February 9, 2010

Buddhist Hospice Chaplain Hollie Laudal Blogs for the Examiner

My old friend Hollie Laudal, with whom I graduated from the M.Div. program at Naropa University, has just started writing a blog for the Examiner. Hollie is a hospice chaplain, and her first post reflects on the evolution of the role of the health care chaplain. Here’s a choice snippet:

Chaplains play interesting roles. Many people assume that chaplains are Christian, and they react based on their assumptions. We see reactions from, “Oh, a Christian. I’m not interested in that Jesus crap” to the other extreme of, “Oh, please help my mother to accept Jesus into her heart before she passes.”

The author (left) with Hollie Laudal (right) in 2006.

Chaplains have to ride the edge of these extremes, never knowing which they might get. For the most part, however, people fall somewhere between them. They are learning that chaplains are not present to perform particular services, but rather to ask the questions, “What services do YOU want? What do you want this process to look like?” This, of course, may included prescribed ritual, but a chaplain would not assume this before learning it directly from the patient and family.

Stay tuned for more from Hollie here.

In addition, my pal Tyler Mountain has also started blogging for the Examiner. Read his first post about about budget constraints and the suspension of critical thinking classes at the University of Colorado here.

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