The vision of the chaplaincy in Anglican Church of Rwanda, Kigali Diocese is to see the value and dignity of every person upheld and to see healing, transformation and reconciliation in the lives of prisoners and their families, the sick and dying and their families and care workers in hospital and prisons through the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The mission of the chaplaincy in Anglican Church of Rwanda, Kigali Diocese is to seek the holistic care and support of people in the hospitals and prisons, workers and their families through the word of God and deeds in the name of Jesus.
- To be a sign of the presence of God in hospital communities.
- To help people find purpose, meaning and growth in their lives.
- To lead worship and to offer sacraments in hospital.
- To provide holistic care of staff, patients and families by working within the multi-discipline team.
- To recruit, train and support Parish Pastors and Christian volunteers for hospital ministries.
- To be a sign of the presence of God in prison communities.
- To help people find purpose, meaning and growth in life and growth in their lives.
- To lead worship and to offer sacraments in prison.
- To provide for the holistic care of staff, ex-prisoners, prisoners and their families by working within the multi-discipline team.
- To recruit, train and support Parish Pastors and Christian volunteers for prison ministries.
THE WORK OF CHAPLAINCY IN HOSPITAL
The major portion of our Lords recorded activity was given to the relief of human suffering, physical, mental, moral and spiritual. Among the divine imperatives which he gave to His disciples was that of healing the man. So, we shall work in that context.
The chaplaincy service at hospital includes:-
- Pastoral visits
- Emotional and spiritual support in times of illness, crisis or loss.
- Prayers for the sick, staff and their families
- Provide physical support for the needy eg. clothes, food and transport
Special services available upon request.
- Emergency baptism
- Naming ceremonies
- Referral to community faith leaders.
The chaplaincy service at hospital will be committed to caring for special spiritual needs of patients, children and families.
The chaplain will be available to help patients’ families of all faith traditions explore spiritual questions and concerns that may arise during hospitalization. Because the spirit is an important dimension of human wholeness and the healing process, our mission is to assist patients, families and staff as they face the emotional and spiritual impact of illness and crisis.
The chaplain shall help people deal with issues of fear, loneliness, ethical values, questioning meaning, hopelessness and hope.
We shall seek to provide resources from an individual’s own faith or spiritual tradition and we shall be available to help patients and families explore the comfort, hope and strength that these traditions provide. A chaplain shall be available to provide spiritual and emotional support to inpatients and families 24 hours a day, 7 days a week if possible.
What we shall do:-
- Dialogue and prayers before surgery.
- Bedside visits during hospitalization.
- Support for patients’ families during hospitalization.
- Confidential listening.
- Worship leadership within hospital.
- Giving sacraments
- Care for their spirit during their physical healing.
- Help patients observe their own faith practices in this setting.
- Pray for hope, healing, comfort and peace.
- Enabling local parishes to participate in the hospital ministry by providing needed resources and training.
THE WORK OF CHAPLAINCY IN PRISONS
Due to 1994 genocide against the Tutsi population, many prisons in Rwanda have been accommodating many prisoners from all sides of the country with different ages, sex, denominations and religions. These prisoners have not been catered for with the word of God because of different reasons. That is why the Anglican Church of Rwanda, Kigali Diocese decided to create the office of chaplaincy in charge of prisons and hospitals.
These people are God’s created creatures, created in the image of God, even Jesus Christ come for sinners not for the righteous, that is why they should be catered for like any other person in the Diocese. The role of the chaplain is a ministry of presence and giving attention to the spiritual dimension. Included are times of direct ministry to individuals for assistance through grieving processes and other personal concerns. We shall listen to the angry, the frightened, the lonely, the poor and those who are hurting in one way or another. It may be a long session or a brief encounter. Pastoral counseling will address multiple issues of the inmates and may bring temporary relief.
A prison chaplain will help tip the scales in a positive direction by simple messages like, God loves you. He cares for you and others like those. To recognize and to respect each person is essential in chaplaincy ministry.
Parish Pastors: Parish Pastors will be trained in how to integrate ex- prisoners in their Parishes, be encouraged to visit them in their homes invite the in their Churches and be near to them and help them to cope with the situation. They will be trained about rehabilitation and reconciliation. They will use skills gained from training to rehabilitate and reconcile prisoners with themselves, prisoners with their families, with the Church, neighbours and the community in which they live in at large. They will be sensitive to fully engage in prison and hospital ministries. The chaplain will do their best to refer patients and prisoners and to keep the clergy informed.
Volunteers: The office of chaplaincy will mobilize volunteers, from different Parishes and train them about caring, counseling, and reconciliation. The chaplaincy office will benefit from support of lay volunteers. They may help in a number of ways. For example after training, some will act as pastoral visitors in the wards and others help to bring patients to the services in the chapel. They will make follow-up visits to released ex-prisoners and their families to avoid and fight against stigmatization. Chaplains will welcome the links made by local Parishes.
Hospitals and prisons chaplaincy team
The office will develop a team which will volunteer in both prisons and hospitals to facilitate in enhancing the Kingdom of God among the prisons and hospitals. The chaplain will be the head of the team.
Christians and community
The office of chaplains will mobilize Christians and community, to participate in offering their riches to the needy and the poor in these institutions.