Hospice Workers Heal Families of Terminally Ill with Power of Prayer - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

2/15/04

Hospice Workers Heal Families of Terminally Ill with Power of Prayer

Facing the death of a loved one is never easy and helping people cope with loss can be just as difficult, but that's something local Hospice workers face each day. Hospice is a program dedicated to helping the terminally ill and their families cope with death. It's not an easy job as you can imagine, but that's where prayer comes in -- not just for physical healing, but spiritual healing as well.

"I truly get a lot out of my work everyday, and I feel that I'm on holy ground with our patients and I get glimpses of God in the situations that I meet everyday," says Elizabeth Abraham, a Chaplain for Hospice of Lubbock. She meets dozens of terminally ill patients and their families at the end of life's journey. But even in death, her impact on them is eternal.

"When they're dying, they have a need to have some reconciliation in their life with their spirituality and with God," says Abraham.

Surprisingly, the subject of death is often never brought up.

"This one man I went to visit would never talk about his disease. He had leukemia, he never wanted to talk about it, and it wasn't up to me to make him talk about it. He always asked me to have prayer," says Abraham.

Prayer about more than just physical healing.

"When I pray, I don't pray for necessarily a miraculous healing. I pray that they would feel God's presence in their life and that they would know that in life and in death we all belong to God and that God is with them," says Abraham.

For Betty Prince, dealing with her mother's death was almost too much to bear.

"I was having a difficult time with it and Hospice came in here and I know that when they came in here they saw a caged animal because the stress was just about to get me down," says Betty Prince.

Betty and her mother had a strained relationship for many years. And this tension between them was obvious.

"I had made two or three visits our here and the wheels began to come off," says Chaplain Bruce Cotton.

Even Bruce Cotton knew something just wasn't right, but through the Power of Prayer, Betty and her mother reconciled before it was too late.

"Honestly, I believe that's where the healing really first began because she began to pay attention to her relationship with her mother," says Cotton.

And it's this part of the healing process Hospice workers say is the most rewarding. Helping family members make peace with themselves and each other through the Power of Prayer.

"Spiritually, it's such a blessing to have two wonderful chaplains do the job they do and prayer is very much a part of what we do," says Hospice Director Nanette Minton.

"Being able to see, work with them, and pray with them and see everything get plugged into the right hole again was just very satisfying and fulfilling," says Cotton.

Betty's mother passed away months ago, but she says finding peace during that difficult time would have been impossible without Hospice and of course prayer.

Hospice of Lubbock has been here for more than a decade and currently serves about 100 patients with two very dedicated chaplains.

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