Misconceptions of depression

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Last week’s ‘Our Church’ contribution from Derek McMillan (County Times September 13) went beyond the usual harmless platitudes, by raising certain misconceptions relating to depression.

It should be emphasised that real clinical depression is a serious medical condition that requires professional intervention.

It has nothing to do with either the presence or absence of religious belief. In common with other social activities, church attendance can obviously provide for some the benefits of companionship, and it is good that Mr McMillan found something positive there.

I hope also that Mr McMillan has shaken off the misconception he seems to have wrestled with, that atheism implies not wanting to believe in such things as justice, mercy and love if associated with Jesus. He can rest assured that atheists, and all other non-believers in the Abrahamic desert god such as Hindus and Buddhists, fully subscribe to these admirable and of course secular values.

Perhaps if his adopted Roman Catholic Church had shown more justice, mercy and love to the children in its care, or to AIDS sufferers in Africa, Mr McMillan would have even more reason to feel contented.

DR RICHARD NEVILLE

Durfold Road, Horsham