Toward the end of life—our own, or that of someone we love—our faith and beliefs can be tested. Our beliefs may strengthen, or change in other ways. VITAS is indebted to the spiritual caregivers who attend to our patients’ spiritual well-being, no matter what beliefs the patient espouses. That is why we celebrate Spiritual Care Week October 22–28, 2017.
Spiritual caregivers come from a variety of religious traditions and are able to provide both religion-specific ministering or broader spiritual care.
The Spirit Can Grow, Even as the Body Fades
Hospice patients and their families often ask “big questions” about life and their place in it. They may want to know, “What will happen after death?”, “Is there really a God?” or “What was the purpose of my life?” VITAS chaplains and other spiritual caregivers have carefully reflected on these types of questions; they are ready to engage in thoughtful discussions about life and death.
Conversely, patients may see death as a natural end with no special purpose. They may not be capable of deep introspection, as in cases of advanced Alzheimer’s disease. Even then, patients and their families can find comfort in the loving presence of a spiritual caregiver.
Interested in becoming a VITAS spiritual caregiver? Learn how.