We are blessed to have a parish nurse who is available to answer questions, locate information, identify resources and provide support to maintain health and cope with illness.
Please see below for her current article and the News tab for past articles.
Past Health Education programs have included:
• Program on Advanced Directive/Health Care Proxy.
• Survey on death followed by a program to present the results and discuss the findings.
• Program on funeral planning.
• Oral Health.
* Program on Nutrition.
* Program on Dementia
Please see the News tab and calendar for future programs.
A display of Care Notes is stocked with helpful information on health topics, specific conditions and helpful information for coping and for caregivers. Posters are prepared on health topics such as the current flu season. Health articles are also featured in our monthly newsletter.
Members and friends of the congregation knit or crochet prayer shawls. They are blessed and given to people facing illness and loss. A prayer is enclosed with the shawl telling the recipient(s) that as they are enfolded in the warmth of the shawl, they are warmed by our prayers knowing that they are held securely in God’s love and care.
Ministry to the bereaved. A series of four grief books are sent to families who have lost a loved one throughout the first year of loss.
Meals are provided to members who are ill as needed.
A Prayer Chain is available for prayers submitted on our website.
Dear Family and Friends,
We are now looking at the days becoming shorter; many people tend to become hermits until spring. Its dark earlier, its colder, who wants to do anything??! Life continues and we must not stop striving to be healthy just because the weather changes! Since the beginning of time, the concept of health was related to the notion of wholeness and peace, Shalom, as it is possible in a relationship with our living God (Num:6:26). God was seen as permitting illness, but also as the ultimate source of all healing and restoration. These ideas continued into the New Testament, with the additional image of Jesus, as our Healer, who always is seen as wholistic, compassionate, and powered by the Spirit of God. He healed people physically, but it was never only physically!!! At that time, as today, people struggled with the explaining individual sin as the cause of suffering and illness. These are ideas which Jesus refuted, but He does remind us that illness and suffering are present, because of the reality of sin in our world. What can we as Christians do to be good stewards of their wholistic health??
Exercise most every day (fit, but slightly overweight people have better health profiles than normal-weighted persons who are inactive) Avoid or reduce obesity. Move to a "Garden of Eden" Diet. Try to obtain calories from fruits, vegetables and grains. Do not use tobacco! Use alcohol minimally as a beverage and not a DRUG! LEAD your life, rather than being led (by your dark side, your stressors and demands or by other people). Monogamous marriage is good for the heart, mind, soul, and body STAY CONNECTED!!! Worship, Bible Study and Fellowship are healthy whole person practices! Active Christians have stronger immune systems , less depression, and better quality of life! WORK rest into your life! It can be hard work, but it is as needed as sleep....sometimes our sleep is as tense as our awake time. Find a health care provider you trust and schedule annual screenings!
If I can be of any help to you and your family, please contact me. "Don't be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the LORD and turn your back on evil. Then you will gain renewed health and vitality" (Prov 3:7-8).
Yours in Christ, Karen C. Davies RN
Our Parish Nurse, Karen Davies, received her nursing diploma from Baystate Medical Center School of Nursing in 1990. She received her Bachelor's Degree from American International College graduating with honors in 1999.
The first 12 years of her nursing career were spent in Long Term Care, first as a staff nurse and eventually a Unit Manager. The Unit Manager position required more administrative responsibility, and therefore less contact with residents. Karen accepted a medical/surgical position at Wing Memorial allowing her to return to patient care for four years and then she transitioned to the Intensive Care Unit, for another four years. Currently she works for a Primary Care Physician in the Wing system.
Karen always felt a calling to serve the church and a calling as a nurse. Many times throughout her career she has let her patients know that they don't have to carry the burden of their illness alone. They can give it up to God and God will take care of their fears, worries, and troubles. Karen found the role of Parish Nurse where she could blend her nursing and religious callings together. She completed a Parish Nurse Course in 2006. She currently serves Bethesda and East churches in this capacity.
A Parish Nurse is a health educator, health counselor, and can act as a liaison with community health organizations. The Parish Nurse an also help be a clarifier of the close relationship between Faith and Health. Nurses practice holistic nursing; caring for the "whole" person in mind, body, and spirit.
Karen C. Davies BSN, RN, Parish Nurse
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Bethesda Lutheran Church East Chruch, Congregational Address: 455 Island Pond Rd. Springfield, MA 01118 Ph: 413-733-4494 Email: Admin@BethesdaSpringfield.org