Clients who become mindful of the fellowship that exists at St. Mary’s often find emotional release and healing. Anyone who is interested in embarking on a spiritual journey that is both gentle and steadfast, as well as community oriented, will find that St. Mary’s place for you!
At St. Mary’s pastoral care is about providing spiritual presence, companionship, prayer, and, most importantly, love. The Chaplain facilitates conversations around religious, spiritual, and cultural beliefs and practices. When clients first arrive at St. Mary’s often the first thing the Chaplain attends to is to reduce spiritual, religious and/or emotional distress. Here it is important to remember that spirituality isn’t always religious, although it can be. Spirituality speaks to what gives meaning, purpose, and comfort to a person’s life. When those things are compromised due to addiction, illness, racism, religious discrimination, classism or sexism and other negative forces, that struggle can be especially challenging. Here the Chaplain and other spiritually oriented caregivers can help clients find support for the release of emotional and spiritual distress as they talk about the components of their lives that have been injurious to them emotionally and spiritually. Along this line the Chaplain also contributes to facilitating conversations regarding the plan of care and the patient/family experience when it comes to managing grief and bereavement. Here the chaplain is always available for prayer and counsel upon request.
Faith & Addiction Group
The relationship between addiction and spiritual awareness is explored in this group. We create a space that acknowledges that there comes a time in the lives of many people when the things to which they have been most addicted no longer work for them. This is often precipitated by a medical, psychological or social crisis. It is at this point that people are forced to admit that a radical life change is necessary. And it is at this place of crisis that many people come to St. Mary’s find themselves.
The Empowerment Group
Through a series of topic related sessions, The Empowerment Group uses a variety of resources to explore client feelings about drug use, sobriety and harm reduction. Members share selected readings and build a framework for their personal recovery journey. Literature is used to stimulate conversations and reflection. Clients may journal their thoughts. Each week the clients share their past knowledge, readings and recap their observations. At the completion of the series clients share what they have learned with the group and how they can and will apply these realizations.
The Positive Affirmations Group
The primary goal of this group is to help clients develop positive affirmations to challenge and undermine dysfunctional thought patterns that may be sabotaging them from making positive life choices regarding mental health treatment and harm reduction. In the Group the clients talk about their emotions and feelings as related to receiving positive affirmations about themselves from their peers. Clients also share how low self-esteem played a part in their own negative behavior.