There are three main areas of Catholic health services operating within the Archdiocese of Brisbane.
- Hospital Chaplaincy
Hospital chaplains support, heal, counsel and nurture spiritual growth among those who find themselves in the hospital environment.
Centacare Brisbane oversees Catholic hospital chaplaincy in government, Uniting Church and private hospitals throughout the Brisbane Archdiocese. A number of priests, religious and trained men and women minister to the spiritual needs of patients, their visitors and staff.
The pastoral care team visits patients, their families and hospital staff, offering a listening ear, the companionship of the church at this stage in their faith journey and the offer of the Sacraments.
Hospital Accreditation guidelines recognise the valuable contribution which chaplains make alongside other healthcare workers to the holistic healing of patients and their families. Solid training in the areas of counselling, theology and grief and loss are now standard qualifications for hospital chaplains.
Despite the fact hospital chaplains work as volunteers, many attest they receive far more from the exchanges and interaction than the patients ever do.
“They reward you incredibly with their patience and fortitude” one seven year veteran said. “They’re really wonderful, wonderful people and you learn so much from them.”
See Centacare Hospital Chaplaincy services for more information regarding services and locations.
- Mental Health
Catholic Psychiatric Pastoral Care (CPPC) is a support organisation that started in 1987 in response to people suffering with a psychiatric illness. Families and friends also felt a need for the Church to provide a supportive, caring, faith-filled role.
In Brisbane CPPC pastoral carers visit 10 hospitals and 10 hostels on a weekly basis and provide a community centre in Morgan St, Fortitude Valley from 9.30am – 3.00pm for people with a mental illness.
One of the people who uses the community centre has vouched for its value.
“The centre is the perfect place for unsettled minds and restless souls. The pastoral carers are God’s hands, feet and legs lifting us up where we belong. It is a place for things in life that really matter – love, friendship, hope, peace, joy and faith,” he said.
It is quite exceptional that the Brisbane archdiocese had established such an innovative model of pastoral care almost 30 years ago. Approximately 1000 people a week are helped through CPPC ministries.
CPPC has an extensive training program focussed in the area of psychiatry and spirituality which enables selected volunteers to become trained pastoral carers.
These pastoral carers then are able to be in one of the existing six ministries of CPPC; that is Office, Hospital Visitation, Hostel Visitation, Day Centre, Faith Support Groups or Prayer Ministry.
A CPPC Pastoral Carer said “in these days when we need lay people to be doing more, we can give them something to do in a way that they stay in ministry for many years.”
58 Morgan Street,
Fortitude Valley, Brisbane 4006
Ph: 07 3252 5461
Catholic Psychiatric Pastoral Care