Recently, while attending a chaplain’s conference in St. Louis, I stayed at the St. Louis Union Station Hotel. This hotel is located in the building that was once St. Louis’ bustling train station. Union Station was built in 1894 and is huge -- spanning the length and width of a large city block. Its interior is ornate, elaborate, and beautiful. In its heyday, the station could accommodate passengers embarking or disembarking on up to 42 trains at one time.
Today, throughout the station, there are photographs on the walls illustrating what the station looked like in days past when it was a fully operational train station and thousands of people boarded trains there on a daily basis. The pictures show huge crowds of people both in the terminal building itself and down on the Midway where the trains arrived.
As I looked at the persons in the pictures, I wondered who all these individuals were and why they were there at Union Station. Some were persons in military uniforms clearly going off to military training and war. Some looked like businessmen going out of town on business. Some persons were probably going on the train to see relatives and loved ones. Others were undoubtedly at the station waiting for loved ones to arrive whom they hadn’t seen in a long, long time. Some persons looked serious, others happy, and some a bit lost or confused. So many persons, so many stories…
Those of us involved in faith community nursing and health ministry have the privilege of connecting with folks in the midst of life and in the midst of their life stories as they are being lived out. We often have the opportunity to listen and be present to persons one at time as they share with us who they really are, what is most important to them, how God has worked in their lives, and what gives them hope even in the midst of personal travail and hardship.
Health prevention programs, taking blood pressures, health fairs, healthy eating programs, diabetes awareness programs, house of worship safety initiatives, church newsletter articles focusing on healthy lifestyles, visitation with faith community members who are ill, laid up, or hospitalized, and so many other things that we are involved with as faith community nurses and health ministers -- all of which are important, needed, and necessary. But let us never forget the importance of just taking time to listen to people’s hearts and stories. For it is only when we truly listen to one another that genuine and holistic healing occurs.
Craig Schneider, M.Div., BCC
HMA Chief Financial Officer/Treasurer
HMA Board Nominations Slate Posted
The 2014 Board Slate has been posted on the Member's Only page. To see all information related to this vote, including position descriptions, please log into the member's only section.
Chief Financial Officer/Treasurer*
Directors for Constituents
Director for Faith Community Nursing
Director for Spiritual Leadership
Position A - 3 year term 2014/2017
*No candidate for this position. Position description being revised by HMA BOD.
This year's vote is being managed by Election Buddy. It is very important that you save: firstname.lastname@example.org in your email contacts so that you receive your email to vote and it does not go into your "spam/junk" folder.
The email will have a link that takes you to their website to vote. All votes will be confidential, but the system will track whether you have voted. You will only have one opportunity to vote, so do not forward the email you receive, the system does not allow multiple votes.
Casting your vote for leadership is an important part of being a member of HMA. Please be looking for this information to come to you in approximately 5-7 business days by email from email@example.com.
If you have any questions, please contact the HMA Office right away! firstname.lastname@example.org
Program Leadership Update
HMA Director for Program Leadership
In some parts of the country temperatures are reminiscent of summer days. These extremely warm temperatures prompt news reporters to issue heat warnings, encourage the use of sunscreen, drinking lots of liquids to keep hydrated, and not to leave children or pets in cars. These simple warnings provide an opportunity for health ministers and faith community nurses to institute programs and plans to remind constituents of the importance of these seemingly, common sense measures. Many of the programs addressed have potential to promote lasting healthy lifestyle actions.
For several years now during the summer, health ministry programs in northern California have partnered with their vacation bible school leaders to incorporate health promotion activities into the bible school program. Inclusion of programs that provide healthy food choices, physical activity and model to adult’s small ways to include these options in their daily lives are all the rage. Several churches formed relationships with the local school district and many have become certified in the summer feeding program. Others have tackled the soda industry and declared their bible school programs to be soda free and encourage the children and parents to rethink their drink (see more information at Bay Area Nutrition and Physical Activity Collaborative website). Following the lead of Mrs. Obama’s “Let’s move” campaign, physical activity programs that encourage the children to move have made a comeback. Hula hoops and jump ropes are reappearing on church play grounds.
Program leaders have a tremendous opportunity to provide information, education and resources to assist their constituents and community in small ways that can result in a change that can be lifelong. Included in this eblast are examples of the ingenuity of our peers.
Creative Summer Ministry Programs
My summer activity is somewhat different this year. In my mission as the nurse caring for the General Board of Global Ministries of the United Methodist Church, I will participate in the training and development of FCN relationships with 50 young adult missionaries. This will take place in the Philippines in July. I will also be presenting programs on (and discussing with them) issues on physical, mental, spiritual, and relational health as they will be sent to serve for two years all around the world.
At my church, I will also co-facilitate a program called Love is an Orientation that encourages the participants to be a faith community where individuals from the LGBT can feel safe to share their experiences and beliefs and also worship.
One of my volunteer interests outside my mission assignment is for a local free clinic. In February I began an “ask the nurse” morning in the waiting room one Tuesday morning a month. I present an interactive topic then open it up for questions. Yesterday we had a great discussion on summer first aid that led to hip replacement, osteoporosis, and bone density testing questions. Our focus is on consumer participation and answering their questions.
