Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada

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St. Joseph's Care Group

St. Joseph's Care Group


Spiritual Care

Hospice and Palliative Care Unit at St. Joseph's Hospital

Spiritual Care Services are provided to the patients, their family members and to the staff working on our hospice and palliative care unit.

The Spiritual Care Associate helps to facilitate connection and/or reconnection with patients and their local clergy and assures that all patients' religious and sacramental needs are meet whether that is through arranging for clergy visits, sacramental rites, such as Sacrament of the Sick or Holy Communion, or a bedside visit. The Spiritual Care Associate participates in all family/inter-professional team meetings and is available for follow up emotional and spiritual support.

The Spiritual Care Associate is able to provide a ministry of consolation, sanctuary and healing perspective making in a multi-faith context and often makes use of the sacred space provided by our Multi-faith room to allow First Nations peoples the opportunity for prayer and sacred ceremonies.

The Spiritual Care Associate is available to provide beneficial narrative listening to circumstances of grief, loss and bereavement follow-up and provides literature and other resources for those experiencing the ravages of the loss of a loved one. The Spiritual Care Associate can also provide referrals to counselling services for those experiencing complicated and/or prolonged grief.

Spiritual Care within the context of the Hospice and Palliative Unit provides follow-up bereavement care together with guidance and ritual to assist the grieving. At Christmas there is a special time set aside to assist grieving family members to attend the Chapel to place an angel on our trees. Family members also receive a sympathy card and anniversary card on the anniversary of the loss. In addition, a Memorial Service is offered every 4 month to honour the lives of those who have died throughout the year in the hospital setting.

The Spiritual Care Associate also assists staff members to deal with their own losses in relation to their caring for others by providing an opportunity for the Blessing of the Patients Room, and through availability for debriefing at any time.

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Supported by: The North West Local Health Integration Network of Ontario