Advancing Spiritual Care Through Research

Support Transforming Chaplaincy to Develop Spiritual Care Leaders: Our Fundraising Campaign Continues

A Reflection from Theresa Vithayathil Edmonson, Vice President of Spiritual Health, Providence St. Joseph Health

This past September I had the wonderful opportunity to attend the presentations of an incredible cohort of chaplains who participated in the Transforming Chaplaincy Rush University Spiritual Care Leadership and Management Certificate program.  As I shared in my closing comments with the group, I am proud to be a part of a profession that expects continued growth, research, and development as servant leaders to everyone we are blessed to serve.  Every presentation explored how we can improve care as experts in spiritual health services.  Each presenter acknowledged the importance of collaboration, research, and of being a part of something bigger.  This notion of community and humility is one that many of us learned from our CPE experiences as well as from mentors along the way.  For over twenty-five years, I have been blessed to learn from educators, leaders, and colleagues in chaplaincy.  One key colleague for many of us is Dr. George Fitchett, who recently retired from his position as Director of Transforming Chaplaincy.  I, like many of you, first knew George from a distance as he pioneered excellence in spiritual care through his innovation, research, and contributions to the academic world.  I also had the blessing, a few years ago, to work with George through Providence St. Joseph Health’s sponsorship of Transforming Chaplaincy.  His curiosity and striving to set high standards and expectations for our profession are enhanced by his kindness and genuine concern for others.  His humility and continuous desire to learn and grow as a professional chaplain and educator draws international attention. Many follow his path towards raising the bar and contributing to the whole person care chaplaincy offers in health care.  We are blessed in the chaplaincy field and in the academic community to have George continue to contribute to the professions of chaplaincy, education, and health care.

As we prepare to celebrate Spiritual Care Week this year, I invite you to consider contributing to the Transforming Chaplaincy Fundraising Campaign in honor of the incredible service George has demonstrated to our profession.  It was my delight to support the fund and ensure that his good work continues for our ministry of spiritual health service to all we are blessed to serve.

Theresa Vithayathil Edmonson

Vice President Spiritual Health

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