Encouraging congregations to reach out to multiethnic communities through a health-and-wellness education ministry is the focus of “Missionaries Without Passports,” a free webinar scheduled for 1 p.m. Central Time on Monday, June 15.
Sponsored by LCMS Health Ministry, the webinar is designed for parish nurses, pastors and others who are part of a multiethnic congregation or community.
Rita Nickel, executive director of Lutherans in Medical Missions and a former medical missionary to Kyrgyzstan, will lead the webinar discussion, presenting principles and skills for administering transcultural care while emphasizing the distinctive opportunities parish nurses have as they serve others in health-related ministries.
Acknowledging her passion for community-health education, Nickel notes that U.S. demographics “are changing rapidly and we are — more than ever before — a ripe mission field as cities nationwide are receiving refugees and immigrants, often directly from displaced-person camps.”
Connecting with these transcultural populations is a heaven-made task for parish nurses, who can go out into the neighborhoods, become acquainted with residents, discover their health concerns and develop ways to meet them, says Nickel.
“We must do all we can to remove the glasses through which we view the world and learn to see and hear through the eyes and ears of our new neighbors,” she says. “What do they believe about health and wellness? Once we understand these things, we will be more equipped to share health information with them.”
Nickel relates the situation of a pregnant woman from another culture who was so shocked and uncomfortable with being examined by a male doctor that she refused prenatal care. “We neglected to consider her feelings, resulting in frustration, misunderstanding and lost opportunities,” Nickel explains.
“God has placed” congregational health ministries — and parish nurses — “in position for such a time as this, just like [the Bible’s] Esther,” she adds. “By reaching out and being leaders in their churches, [parish nurses] are becoming missionaries without passports.”
To register for the webinar, click here.
For more information, contact Tracy Quaethem at 888-843-5267 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted May 12, 2015