Counselor helps clients ‘find their voice’ at NewSong

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Pastor Tom Hawkins and Donna McCarrell. Photo by Deb Wuethrich

One of the things Christian Counselor Donna McCarrell, MA, LPC, has learned in her 20-plus years of practice is how gratifying it can be to help someone gain insight and growth.

“I think one of the things God has given me is an absolute passion for is helping people find their voice in this world,” said McCarrell, who will be practicing at 5211 Occidental Highway, Tecumseh, out of an office in the NewSong Community Church building. “I believe the reason some people struggle is they haven’t been given a voice in life or it was taken away for some reason and they don’t feel they can use it. A lot of times we get stuck in life and don’t feel we have a voice, and that’s my passion — helping people find it.”

McCarrell is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Michigan and a National Certified Counselor. She founded Perspectives LLC and has been in private clinical practice since 2001. She and her husband, Tom, recently relocated to the Tecumseh area when he became part of the United Bank and Trust’s Wealth Management Team.

“We lived in the Jackson-Parma area 25 years and raised our son and daughter there,” said McCarrell. After coming to Tecumseh, the couple sampled a few churches in the area, but knew rather quickly that NewSong would be a right fit for them — especially after a few conversations with Pastor Tom Hawkins.

“I learned that Donna was a Christian counselor and we just happened to have an office open in our new building,” said Hawkins. He added that after talking with her, he realized she could be an answer to a prayer. “One of the things we envision as part of our ministry now that we have our own church is a marriage ministry,” he said. “With the facilities we have, we can be available to people ‘before, during and after’ the wedding.” Hawkins immediately envisioned Donna as a potential resource to assist with pre-marital counseling as well as marriage and family counseling at the church, something busy pastors don’t always have the time to do alone.

“I think she’s going to be a valuable resource to us and to others in the community,” he said.

Under the Perspectives LLC umbrella, through which McCarrell offers “Professional and Personal Growth Services,” she lists specialty areas that include, but are not limited to: grief, loss and bereavement; depression, anxiety, stress and anger; relationships — premarital and marital; abuse — physical, sexual, emotional and spiritual; codependency; and chronic illness.

“I actually love doing pre-marital counseling as well as other family and marriage counseling,” McCarrell said. “The name of my practice comes from the fact that people come to life circumstances with different perspective on things, and because I am a Christian counselor, I can help lead people to the perspective that’s going to help them the most. I believe it’s our relationship with Christ that brings the ultimate healing. But people don’t have to be a Christian to come and see me. I just make it clear the foundation and reference point I work from, but I never push those values on another person. I respect where people are at.”

McCarrell obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Spring Arbor University, and later received a Master’s degree in counseling. Her experience also includes working as a social worker/bereavement counselor for Hospice of Jackson. From 2001 to 2012 she also served as a professor at Spring Arbor University working in the Social Science Department.

“I taught a lot of classes on death, grief and loss, and that is a huge specialty area of mine, but I’ve also taught classes on substance abuse and other subjects,” she said. She’s also led seminars, from suicide prevention to teaching pastors in the use of the Prepare/Enrich pre-marital and marital counseling program. Use of the Prepare/Enrich inventory is one of the things she has in common with Hawkins.

“We both believe there can always be a happily ever after,” said McCarrell. “Tom and I believe it takes a lot of hard work, with Christ at the center, but we believe there’s always help.”

“We’ve been brainstorming some ideas on some of the things we can collaborate on, and maybe put on some workshops as things get going at NewSong,” said Hawkins. “We may even do some seminar programs in the area of loss, working with funeral homes. We have a lot of ideas.”

McCarrell said she and her husband have been in Tecumseh since August.
“We love it here,” she said, adding that she looks forward to getting to know more people in the community.

To contact McCarrell or to make an appointment, call 517.414.5123 or Email her at donna@perspectivesllc.net.




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