I haven’t written much about the pandemic. I’ve been too busy living in the middle of it, going to work as a hospital chaplain. We continued to work, though with constant adjustments in ways we provided care to patients, their families and friends, and our… Read More
When there’s no hope of recovery, how do you recover hope? You and I both know that question, I’m guessing. I wrestle with it regularly as a hospital chaplain. When I’m called to a room after Eddie hears his diagnosis. When the ambulance brings in… Read More
Dr Dave Johnson and I spent some time talking about the importance and nature of hope. We both work in healthcare, Dave as a nurse educator and an therapist, me as a chaplain. We both understand from others and from our own experiences how challenging… Read More
I sat with an old friend, Dave Johnson, for a series of conversations. This one is about pain and grief.
How working as a hospital chaplain shapes the way one writer approaches the Biblical text. (Hermeneutics)
As a pastor then, as a chaplain now, I often navigate in a space bounded by positional obligations and patient (and family) expectations, and God’s invitation. So in that space, when it occurs in hospitals (or other places of pastoral care), what does it look like to talk to God on behalf of and in the presence of other people? And, perhaps, to talk to people on behalf of, and in the presence, of God.
If you’ve sat with a family in an emergency room, you’ve faced hard questions. And you’ve struggled to figure out the way to navigate hope and despair. It doesn’t matter if you are a chaplain or a pastor or a friend that showed up in a hard time. You get questions and you have to answer. Sometimes, it sounds like this.
“What do we do?”
The dad was holding the baby. About 30 weeks in the womb, the first 28 of those growing, moving. The last two motionless. Now, this couple was thinking about the services that would honor their child who had no list of accomplishment to eulogize. Here’s what I told them.