web analytics
October 25, 2014 / 1 Heshvan, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



The Ins And Outs Of Visiting The Sick: An Interview With Hospital Chaplain Rabbi Simeon Schreiber

.

You write, though, that it’s important to leave a patient with hope.

Exactly. You always leave with the idea of hope. I have a patient right now dying of pancreatic cancer. But I never go on statistics. I had cancer myself eight years ago. I say to patients: I want you to know you’re looking at someone who had cancer, and here I am talking to you. You always have to have hope because the truth of the matter is we really don’t know. There are stories every day where people who you think are going to die just don’t. We’re not God. So although you don’t promise, you do give them hope.

You’ve been a chaplain for a decade now. What are some of the more interesting things you’ve experienced?

I write about one of them in the book. When I was a chaplain in Hackensack University Medical Center before moving to Florida, a young lady came over to me and said her mother had been in a very serious accident – she was hit by a car going 80 miles an hour – and asked if I would mind visiting her.

When I came into the room I saw a very seriously ill woman. I spoke to her for just a few minutes – I didn’t want to tax her – and at the end I said, “May I say a prayer for you?” She said yes, and I said, “What is it that I can pray for?” She said her dog Buttercup had died two weeks ago, and she’s concerned that the dog is not being fed or walked properly in heaven. Would I please pray for Buttercup?

Well, I went to Yeshiva University and studied under Rav Soloveitchik, but I never learned how to pray for a dog. Nonetheless, I created a prayer that God should take care of Buttercup in heaven, He should make sure that he has friends, that he’s walked daily, that he’s fed properly and that he will be very well taken care of. When I finished I saw that the woman’s face completely changed. She was relieved that I had prayed for her dog.

So it’s important to ask what patients want you to pray for because if you make the wrong assumption, you may end up saying a prayer that has nothing to do with what they really want.

Of course, there may be those who say, “I don’t want any prayer,” and you accept that as well. I’m not there to force prayer or my religious beliefs on you. The idea is to be present with the individual and allow them to know there’s someone in the world that cares about them, is listening to them, and will try to help them through their situation.

About the Author: Elliot Resnick is a Jewish Press staff reporter and author of “Movers and Shakers: Sixty Prominent Personalities Speak Their Mind on Tape” (Brenn Books).


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “The Ins And Outs Of Visiting The Sick: An Interview With Hospital Chaplain Rabbi Simeon Schreiber”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Do you know where your vegetables grow?
Not So Kosher Shemittah L’Mehadrin
Latest Sections Stories
Nimchinsky-102414-Flag

Over the course of the next couple of weeks we were planning our daily schedule by the minute. At any second we would have to change our plans. It was understood by everyone on the bus that this was not the normal agenda for the summer, but we still managed to have a ridiculous amount […]

Schonfeld-logo1

Avromi often put other people’s interests before his own: he would not defend people whom he believed were guilty (even if they were willing to pay him a lot of money).

Kupfer-102414

The Presbyterian Church USA voted to divest from three companies that do business with Israel.

How can I help my wife learn to say “no,” and understand that her first priority must be her husband and family?

My eyes skimmed an article on page 1A. I was flabbergasted. I read the title again. Could it be? It had good news for the Miami Jewish community.

Students in early childhood, elementary, and middle school were treated to an array of hands-on projects to create sukkah decorations such as wind chimes, velvet posters, sand art, paper chains, and more.

It is important for a therapist to focus on a person’s strengths as a way of overcoming his or her difficulties.

Sadly, there are mothers who, due to severe depression are unable or unwilling to prepare nourishing food for their children.

Michal had never been away from home. And now, she was going so far away, for so long – an entire year!

Though if you do have a schach mat, you’ll realize that it cannot actually support the weight of the water.

More Articles from Elliot Resnick
Resnick-102414-Pergament

I think Seth Lipsky is amazing, but it just drives home the point that newspapers have a lot of moving parts.

FE_PR_100112_22Learning_CableTV425x282

Can teenagers seriously be expected to behave properly when they are surrounded by so much suggestive material? Is it fair to expose them (and ourselves) to so much temptation and then tell them, “Just say no”?

If you remember, in 2006, a Jewish kid in Paris, Ilan Halimi, was abducted, beaten, and held hostage for three weeks… These are the kinds of people attending these Gaza solidarity rallies.

King Solomon said it long ago: “Cast your bread upon the waters” because you don’t know when you’ll hit something. Our job is to do.

Formerly an attorney at the prestigious law firm Proskauer Rose for 40 years – six of those years as its chairman – Fagin holds degrees from both Columbia and Harvard Universities. He retired in 2013 to devote more time to the Jewish community.

The message is that Zionism, which used to be great, is today very institutionalized and [consists of a] bunch of people who are just squabbling over titles and budgets.

For Steinsaltz, the Rebbe was no less than “the greatest man I have ever met,” as he writes in the preface to his book.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/health/the-ins-and-outs-of-visiting-the-sick-an-interview-with-hospital-chaplain-rabbi-simeon-schreiber/2011/12/21/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: