ESNEFT chaplains and their dedicated team support our patients, their families, and our staff and volunteers at any stage of their life, talking and listening to people from all walks of life to meet their spiritual needs.
Lead chaplain Allison Cline-Dean, said: “We will always be there for a patient who is dying and they want their last rites read, or if someone is in spiritual distress.
“Part of the patient’s care is to ensure their spiritual needs are met. That’s just as crucial as them having the right medication and therapies – the spirit is an integral part of everyone.”
“You do not have to be religious and we are for the spirit of every person, whether they are religious or have different beliefs or faiths.
“Religion takes up 5% of my job, caring for the human spirit takes up 95%. We all have a spirit in us and it is about honouring the person and their beliefs.”
People often find themselves in desperate situations but there is very little our chaplains have not heard or seen before.
Allison said: “We are confidential, non-judgemental and we can always offer a listening ear.
“We can be the guest of a patient but can also be the host at their bedside, however, will respect a person’s wishes if they do not want visitors.
“It’s a privilege and an honour to do what I do and it is so humbling to work with staff, patients and carers.
“For our staff, we are there to comfort them. For instance they may work with children every day and see some difficult things and then have to go home and look after their own family, so things can hit close to home for them. We are there to comfort and support them.
“There may be things going on at home so it’s about being there for them and giving them the opportunity to talk about their concerns.
“It allows staff to go back to work in a better frame of mind feeling able to cope and they are not alone.”
Our chaplaincies are open to people of all faiths and beliefs.
Allison, who has been a chaplain for 23 years, having previously been a legal secretary for 20, said: “We have Muslim colleagues, Jewish, Buddhist, Sikh colleagues, people from other faiths and beliefs, including Humanist, who can come in to the hospital and give our patients the care and support they need.
“We are also there to teach our colleagues how to deal with different situations. For instance we speak to our colleagues in the cancer information centre once a year about how they can and need to acknowledge spiritually for those people that have cancer.”Back to top