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Awakening Faith Communities to Address Addiction

Dan Gibson, D.Min., M.Div., CADC I serves as an advisory board member of The Center of Addiction and Faith


The CAF (Center of Addiction & Faith) is an interfaith community dedicated to addressing the growing problem of addiction in our society. We particularly target faith communities, who, rather than being places of welcome and healing, tend to be plagued with stigma and indifference. Our aim is to provide education and  resources to better equip these bodies, that they can more fully embrace those who suffer from isolation and shame. We embody various facets that include science and justice, alongside of various religious and cultural traditions. I am proud to serve on the advisory board for the CAF, with an emphasis on youth & family ministry.


Coming to Minnesota each fall has become an annual pilgrimage where the CAF hosts a conference that invites faith community leaders from all over the world. This year’s event was held at the Airport Hilton in Bloomington, MN, from

October 6 through the 8, 2022. First-rate speakers in the field of addiction were brought in to address the current challenges that are facing us today, and to offer the newest, and most innovative ways to deal with them. This year, we gathered around the theme of trauma. Those who suffer from trauma often attempt to numb their unresolved pain with the use of substances, which inevitably leads to an even lower depth of misery and hopelessness. Speakers explored the various historical, cultural, psychophysiological, and even religious effects of trauma. My own workshop, Addiction, Recovery, & the American Family touched on how harmful behaviors that are passed down from generation to generation can also be a form of trauma. Once again, faith leaders went away from this event with a greater awareness, as well as the tools and resources to more fully embrace those who are struggling and seeking help and guidance from the church.

From a personal standpoint, I am grateful for the CAF for giving me the perfect vehicle to streamline my own passion for recovery work and mission in the church. This was all made possible through the vision of our founder & director, the Rev. Dr. Ed Treat, whose ministry began as a support for recovering clergy, and then evolved to opening itself up to faith leaders of every religious persuasion throughout the world. I am also grateful to be part of the excellent counseling team at the renowned Thelma McMillen Recovery Center in Torrance, CA, which continues to be a tremendous source of learning and service for me. Lastly, I want to give special thanks to my Bishop, Brenda Bos, and the Southwest California Synod, for your ongoing support of me and my ministry, including helping to make these special annual events possible for me to attend. This coming year you will be seeing more of me at various gatherings and assemblies, including an appearance at an upcoming Haven (an online space for support & education) sometime around the first of the year!  Please let me know if there is any other way I can be of support to you and your congregation!

To learn more about The Center of Addiction & Faith go to  Donations are welcomed & needed! Just look for the donate button located right there on the homepage!  Thank you for your partnership & prayers!


Grace, Peace, & Good Vibes,

Rev. Dr. Dan Gibson

Advisory Board Member

Center of Addiction & Faith