Arleen Xiomara Gomez (MDiv, 2015)

Distinguished Alumni Horizon Award, 2021

Arleen Gomez smiling infront of a glass building

Arleen Xiomara Gomez (2015 MDiv) was interested in studying at Tyndale because it offered a master’s degree that combined her two passions: theology and psychotherapy.

“My education at Tyndale helped form my clinical skills and understand people in a more holistic way,” she says. “The class on trauma I took in my last year was absolutely foundational to me in understanding mental health and the people I work with now.”
Arleen is now living out her passions as a care manager (known as a “case manager” at other agencies) and associate pastor at Yonge Street Mission (YSM) in Toronto, Ontario. YSM provides support and services to individuals, families, children, youth and entire communities living with chronic poverty.

As a care manager, Arleen helps people create and reach specific goals, such as addiction recovery, going back to school or reconciling with family members. “The clients I work with are diverse in their experiences, but I would say 99 percent of them have experienced trauma,” she says. “They have been through so much in their lives, and the majority of the work I do is to create endurance to reach one’s goals in the midst of traumatic triggers.”

As the YSM associate pastor, Arleen shares messages at the organization’s church, which creates a low-barrier setting for those who would not normally fit into traditional church settings.

“It is the joy of my life to see people come to know Jesus Christ, give their lives to Him, get baptized and grow in their spiritual gifts.”

Arleen is a licensed minister with the Evangelical Missionary Church of Canada and is in the process of ordination.

Her advice for individuals interested in pursuing a similar path in ministry is to rely on God’s strength, persevere and pay attention to one’s own well-being.

“Learn how to take care of yourself and to fill your cup before you dedicate your life to taking care of others and filling their cups,” says Arleen. “Also, learn to give to God your worries and the weight of suffering you hear from people’s stories.”

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