A new program at Aldersgate United Methodist Church is designed to work alongside other addiction recovery groups.
“We’re bringing a spiritual side not just physical and psychological,” said the Rev. Brett DeHart, senior pastor, about The Table Recovery Church, which will begin at 11:30 a.m., Sunday, May 7. “AA talks of a higher power, and we want to be helpful in advocating the spiritual.”
The sessions will be held after the Sunday morning service and will include a free lunch and a short message related to one of the 12 steps as well as a time of open sharing.
DeHart said several members of Aldersgate have gone through recovery programs and thought a program reaching out to others might be beneficial especially in light of the opioid crisis as well as the skyrocketing number of overdoses related to Fentanyl.
Plus, DeHart has experience facilitating a ministry like this one. He was formerly part of a church in the Chattanooga, Tenn. area that offered one.
While most people associate recovery with drug or alcohol addiction, DeHart said The Table isn’t limited to just those two. It’s broad-based.
“The Table is a safe place for those dealing with addictions, afflictions, and compulsive behaviors to find hope, help, and healing. Addictions are an unhealthy use of a substance with an inability to stop, such as alcohol, drugs, food, smoking. Afflictions are something we didn’t cause but it causes us suffering, such as abuse, abandonment, codependency, divorce, relationship issues, anger, depression, fear, pride, unforgiveness. Compulsive behaviors are the continued return to a harmful behavior with an inability to stop, such as gambling, cutting, workaholism, control, relationship addiction, sex addiction, shopping,” he wrote in an email.
The ministry is open-ended with no set start or finish date. If people miss the first or second meeting, they can jump in on subsequent ones. Whatever steps they miss will come back around, he said.
DeHart doesn’t have any preconceived ideas about where the ministry might lead.
It will depend on those attending the sessions.
In Chattanooga, DeHart said other ministries evolved from the recovery ministry based on the need. Some catered specifically to gender.
The Table is open to the entire community not just members of Aldersgate, he said.
Charmain Z. Brackett is the publisher of Augusta Good News. Reach her at email@example.com.
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