Faith in action for March 15

Spiritual Care Department of Avera Marshall

A time of building hope and healing

During this Lenten season, staff members and community representatives gathered together to share our visions and dreams of the chapel or worship center within the future Avera Cancer Institute Marshall.

Since Avera is a healthy ministry rooted in the Gospel of Christ Jesus, it is our desire that this new chapel will connect with our mission of making a positive impact in the lives and health of persons and communities by providing quality services guided by Christian values. This is especially important for our patients and their family members who have been affected by cancer as they take on a journey to wellness and wholeness.

The Lenten season is a time for renewing hope and healing as we focus on the painful suffering, death and resurrection of Christ Jesus. As we create a prayerful place for people to gather, it is agreed that the chapel will serve as a source of strengthening hope and healing to the whole person – body, mind and spirit.

Similar to our Lenten journey, living with cancer may include feelings of hopelessness, sadness, anger and despair experienced on that first Good Friday; as well as the Resurrectiontide feelings of renewed peace, hope, joy, gladness, healing and wholeness. It is our anticipation that the chapel on our campus will provide place to offer our inner thoughts and feelings to the God of compassion, of healing and of hope who invites us: “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

It is our desire that this chapel, “Will be a house (room) of prayer for all people.” (Isaiah 56:7) It will be dedicated as a sacred place, “where two or three may gather together in God’s Name” (Matthew 18:20) and be able to pray, praise and give thanks to our gracious and merciful God. It will be a place of consolation and solace providing “a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole and to heal the sin-sick soul,” as the African-American spiritual assures us.

As we enter through its doors, being surrounded by stained glass windows symbolizing healing faith, hope and love of Christ, the great physician of our body and soul; we will be inspired as the prophet Malachi, who wrote: “For the Sun of Righteousness will arise with healing in His wings for you people who revere His Name, and you will go forth and leap like calves released from their stalls.” (Malachi 4:2)

The chapel for meditation and intercession will be centrally located near the cancer care areas and be accessible for anyone with a loved one in the emergency room, surgery as well as other areas of the medical center.

We welcome continued interest as we make our journey into a new era of cancer care for the region. We invite all families of faith to pray for God’s abundant blessings upon the future Avera Cancer Institute Marshall as we continue to minister to the physical, emotional, and spirituals needs our wounded sisters and brothers serving in accordance with our Gospel values of compassion, hospitality and stewardship.