Prayer for mental health healing

A Prayer for Mental Healing

Scripture Reading:

Psalm 18:1-31, Psalm 42

Reflections of the Heart:

We receive comfort in these words, “Those who wait on the Lord will find new strength.  They will fly high on wings like eagles.  They will run and not grow weary.  They will walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31 (NLT)

Scriptural Prayer:

Wonderful Father, You are great and most worthy of praise. You are to be feared above all gods.  The earth is Yours and everything in it; the world and all its people belong to You. You laid the earth’s foundation on the seas and built it on the ocean’s depths.  You are the King of glory; the Lord strong and mighty.  You are the Lord, invincible in battle.  O Lord, you have performed many wonders for us.  Your plans for us are too numerous to list. You have no equal.  We are grateful that when we, Your people, call to You for help, You hear and rescue us out of our troubles.  Thank You for giving us Your peace and joy.  Thank You for providing a life of hope, abundance, and destiny.  Thank You for being our strength in times of weakness.

Father, You said that You would give rest to all who are weary and heavy burdened. Your yoke is easy and Your burdens are light.  We are supposed to trust in You with all of our hearts and not depend on our own understanding.  We are to seek Your will in all that we do and You will show us which path to take.  You are the God who will bring rest to our souls.  We trust in Your Word and believe that Your Word will be operative in the hearts and souls of those with mental illnesses.  We confess that when they walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive them and stretch forth Your hand and save them. You have left Your gift of peace of mind with them and we pray that their hearts will not be afraid.  We confess, even though they may be pressed on every side by troubles, they will not be crushed and broken.  They may feel perplexed, but they will not give up and quit.  They may be hunted down, but You will never abandon them.  They may be knocked down, but they will get up and keep going.  Father, we confess that they will lie down without fear and enjoy pleasant dreams.  They will not be afraid of the threat of disaster or destruction; for You are their security.

Holy Spirit, we ask You to replace sadness with joy, defeat with victory, and fatigue with praise.  Help those who feel depressed or sad to not focus on their circumstances, but rather focus on Your blessings in their lives.  Remind them to praise You at all times.  We ask that You bring all things to their memory that concern You and Your plans for their lives.  Give them power as they meditate on Your Word.   Help them to keep Your commandments and embrace them in their hearts.  Father, help them to not be conformed to this world, but transformed by the renewing of their minds through Your Word.  Holy Spirit, we ask that You strengthen and renew their innermost being.  Let the fiery darts of the enemy not permeate their being.  May they always hear Your voice and obey Your will.  Father, please help them to overcome their fears. Please strengthen their family members and caretakers and help them to always walk in Your peace and love with their loved one(s).

Merciful Father, forgive them for sin.  Forgive them for worry and fear.  Forgive them for being anxious.  Forgive them for not being diligent in fasting and praying.  Forgive them for not trusting You at all times.  Lord, forgive me for (list any sins that you have committed.)  Holy Spirit, remind us all of those we need to forgive and help us to be quick to forgive.  As for me, Holy Spirit, bring to my remembrance those I need to forgive.  (Take a moment and ask the Holy Spirit to show you names or faces of people that you may need to forgive.  As He shows you, say aloud, “I forgive name of person(s).”  Now, trust the Lord to heal any wounds in your soul caused by unforgiveness.)

Help them not to yield to temptation; but deliver them from the evil one.

