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- A Nurse’s Spiritual Handbook
Nursing with the Hands of Jesus: A Guide to Nurses for Divine Mercy, IV Edition (2019) authored by Marie F. Romagnano, MSN, RN, CRC, CCM, CLCP and other devoted contributors continues its unique and beautiful purpose of providing nurses (and other health professionals) a spiritual guide for integrating the elements of the Divine Mercy message into patient care. I am compelled to write this review in hopes of inspiring nurses and students of nursing at all levels to embrace this guide that truly holds a wealth of information and inspiration for the practice of nursing as well as one’s spiritual and professional growth. From the previous edition of the guide is the beginning chapter on the founding and mission of Nurses for Divine Mercy. The second chapter, contributed by Fr. Seraphim Michalenko, MIC, provides nurses with a “ministry kit” for providing spiritual care that centers on the dedication as health professionals to caring for the sick and the dying; and beautifully describes and displays the Divine Mercy image of Jesus and message. Chapters follow that focus on the spirituality in the life of the nurse, contributed by Fr. Kazimierz Chwalek, MIC and enriched with beautiful pictures of Divine Mercy Jesus and our Blessed Mother. This chapter is followed by a guide for caring for the whole person and spiritual care specific to emergency situations and death that all nurses can follow and would find most informative for their practice. New to this edition, is the final chapter also by Fr. Kazimierz Chwalek, MIC, which is enriched with prayers for the sick, dying and dead illuminated by scripture readings and the diary readings of St. Faustina.
I found the unique and touching aspect of this guide in the story of its author, a compassionate practicing nurse in her work with traumatically injured patients and their families who knew and experienced first-hand, every day the absolute critical need for nurses to care for the whole person (body and soul). This nurse, Marie, observed day-in and day-out that many nurses though committed to meeting the emotional and spiritual needs of their patients, lacked the support within their work environment, the confidence of knowing what it means to provide this care and helpful tools to guide them. It was clear that all of these factors would strengthen nurses to follow their hearts and provide spiritual care to patients particularly in those times of extreme vulnerability and when facing death. Thus, the guide for Nurses for Divine Mercy came to be not only a publication, like no other, for the spiritual and professional formation of nurses, but also became a lifelong dedication for Marie. A dedication to enhancing the spiritual care of patients by guiding and educating nurses about the assessment of patients for spiritual distress, planning care and ensuring that patients receive the appropriate spiritual and pastoral care. I am blessed to be with Marie on this journey.
Suffice to say, there is more content than one could imagine would fit in this conveniently small book designed for nurses to have at their reach. Each page opens up to content that spoke to me as one who often seeks spiritual uplifting and foremost as a Catholic nurse and academic leader. I end with where I began…it is my hope and my strong desire to bring the gift of Nursing with the Hands of Jesus: A Guide to Nurses for Divine Mercy, IV Edition (2019) to nurses and student nurses to use for both their personal and spiritual growth as well as to inform their practice in a world where patients and their families so desperately need a compassionate nurse who recognizes the need and provides spiritual care.
Kathleen B. Scoble, MA, MEd, EdD, RN
Dean, School of Nursing
Professor of Nursing
College of our Lady of the Elms