Here at Springhill Hospice we care not just about the physical aspect of a person’s illness but also about its impact on their wider wellbeing. For this reason, we aim to provide psychological and spiritual care for patients and their loved ones. Spirituality is about how we make sense of the world and about our sources of hope, strength and comfort. For some people spirituality is closely linked to religious belief but for many it is not. Serious illness, whether our own, or that of someone we love, shakes our world and can cause us to ask some big questions, questions like; ‘why is this happening to me?’ or ‘what does it mean for my life?’ It can also cause some people to question previously held beliefs by which they made sense of life.
Illness can be bewildering and disorientating. Our Spiritual and Pastoral Care Coordinator, Rev Michele Ryan, and the Spiritual Care Volunteers who work alongside her, are available to talk about anything that matters to you; whether that’s something which is troubling you, changes to your beliefs, loss of hope or practical and relational problems.
The Spiritual Care Team is also available to provide religious care to those of faith. There are regular short services from the Christian tradition in the Hospice chapel – please ask for details of these if you are interested. Michele will also happily offer prayer and/or Holy Communion to anyone who would appreciate them. For people of other faith traditions, your own faith leaders are very welcome to visit or if you are not connected to a particular faith community but would like to receive some religious care from someone within your tradition, we can facilitate this too. Our Quiet Room is our designated multi-faith space and the cupboard in this room is home to a number of faith resources which we hope might be helpful to you and which you are welcome to use whilst in the Hospice.
We have a small Chapel which is not an overtly religious space but rather a quiet space to rest a while and to enjoy some peace. The Chapel is also the home of our memorial beach. Many people find that following the loss of a loved one they welcome the opportunity to express their love and loss in some form of symbolic act. At the beach you are invited to choose a pebble and write the name of your loved one on it before adding it to the existing pebbles. Periodically the beach is cleared to allow a new beach to form. Once cleared from the beach the pebbles are added to our Memorial Cairn in the small orchard at the back of the Day Therapies. You are welcome to visit the Cairn at any time.
As many people continue to find ritual and symbol helpful on their journey with grief, we also offer bi-monthly Remembrance Services and annual Light up a Life Services. Both these services offer the opportunity to remember your loved ones and celebrate their lives and include the symbolic lighting of a candle in their loving memory. The bi-monthly services are by invitation and you will be invited to a specific service a number of months after your loved one’s death. The services are not religious in nature but offer a simple reflective space in which to remember alongside others who are on similar journeys with loss and grief. The Light up a Life services take place in December and are open to all. You can obtain information about these from Reception or from our website in the autumn.
Rev Michele Ryan Spiritual and Pastoral Care Coordinator