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Pastoral Counseling and Care: When to Pull the Plug?

Pastoral Counseling and Care: When to Pull the Plug?

Pastoral Counseling and Care Regarding Extraordinary Measures and Means As disheartening as it may be, there may be a time when we have to make an ultimate decision about a family member.  The decision could be to allow the person to remain sustained via articial measures or allow them to pass away naturally.  Far from assisted suicide, and well within Christian norms of Pastoral Counseling and Care, one can make the decision that frees a family members from the bondage of suffering.  The person has fought the good fight and carried his cross finally to his personal Calvary, now he

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Pastoral Care for the Dying

Pastoral Care for the Dying

Pastoral Care and Compassion for the Dying More and more people are recognizing the need for pastoral care of the dying.  The fear of dying alone or without compassion is one of the biggest concerns of the dying. Colette Douglas Home of the HearldScotland writes about the need of pastoral care and love for the dying to ease the transition from life to death in her article “We Need a Human Touch on the Pathway to Dying”. ASK anyone if they fear death and nine times out of 10 they’ll tell you: “I’m not afraid of being dead but I’m

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Palliative Care and the Dying

Palliative Care and the Dying

Palliative Care and Death Pastoral Care givers are thrilled that more options are becoming more available for dying patients to live their remaining lives at home and in decency.  Federal laws are looming that may help families afford this option and give their loved ones some peace in their final days. Irma Faith Pal of Inquirer News writes about the growing need of good and affordable Palliative Care in her article, “Palliative Care: Helping the Dying “To Live Until He Dies” For any family, it is devastating to hear doctors say there is nothing more they can do for the

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Pastoral Care Givers – Denial: Is it Dangerous?

Pastoral Care Givers – Denial: Is it Dangerous?

Pastoral Care Counselors and Dealing with Denial of Patients Elizabeth Kubler Ross identifies denial as the first response to grief.  She considers it to be a natural reaction to sudden and horrible news.  In her seminar on the dying, she hoped to share with pastoral care counselors, health care professionals and ministers the necessity of denial in the progress through grief. While not everyone follows the same pattern of grieving, pastoral care givers can be assured to witness many cases of denial.  The looming question, however, is when can denial become dangerous, if it ever even can be? Kubler Ross experienced one case of a woman who

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Pastoral and Spiritual Care of a Coma Patient

Pastoral Care for the Coma Patient   Pastoral and Spiritual Care for those in a coma is important because one cannot ascertain if the patient is totally unconscious or not. In this way, pastoral care givers should treat the coma patient as if conscious.  Furthermore, the spiritual energy and presence can also communicate without any sensible connection.  Albeit many deny the metaphysical realm, I would contend as a one of the faithful that such connection would exist. Sara from the Institute of HeartMath writes in her article “The Effects of Compassionate Presence on People in Comas” about the sense of positive energy that can

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Pastoral Care and Dealing with the Angry Patient

Pastoral Care and Dealing with the Angry Patient

Pastoral Care Giving Is Love and Understanding Elizabeth Kubler Ross in her writings spoke of the five stages of grief.  In particular, her studies dealt with the reactions of terminally ill patients and the phases they went through.  Pastoral Care Giving involves an intimate connection of communication between care giver and patient.  In many cases, the care provider supplies the horrible news that someone will soon die.  Within this there will be a multiude of reactions.  One such reaction is anger. So how does a nurse or pastoral care giver deal with the angry patient.  Ultimately with love and understanding!  The care of a terminally ill patient

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Patient Assisted Suicide Possibly in Massachusetts

Patient Assisted Suicide Possibly in Massachusetts

Pastoral Care Givers and Assisted Suicide in Massachusetts   The issue of Patient Assisted Suicide became a national controvery when Oregon first passed a bill that allowed it in the late 90s.  Now Massachusetts is proposing a similar bill.  Many people may support this idea but there are many Pastoral Care Givers who oppose it.  In the article below from Lifenews.com, the concerns regarding this bill are analyzed. Dr. Jacqueline Harvery writes on Patient Assisted Suicide in her article “Massachusetts’ Assisted Suicide Proposal: Concerns on Question 2″ and how it may not be beneficial to those of the state. The

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Are Pastoral Counselors Effected By Your Own Fears of Death?

Are Pastoral Counselors Effected By Your Own Fears of Death?

Medical Caregivers and Their Own Preconceived Notions About Death   In counseling it is always taught to keep one’s own preconceived notions or past out of the objective judgement during a session with a patient.  The same should hold true for medical caregivers.  This represents a large portion of doctors, nurses, social workers and even pastoral counselors. While counselors and social workers recognize the psychology behind death, many doctors are not trained in emotional caregiving.  They tend to not treat the emotional symptoms but only the physical ones.  Treating the disease overtakes treating the wholeness of the human person. With these things in

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Pastoral Care and Giving Of Oneself

Pastoral Care and Giving Of Oneself

Pastoral Care Is About Giving Oneself Completely Pastoral Care ultimately is successful based upon the convictions, beliefs and efforts of the actual care giver.  Carol Nesbitt is a good example of what it takes to give not just one’s skills but ultimately one’s heart to the dying. From Argusleader.com, Dorene Weinstein wrties about Carol Nesbitt in “A Friend in Death”. The hospice room was dim, and the withered man was cocooned in  bedding while Carol Nesbitt sat nearby and cradled his hand. She periodically redraped the cool cloth on his forehead and sang, read softly or simply sat quietly. She

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Pastoral Thanatology Program Superstitions Surrounding Death

Pastoral Thanatology Program Superstitions Surrounding Death

Death and Dying Superstitions Death and Dying involves the unknown and due to this, superstitions will follow. Chris Raymond explores some of this superstitions about death in his article “13 Superstitions About Death and Dying” from about.com While people generally view superstitions with mild amusement these days, it is amazing how many of us still knock on wood to avoid tempting fate, cross our fingers for luck, or avoid walking beneath a ladder “just in case.” Here are 13 superstitions concerning death and dying that persist today and possible explanations of their origins. You may take them as seriously (or