Father, You are the Lord God Almighty!  Let the whole world glorify You, Lord; let it sing Your praises!  You will march forth like a mighty hero.  You will come out like a warrior, full of fury.  You will shout Your battle cry and crush all of Your enemies.  You alone are worthy to receive glory and honor and power.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture References for the Written Text:  Psalm 96:4, Psalm 24:1-2,8, Psalm 40:5, Psalm 34:17, Matthew 11:28, Proverbs 3:5-6, Psalm 138:7, John 14:27, II Corinthians 4:8-9, Proverbs 3:24, Psalm 34:1, John 14:26, Romans 12:2, Matthew 6:13, Isaiah 42:12-13, Revelation 4:11

Today, I will trust God to:


prayer for mental health healing

The following e-mail arrived today from a priest:

Hello Deacon Greg. We do not know each other, but I stumbled upon your website today. I am asking, please, that you pray for me and give my name to others who have a ministry of prayer. I am a 51-year-old priest and have terrible terrible mental health issues. Greg, I am pretty desperate. I have sought out loads of help over the years and have honestly tried to get better but my condition is so severe, I literally need a miracle. I have profound misery in my brain, major memory and concentration issues and hissing in both ears. I know that all things are possible with God. Please pray for healing. I am grateful. God bless you.

I assured him of my prayers and then decided to post it here, to put this out there as an intention. Please pray for this priest. Ask your friends to pray for him. Carry him with you for a decade of the rosary, or for an hour before the Blessed Sacrament. And please remember, in a special way, all priests, bishops, deacons and religious who struggle with depression. (Two decades ago, Cardinal O’Connor composed a beautiful and fitting prayer for priests that we should all pray from time to time. Priests need our prayers more than we may realize, for problems we may not imagine.)

We’ve all known despair, depression, anxiety, feelings of helplessness and hopelessness at one time or another. Mental illness has also touched my family, very closely. But reading this priest’s words this morning moved me in a particular way and sent me searching on the internet for some words of consolation.  I know, in days past, I’ve asked St. Dymphna to intercede on behalf of those I love.  I wondered if there might be anything more contemporary that would speak more directly to the world we live in today.

Well, the Holy Spirit never fails. After a little hunting, I found this Prayer for Mental Health and offer it for reflection. It can be prayed privately, or in community. The woman who wrote it notes:

A friend asked me to write a prayer that Sanctuary Mental Health Ministries could circulate to churches (check out their website for some great resources and events). As someone who struggles with depression, and has witnessed family and friends also wading through the mire of mental illness, it was a task I was eager to undertake. Mental illness carries a heavy weight of stigma and misunderstanding. In reality, it is both subtle and pervasive. It is varied. All of us swing somewhere on its pendulum. This prayer is intended to reveal Christ’s presence within the pain and difficulty we all experience. Then, out of that state of sympathy, we can pray more fully for those who struggle with profoundly damaging levels of mental illness. May we pray with passion and with enduring sympathy.

Please feel free to take and use this liturgy in your church.

The bold print is to be read by the congregation. The plain print and the italic print by two different readers. The final section of the prayer may be read by either of the two readers (or both), or by a third reader. The first section of liturgy incorporates Psalm 23, and parts of Deuteronomy 31 and Joshua 1.


The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.

Although sometimes we feel we lack everything. Sometimes we cannot see what you have given us through the lie of what has been taken away. Show us how to see your blessing. Show us how to see your provision when the world teaches us an economy of fear and scarcity.

The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.

He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul.

Refresh us, Lord. Let the raging waters be quiet. Let dry pastures be watered. Let us lie down and rest without fear.

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.

He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake.

We so often turn from your path—believing lies about ourselves, about others, about you; taking on burdens that are not ours to bear; struggling to entrust you with ourselves, our family, our friends, and our circumstances. Guide us along your path of trust and contentment.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Even though I walk through the darkest valley,

The valley of depression, the valley of medication, the valley of sorrow, the valley of pain and abandonment, the valley of past wrongs done to me, the valley of despair, the valley of derision, the valley of fear, the valley of waiting, the valley of misunderstanding.

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of the valley in which you walk, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.

Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me;

Although we sometimes feel abandoned, you have not left us alone. You have not left us alone with our depression, with our sorrow, our pain, our illness, our despair, our fear, our waiting. You have not left us alone with the past wrongs that have been done to us, with the derision and misunderstanding of others. You have not left us alone. You are with us.

