How do you handle it? part II

In a previous post I started to tackle the question of how I “handle” being a hospital chaplain. In this post I’d like to mention another thing that really helps: the miracles!

Last Saturday I was called in to anoint an elderly woman who was dying. I prayed with the family, and I explained to them that the anointing fundamentally meant for healing. It is Christ himself who is anointing, and he desires to share his healing grace. So I encouraged them to look for the healing, in whatever form it might come.

This morning’s paper contained a notice that she had died, so this evening I went to the wake service. The daughter of the women saw me and immediately related what had happened. The next morning after the anointing, the family was stunned to find the woman sitting up in bed, lucid and able to communicate! The anointing had, in fact, provided its healing touch. They had a wonderful time of sharing together as a family, and then the woman gently fell asleep and died. But what a beautiful passing!

Yes, at times what I do can be emotionally draining, particularly in the moment. But these “miracle moments” also bring their own joy, and I am thrilled to live them. It keeps you going, knowing that God’s power and grace is so close all the time.