2019. She is also clinical faculty to Saint Louis University Department of Family and Community Medicine and teach both medical students and residents. Dr. Turner is a member of the American Academy of Family Physicians and serves as a board member to the St. Louis Academy of Family Physicians.


      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      Congregational Emotional Health + Spirituality

      Our guest speaker is Laverne Williams of PEWS (Promoting Emotional Wellness and Spirituality) Program based in New Jersey! She discusses congregational emotional health and spirituality.  

      Speaker Bio:

      Director of the PEWS – Promoting Emotional Wellness and Spirituality Programs at Mental Health Association in New Jersey.

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      Mental Health Education and Reducing Stigma

      Educating clergy and congregations on mental health topics is an important part of reducing stigma and supporting communities. Rev. Kathy Dale McNair shares her experiences about developing a Mental Health Task Force, interfaith networking, and creating space and accessing tools to educate and support mental health in the faith community. 

      Speaker Bio:

      An ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church (USA), Rev. Kathy Dale McNair specializes in mental health ministry. She is certified by the Depression Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) as a peer support specialist and is the FaithNet coordinator for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) for the Cook County North Suburban affiliate.

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      The Companionship Movement

      This webinar will explore the mission of Companions to act on our concern for another person offering the encouragement of five basic spiritual practices: hospitality, neighboring, journeying side-by-side, listening, and accompaniment. You will also learn about the opportunity to become a trainer of Companionship in your community!


      Speaker Bio:

      Rev. Jermine Alberty, Pathways to Promise Executive Director. He brings a rich variety and depth of experience to his work with Pathways. He has worked over 20 years in nonprofit, faith communities, mental health and government serving in the roles as a community organizer working with different faith traditions, training director for a community mental health center, neighborhood planning assessments and staff development work.

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      Diversity and Inclusion in Faith Communities

      Is there a need to consider diversity and inclusion strategies in the faith community?  Diversity and inclusion has increasingly become a focal point for businesses, educational institutions and service organizations.

      During this webinar we discuss the following:

      •  Issues of cultural diversity in the context of faith communities.
      • A few basic concepts of cultural diversity, explicit/implicit bias, and microaggression.
      • These concepts were examined from an individual, group and community perspective.

      Speaker Bio:

      Rev. Deborah J. Burris earned her Master Divinity from Eden Seminary and is the Chief Diversity Officer at the University of Missouri – St. Louis. She brings to her position over 30 years of higher education experience working in student development, human resources and equal opportunity/diversity administration. Advancing opportunities for women and other underrepresented groups has been at the core of her career.

      She currently serves as co-chair of the Chancellor’s Cultural Diversity Council. Ms. Burris earned a Master of Education in Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis from the University of Missouri Columbia and an undergraduate degree from St. Louis University in Organizational Development.

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      Sabbaths of Hope

      Sabbaths of Hope is a mental health literacy initiative that enables clergy and other faith leaders to recognize types and symptoms of depression, provide referral and linkage to treatment options, and offer more effective support to congregants suffering from depression and other mental health challenges.

      Participants  who attended this webinar received training and resources to enable them  to conduct educational events for congregants and how to integrate mental health awareness in sermons, sacred text and other liturgical elements in both a Christian and Jewish context.

      Speaker Bio: Leslie Levin is a licensed Clinical Social Worker and served as the founder and President/CEO of Behavioral Health Response, the Eastern Region of Missouri Crisis System from 1995-2012. She is the President of AccredAssist.  Lesley received her undergraduate degree from Indiana University and her MSSA from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. She has worked in the field of mental health and substance abuse for over 45 years.

      Speaker Bio: Rev. Jermine Alberty, Pathways to Promise Executive Director. He brings a rich variety and depth of experience to his work with Pathways. He has worked over 20 years in nonprofit, faith communities, mental health and government serving in the roles as a community organizer working with different faith traditions, training director for a community mental health center, neighborhood planning assessments and staff development work.

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      Faith.Hope.Life: A Suicide Prevention Tool for Fatih Communities

      Faith communities of all traditions have an important part to play in fostering mental health and helping prevent suicide. Faith leaders are on the “front lines” –the first people many turn to in times of emotional or spiritual crises. Moreover, our congregations offer the faith and hope needed to get through the most difficult of times. The webinar will introduce an exciting initiative entitled Faith.Hope.

      Learning Objectives/Goals:
      •Familiarize participants with the components of the Faith.Hope.Life Initiative
      •Describe the resources on the Faith.Hope.Life website as a go to resource for the broader topic of Suicide Prevention and faith communities
      •Discuss the ways that faith leaders and congregations can integrate resources to create action plans. 

      To access the resources discussed in webinar from Faith. Hope. Life initiative please click this link resources.

      Speaker Bio:

      A retired Air Force colonel, Dr. David Litts has embarked on a second career mission: to promote suicide prevention, a cause he championed during the last 10 years of his military career.

      Litts provides expert consultation in public health approaches to suicide prevention, as well as, efforts to transform clinical systems to provide high quality suicide care. He is also recognized as an expert in public communications in support of suicide prevention and reductions to prejudice and discrimination that prevent many people from seeking and receiving effective mental health treatment. 

      Leadership Forum Webinar:

      The 3 Ms: Meditation, Mediation, and Medication.

      Providing mental & spiritual wellness to those who serve in communities of faith.

      In this webinar, the role that active support from faith leaders and communities and the principles that can enhance an individual’s wellness and recovery of both mind and soul will be discussed. Participants will learn holistic approaches to successfully ministering to the needs of individuals with mental illness, how to recognize the impact stigmatizing language can have on all individuals and how to recognize and eliminate it from sacred places.The second half hour will be devoted to sharing and networking about what you are doing related to mental health awareness and organizing in faith communities in your area.

      Speaker Bio:

      Rev. Jermine Alberty, Pathways to Promise Executive Director. He brings a rich variety and depth of experience to his work with Pathways. He has worked over 20 years in nonprofit, faith communities, mental health and government serving in the roles as a community organizer working with different faith traditions, training director for a community mental health center, neighborhood planning assessments and staff development work.