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Chaplain and
pastoral care

Chaplain & Pastoral Care

Medical center chaplains are available 24 hours daily to provide counsel and comfort for people of all faiths and beliefs.

The Medical Center chapel on the second floor is always open for prayer and to people of all faiths. Services for children and for teens are scheduled weekly, and Catholic Mass is celebrated in English and Spanish. The chapel is home to a dramatic stained glass mural depicting the biblical story of Noah and the ark. The mural, designed by nationally known artist Gordon Smith, was funded by donations from civic groups, faith congregations and Cook Children's physicians, employees, children and their families.

Cook Children's chaplains are ministers with expertise in the spiritual needs of children, families and staff in a hospital setting. Chaplains may celebrate baptisms, weddings and other rites important to a patient's faith. Chaplains also provide bereavement support, conduct funerals and memorial services, and help families consider organ donation. Physicians, staff and families seek chaplains for ethics consults, mediation of conflicts and counseling referrals. Chaplains can help patients and families find a faith connection at any of more than 120 area congregations that participate in the interfaith prayer ministry.

Contact a chaplain

Call 682-885-4030 and ask the Medical Center telephone operator for assistance.

Services available

Cook Children's Medical Center offers an Interfaith Prayer Ministry to give local church congregations a way to support patients, families and hospital staff. More than 120 congregations of many faiths provide support and receive the medical center's weekly prayer list.

Some congregations provide family partners, who offer out-of-town families the care they would provide hospitalized members of their own congregation. They run errands, lend a listening ear and deliver home-cooked meals. Other congregations adopt patient care units, providing staff with snacks, encouragement and prayers.

PrayerBear program

Many congregations and community organizations participate in the interfaith ministry's PrayerBear program. New toy teddy bears of all shapes, sizes and colors are blessed during worship services, then delivered to medical center chaplains. These bears are given to patients who need encouragement or support after a painful procedure, during a lengthy hospital stay or during difficult times.

Chaplains tell children that "this bear comes to you with love from people you have never met who are praying for you." The PrayerBears often mean so much to children and their families that some families return to the medical center to donate bears to the program.

Kids' Chapel

Kids' Chapel is a 30-minute service designed especially for children. It includes story time, children's songs and a craft activity related to the story. At prayer time, children may share their feelings, such as fears of undergoing surgery, sadness about illness, joy at the prospect of going home or pride in a newfound ability to walk or talk after injury.

Teen Chapel

Teen Chapel recognizes that hospitalized, ill and injured teenagers have different emotional and spiritual needs than those of young children. This service includes a brief devotional, group discussions, and a time to talk openly about faith, fear and hope.

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