ABSTRACT

Once persons recognize and accept the need for help with a mental illness, they may find assistance from various sources. That is, they may choose to utilize services from health and mental health care, and other formal organizations or they may choose informal sources of care. Help-seeking may be thought of as "any communication about a problem

sion also transpired within the context of an antagonistic larger society, the aims and purposes of religious belief and expression were distinctively adapted toward addressing life circumstances that were harmful to the well-being of African-Americans (Taylor, Chatters, & Levin, 2004). Also, as pointed out by Lincoln and Mamiya (1990), the religious traditions of African-Americans have historically reflected the significant issues of emancipation, individual and community enfranchisement, civil and human rights, and social and economic justice. Religion and Mental Health

In examining the impact of religion on serious mental illness, Koenig, Larson, and Weaver (1998) mentioned the fact that for many years, the area of religion was considered by some mental health professionals and researchers to be a strong contributor to mental illness. Therefore, positi ve roles that religion may have played in the treatment of mental illness were overlooked. The authors also noted the belief of incompatibility between religion and science led most researchers to ignore the relationship between religion and mental illness (Koenig, Larson, & Weaver, 1998; Larson & Milano, 1997).