How spiritual care helps
Grand River Hospital offers a full-service spiritual care program, helping to meet the needs of patients, families, physicians, staff and volunteers.
Sometimes called chaplains, spiritual care providers work with all people--those connected with a faith community, those who find themselves without community, and those who find their support outside of a faith group.
We believe that many spiritual practices are important to healing. Sometimes patients want a visit from their own spiritual leader or are seeking a particular religious ritual. At your request, we can help you contact spiritual resources and faith communities outside the hospital. Spiritual care providers can also help patients and families talk about their specific spiritual or religious needs and how these can best be met during the time in the hospital.
How to reach a spiritual care provider
If you would like the services of a spiritual care provider, ask any hospital staff to assist you in contacting us. You can also call our main extension 2142 with less urgent requests, or contact the on-call spiritual care provider through the hospital switchboard (dial ‘0’ on a house phone, or 519-749-4300 ext '0' from outside the hospital).
You are welcome to visit us at our offices in the KW Campus, 3C corridor, room 310, a space we share with volunteer resources. At the Freeport Campus, you can find us at the Village Centre 2nd floor swing space (not far from the Sanctuary).
Through a long-standing volunteer on-call program, a spiritual care provider, either staff or volunteer, is available 24 hours a day for emergency and crisis situations. In partnership with the local Roman Catholic Deanery and St. Mary’s General Hospital, there is also a Roman Catholic priest on-call for Sacramental emergencies at all times.
We have the equivalent of four full-time spiritual care staff at Grand River Hospital, as well as approximately 35 volunteers and over 300 credentialed local faith community leaders. All staff spiritual care providers and several of our volunteers are trained through the Canadian Association for Spiritual Care (CASC). You may find more information about the profession of spiritual care at the CASC website (opens in a new window).
All our staff spiritual care provider are also registered psychotherapists with the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO) (opens in a new window.)
Celebrating World Interfaith Harmony Week and its impact on the GRH communityFebruary 1, 2017
It's World Interfaith Harmony Week. The GRH community is celebrating the occasion by remembering how our local Interfaith Grand River organization came together following a tragedy, and how their work has benefited the hospital community.
Ala' Al-Thibeh: learning to be present as a spiritual care internDecember 4, 2016
Ala’ Al-Thibeh loves being a spiritual care provider at Grand River Hospital. Spiritual care providers are key for supporting the spiritual well-being of patients in the hospital. When patients and families are in crisis, spiritual care providers are often called upon to provide assistance and support.
Laura Fietje: helping to provide a wholeness of careDecember 3, 2016
Laura Fietje knows how important spiritual care can be to others because she’s benefitted from it in her own life when she was presented with a difficult challenge.
Florence Juma: supporting patients and educating the next generation of spiritual care providersDecember 2, 2016
Florence Juma knows how religion and spirituality play key roles in the lives of many people. So it can become even more important when a crisis lands someone in hospital.
Thank you to our spiritual care personnel during Spiritual Care and Ethics WeekOctober 17, 2016
GRH is pleased to shine the spotlight on our spiritual care department during Spiritual Care and Ethics Week, happening from October 16th to 22nd.