January has been a very fruitful month for networking here in the Spirituality Department. This month I have attended several University of Kentucky County Extension meetings from different facets of the organization here in Casey County to build bridges within our community. I am delighted to say that the results have been wildly successful. As a result, I have had the honor of being asked to serve as a Family and Consumer Sciences Council Member as a Signature Representative and representative of the elderly and aging population of Casey County. Photos from last year’s first and highly successful trellis garden sparked great interest and gave us a fair amount of credibility amongst the members of this agricultural county. Already the extension office has blessed us by involving us in the planning phase of forthcoming special projects from the Homemakers Club this spring. They include providing participation and sweets for our Spirituality Department Valentines Tea, making royal robes for our Valentines King and Queen Valentines Party, bringing birdhouses to assemble and paint, and making personalized wheelchair and walker caddies for our residents. A Petting Zoo Day is also in the works when the weather breaks as we link with the Casey County 4-H Department to continue our intergenerational connections. Because of this new networking opportunity, our home has also been invited to participate in collaborative community service efforts with the Community Garden Share Program, Seed Exchange, Community Safety Program, Community CPR Training and Grandparents Day. At each of these events, we have the opportunity to show off our “wares” and give back to the community. Many of these events will be taking place here at our home in Liberty. here at It’s all so exciting! The Revolution continues!
Dominic R. Gordon,
Chaplain Signature HealthCARE of Liberty
Ever since the first disciples began to spread the good news of the gospel there has been a need for more laborers in the spiritual fields of life. This certainly continues to be the case in healthcare chaplaincy. There are so many needs and so few hours in the day. How can a small group of spiritual leaders called Chaplains/Spiritual Directors make an impact with so many needs among our residents, their families, our stakeholders, and their families as well? It may seem overwhelming, mostly because it is exactly that!
The answer to this quandary is as old as the church itself. We cannot meet the need by adding more ministers – we must MULTIPLY them instead! The multiplication happens when we cease to rely on professionals to get the job done, but instead utilize the expertise of the professionals (in our case the Chaplain/Spiritual Director team) to train an army of every day folks who can pray, encourage, and share the message of hope with the thousands who are in need of care.
One Chaplain/Spiritual Director is limited in how many lives he or she can touch in a single day. But if that chaplain can train and release a dozen or more others into the work, suddenly there is a flood of care and hope that is spread throughout our resident and stakeholder family.
This is the “new” strategy for our spirituality pillar. Obviously it’s really not “new” at all. It’s really a return to what has always worked in every community around the globe. Things may look a bit different in the short term. Chaplains/Spiritual Directors will be doing far more training of stakeholders than ever before. This will initially seem to reduce the touch our Chaplains/Spiritual Directors have among our residents, but the goal is to train and release an army of spiritual caregivers from among our talented and gifted stakeholders. Once this army gets engaged in meeting needs – anything from sharing a word of kindness and hope, to quick prayers at the bedside, to encouraging a fellow stakeholder – the whole organization will be deeply affected with spiritual growth and a culture of joyful hope. Volunteers from the community will also be trained and released to join the army – people already highly gifted from our area churches, synagogues, and other communities of faith.
Multiplying disciples – that’s the strategy for the Signature Army. It’s a vision big enough to include everyone who longs to be a part of spreading hope, joy, and care into the lives of those around us. Come and join this revolution of spirituality!
I recently read a reflection about being comfortable in the middle ground between old and new.
When I look back over the last year and life in general, this reflection gives me comfort because life is always in the middle ground. Getting out of normalcy into unknown open space may feel like suffering, because it is letting go of what we are used to experiencing. If we aren’t willing to let go of yesterday, it becomes hard to enter new sacred space.
Because of circumstances in our personal lives, 2017 has brought much change to many stakeholders, residents/elders, and families who have found themselves in unfamiliar territory. Unprecedented changes to our industry has introduced challenges to the Signature family that have caused major disruption to our work flow as well as our personal lives.
The question is, “Am I going to find comfort in the disruption?”
Come back for more on this topic – finding middle ground between old and new.
Have compassion for all beings, rich and poor alike; each has suffering. Buddha
There is only one God and he is God to all. We should help a Hindu become a better Hindu, a Muslim become a better Muslim, and a Christian become a better Christian. Saint Teresa of Calcutta (Mother Teresa)
Recently Mother Teresa was canonized as Saint Teresa of Calcutta. How does someone become a Saint? Aren’t those people from a long time ago who lived in a different time/culture than we do today? What can I learn by her example?
