When ill and faced with challenging medical decisions, many persons use their faith to find strength, comfort and hope. Practices such as praying the rosary, reading scripture or meditating have been shown to significantly improve health outcomes. Patients tell us directly – they want their health care providers to respect their beliefs and ask about their spirituality as part of whole person care.
Chaplains at Northwestern Medicine hospitals work to meet the spiritual and religious needs of patients, families, and health care providers. Chaplains are trained to serve people of all faith traditions as well as people who don’t describe themselves as “very religious.” They help persons access their own unique resources for healing. Chaplains are a valuable resource in times of crisis, when bad news is delivered and as the end of life approaches. They serve as sounding boards for ethical and moral dilemmas, not only for patients and families, but also for staff.
Pastoral Care Week recognizes the role of spirituality in healing and celebrates all those who tend to spiritual needs in our community. At our downtown campus this week, noon-time seminars designed to promote spiritual well-being will be offered. Please also join us for a community concert featuring music of diverse spiritual traditions, Friday, October 24, 12-1 pm in the Pritzker Auditorium of the Feinberg Pavilion.