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Category: Pastoral Thanatology RSS feed for this category

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Pastoral Care and Use of Advance Directives

Pastoral Care and Use of Advance Directives

Pastoral Care Giving and Advance Directives It is important in Pastoral Care to also ensure that the needs of the dying patient are met in full.  This not only involves physical and spiritual support but also helping one fulfill their end desires for themselves or family.  Advance Directives are essential elements in knowing exactly what the dying patient would want or wish if he/she is unconscious or unresponsive in his/her final hours. An Advance Medicial Directive can solve many problems in regards to who takes charger in an event if the person loses consciousness.  It also lays out groundwork for care givers and medicial providers to

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St. Camillus, Patron of Physicians, Pastoral Caregivers

St. Camillus, Patron of Physicians, Pastoral Caregivers

A Saint for Pastoral Caregivers to Model Themselves After St. Camillus of Lellis was born in 1550, oringally a soldier only to become a pastoral caregiver to the sick and wounded of war.  This saint founded the The Order of the Camillans who assisted at battlefields, served in hospitals, and went out to the streets to care for the sick. The Order of the Camillans to this day is the symbol of the red cross as it spreads its sacred mission to find Christ in the least of one’s brethren.  The Order’s comittment is so strong that they even take a fourth vow.  This vow states

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Euthanasia: A Pastoral Care Paradox?

Euthanasia: A Pastoral Care Paradox?

Pastoral Care and Euthanasia Many in pastoral care are faced with the dilemma of euthanasia.  Although banned in many states, the right to die movement is a powerful one.  This movement, however, is far from pastoral.  It may paint images of taking someone out of their misery with compassion or ironically tying the words “mercy” and “killing” together, but if one looks beyond this, one will find nothing pastoral regarding euthanasia. Euthansia is murder.  It is that simple and those who seek to bring Christ to the dying and wish to represent a pastoral element can never condone it.  Euthanais is suicide of despair.  It is the

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Hospice and Pastoral Care

Hospice and Pastoral Care

Hospice and Pastoral Care Giving For many the choice of hospice is a painful one.  Intrinsic to hospice is the idea that one has given up and medicine can no longer save one’s loved one.  One feels defeat and dismay but the reality is one is freeing him or herself from the bondage of self and accepting the will of Christ.  Pastoral Care Givers have an opportunity to help others accept the final leg of their journey.  They can also help families learn acceptance and find some joy in the final days.  Furthermore, once prolongation of life is no longer the goal, then comfort becomes

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The Spiritual Message of Pastoral Thanatology

The Spiritual Message of Pastoral Thanatology

Pastoral Counselors Must Be Like the Good Samaritan The spiritual message of Pastoral Thanatology echoes with the words of Christ when he said “when you do something for the least of your brethen, you do it for me”.   When a pastoral counselor walks downs the halls of a hospital or nursing home, he or she should see Christ in all the faces of the people. Christ pointed this out best in his parable of the “Good Samaritan” where only a Samaritan was willing to help an injured man.  Pastoral Counselors encounter Christ in the faces of the suffering on a

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Pastoral Care and the Teachings of Christianity

Pastoral Care and the Teachings of Christianity

Pastoral Care and Church Teaching Pope John Paul the II, one of the most prominent Christian figures of the 20th century, was not just a leader of the Catholic Church but also a visible sign of unity for all Christians.  During his lfietime, he spoke on a variety of topics and Pastoral Care was not an exception.  Below is a document he wrote in commission of the Pastoral Care Commission of Health Care Professionals. In the Papal Document, Dolentium Hominem, Pope John Paul II discussed the need for Pastoral Care of Health Care Professionals for the world’s suffering.  He speaks of Christian dignity in dying and how pastoral counselors

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Pastoral Thanatology and End of Life Issues

Pastoral Thanatology and End of Life Issues

End of Life Ethical Confusion and Pastoral Thanatology Issues As one’s loved one faces death, many difficult decisions arise that involve ethics and unfortunately financical cost.  Ultimately, we want what is best for our loved ones no matter the cost.  Peace, spiritual happiness and the least amount of suffering is usually the biggest things on our mind.  Pastoral Thanatology deals with many of these issues.  Below is a story of such issues. Regarding this, David Weber writes in ”End of a Life: What Patients and Families Should Know” about  this issue.  In the article, he specifically mentions Lisa Kreiger and her dealings with high hospital costs and ethical confusion as

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True Stories of Life and Death

Learn about sevenponds.com They provide true stories of life and death. access information Their website: www.sevenponds.com

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Pastoral Thanatology and Judaism

Pastoral Thanatology and Judaism

Judaism and Pastoral Thanatology As a Pastoral Counselor and Thanatologist, it is important to have a broad understanding of all religious ideals and faiths.  This enables the counselor to pastorally care for the suffering and soon to die in a compassionate way that accommodates the individual.  Christians will not always deal with Christians, so it is important to broaden one’s theological knowledge into all faiths.   We will briefly review some of the primary concepts of Judaism and death to sharpen one’s knowledge in inter-faith dialogue and practice. Judaism as a non-creedal religion has various interpretations on the afterlife, but the

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Pastoral Thanatology and Islam

Pastoral Thanatology and Islam

Islam and Pastoral Thanatology Islam while a Monotheistic creed does pose a challenge for a Western counselor.   The Pastoral Thanatologist, however, can meet the needs of the Islamic suffering by covering the general aspects of paradise and a good and just God; a God that is the same and shared by all monotheistic traditions as the God of Abraham.   Still, a slight understanding of Islamic death and eschatology can be of great benefit when counseling a Muslim who is about to die. Upon approach of death of a Muslim, verses of the Quran are read to remind the person of