Monday, August 27, 2012

Hospice Chaplain Week Ahead

I almost wrote:  We have survived Tropical Storm Isaac.  And I'm fairly sure we have.  Or perhaps we're in the process of surviving.  It still sounds stormy, but no worse than your typical stormy morning down here.

I'm fairly sure my school will be open, so I shall return to reassemble pieces.  I have 25 classes left with no teacher after the recent restructuring.  I need to think about staffing needs.

I'm sure that there will be people of all sorts coming through my office.  Perhaps I should stop on my way to work and buy more tissues.  I have plenty of tea, some mugs, an electric kettle.

I wonder if it is offensive to real hospice chaplains when I think of some of my job duties as being the departmental hospice chaplain.  If so, I don't mean to offend.  I realize that real hospice chaplains are dealing with the most permanent kind of loss.  So far, we haven't experienced the physical death of one of our department members.  But we are dealing with other kinds of loss, some of the most extreme that humans can face short of death:  loss of job, loss of future, loss of community members who will still alive somewhere but won't be part of our daily lives the way they have been.

One of my pastor friends sent me this quote in an e-mail, and it seems wise to put it here, for everyone who needs the calmness that prayer might bring:

"Prayer is largely just being silent: holding the tension instead of even talking it through, offering the moment instead of fixing it by words and ideas, loving reality as it is instead of understanding it fully. We must not push the river, we must just trust that we are really in the river, and God is the current.

That may be impractical, but the way of faith is not the way of efficiency. So much of life is just a matter of listening and waiting, and enjoying the expansiveness that comes from such willingness to hold. It is like carrying and growing a baby: women wait and trust and hopefully eat good food, and the baby is born."

~ Richard Rohr


Listen to the stillness, the language of God.

1 comment:

rbarenblat said...

Thanks for that beautiful quote.