Wairarapa chaplain commended for leadership

Wairarapa chaplain commended for leadership

Rev Lizzie Snowsill is the Interchurch Council for Hospital Chaplaincy’s (ICHC) Lead Chaplain in Wairarapa, and is also one of our priests in the Parish of the Epiphany, Masterton.  Recently, the ICHC’s Chief Executive commended Lizzie amongst a group of chaplains nationwide for their outstanding service, and particularly, because Lizzie “works tirelessly to ensure all regardless of spiritual belief or ethnicity are supported.”

Lizzie contributed to the ICHC’s newsletter, telling of the need to build trusted relationships with a variety of stakeholders.  “It took at least three years to build a professional network with social workers, district nurses, the disability responsiveness teams, diabetes and oncology nurses, palliative care, and community health professionals including the Pasifika Health Teams,” Lizzie said in the newsletter.

Lizzie’s role is not simply to visit patients, but as Lead Chaplain, she is responsible for co-ordinating the process that enables patients to access the spiritual care they feel is best appropriate for them.  “It became obvious that the way forward was to  grow an  inclusive, truly patient-centred model based around an awareness of the variance in spiritual needs of patients, families and staff,” Lizzie wrote. “This meant that I had to establish a level of trust at management and board levels that chaplaincy is about provision of spiritual support to people of all faiths –and none.”

Together with a group of people, Lizzie reinvigorated the hospital chapel.  Though it is a consecrated space, there had not been a service there for years, and it had become primarily a waiting place for bereaved families.  Lizzie involved a group of people to enliven the chapel and redefine its purpose as an important place in the spiritual wellness journey of hospital patients.

We’re blessed to have Lizzie as part of our Anglican whānau and are thankful for her answering of God’s call.