About this blogger:
Ronda Chervin received a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Fordham University and an MA in Religious Studies from Notre Dame Apostolic Institute. A widow, mother, and grandmother, she currently teaches philosophy at Holy Apostles College and Seminary in Cromwell, Connecticut. Write to her at chervinronda@gmail.com.
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“Iconographic tradition has theologically interpreted the manger and the swaddling cloths in terms of the theology of the Fathers. The child stiffly wrapped in bandages is seen as prefiguring the hour of his death: from the outset, he is the sacrificial victim, as we shall see more closely when we examine the reference to the first-born. The manger, then, was seen as a kind of altar.”
— Pope Benedict XVI (2012)

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Depression, Anger and Anxiety - All Related
published 11 March 2011 by Dr. Ronda Chervin

I got into dealing with anger this way: at 58 I was teaching at Steubenville. A grad student told me about this great group he wanted me to advertise: Recovery, Inc. (not 12 Step) for anger, anxiety and depression. I read the description and saw it as an answer to my prayers to do better with anger. I would say I had an average of 5 fits a day whenever frustrated in any wish to goal. Only after years of group work combined with prayer was my anger enough diminished that I could see the underlying anxiety and the depression (not clinical but more sad feelings) related to the other two.

How so? Well, anger can be a way to overcome anxiety in this way. I feel anxious that I won’t succeed in some endeavor all the way from finding my way to a new place before GPS, to fear about my husband’s asthma attacks. But anxiety is very painful. Finding someone or something to blame is less painful. So, blaming the complicated patterns of suburbs of cities feels better than just feeling stupid because I have no sense of direction. Or blaming my husband for smoking with resultant late onset asthma would be less painful than accepting the possibility that he will die of an asthma attack.

So, where does depression come in? Psychotherapists claim that some non-clinical depression comes from suppressed anger. So, once I stopped venting all my anger 5 times a day, I would feel low and sad more often. Some therapists have described this as addiction to the adrenalin rush of anger! To avoid the unpleasantness of depressed feelings, we foment incidents of conflict and anger.

What a vicious cycle! What is the remedy? For those who know Him the only remedy is getting much, much, closer to Jesus so that He can make us feel peace when we are otherwise anxious and give us joyful hope instead of sad depression. Next time you feel angry, ask yourself, what the anxiety is beneath the anger. Next time you feel depressed ask yourself if you are suppressing anger. Instead of just running to a distraction, take the whole knot of emotions to Jesus, the Divine Physician, and beg Him to help you.

Dr. Ronda has many free e-books and audios on her website rondachervin.com. If you go to her website and read or listen and then want to correspond with her she will be available. Her schedule does not permit, however, responding to comments on the Blog, though she enjoys reading them. Dr. Ronda’s newest project is spiritualityrunningtogod.com.