Faith and Health Partnerships Monthly

A resource toolkit for faith and community leaders

December 1, 2022

Welcome to the December edition of Faith and Health Partnerships Monthly. In this issue, we highlight World AIDS Day, the Holiday Blues, the importance of flu vaccination and hand washing, and the A.C.T.S. prayer model.

We hope you find these resources and tips helpful. If you have questions or topic ideas for future issues, please reach out to us - we'd love to hear from you.

Thank you for your commitment to caring for those in your congregation and community!

World AIDS Day is observed on December 1 each year.

It is a day of solidarity for members of your congregation and other people around the world who are affected by HIV. This is a day for voices to unite by sharing experiences, remembering those lost, and standing together in the fight against HIV. 

While great strides have been made over the four decades since the first known reported cases of AIDS, this disease remains a public health challenge. World AIDS Day is an opportunity for every community and each individual to honor the more than 32 million people who have died worldwide from AIDS-related illness. For more information on World AIDS Day, visit UNAIDS World AIDS day.

Caring for Mind

Coping with the Holiday Blues

The holiday season has arrived, and, for many, that means enjoying time with family and friends and gathering to observe Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Bodhi Day, and other religious holidays.

Many look forward to the month of December and all the festivities it brings; but for some, the holidays are anything but merry.

Unrealistic expectations, inability to be with family, missing loved ones who have passed away, and other stressors can bring about the “Holiday Blues” – temporary feelings of depression and anxiety during the holidays that can be associated with extra stress or even memories that accompany the season.

You can help your members cope with the Holiday Blues by encouraging them to:

  • Stick to their normal routines as much as possible
  • Get enough sleep
  • Eat a nutritious diet
  • Take time for themselves, but don’t isolate themselves.
  • Spend time with supportive, caring people
  • Get exercise – even if it’s just a short walk
  • Set reasonable expectations and goals for holiday activities, such as shopping, cooking, entertaining, attending parties or sending holiday cards
  • Listen to music or find other ways to relax
  • Participate in a volunteer effort or help a local charity
  • Attend worship services
  • Seek out opportunities to add laughter to their day. Learn about the health benefits of laughter:
  • The Healing Benefits of Humor and Laughter -
  • Stress relief from laughter? It's no joke - Mayo Clinic

Tips courtesy NAMI.

Download and share this flyer with members of your faith community.

Learn more about the Holiday Blues

Caring for Body

Staying Healthy During the Holidays and Beyond

National Handwashing Awareness Week: Dec. 4-10

National Influenza Vaccination Week: Dec. 5-9

Help your members stay healthy this holiday season - and beyond - by encouraging those who are six months and older to get their annual influenza (flu) shot. You can promote flu immunization in your faith community by:

In addition, encourage your members to stay vigilant in washing their hands, using soap and water or hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Key times to wash hands include before, during, and after preparing food, before and after eating food, and before and after caring for someone at home who is sick with vomiting or diarrhea.

Handwashing Resources:

Download and share the resources in this Influenza Prevention Toolkit.

Schedule your flu shot here.

Caring for Spirit

The A.C.T.S. Prayer Model

As a faith leader, you want your members to grow spiritually and know they can connect with God or their higher power through the spiritual practice or prayer.

But the busy holiday season may leave them feeling stressed and over committed. They may want to incorporate prayer into their day but may have less time available or don’t know where to start.

The A.C.T.S. Prayer Model is a simple, practical tool to help your members organize their thoughts as they connect to God or their higher power.  A.C.T.S. refers to four elements of prayer: Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, and Supplication.


Share this worksheet with your members to help them get started with the A.C.T.S. Prayer Model. The easy-to-follow

format can make it easy for them to pray anywhere and at any time: first thing in the morning, when they have a break during the day, or before they go to bed.

Download and share this A.C.T.S. Prayer Model worksheet with members of your faith community.


The Advocate Aurora Local Services Guide allows you to find free and low-cost options for food, safe housing, child care, transportation and more.

Download and share this Mental Health Resources Toolkit

Download and share this 988 toolkit.

Who We Are

Advocate Aurora Health

Faith and Health Partnerships

We work side-by-side with faith communities to promote health equity by mobilizing the transforming power of social connectedness and spiritual wisdom.

Our core belief: Drawing on the wisdom of our religious traditions and the best social and public health science, we believe that positive, mutual relationships and the intentional practice of faith are at the heart of what creates equitable health and well-being for individuals, congregations and communities.

Learn more about our work in English and Spanish.

We blend the strengths of Advocate Aurora Health with the strengths of your congregation to improve the health of those in your community.

Faith and Health Partnerships Monthly aims to address health topics that are important to you, as well as share educational resources and ideas on ways you can make a difference in your community.

We invite you to reach out to us with your questions, ideas, and topic ideas for future issues.

Thank you!
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