Caring for the Human Spirit
As noted on our website “About” our organization, we are a faith-based mental health, and social services organization providing best practice, evidence-informed mental health recovery services in communities where we are invited.
The primary purpose of our Spiritual Care program within Eden Health Care Services is:
- To assist individuals and their significant others in searching for meaning and purpose in the context of the pain, suffering and confusion caused by mental illness.
- To bring compassion, to instill hope, and to facilitate the healing of each person on their journey to recovery.
- To serve as a connecting link between a patient’s faith community and the patients and staff.
Caring for the Human Spirit
What does it mean when we talk about Caring for the Human Spirit?
Care for the human spirit is all about supporting that innermost part of you, your spirit, that inner core of who you are within this life, within your relationships through all of life’s stages from a person’s health through struggling with mental health challenges.
Why it is important to have support for your spirit?
For many, the relationship they have with God and a faith community is an integral source of support, hope and strength in their life.
We also find support in our lives from those with whom we are in relationship. Our family members, spouses, siblings, children and close friends nurture and care for our spirit every day through their love, presence, support and understanding.
Emotional and spiritual support helps us when our independence, our lifestyle, and our future appear threatened— especially due to illness. Illness affects our ability to work, socialize and find peace. It affects our quality of life.
When diagnosed with a physical or mental illness, we enter into a process of searching. We ask many questions to help us understand. We search to make sense of what may happen to us and we question why and how. We may question all that we believe ourselves to be in this life. We search to understand the meaning and purpose of what this is all about. Illness is part of life and so understanding treatment and care for our illness is the beginning of a process that involves uncertainty, change, adjustment, challenges and healing time. We understand this to be part of each person’s recovery journey.
Facing into mental illness, for an individual, can be a stressful time. Recovery from mental illness is hard work. This is when support of our spirit is crucial.
Our spirituality is deeply connected to any religious values and beliefs we may or may not have at this time or beliefs that we held to when we were growing up.
Spirituality is a life force that promotes hope, encourages healing, helps us to embrace others and enables us to experience transcendence. Spirituality is an integrated progress. It is expressed in the attitudes, beliefs, and practices that influence people’s lives.
Spirituality is an integral component of healing. It is a source of strength in the presence of distress. It is at the heart of our well-being and enriches all aspects of our life: physical, mental, emotional and relational.
What is the difference between Spirituality and Religion?
Spirituality – relates to our human spirit; it is about our connectedness with each other and with our Source of Life.
Religion – has to do with how we practice our spirituality, which is expressed through various religious beliefs, practices and rituals.
Spiritual Needs of All Persons
Meaning & Purpose: “Who am I? Why is this happening? When do I feel most alive?
Belonging: “Who cares for me? Do I have a support network?”
Hope: “Where does my hope lie?”
Communication: “With whom and how can I be open and honest?”
Relationships: “How do I see myself now in relationship to myself and others?”
Forgiveness: “Am I forgiven and/or am I forgiving?”
Eternal: “Do I feel God’s presence in my life or do I feel like God has abandoned me?”
Symptoms of Spiritual Distress
Eden’s Director of Spiritual Care
Presence, Listening, Counsel, Liaison, Prayer, Ritual
Our Director of Spiritual Care (Chaplain) will…
- be present to you and your family, when you need to talk
- listen to you and provide counsel for any issues you wish to discuss
- help you to:
- process and deal with the feelings you have
- explore your strengths, resources, and choices
- be a positive energy empowering you through your illness and recovery
- be available to provide a prayer or ritual, if you wish.
- assist and connect you with emotional and spiritual support resources in your community
If you have any questions related to our Spiritual Care program, please feel free to contact Eden (see contact info on the main webpage) and ask for our Director of Spiritual Care.