The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.

your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

With your rod, you protect us from ourselves. With your staff, you protect us from the harm of others. Your truth comforts us, as we find our identity wholly and firmly locked up in you.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.

Although we are surrounded by people who do not understand the weight we bear, the struggles we face, we gather to eat at your table. Although we suffer ignorant comments, laughter, and sometimes shame—we are worthy to eat at your table. We can eat our fill—even feast—because you have not despised us. You have made us welcome.

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.

You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.

You have made us worthy. You have made us chosen. You accept us with all our flaws, with all our illness and frailty, with all our failings. You have anointed us, us, to serve with you—our cup overflows with joy.

The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.

Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life,

Surely goodness and love will follow us. Surely goodness and love will chase us down—despite ourselves, despite others, despite our circumstances—goodness and love, by the power and grace of your Spirit, have found us. And will never let us go.

The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.

and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

Forever. In health, in strength, in love, in mercy. Forever. Amen.

The Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.

And as we rest in that assurance, we pray for those who live without it, and who live with the pain and stigma of mental illness. We ask that you would watch over those who live on the street, without the medication they so desperately need. We pray that you would hold accountable those systems that have let these precious children of yours down, that have left them destitute. We pray for those who are in positions of power—that, as they make policies and work to improve existing structures of care, they would faithfully and carefully consider the welfare of those who struggle with mental illness. We pray that you would prevent us from putting distance between ourselves and those struggling with mental illness. That you would grow in us the love we need to take action, and to make their struggle our own.

Comfort those who live with the darkness of depression. May we be a light in the darkness for them. Teach us to avoid false cheerfulness, and instead give us wisdom to know how to help our friends and family who struggle in this way to come up for air. To see, again, your goodness. Lord, watch over those who are, even now, contemplating suicide. Stop their hands. Send someone to intervene.

Guard our tongues from unthinking and unkind words that contribute to feelings of worthlessness. Empower us to use our words, instead, to speak for those who cannot. To proclaim your worth over those our culture denigrates. To defend the powerless, and stop others from contributing to the stigma that mental illness so often carries.

Bring the comfort only you can bring to those who have lost a loved one to mental illness. And use us to bring comfort. May we, your church, be a healing presence, a safe community, a strong advocate for the mentally ill.

Thank you for the assurance that you do not let go. That you are always with us. May we in turn extend that hope to every person we encounter.


UPDATE: A deacon candidate writes more about St. Dymphna:

I do a lot of work with addiciton and emotional disorders and the like. I have come to fimd an awesome sister in Heaven who has been entrusted by the Church for centuries with the patronage of mental and emotional disorders: St. Dymphna.

In the past, especially pre-Vatican II era, she was invoked for mental illness but it was a “quiet devotion” because people had such a negative idea about that. I am trying to spread deovtion to her in a way we need it: the more universal and enlightened understanding of mental health.  I invoke her a lot in my ministry with 12 Step recovery and I think she is truly “a saint for our times” with an openess to a more realistic understanding of depression  and with so many broken people coming out of broken homes and siutations; so many emotional issues and disorders…

Her international shrine and tomb are in Belgium but there is also a national shrine here in the USA:  Medals blessed by her relic and deovtional items can be obtained from the shrine and people can be enrolled in their prayer association.

“For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” (1 Timothy 4:8) 

Daily life is littered with all sorts of sickness. Flu season hit my household this week, and according to the CDC, most of United States is in the midst of a “high activity” flu season. One does not realize the luxury of the average day until it’s besieged and de-railed by influenza. Life comes to a pause, and workloads pile up. 

“A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” (Proverbs 17:22)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that one in four adults had one or more chronic health conditions in 2012. Discouragement that leads to a depressive state cannot be categorized as a “it will never happen to me” notion. Mental health is an astronomical concern in this country. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, one in five adults in the US experience mental illness in a given year. 

“Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” (3 John 1:2)

If our bodies and minds are ailing at such a high rate, it shouldn’t surprise us that our spiritual lives are unhealthy as well. LifeWay Research released a report in April of 2017 that states “more than half of Americans have read little or none of the Bible.” Though we don’t have full control over flu germs, depression, and terminal disease, we can choose to read Scripture daily.

Let’s pray for complete health, mind, body and soul. To seek His counsel in all things, and welcome the wisdom of the Holy Spirit into the part of our hearts that need healing. A healthy life is comprised of more than a fit physically body free of injury and illness.

A Prayer for Complete Health


Praise You for this, and every day that we get to wake up this side of heaven. Each day is laced with purpose, and we ask for Your wisdom and guidance through every one. Help us to live each day well, and for Your glory, from start to finish. 

Thank You for Your Word, which breathes life into our tired souls and minds. You promise to meet us there, in study and prayer. Thank You for the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross, paying with His life for our ease of access to our Heavenly Father through prayer and Scripture. Each biblical story and truth weave in and out our lives in Your perfect timing. 

Father, You remind us throughout Scripture that You are faithful to Your people. Jeremiah 33:6 says, “Nevertheless, I will bring health and healing to it; I will heal my people and will let them enjoy abundant peace and security.” So often, as in the Old Testament, we rebel, neglect to care for ourselves as You do, and end up tired and sick. But Father You are faithful to enwrap us in Your healing love each time we turn back to You. 

Forgive us for neglecting to care for the life You have entrusted us with. The life that You have purposed specifically to do more than we can ask for or imagine. When we go our own way, we wear ourselves down, physically and mentally. Other times, we train physically but neglect our psyche. We often neglect our spiritual life. 

Father, strengthen us to hold captive the joy You bless our lives with daily. Help us to walk freely in Your love. For as Paul reminds us in 1 Timothy 4:8 (VOICE), “Although training your body has certain payoffs, godliness benefits all things–holding promise for life here and now and promise for the life that is coming.” Send us more of Your Holy Spirit, to help us focus on Your Word daily. Give us hearts like Jesus.

Give us the wisdom to seek You first each day, before each decision. It’s often the little thoughts and daily decisions that lead us into a sudden spiral of bad health. Enlighten us and guide us through Your Word. Let our hearts burn for more of You each day. 

Help us endure the pain of chronic conditions, some of which will not find healing in this broken and sinful world. We know that You work all things for good, but in those moments of chronic pain and suffering, it can be impossible to understand Your perfect and just hand in it all. 

In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

Bible Verses for Healing and Health

  • “Heal me, O Lord, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise.” ~ Jeremiah 17:14
  • “Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven.” ~ James 5:14-15
  • “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” ~ Isaiah 41:10
  • “But I will restore you to health and heal your wounds,’ declares the LORD” ~ Jeremiah 30:17
  • “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” ~ James 5:6
  • “Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. He sent out his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave. Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind.” ~ Psalms 107:19-21
  • “Praise the LORD, my soul, and forget not all his benefits – who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion.” ~ Psalms 103:2-4

– read more Healing Scriptures at

Meg Bucher (Meg) encourages others to seek Him first through her life as a stay-at-home mom, career as a freelance writer, teaching Emoti-moms Weekly Bible Study, and leading the kids worship teams at her local church. She resides in a small, Northern lake town with her husband of ten years, two daughters, and their Golden-doodle. Meg writes about everyday life within the love of Christ on her blog, 

Photo courtesy: illness©Thinkstock/Tero Vesalainen


Prayers against addiction (Akathist – Theotokos, Inexhaustible Cup)

Prayer for healing (very short)

