Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training

Suicide is a tragedy to everyone affected.  South Dakota is disproportionately affected by this tragedy, particularly  in the Rapid City Diocese.  Of the 192 people whom South Dakota lost to suicide in 2017, 142 were white and 47 were Native American, however as a percentage rate, the Native American  suicide death rate was 60.5 deaths per 100,000 population, versus 19.3 for whites, both well over the national average of 13.0.

The State of South Dakota Department of Behavioral Health will be conducting an Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) at Terra Sancta Retreat Center on September 4 & 5, 2019.

ASIST is a free two-day, two-trainer, workshop designed for members of all care-giving groups. Family, friends, and other community members may be the first to talk with a person at risk, but have little or no training. ASIST teaches participants to recognize when someone may have thoughts of suicide and work with them to create a plan that will support their immediate safety. Studies show that the ASIST method helps reduce suicidal feelings in those at risk. Although ASIST is widely used by healthcare providers, participants don’t need any formal training to attend the workshop—anyone 18 or older can learn and use the ASIST model.

Click here to Register 

Registration is limited to 30. Please register as soon as possible if you plan to attend

Wednesday, September 4 – Thursday, September 5
8:30am-4pm each day

This workshop is free and includes lunch and snacks each day, however Free-will offerings will help off-set the costs of lunch, snacks and materials provided. All are welcome. Donations are appreciated, but in no way expected.

For more information on ASIST training, click here.

Social Justice Commission

SocialJusticeLogo1Based on the biblical and theological foundations of Catholic social teaching, the Commission will advance through education, prayer, and advocacy the social ministry of the Catholic Church (cf., Part Three, Chapter Two, Article 3 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church).  The Commission’s agenda begins with promoting respect for all human life from conception to natural death.  It also includes a broad index of issues including advocacy on behalf of the poor for economic justice, the promotion of the common good in society and the world, and good stewardship of God’s creation.  The Commission will develop a hands-on approach for communicating social justice issues to the Catholic laity of the diocese.  It will encourage the discussion of critical public issues so as to raise the consciousness of the Catholic community.  The focus of activities will include a public information and education effort, a public policy effort directed at promoting and protecting the dignity of human life and pastoral/spiritual care for all people.

Social Justice Commission:

President: Deacon Greg Palmer
Vice-President: Beth Erk
Secretary/Treasurer: Sr. Samantha Chamley
Corresponding Secretary: Anne Lyon
Ex officio representative: Amy Julian, Director, Family Life Ministries


Advance Directive for Health Care

Every Catholic should examine carefully those legal documents variously called “advance directives,” “living wills,” “medical/durable powers of attorney,” etc.  Often the language in these documents runs counter to the teaching of the Catholic Church.  The Advance Directive attached is consistent with the faith and moral teaching of the Catholic Church.  Among other things, it provides that one wishes to follow the moral teachings of the Catholic Church; that one wishes to receive the sacraments of the Church, and that there should be a presumption in favor of providing nutrition and hydration.  As with any legal document, please consult your family and attorney before completing this form.  For questions, please contact your pastor or Family Life Ministries.  Advance Directive DORC

Joint Statement on Morally Acceptable Shingles Vaccine

The USCCB has announced that the long-awaited, morally produced shingles vaccine has received FDA approval for licensing in the US.  Shingrix, made by Glaxo SmithKline (GSK) pharmaceutical company is produced using Chinese hamster cells, unlike Merck’s Zostavax which uses aborted fetal cells.  Until now, people wanting to have protection from shingles have had to either use Merck’s aborted fetal version or abstain entirely.

According to the National Catholic Bioethics Center, “Shingrix is said to be more effective than Zostavax in protecting against “shingles,” a painful and potentially dangerous viral infection that impacts roughly 30 percent of Americans at some point in their lives. Shingrix can prevent painful rashes and lasting nerve damage, and save millions of dollars in health care expenditures.”  (Emphasis added) 

Joint statement by the Catholic Medical Association (CMA) and the National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC)


Social Justice Winter Conference 2017
Social Justice Fall Conference 2015
Social Justice Conference 2014

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