Rev. Dr. Sarah Lund
I was that kid who the teacher called on to stay inside during recess to help students who needed extra time taking tests. No wonder I grew up to be a minister! Ever since college I knew I wanted to dedicate my life to serving God and helping others. I majored in religious studies in college at Trinity University, graduated with a Master of Divinity degree at Princeton Theological Seminary, and also received a Master of Social Work degree at Rutgers University. Ministry and Social Work blend together my two passions of loving God and loving my neighbors. I was ordained into Christian ministry by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in 2002 and began serving as a local church pastor in 2003. I’ve served large and small congregations in Brooklyn, Minneapolis, and New Smyrna Beach, Florida, and Indianapolis, Indiana.
In 2011, I earned my Doctor of Ministry degree from McCormick Theological Seminary with a focus on revitalizing the local church. My thesis is entitled, “The Challenges to Building a Beloved Community on Facebook.” I served the church as a Regional Minister, providing support and guidance to dozens of congregations in the United Church of Christ throughout central and western Florida. From 2014-2018, I served as Vice President for Seminary Advancement at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis.
In 2018, I was called to serve as the first woman Senior Pastor at First Congregational United Church of Christ of Indianapolis. In addition, I serve on the National Staff of The United Church of Christ as the Minister for Disabilities and Mental Health Justice. I am an active community volunteer and serves locally on the board of the Faith and Action Project at Christian Theological Seminary to end poverty and I am the UCC Denominational Representative for Bread for the World Indiana Chapter. I serve nationally as a Trustee of Piedmont University, and as Director of Bethany Fellows, Mental Health America, and as Executive Committee for Pathways to Promise. I am the Open and Affirming LGBTQ Consultant and a member of the Mental Health Ministry Team for the Indiana-Kentucky Conference UCC. I am the past President of the Southeast Association of the Indiana-Kentucky Conference UCC.
I received the Princeton Engle Preaching Prize for excellence in preaching and the Bob and Joyce Dell Award for Mental Health Education from the United Church of Christ Mental Health Network for my “outstanding authorship and leadership in breaking the silence about mental illness in family and in church and offering healing and hope.” I am a widely published author in journals, magazines, and books. I am excited about sharing part of the story about my family, faith, and mental illness with the world in my first book, Blessed are the Crazy: Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness, Family, and Church. (Chalice Press, 2014). The stories continue in my second book, Blessed Union: Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness and Marriage (Chalice Press, 2021) and my third book, Blessed Youth: Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness, Children, and Teens (Chalice Press, 2022). I continue to be amazed at the resilience and strength of family bonds, as I give thanks for my own family nearly every day.
I’d love to partner with you to share hope and healing. To schedule a conversation or speaking engagement please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
15 thoughts on “About”
Sarah, Dear, I am so pleased that you will be in the Chapel at Trinity in October. When Mary Kay Cooper sent the email that you were to come, I sent a message to Dr. Judd and Dr. Garcia and they are as excited to see you as I am; It will be wonderful seeing you and very special to hear your message. One of my greatest personal losses has been the end of Sunday Chapel services.
Hi Glenna! It’s wonderful to hear from you! I’m very excited about my visit to Trinity in October. So many good people to reconnect with and so many good memories to share. Let’s talk more about it.
I read your post about Christmas in Rehab. I, too, am a minister and a girl I give Spiritual Direction to was in the same Costa Rica rehab center. As I began to read your brother’s answers to your questions, I immediately got my journal and started taking notes. So many pieces resonated and struck me as I teach and encourage others, with and without mental illness, giving hope and Light. Thank you for sharing….thank you for being another female voice in this interesting era of the Church. Blessings, sister!
Thank you for your words of support and for the hope you offer to others.
Enjoyed your book. I was looking for a similar book about a being a memoir, Christian (I graduated from Southern California Seminary), and I am epileptic with postictal mania. I am looking to write a book similar to yours and start a ministry at my church like the one that you recommended at the end of your book (maybe at Shadow Mountain Community Church (El Cajon, California)
Dear Sarah and Jonathan, Your book is so interesting… provocative, thoughtful and terribly good. Where are you all now, if I might ask. I shall be in the US next month. Much love, Kathy
Thank you so much for bringing your story to us at First Church. I have had my own experiences dealing with mental illness in family members and friends. I participate in the regular book study group at church and read your book. I also heard Tim’s sermon series on mental health and illness. But you brought this to a level that reaches beyond all of that. You are an impressive speaker and make this issue very real for listeners.
My prayer is that you find the strength to carry your message to many more people and inspire us to look honestly at a problem we too often don’t choose to look at because of the pain involved in dealing with mental disabilities honestly.
I know about physical disability because of a younger sister born crippled and now totally disabled at age 63. The suffering, mentally and physically she has dealt with has been very real and to think of mental disability in the same way as her deformed body brings it to me in a new way.
Thank you again for this amazing weekend of learning
Sarah, Just ordered your book and looking forward to reading it. We live in Zionsville and I’ll be running a Mental Health First Aid course at the Brick Street Inn on Main Street Friday, April 27. Please let your friends or congregation know….PS I have a beautiful son living with schizophrenia. He’s 26, lives at home, paints, plays guitar, works. Blessing. Darby
You may not check this. Read your book and loved it. Sent it to my sister.
I live in Indianapolis (Zionsville) and will visit your church.
Any interest in a coffee? My treat?
Hi I have just finished your book and relate in a profound way! I live in Alabama and not only are there religious barriers or stigmas but the state as a whole is ignorant about mental illness. I was really touched by your book because I was diagnosed with CPTSD in July and already had major depression and anxiety. I have taken a years leave of absence from teaching elementary school and am studying and researching how to get my life back without any support except for my therapist and psychiatrist. It is worse than anything in Alabama to have a mental illness. No one from any church in my area will even help me find a prayer partner. Thank you for your book and I will keep trying to remember “Blessed are the crazy”!!
I am a member and minister of a UCC church in Denver CO starting a mental health group to become a WISE congregation. I ran across your book while searching through mental health and church related topics. And as internet connections go, I also went to Trinity University ’84, and PTS ’89. I know Raymond well, but majored in Art. It seems from what i can tell, you graduated after me. Nice you got to go back an preach in the chapel. I did that a few times and really enjoyed it. I didn’t realize there were no more Sunday chapel services–that’s awful. I look forward to reading your book. Blessings.
Olive Hinnant, DMin
You preached at our University Christian Church San Diego a few weeks ago on the Prodigal Son. I was the one that shared my memory of the Japanese translation of that story where the father “nigai kube ne mateimasu” (with a long neck he waited for his son). Each day he would look down the lane to his farm to see if he could see his son returning – – he waiting with an expectation that he would one day return!
I also bought a copy of your book that day, and after reading it feel as if I have had the privilege of being a part of your own story of a journey of faith. Today a woman who also bought your book that day shared her own journey referred to your story as a shared hope. In a pew a few rows ahead of me was another person who recently shared that she had just reached a 1000 days of sobriety.
How many more such stories help make a Living Pentecost Sunday?!!
As a clergyperson who struggles with ADHD, type II rapid-cycling bipolar, and cPTSD, trying to parent a child with SPD and severe anxiety, how is it that it has taken me so long to run across you? You’re an angel. Thank you for your ministry.