Cathy Norman Peterson is the editorial director for the Evangelical Covenant Church and as editor of the denomination's award-winning magazine, The Covenant Companion. In her work, she loves clear, compelling storytelling and making space for all voices to be heard.
She has a B.A. from Wheaton College, an M.A. in English from the University of Massachusetts – Boston, and has completed theological coursework at North Park Theological Seminary. She lives on the north side of Chicago with her husband and their English mastiff, where they are trying to figure out how to adjust to a much emptier house without their young adult kids home. Last spring her older son graduated from college, and his younger brother graduated from high school.
Along with an intentionally diverse group of talented, creative women, she blogs at theoloqui.net on issues of faith and the church.
We’ve seen the studies. Millennials are the least religiously affiliated generation, according to Pew. Adults under 40 are less religiously affiliated than older adults around the world. Every news report on religious practices seems to point to declining church attendance.
Nones. Dones. Spiritual but not religious. How do we walk alongside our young adult kids as their faith changes in this climate?
Our students are home—maybe for a long time as colleges and universities continue their efforts to contain the spread of Covid-19. Perhaps your student came home for Thanksgiving and will not return to campus until the new year, if at all. Let's enter into this elongated break with our eyes open and with a spirit of gratitude, remembering that this may be an opportunity to be together in unique ways.
The American Psychiatric Association says Gen Zs are more likely than any other generation to report being diagnosed with depression (23 percent), and just over 9 in 10 “have experienced at least one physical or emotional symptom due to stress in the past month, compared to around three-quarters of adults overall who say they have experienced at least one symptom.” In addition, Covid-19 has caused increased anxiety and depression throughout society.
Recently, Cathy Norman Peterson sat down with Elizabeth Pierre, who teaches counseling and pastoral care at North Park University in Chicago, to talk about how parents can support their college students in their mental health journeys.
Our kids were supposed to be engaged in an adventure of learning on campus this fall. And we should be cheering them on, celebrating this season of new growth and opportunity. Instead, many are stuck at home or severely limited on campus. And we're worried for them. How do we balance our own anxieties for them with our prayerful desire to offer them a calm spirit of guidance and support? Here are some steps that Cathy Norman Peterson is trying.