Compassion and Support


Patients & Families

Faith Based Perspectives- Patients & Families

Advanced Care PlanningSeriously ill patients rely on spiritual, religious, and existential support to help cope with illness and symptoms.  This support has been shown to improve the quality of life and can impact medical decision-making.

Facing the end of life is stressful for patients and families. Patients regard their concerns about religious, spiritual and existential matters as being very important.  A person’s faith perspectives can have a great influence on his or her personal choices for end-of-life care. Having a greater understanding of how religious beliefs affect our approach to how we make choices is essential in the advance care planning process.

The Community-Wide End-of-Life/Palliative Care Initiative launched the Advance Care Planning campaign in September 2002 with a Press Conference with Spiritual Leaders in Rochester at which time ten leaders from multiple faiths and cultures signed their own Advance Directives at a public ceremony. Among the spiritual leaders present at the signing were Bishop Matthew Clark (Roman Catholic Diocese) Bishop Jack McKelvey (Episcopal Diocese) Dr. Muhammad Shafiq (Imam of the Islamic Center of Rochester) and Rabbi Laurence Kotok (Temple B’rith Kodesh). View their comments pertaining to advance care planning.
Faith-based communities serve a key role as community partners in advance care planning. When available, parish nursing can assist in providing education and one-on-one counseling as part of parish ministry.
Reliable information about faith perspectives is needed to assist patients, families and professionals. Additional information will be added through input from faith leaders.

Recorded Webinar


Faith Perspectives

Roman Catholic