Community of Hope

New Training For Community of Hope

Are you interested in visiting with the sick, the homebound, or others who are in need of a listening heart and the voice of hope in their lives? If so, you might consider becoming a Community of Hope chaplain.

We will begin a new training series March 25, 2014. What is the Community of Hope? Most simply said, it is a pastoral care community. The organization was started 15 years ago at St. Luke’s Episcopal Hospital in Houston as a response to a very real concern. because we live in a society where few people really listen to others, so many people need someone to listen and respond appropriately to their spiritual needs—especially those who are ill, suffering, lonely, or in pain. The role of pastoral caregiver is not just for clergy, but can be filled by appropriately trained lay people.

The Community of Hope training is rooted in Benedictine spirituality and the pastoral care model that many hospitals use to train pastoral caregivers. Prospective chaplains receive 42 hours of training over a period of several months in areas such as Benedictine spirituality and Christian meditation, listening skills, coping with loss, making pastoral visits, and exploring spiritual gifts.

After training and commissioning, our new lay chaplains will join our active chaplains in monthly Circle of Care meetings that include continuing education, peer support, spiritual formation, worship, and fellowship. Membership is not limited to members of St. Thomas or to Episcopalians.

If you feel that this may be a ministry to which you are called, please contact Cathy Villani. I also encourage you to look at the Community of Hope International Website for more information.