This is my final article, the 434th that I have written since I started my work as chaplain at Bethesda Hospital and Place. I want to use this final article to express my gratitude and say good bye.
It is hard to believe that in a number of days I will no longer be the chaplain at Bethesda Regional Health Centre. It seems like just a short while ago that I came to Bethesda to begin this work.
15 years ago, I was asked if I might plan an annual service for families who experienced pregnancy and infant loss.
Transitions are difficult! My co-workers have been working to convince me not to retire. They haven’t been successful. So soon there will be a transition, I will leave and a new chaplain will take my place.
The Toronto Star reported in August 2015 that 77% of Canadians approve of Assisted Suicide. The CBC in April of 2017 reported that in the first 10 months after Physician Assisted Death became legal that 1324 people had died as a result of physician assisted death.
Coming to the end of something is a natural process. I am coming to the end of 17 years as the chaplain at Bethesda Hospital and Bethesda Place. As I do I am doing things for the last time – this is one of those things – my last Easter article.
I have been caring for people spiritually my entire career, in May I will complete forty years in pastoral/spiritual care work. I have never been much of an organizational person.
Often we assume that once dementia sets in a person loses the capacity for wisdom. We think that folks with dementia are simply befuddled, disoriented and they tell the same stories over and over again.
We talk a lot about dignity in health care. One of the researchers at Cancer Care Manitoba, Dr. Harvey Chochinov, has written a book about a therapeutic approach that he developed to help those who are approaching the end of life.