Sunday, 1 February 2009

Be Careful What You Pray For...

...or rather, who you pray for.

A nurse in Weston-super-Mare was suspended without pay after she asked a patient if she'd like her to say a prayer for her recovery.

The patient allegedly reported Caroline Petrie, a community nurse, because, although she herself was not offended by the question, she thought that another person might be.

So, it seems that one can now complain on behalf of other people who might be offended by something. Aldous Huxley and George Orwell couldn't have dreamed up anything like it...

Twitch of the mantilla to John Smeaton.

5 comments:

Elizabeth said...

Of course the miserable woman was offended by the offer of a prayer or she would not have reported the kind nurse. Well, that prayer will go to God and be answered but woe to the miserable woman.

Jane Teresa said...

In teaching/youth work I use "I'll be thinking of you" as code for "I'll pray for you", and "values and beliefs" as code for God. Anything more and I'd get the sack; anything less and I'd feel I wasn't making a difference.

dillydaydream said...

I read that it wasn't the woman herself who complained, but her officious sister. I know the type. Always looking for something to pick up on, to feed their sense grievance.

Joe said...

I am involved in pastoral visiting at my local NHS hospital, and do weekly bed-to-bed visting on one ward there. A key principle to which we are trained to work is one of patient consent, not necessarily in a formal sense, but certainly in an informal sense. So, I don't usually try to have a "religious" conversation with a patient unless I already know something about them or they give an indication to me about their religious belief. That then shows a kind of "permission" on the part of the patient for me to talk about it. There are often other "clues" that can be used as starting points for conversations. As far as prayer goes, I always ask a patient with religious faith if they would like me to pray with them before actually doing so, and then ask them if they have a prayer they would like to say (sometimes they don't). This is really important if the person is of a non-Christian faith, as they might be offended by an explicitly Christian prayer, though this is not always the case.

Whatever the circumstances of the complaint against Caroline Petrie, a suspension from work seems a disproportionate response, made possible, I gather, by her working as a "Bank nurse" (nursings equivalent of a supply teacher). I would have thougth that a sensible meeting between Caroline and the Department of Pastoral and Spiritual Care (formerly known as the Chaplaincy) at her local NHS trust should be able to resolve issues in a way acceptable to both Caroline and the Trust.

George said...

Hi Mac,

Lifesitenews has this story and has published an email address for people to write in with their support for nurse Caroline Petrie.

I wrote in with this, if I get a reply I'll send it on to you:

Dear Sirs,

I have read about the recent incident concerning nurse Caroline Petrie who has been suspended from work for offering to pray for a sick patient. This cannot be right.

Please reinstate nurse Caroline Petrie so that she, as a truly committed nursing professional can carry on with her duties with the obvious due care and diligence she has shown to date. In this climate of political correctness any action even a word is often taken to extremes by a vociferous and mischief seeking minority and if we are not careful this case could open up a flood of spurious allegations for this and that etc… which simply fly in the face of plain old common sense.

Nurse Caroline by offering to pray for those in her care simply shows the depth of her involvement and interest in her patients, going that extra mile to make them feel loved, valued and cared for. How in heaven’s name can that be a cause for her suspension from work?

No doubt this situation is causing the good nurse a great deal of personal anguish and the sooner this is resolved to absolve her of absolutely any wrong-doing, the better.

May God Bless the NHS and all who work tirelessly to save lives and ease suffering,

Kind regards,

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