The Community Chaplain provides pastoral support and care, ministering to all, including and especially those who are on the fringes, those who have no one else, no church connections (or connections with a church that cannot help them because of lack of resources).
Here is a little sample of where we are so far:
--Clint has been working with many different people on life transitions, which has included moving into assisted living, working out at-home elder care and moving from rehabilitation back home.
--He visits specific people on a weekly basis for the purpose of fellowship, Bible study and simple home repair. This is part of the over-arching ministry of presence.
--He has made many, many, MANY hospital visits, for those who need support during times of family or personal illness.
--He has performed weddings, funerals and ministry of the sick.
--He leads a weekly study and prayer time in our home.
--He leads a service at a local nursing home 2-3 Sundays a month, with the support of several of our ministry partners.
--He ministers via telephone, too, offering encouragement and information to those in need or crisis.
There is no ordinary day. He might spend a few hours having coffee with an elderly lady who has asked him to do some home repairs, and then stop at another couple's home to put together a new kitchen table, and then meet someone else at Panera to offer a listening ear, and then spend a few hours on the telephone working out a delicate assisted-living transition before he devotes some time to preparing his next lesson or service.
None of these tasks are paid. All are freely offered. All are freely and joyfully given.
We did try to work out independent contracts with some homes and facilities, but unfortunately, spiritual care falls low on the budgetary concerns of most medical facilities. Here and there, Clint is compensated for a funeral or wedding.
We are doing everything we can to be faithful to the calling God has placed in our lives. My work is helping to support us, but that's another entire story (which I'd be happy to share, but which doesn't belong here).
We have been encouraged to begin seeking support for this ministry. We are so grateful for all of the love and encouragement given to us by those near and far.