Spiritual Care Department

Spiritual Care at Fletcher Allen

The mission of the Spiritual Care Department is to encourage, support and enable the integration and provision of spiritual care and well being in every aspect of Fletcher Allen activities.

The Spiritual Care Department contributes to the health and well-being of patients, families and staff by providing emotional and spiritual support, especially in times of crisis, chronic illness or imminent death.

The Spiritual Care staff is comprised of qualified Roman Catholic and Interfaith chaplains, trained Interfaith Volunteer Chaplains and chaplain interns training in our nationally accredited Clinical Pastoral Education Program. A number of volunteers assist the staff in bringing Communion and visiting patients.

Spiritual Care activities include: 

  • Pastoral visits to patients and families
  • Consultation for spiritual component of total patient care
  • Sacramental ministry
  • Spiritual assistance in emergency situations
  • Support in times of decision-making
  • Ministry to grieving and bereaved persons
  • Pastoral support for staff
  • Short-term pastoral counseling and referrals
  • Regular worship services
  • Special worship services to meet particular needs within organization
  • Networking with community clergy
  • Educational events and workshops
  • The Clinical Pastoral Education Program
  • Providing Bibles and other spiritual literature and lending books from the SRC Library
  • Providing information on the multi-cultural/spiritual traditions of religious faith-groups
  • Healing Touch Services
  • Reiki Services
  • Annual Infant Burial Service
  • Annual Memorial Service

A  Chaplain is available 24 hours a day.

For urgent referrals in house, contact the chaplain by pager:

Call the House Operator at 802-847-0000 and ask to speak with the Interfaith or Roman Catholic Chaplain on call.

For non-urgent referrals and general information:

Phone the Spiritual Care Department at 802-847-2770, located on Baird 223, Medical Center Campus.

Chapels locations:

  • Medical Center Campus: McClure Building, Level 1
  • Fanny Allen Campus: Between the Convent and the Hospital.

You are welcome to come to pray, meditate or simply seek peace any time day or night. Regular service times are posted.

Spiritual Care Volunteer Training Program

The Spiritual Care Department at Fletcher Allen offers an eight-week training program twice yearly (Spring and Fall) for people interested in providing basic spiritual support to people in hospitals, convalescent homes, nursing homes, or private homes.

The sessions are two hours, once a week, with some reading, and suggested activities.

This program is offered by the Spiritual Care Department at Fletcher Allen as a service to the community.

Classes include: 

  • Overview of Program - listening and communicating, the helping relationship
  • Spirituality of suffering
  • The meaning of Illness and Spirituality, Interfaith approach to Spiritual Care
  • Spirituality of Eucharist - role play – only for EMs
  • Death, Dying, Grief and Loss
  • Important points in visiting - ministry to the minister
  • Tour of Hospital, collaborating with staff chaplains
  • Evaluation and commissioning

Since all Spiritual Care volunteers are part of the hospital volunteer department. An hour and a half orientation is provided, as well as the training.

If you desire to be a Spiritual Care Volunteer, you will need to write an essay of no more than two pages, stating your motivation for doing this, as well as presenting a letter from your religious leader stating that he/she is aware of your desire to be a Spiritual Care Volunteer here at Fletcher Allen.

If your intention is to volunteer as a Eucharistic Minister for the Catholic Church, the diocese requires an essay of no more than two pages, stating your appreciation of the Eucharist. You will also need a letter from your pastor stating that he is aware you will be a Eucharist Minister here at Fletcher Allen.

This course is coordinated by Sr. Karen Pozniak, SND de N, MA. Sister Karen is Chaplain Educator here at Fletcher Allen. 

For more information, please contact Sr. Karen Pozniak at 802-847-6537 and email her at Karen.pozniak@vtmednet.org.