Prayer for mental health

Prayer to the Theotokos/Mother of God for healing


• Morning prayers

Midday prayers

Evening prayers

– – –

The Angelic Salutation

Closing prayers: Prayers after praying

The Great Doxology

Morning prayer of Archimandrite Sophrony: Prayer at daybreak

Morning prayer of Metropolitan Filaret of Moscow

Psalm 50 – Septuagint

Prayer of the Hours

Prayers before bedtime

Prayers of St. John Chrysostom for every hour of the day

Departed and Dying

• Prayer for a mother after miscarriage or stillbirth

Prayer for someone dying, by St. Nephron

Prayer for victims of abortion

Prayers for the repose of Christian souls

Depression, Distress, and Mental Health

• The Great Paraklesis

Healing prayer of Saint Ambrose, Bishop of Milan

Midnight hymn to the Mother of God

Prayer against depression (Prayer to the Mother of God in a time of distress)

Prayer for a building afflicted by evil spirits

Prayer for healing (very short)

Prayer for mental health

Prayer for salvation by faith

Prayer of Saint John Chrysostom

Prayer of someone in trouble

Prayer to accept God’s will

Prayers against despair, torments and passions

Prayers against sorrow caused by enemies (Akathist – Theotokos, Softener of evil hearts)


Prayers to heal mental illness (Akathist – St. Ksenia (Xenia) of St. Petersburg)

Prayer to the Theotokos/Mother of God for healing

Family, Marriage, and Loved Ones

• Mother’s prayer for her children

Prayer at the naming of a child

Prayer for a mother after miscarriage or stillbirth


Prayer for a woman after giving birth


Prayer for children by Saint Nikolaj

Prayer for one’s brother or sister

Prayer to find a husband or wife

Prayers during pregnancy: Prayers for mother and unborn child

Prayers for husband and wife

Prayers of a child for his or her parents

Prayers of parents for their children


Prayers to find a spouse or to save a marriage (Akathist – St. Ksenia (Xenia) of St. Petersburg)


• Prayer for forgiveness, from the Order of Confession

Prayer for salvation by faith

General Prayers

• Prayer for the blessing of any object

Prayer for oneself

Prayer of praise by Saint Symeon the New Theologian

Prayer of Saint Dimitri of Rostov

Prayer of Saint John Chrysostom

Prayer to accept God’s will

Prayer to Saint John of Shanghai and San Francisco

Prayer to the Holy Cross (Let God arise)

Prayers to the Mother of God


• Prayer at the founding of a house

Prayer for the blessing of any object

Prayer for a building afflicted by evil spirits

Prayer upon moving into a new home


Prayers to find a home (Akathist – St. Ksenia (Xenia) of St. Petersburg)

Lust and Unchastity

• Prayer of an unmarried person

Prayer to find a husband or wife

Prayers for purity and chastity

Protection, Safety, and Enemies

• Prayer for a building afflicted by evil spirits


Prayer for children by Saint Nikolaj

Prayer for enemies

Prayer for enemies (Akathist – Mother of God, Softener of evil hearts)

Prayer for protection of soldiers during war

Prayer from Kosovo

Prayer of Saint Basil the Great

Prayers to your Guardian Angel

Sickness and Healing

• Healing prayer of Saint Ambrose, Bishop of Milan

Prayer for doctors and nurses

Prayer for healing (very short)

Prayer for mental health

Prayer of thanksgiving after recovering from illness

Prayer to the Mother of God, Queen of All, for the healing of cancer and other illnesses

Prayer to the Theotokos/Mother of God for healing

Prayers for healing of illness – for self and others


• Prayer for the priesthood

Prayer of St. Isaac the Syrian: Prayer to know and love God

Prayer of St. Symeon the New Theologian: Prayer to find a spiritual mentor

Prayers of St. John Chrysostom: Prayers before and after reading spiritual texts


• Prayer of Saint Basil the Great

Prayer of thanksgiving

Prayer of thanksgiving after deliverance from trouble

Prayer of thanksgiving after recovering from illness


• Prayer before traveling

Prayer for drivers

Prayer for one who travels by land

Prayer for pilots, sailors, and those who travel by air or water

Work and School

• Prayer for a child when beginning school

Prayers before and after work

Prayers to find work (Akathist – St. Ksenia (Xenia) of St. Petersburg)

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