Mental Health and the Church 2016




A one-day conference that will take a close look at a range of mental health issues including diagnoses such as depression, suicide, bipolar, schizophrenia, and the pastoral care of people who experience mental health issues.

This conference is open to all interested people including family members. However the primary target group is pastors, vicars, ministers and those involved in the pastoral care ministry of churches and Christian organisations.

The address by Dr Andrew Darby will also be very helpful for pastors who may be struggling with depression of some kind.

Co-convened by Naomi Cowan (Equip) and Alan Vink (WillowNZ)

Venue: Windsor Park Baptist Church, 550 East Coast Rd, Mairangi Bay, North Shore, Auckland 0732
There is plenty of parking available on site.

Date: Tuesday 14 June 2016

Time: 9.00am until 4.00pm.  Registrations open at 8.00am.
Tea and coffee supplied throughout the day but not lunch. There is a cafe on site at Windsor and a number of takeaway eateries close by.




Married Couple

Full Time Student or Superannuitant

 Early Bird Rate
until 14 May 2016




 Regular Rate




Group Rates apply: If you register a team of six or more: 10% discount on total price. To access discount, use the Coupon Code TENOFF when you have finished shopping and your cart holds all the registrations you require.

NB: please pre-register (24 hours minimum – by 9am Monday 13 June) to access these discounts. On-the-day will be at the regular rate – i.e. no group discounts.


Andrew DarbyDr Andrew Darby
Andrew immigrated to the Waikato in 1995. He has worked in a number of senior psychiatric positions since 2002 including the crisis, assessment and treatment service (CATS), inpatient psychiatric service, adult community psychiatric service, and community alcohol and drug service (CADS). He is currently employed at the Waikato DHB as the Clinical Director for Adult Mental Health Services. One of his passions is the well-being of all New Zealanders, and he remains determined to help deliver a service that “people will trust with their loved ones’ care”.

Previously having suffered from depression, he has first-hand experience of what it is like to explore the depths of despair and desperation associated with depression. Having fully recovered, he is committed to discussing, supporting and encouraging people in their journey against the “Black Dog”. Andrew advocates that a life of healing requires far more than biological interventions (medications). Psychological and social frameworks including cultural and spiritual components should also be considered. Andrew has been a Christian since the age of 14 and testifies to the grace of God that has allowed him to lead a life of joy, meaning and wholeness.

He is an ardent supporter of the All Blacks, the Chiefs, the Magic and “any team that beats Australia”.

Phil Halstead2 crDr Phil Halstead
Phil is on staff at Carey as a lecturer in applied theology and until very recently at St Paul’s Symonds Street where he worked in the area of pastoral care and counselling. Phil is also in private practice. He received his PhD in Theology from the University of Auckland in 2009 and his research focussed on designing and running a series of forgiveness courses that helped adults to explore their relationships with their parents. He has published in all of these areas.

Dr Mike Ang2 crDr Mike Ang
Mike has worked in the UK and NZ as a consultant physician in adult mental health. He is the Service Clinical Director of Adult Mental Health for the Waitemata District Health Board and sometimes acts in the role of the Director of Area Mental Health Services. He has worked clinically in the areas of inpatient, consultant-liaison, acute crisis service and community teams.

He previously specialised in the area of early psychosis intervention for young people but now has a more governance, leadership and service development focus.

Mike is married with two teenaged daughters, attends Long Bay Baptist church and serves on their leadership council.

Amanda Christian crAmanda Christian
Amanda Christian is a registered psychologist interested in addressing the needs of mind, body & spirit after grief, loss and trauma. Bereavement counselling is useful for anyone who has experienced the death of a loved one, useful in the early grief experience or some years, even decades later.

Extreme grief can also be experienced when we lose a meaningful relationship through separation and divorce, job loss, loss of a homemaker role, country or lifestyle.

Amanda Christian brings the expertise of an experienced social worker, counsellor and registered psychologist, working in a compassionate and confidential environment without judgement. She works in accordance with the NZ Psychologists Board Code of Ethics.

Her specialist area of interest, which has developed from her own personal lived experience of bereavement by suicide, is suicide prevention, postvention and intervention.


A range of useful resources will be made available, some of which will be supplied by the Ministry of Health and Mental Health Foundation


The day will be made up of four plenary sessions in the morning, and then in the afternoon each of the speakers will facilitate a workshop on the topic they spoke about in the morning. The workshops will be repeated, so each attendee will have the opportunity to attend two.

Dr Mike Ang: Understanding Psychosis

Amanda Christian: After Suicide – Caring

Dr Andrew Darby: Understanding Depression

Dr Phil Halstead: A Church Care Response


Register here!

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Questions? Phone Karyn on 021 437 803, or email: