How far that little candle throws its beams! So shines a good deed in a naughty world.
-William Shakespeare

From "The Healing Power of Faith" by Harold G. Koenig, M.D:

Steps for the Nonbeliever to Help a Religious Loved One Who is Ill

1. Contact your loved one's clergy and ask them to say special prayers or perform a religious ritual for the ill person. For Roman Catholics, you may wish to dedicate a mass. For Protestants, request special congregational prayers to be said during a service. Many Jewish congregations will also say special prayers for the recovery of the ill. Jewish healing centers will send spiritual counselors to visit your ill loved one. Be sure to tell the patient what you have done, not to claim credit, but to extend emotional solidarity.

2. If the person has faith in religious shrines or sites (Lourdes, the Western Wall, etc.) request that prayers for their recovery be said there.

3. Give the person an inspirational book, audio book, or CD with religious music. This might provide comfort during periods of lonely anguish.

4. Take an active role in assuring that a chaplain or member of the clergy regularly visits and prays with your loved one, whether the patient is hospitalized or being treated at home.

5. Help collect and deliver to the hospital messages of faith from members of your loved one's religious community and from religious friends and relatives.

6. If your loved one is convalescing, offer transportation to attend religious services. If the patient has hearing or visual impairment, you can arrange for adaptive devices: scripture or other inspirational literature in large-print or audio.

Join the Discussion
comments powered by Disqus