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Bringing Comfort, Healing, and Hope

November 28, 2018
If you or a loved one has been hospitalized, you know how stressful the experience can be. At GBMC, the Spiritual Support Services team, led by Rev. J. Joseph Hart, is there to help patients and their families find comfort, healing, and hope during what can be a very difficult time. Rev. Hart talked with Good Morning Maryland’s Ashley James about the services that he, his multidenominational staff, and 75 volunteers provide every day.

“We all have a fear of the unknown and have issues that we’re dealing with,” Rev. Hart explained. “Our mission is to provide spiritual support as the patients we work with define it, whether they practice a particular faith or don’t. We serve as facilitators to help resolve family relationship issues and strive to walk with patients and their families to alleviate suffering and struggle and to answer questions.”

GBMC’s Spiritual Support Services cover 34 different faith traditions. The multi-faith chapel offers services for people from a range of faiths, including Catholic and Lutheran communion services, Muslim prayer, and Jewish services, and is open 24 hours a day for individual prayer and reflection. There’s also pet therapy, bringing therapy dogs to comfort patients of all ages, music ministry that includes piano in the hospital lobby and classical guitar in the pre-surgical unit and ICU, and a kosher pantry for Orthodox Jewish families and patients.

In addition to supporting patients and their families, the team does community outreach. They adopted 63 families during the last winter holiday season and provided them with food and gifts donated by staff and others in the community.

“When people are in the hospital, they’re looking for a sense of grounding and security,” Rev. Hart added. “We’re here to help make the hospital feel more like home.”
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