Spiritual Care Week celebrations, October 25-31, 2020
The week of October 19-25, 2020 represents 34 years of celebrating Spiritual Care Week.
Spiritual Care Week is a time of both celebration and education. Organizations and institutions throughout the world will recognize spiritual care providers as well as the spiritual care given through professional chaplaincy and pastoral counseling within our communities. The theme, “Collaborative Healthcare: Chaplains Complete the Picture” encourages professionals and constituents across the healthcare continuum to view the work of chaplains as part of an image that conveys inclusive healthcare practices among spiritual care practitioners. Chaplains are viewed through a lens whereby they collaborate to provide holistic interdisciplinary care, which otherwise would not be complete if the chaplain were not included.
Spiritual care has a wonderful history of cultures and religions which engage with a continuum of healthcare providers in supporting patients and families. This year's theme emphasizes collaboration with a focus on chaplains providing spiritual care in ways that affirm and value their contribution as well as foster an appreciation for what is considered important for holistic care. This lens serves as a focal point to capture what is considered important and conceptualizes messages or thoughts as images for later reflection. Chaplains should be within the frame of focus for healthcare professionals, patients and families who directly benefit from their presence and spiritual care services.
When chaplains are serving as part of an interdisciplinary team they are visible and regarded as an integral part of patient care. It is during these experiences, scope of practices, and interactions that the chaplain becomes one of the central subjects of focus for best practices and optimal care. They are within the lens, within focus and demonstrate relevance as they give meaning to their trade as a chaplain.
Spiritual Care Week is supported by the COMISS Network: The Network on Ministry in Specialized Settings (COMISS). COMISS members provide care in specialized settings such as hospitals, prisons, businesses, industries, long-term care facilities, pastoral counseling centers, hospices, military settings, nursing homes, corporations, congregations of sisters, priests and brothers, schools and universities throughout the world. Among the variety of celebrations will be hand-blessing ceremonies for health workers; open houses; poetry jams by clients; lecture series and luncheons. Resources to help recognize and celebrate spiritual care week are available at: www.spiritualcareweek.org or www.pastoralcareweek.org.