The Spiritual Care team supports the healing ministry of the Nazareth Hospital and the educational ministry of Nazareth School of Nursing. Financially, NPI supporters provide financial support for spiritual care provided by the hospital’s chaplaincy team. NPI has a special dedicated fund for Spiritual Care at the Nazareth Hospital.
The Nazareth Trust’s Spiritual Director leads initiatives with patients, staff, visitors and the community to enhance the Trust’s Christian identify and witness across all entities. A recent initiative is the expansion of the chaplaincy and spiritual care by recruiting international volunteer chaplains.
Nazareth Hospital staff encounter over 300,000 people every year. Spending time in hospital can be very difficult, stressful and tiring, not just for our patients, but also for their family and friends. This is particularly evident in high-stress environments such as our Emergency Room, Intensive Care and Neonatal Intensive Care Units. Recognizing people’s particular spiritual needs in such difficult situations, the Nazareth Trust recently launched a new service, a dedicated Pastoral Care team made up of local and international volunteers.
The hospital already has a wonderful, local chaplaincy team at the hospital, however, their time to be with patients is very limited due to volunteer numbers. The new Pastoral Care service will complement and support the existing one. International volunteers will serve for periods of three months or longer, enabling a much greater level of spiritual care at our hospital.
Beginning in late 2021, interested volunteers with or without a chaplaincy background are invited to consider spending a period of 6 weeks or longer in Nazareth serving as volunteer spiritual care providers alongside local clinicians and volunteers. There will also be opportunities for other kinds of volunteering within Nazareth Hospital and Village for family members or chaplain volunteers to expand their experiences.
The new initiative will include up to six international volunteers at any one time. A part-time Pastoral Care Coordinator will oversee the recruitment of a pool of volunteers and work with churches, mission organizations, colleges and seminaries to identify prospective volunteer chaplains. The Nazareth Trust will provide orientation and relevant training prior to placement and then on-going volunteer support, supervision and accommodation in Nazareth.
Frank Kantor, Spiritual Director, describes the program: “Whether it’s 1pm or 1am, at the Intensive Care or at Outpatients Clinics, if someone would like somebody to sit with them and possibly pray with them, we want to be there. We want to provide a ministry of presence to all those who desire it, to provide a reassuring hand at a difficult time. Often in times of crisis, the offer of prayer can make a huge difference to someone and we want that option to be available for everyone and anyone.”
Please join us in providing this ministry of presence to all who need it.