True spiritual comfort can be found even in the hospital

Spiritual comfort is part of the health care system

Being admitted to a hospital can be a disquieting experience.  The reasons for our unease may include the pain or illness which caused the admission, plans that had to be canceled, worry about those at home, anxiety over what the symptoms might mean, potential financial burden, and so on.

The attention of health care professionals does much to address our physical condition and may even alleviate some of our anxieties.

Yet, while we are incapacitated, there is much which churns over in our minds and spirits as we consider the disruption to our normal lives.

The unease and stress does not help with the healing process.

Like all of my colleagues in faith communities, and other volunteers, a fair proportion of time is spent in hospitals visiting church members, and sometimes their family and friends, who are hospitalized for one reason or another. Occasionally, a patient in the next bed, or some one in the corridor will call out when they see a clergy person, a conversation will ensue, and we are always very happy to reach out and be present to anyone whatever their need.

Sadly, much of the time, little or no spiritual care is provided to, nor received by patients in hospitals.  In our local hospitals, indeed most hospitals wherever you are, there is a service called ‘Spiritual Care.’

Hospital chaplains are part of the health care team and specialize in providing spiritual care to patients, family members, and also to hospital staff.

Quoting from the VIHA Spiritual Care Services brochure, “Chaplains serve people of all faiths, as well as people who do not have a religious affiliation.

A Chaplain has compassion for what you are going through;  listens;  respects your culture, traditions and beliefs;  doesn’t judge you;  offers words of hope, encouragement and comfort;  keeps what you say confidential;  will pray with you, and for you, if you ask;  can help connect you with your own faith community.”

Respect for privacy and concern for personal preferences, mean that no assumptions will be made about your need for spiritual care, and services will not be offered without a request.

So, may I offer the following suggestions? If you or a loved one, find yourself admitted to a hospital, consider first that your restoration to wholeness extends beyond your body to mind and spirit — how you feel about yourself, your stresses and worries,  will affect your physical healing.

Be assured if you ask to speak to a chaplain your own beliefs and convictions will be treated with the utmost of respect.

If you are a member of a particular faith community please ensure that they know where you are so that members may pray for you and visit as appropriate.

When we are in distress or feeling weak, the gentle presence of another human being can be most helpful.

They may listen, offer words of wisdom, read something inspiring or comforting, pray, or just be with you in silence.

 

 

 

Rev. Alan Naylor is at St. Mark’s Anglican Church, Qualicum Beach

 

 

Just Posted

Man dead after reported early-morning hit-and-run incident in Parksville

Oceanside RCMP seek public’s help gathering information

Retired Nanoose Bay teacher ‘Set for Life’ after $675K lottery win

Shannon plans to buy new sails for his sailboat

Country music star Aaron Pritchett back in Qualicum Beach to play benefit concert

Singer to headline Thalassa restaurant fundraiser for Ronald McDonald house

Order in the chambers: Qualicum Beach votes for council code of conduct

Coun. Robert Filmer’s motion passes unanimously at town meeting

VIDEO: B.C. woman meets biological mother, 38 years later

Mother never gave up hope of finding daughter, despite all the obstacles

B.C. Lions fall to 1-9 after 13-10 loss to Ticats

Lowly Leos have dropped six straight CFL contests

VIDEO: B.C. woman meets biological mother, 38 years later

Mother never gave up hope of finding daughter, despite all the obstacles

B.C. man who died after rescuing swimmer was known for helping others

Shaun Nugent described as a dad, a coach, a hero and ‘stand-up guy’ at celebration of life

B.C. RCMP plane chases fleeing helicopter as part of major cross-border drug bust

The helicopter eventually landed at a rural property near Chilliwack

Thousands cycle to conquer cancer

The 11th annual Ride to Conquer Cancer took place Saturday morning, Aug. 24 in Surrey, B.C.

PHOTOS: Brazil military begins operations to fight Amazon fires

Amazon fires have become a global issue, escalating tensions between Brazil and European countries

Racist confrontation in Richmond parking lot caught on camera

Woman can be heard yelling racial slurs, swear words at woman in apparent parking dispute

Groups ready campaign to help young voters identify ‘fake news’ in election

The media literacy campaign to focus on identifying misinformation and suspicious sources online

Most Read