Calvary Pastoral Carers recognised as ‘best of care’
8th May 2015
Calvary’s pastoral care team featured highly with presentations and recognition for ‘Best of Care’ and ‘Lifetime Membership’ awards at the Spiritual Care Australia National Conference 2015 in Hobart 21 – 22 April.
Calvary staff received two of the four ‘Best of Pastoral Care’ peer nominated awards. Mary Ringstad, Pastoral Care Manager at Calvary Mater Newcastle and Sister Debra McCarthy, Director of Pastoral Care at Calvary Health Care Bruce, were recognised for “Best of Care”.
In addition Carmel Williams, formerly Pastoral Care Manager at Calvary Hobart, was publically acknowledged with a “Life Time Membership ‘Award for her role as Pastoral Care Manager, Calvary Tasmania and for her contribution to the development of the Tasmanian branch of Spiritual Care Australia.
The conference, hosted by Spiritual Care Australia, the professional association for practitioners in chaplaincy, pastoral care and spiritual services, attracted over 200 national and international spiritual care professionals.
Mark Green, Calvary’s National Director of Mission, acknowledged “the conference was a good and rich experience for Calvary. It is a privilege to see the dedication of our pastoral care team recognised, and for us to contribute to pastoral care approaches across the nation.”
Tony Hassett, Pastoral Associate at the Mater, Newcastle, presented on ‘The Groundlessness of our Being’ in reference to homelessness, uncertainty and connectedness. His workshop abstract proposed exploring the notion that ‘Can re- claiming our ‘groundlessness;’ the experience of God as stranger, our experience of absence and uncertainty, and an appreciation of how shallow our understanding of life is, paradoxically, provide us with the strength to care for people who may be radically different from us?”
Belinda Clarke, Director of Mission, and Sarah De Jonge, Pastoral Care Manager, both from Hobart, presented ‘Responding to a diverse spiritual landscape in changing times: the role of Pastoral Care in an increasingly secular society’. The presentation profiled extensive research and evaluation undertaken to respond more effectively to the emotional and spiritual needs of Calvary Hobart hospital’s patients. The aim of the pastoral care program is to be recognised as a service that responds to each person no matter how they manifest their spirituality and beliefs.