Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Ministering 'On The Way'

I understand that Jesus accomplished much of what he did in ministry while he was 'on the way' to wherever he was going.  Not passing by, not looking ahead and beyond, rather by living in the moment, for that moment alone.  Ministering to those he met, any that came to him, regardless of himself, his agenda, or his destination.  The journey was the purpose for him.  "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth and the life; no man cometh to the Father but by me." - John 14:6.  

This afternoon, I was in the "East Wing" (controlled access area) of the Health Care Unit at GHBC.  I had completed a visit with a resident that I can only describe as "awkward at best" when I saw one of the Staff Chaplains walk in carrying some cups and cones of frozen custard.  I thought what a simple and kind gesture to bring such treats on the floor.  Soon I was in a room with the recipients of that custard, preparing to "assist" in offering prayers for the time near death.  The Staff Chaplain+, wife and one daughter of the feeble patient lying in bed, as well as one other resident visitor were all having custard; the others in the room were a nursing orderly and an activities room assistant of the floor, plus one neophyte chaplain intern.

The Chaplain+ asked if I had my prayer book; I did not.  Instead, we used Enriching Our Worship 2 (EOW2), a liturgical supplement which includes materials for Ministry with the Sick and Dying.  The Chaplain+ opened with prayer, then invited us all to join together in reciting the Twenty-Third Psalm (boy, am I pathetic without a book in my hand!), followed by a litany of prayers; I read another psalm, and then led everyone in The Lord's Prayer.  At the close, the daughter asked if I'd sing "On Eagle's Wings" with her.  I did, but not so well.  It was more a "joyful noise".  Able to stay longer, the Chaplain+ advised me on the Prayers of Commendation should the patient die in her absence.  I remained for roughly another hour, visiting with the wife and daughter, learning more about their loved one and them, as we sang more hymns (much better this time).

Looking back, I would not have intended nor even expected any of that would happen on my 2nd day on HCU, or during my first "solo" into the East Wing.  I was 'on my way' after the initial visit, but I couldn't just pass on by nor look ahead or beyond this precious moment of ministry set before me.  Then, I felt I was doing exactly what God wants of me and expects from me.  And I knew it was only possible through His Grace.  It was definitely one of those moments Supervisor Dan+ had spoken of, when he said "I know I'm not the only one in the room".  That was true in a number of ways.                  

I have no idea if I can possibly capture even a portion of this visit for my Verbatim due this Friday.