The answer is simple, she loved people. She didn’t ask people about their faith or perspective before she served. She looked for people in need, serving the poorest of the poor or providing services to people with AIDS when others were afraid.
It would be easy to think “oh that is Mother Teresa she is one in a million”. The reality is when we look around there are saints everywhere. CNA’s and nurses that day in and day out provide compassionate care. Members of the environmental and dietary teams that provide consistent humble service. Leaders that patiently and positively grow stakeholders to find purpose in their work. Home office team members that work behind the scenes to keep the revolution moving. One such saint is Stacy Smith a nurse aide at the Memphis facility; click here and see her story.
In today’s whirlwind environment it would be easy to think I have no power or influence, but everyone can be the hands and feet of God and when we look around many stakeholders are doing that. The challenge is can we join together as one team; loving those around us.
Mother Teresa had high expectations of Sisters of Charity and she built a movement with one simple reference “God doesn’t ask us to do great things. He asks us to do small things with great love.”
God today give me the patience to look for an opportunity where I can lovingly be your arms, legs or voice where compassion and love are needed.
David R. Baumgartner, SPHR, SHRM-SP, SSGB, CNA
VP of Spirituality and Sacred Six
Pray Your Way and receive uplifting messages throughout the work week by texting Endless Hope to 24587
On March 10, Signature Healthcare of Bremen hosted the wedding of Linda Jones, an occupational therapist at Bremen, and Jerry Lairson. Linda asked one of our residents, Joy Johnson, to be the mother-of-the bride for the day. Linda and Joy have an incredible bond. Joy accepted the honor and insisted on giving away the bride! Joy has worked hard in therapy so she would be able to stand for the wedding pictures. Over 40 residents joined us in the therapy gym and lined the hallways in celebration of the joyful day. To quote one of our residents “break out my Sunday best, I’m going to a wedding!” We were honored that Linda and Jerry shared this beautiful day with us.
Reverend Jessica Singleton, Chaplain
Signature Healthcare of Bremen
Now in our sixth year, the National Day of Prayer is our largest company-wide event held on the first Thursday in May. A national healthcare movement, representatives from any and all faiths and walks of government life encapsulate a singular theme, “The Signature Nation-A Movement: ‘Shout it aloud, do not hold back. Raise your voice like a trumpet.’ ” – Isaiah 58:1
Posters are in the mail to facilities today!
The Compassion Fund continues to assist in amazing ways and the needs are growing. When you shop remember the generosity of our partners AmazonSmile and your neighborhood Krogers.
AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon that lets customers purchase the same selection of products at the same price, but the AmazonSmile Foundation donates a 0.5% of the price to The Compassion Fund each time you shop with them. If you have an existing Amazon account, you can use the same account and link it to The Compassion Fund here. It costs you nothing! You can also go to AmazonSmile.com then select AmazonSmile and select The Compassion Fund as your preferred charitable organization. You only have to select us once and every time you log in to Amazon, the site will remind you to check out using AmazonSmile.
Many of you might be familiar with the Kroger Community Rewards Program, which is similar to the AmazonSmile program. You can register your Kroger Plus Card here to begin making the same type of donation each time you use your card. There is no cost to you, and it will help us raise funds to provide assistance and alleviate suffering of our stakeholders, residents and our community members.
So, all year-round, in addition to donating via your paycheck, you can also shop compassionately just by patronizing our partners for your everyday needs.
Feel free to share this information with your friends and families as well. We thank you for helping us fulfill needs of those around us.
Tonight at sunset begins the Jewish holiday of Purim which continues through tomorrow evening at sunset.
Purim is the Jewish holiday of Purim which commemorates the deliverance of the Jewish people in the ancient Persian Empire from destruction in the wake of a plot by Haman – a story recorded in the Biblical Book of Esther.
According to the Book of Esther, Haman, royal vizier to King Ahasuerus planned to kill the Jews, but his plans were foiled by Mordecai and Queen Esther. The day of deliverance became a day of feasting and rejoicing.
Purim is characterized by public recitation, usually in synagogue, of the Book of Esther (known as k’riat megillah). In addition to this there are additions to the regularly said prayers and the grace after meals, the giving of mutual gifts of food and drink, giving charity to the poor, and a celebratory meal. Other customs include drinking wine, wearing of masks and costumes, and public celebration.
Like Hanukkah, Purim has more of a national than a religious character, and its status as a holiday is on a lesser level than those days ordained holy by the Torah. Accordingly, business transactions and even manual labor are allowed on Purim.