by Jan Lewis
As children of God, we are called to be faithful in all that we do, up to and including the day we are escorted home to heaven.
We are confronted with hundreds of choices each day — to get out of bed when the alarm goes off or sleep a little longer, eat a healthy breakfast or grab a doughnut at the office, stop and help the elderly gentleman across the street or rush past to get to a meeting on time. Some of our choices are inconsequential, while others can have eternal consequences.
No one likes to talk about death. Even to a person of great faith, death can be frightening. It is the end of all that is physically known and it is the final leap of faith in God and in the promise of Jesus Christ. So most parents and children never have a conversation about their wishes — do they want to have a DNR (“do not resuscitate” directive) if they are critically ill, what type of memorial service do they want to have, do they want to be cared for at home, in a hospital or a skilled nursing center? And so, it is at the point of crisis that many decisions get made.
November is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month and an opportunity to have that conversation with your loved one. In your discussions, we hope you will consider consulting with Catholic Community Hospice. This special ministry of the church has been providing compassionate care to terminally ill patients and their families for over 10 years.
You will find that there are many organizations to choose from when selecting a hospice — there are over 60 in the Kansas City metro area alone. Some are large national organizations and some are locally owned. Some operate as for-profit and some as notfor-profit. All of them are required to provide essentially the same level of care because of state and federal licensing regulations. Only one, Catholic Community Hospice, has a direct relationship with the Catholic Church and its mission of service to our brothers and sisters in need.
There is not enough space in this short column to tell you about the wonderful care your family will experience. But what really distinguishes us from all the rest is that, by choosing Catholic Community Hospice, you are also serving God. Contributions from our hospice ministry enable many of the other good works of Catholic Charities, including feeding and housing families in crisis, educating young children, and providing mentoring and support to young women dealing with an unanticipated pregnancy.
“Remain faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life” (Rv 2:10). Make your hospice choice one that is faithful to God’s call.