Holy Trinity Seminary Hosts a Lecture on Biopsychiatry and Christianity
by Elizabeth Szlek, LMHC
On Tuesday, November 27, 2012, Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary hosted a lecture on Orthodoxy and biopsychiatry, or the treatment of mental health issues with drugs, with the aim of educating future pastors who will undoubtedly work with people who are currently being treated or have in the past undergone such treatment. The lecture was given by Elizabeth Szlek, LHMC, an Orthodox Christian mental health counselor and founder of The Door Counseling Center in Utica, New York. Ms. Szlek provided a very broad perspective, comparing a thoroughly Orthodox patristic worldview with that of the secular medical establishment. She laid out the foundations of understanding illness from different worldviews. She also compared traditional medicine with psychiatric practice, paying attention to psychiatry’s history and philosophical foundations, and including details about how psychiatric drugs work and their effects on people. The lecture was open to the public, and some from the local community attended. The seminarians found the lecture to be very informative, and recognized that she had laid the foundations for an Orthodox Christian counseling approach. Holy Trinity Seminary would like to thank Ms. Szlek for her worthy contribution, and hope that she will return to share more about her counseling approach.