This summer, we will be hosting Camp Noah, a therapeutic day camp for children who have been affected by disaster. Although Superstorm Sandy is long gone, we still have displaced families and many children who have not worked through their disaster experience. Camp Noah teaches children important resiliency skills and helps children find comfort knowing there are others with a shared experience. Camp is open to all elementary aged children in our community. We will be partnering with Lutheran Social Services of Minnesota (creators of Camp Noah), the International Orthodox Christian Charities, our township Municipal Alliance and many other area businesses to provide this camp experience free of charge to participating families.
We are also in the process of developing a Substance Abuse Awareness Seminar for faith-based youth workers, which will be held in early September, before programming starts for the new ecclesiastical year. Sadly, our county is experiencing an unprecedented heroin epidemic, with the number of heroin overdoses doubling from 2012 to 2013. This seminar will be opened to youth workers (youth group advisors, youth pastors, coaches, teachers, etc.) from all faith communities in our area. The goal is raising awareness about current drug trends and prevention programs, recognizing risk factors and enhancing protective factors of our youth. Our seminar will be sponsored by the Toms River Municipal Alliance (with funding through the Governor’s Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse).
Chrysanthe Patestos, MSN, RN, FCN
Saint Barbara Greek Orthodox Church
Toms River, New Jersey
Lyla Pagels program leader from Fridley, MN included "lots of Sabbath time-personal and professional" when asked about summer program plans. It would be great if you would share how you, your ministry and programs found ‘Sabbath’ during the summer. Please submit to me at email@example.com by August 15th to include in the HMA eblast for September.
Have a healthy and safe summer, Marion
2014 HMA Conference Transforming Lives in Faith Communities and Beyond
The 2014 HMA conference planning team has been very busy in recent months and many options will be available for our attendees. Pre-conference sessions will be announced very soon and participants will have opportunities to explore health ministry concepts within three separate tracts.
Following the earlier call for proposals, a record number of speakers submitted an array of truly unique and meaningful presentations. A total of 16 breakout sessions will be available and cover themes from reaching out to serve special populations, developing strong educational programs for professional development and supporting creative approaches to ministry. Poster sessions are also being planned with similar themes.
We will also take time to celebrate HMA’s 25 years of service and free time will be included to take in some of the sights of our nation’s capital. Final details are being determined and a full brochure along with online registration will be available this month. Save the dates now for September 15-17, 2014 and plan to attend. Check out the website for further details!
The Health Ministries Association (HMA) invites you to consider being a Conference Sponsor and/or have an exhibit table at our 25th Annual Conference in our nation’s capital.
Participation is an excellent way to build new relationships with leaders from across the country who promote health, healing and wholeness in the faith and health movement. To learn more on the opportunities available, please go to the Upcoming Conference page.
ANCC Faith Community Nursing Certification Through Portfolio Program Update
ANCC is collaborating with HMA in the development of Faith Community Nursing certification through portfolio. When the program launches, and the nurses become certified, they will become certified in the specialty of Faith Community Nursing, which holds the credential of RN-BC. The RN-BC credential is awarded to all ANCC specialty certifications. Please go to the ANCC website for the latest information.
National Action Alliance For Suicide Prevention: The Faith Communities Task Force is developing a "tool kit" of resources for congregations for September's "Your Life Matters!" Sabbath for Suicide Prevention. They would greatly appreciate it if you could make a contribution by June 1, 2014 to this tool kit by sharing the resources you have for faith communities relating to suicide prevention and/or mental health. They are particularly interested in:
Prayers and liturgies
Sermons or reflections
Hymns and other sacred songs of hope
They look forward to hearing from you. If you have any questions or would like more information about the Faith Communities Task Force or the Action Alliance kindly visit their web site at http://actionallianceforsuicideprevention.org/about-us and please don't hesitate to contact either of them at firstname.lastname@example.org or Anne.Mathews-Younes@samhsa.hhs.gov. You may send your submissions to either of them electronically. If you wish to mail materials, please send them to Anne at this address: Public Sector Co-Lead, Director, Division of Prevention, Traumatic Stress & Special Programs, SAMHSA
1 Choke Cherry Road, # 6 1093, Rockville, Maryland 20852
June - Men's Health Month: This year marks the 20th anniversary of the passage of National Men’s Health Week. National Men’s Health Week 2014 will take place June 9th – 15th (the week ending on Father’s Day). Sponsored by Senator Bob Dole and Congressman Bill Richardson, National Men’s Health Week was signed by President Clinton in May of 1994.
Please consider becoming a Men’s Health Month “partner” by promoting the health and wellbeing of men, boys and their families. The link above may prove useful in helping you prepare awareness activities for June.
Our new system required that we reset all usernames and passwords.
Our new system went live April 14th. If you joined as a new member on or after April 14th, DO NOT follow the steps below (keep a record of the username and password upon joining). If you were a current member on April 14th and you have not reset your password, please do so now!
Your username is the first letter of your first name and then your last name (i.e. Michelle Randall = mrandall), unless you were otherwise instructed by the HMA Office.
Your password was set to hma.
Your password can and SHOULD be changed as soon as you login to the system for the first time following April 13th. Resetting your password will make your profile more secure.