Author Archives: Stephen Bowling

“The Value of the Chaplain” by Chaplain Ellie Curry

Recently we had a 91-year-old gentleman come to Surrey for some short term rehab.  We had a wonderful conversation as I completed Spiritual Assessment.

His sons were present and we did a lot of reminiscing once we discovered that we were both from New York; loved Yankee foods (Sabrette hot dogs, New York pizza and potato knishes) and that my grandmother worked at a restaurant in Queens called Bickfords, which he often frequented.  I also learned that he was a practicing Catholic and would welcome a visit from Father Andy. Conveniently, our Catholic Church is next door to Surrey.

This resident was not here long when suddenly one morning he stopped breathing. The Emergency Rescue arrived and subsequently took him to our local hospital but his sons were in shock and very upset, as would be expected.  I called the parish next door and they told me that Father Andy would head to the hospital.

When I got to the hospital, I met Father Andy in the parking lot and we went in together.  At first they wouldn’t let us go back, because the room was full of ER staff and Rescue as they continued to work to keep him alive, but as quickly as we were told to wait in the waiting room, a nurse overruled that decision and told us that it was okay for us to go back.

Father Andy was able to administer Last Rites to this dear man before he passed and he was able to minister to the sons as well. Shortly after, one of the sons thanked me for contacting the priest, saying that receiving the Last Rites was very important to his dad.  He also told me that Father Andy told them that in the many years he had served in this parish, he only had two occasions to administer this sacrament, and this was one of the them.

The ER tech confirmed that they rarely had the priest come, because they never thought to contact him.

As a new chaplain, I learned many valuable lessons today, but it became very clear to me that knowing the elders spiritual needs and their desires at end of life is so very important.  It made all the difference for this family.

 

Chaplain Ellie Curry

Surrey Place Care Center
110 Southeast Lee Avenue
Live Oak, FL 32064
(386) 364-5961

 

“Small Thanks” by Chaplain Larry Limbaugh

I walked in the front door from hospital visits and two stakeholders grabbed me squeezed me with bear hugs.

I had forgotten that I wrote a handful of thank you cards early this afternoon and stuffed them into the DON’s mail box before motoring to the hospital.

I think that I bought eight cards for a buck fifty and I already have two hugs that are priceless.

Small thanks are big investments.

#shcchaplainscorner

“Skipping” by Chaplain Larry Limbaugh

I pulled in to work this morning and then sat in silence in my paid for Equinox for five minutes with my eyes closed and without saying a word.

And the Spirit seeped in as the rain softly fell.

I felt the day fall into place even before it happened and a deep cool voice intoned,

“You can’t make a mistake big enough today for me to stop enjoying you.”

I have been skipping ever since, well as much skipping as one can do in a 300+ pound body.

#shcchaplainscorner

“Holiday Wisdom” by Chaplain Larry Limbaugh

Wisdom for the holidays:

1.  Just because it is there doesn’t mean you have to eat it.

2.  The idea of a Hallmark Christmas is nice but not very realistic.

3.  Sadness happens at this time of year.  It is as normal as a holiday ham.

4.  Lower your expectations on the behaviors of certain relatives.

5.  You are a gift to someone this year and you may not even know it.

6.  Find some woods and walk around in silence.

7.  Rum balls DO contain alcohol. You might want to limit yourself to less than a dozen on an empty stomach.

Larry Limbaugh, Chaplain
Winter Park Care & Rehabilitation Center

#shcchaplainscorner

“Stress Medication” by Chaplain Larry Limbaugh

Yrsterday and today, and several times in the past, I buy a bag of wrapped chocolates like Kisses or miniature Snickers and hand them out to Stakeholders saying, “Here is your stress medication for today.  Take one and don’t call me in the morning.”  This builds good will and inspires a lot of fun and good will.  Additionally, many stakeholders thank me later for the medicine. (Often, I say that this medication is Dr. Oz approved, because he recommends chocolate for stress.)

Larry Limbaugh, Chaplain
Winter Park Care & Rehabilitation Center

#shcchaplainscorner

“Happy National Frustration Day” by Chaplain Larry Limbaugh

Today at 3 pm, we will scream into pillows and then laugh for no reason for about five minutes, and then some will spread bright, beach towels on the floor and lay down like it was first grade all over again.

We will drop into deep silence and rest for about fifteen minutes.

This stillness produces a profound sense of security which in turn reduces the frustration we feel at everyday turn of events like getting one’s 2006 Chevy Equinox nabbed from the front yard or the rude comments of a troglodyte.

How do you plan to spend your National Frustration Day?

“There I Said It” by Chaplain Larry Limbaugh

Chaplains, sometimes are you like me in that I can be so right about something and yet be so wrong.  Most of what we stand for so strongly and hard-headedly is really nothing more than our opinion given a slap dash of a coat of religion and pride.

Have we heard of agreeing with our adversaries?  Jesus said to do it.  When someone criticizes me now I know that there is some truth in it.  There is some inkling of truth in any grievance that someone may have against me.  Do we then venture to make great and noble stands on things that really will not matter a month from now?

I like what St. Thomas a Kempis said “He (or she) to whom the Eternal Word has spoken has ceased from a multitude of opinions.”

I am willing to say that 99% of what we refuse to compromise on is opinion anyway.

Show me a chaplain who is humble and willing to admit that he is wrong a lot and I will show you one who enjoys higher chances of meaningful employability.

There, I said it.

“World Traveler Talk” by Chaplain Larry Limbaugh

Roger Pynn, family member, local business man and world traveler talks to residents and Stakeholders about a recent trip to Europe including: England, Germany, Finland, Denmark and Russia.

His talk helped us to understand how others live life in various parts of the world. His presentation drew us together just a little closer as a world community which is one of the aims of our spirituality at Signature HealthCARE.

Larry Limbaugh, Chaplain
Winter Park Care & Rehabilitation Center