Forgiveness nearly always changes lives for the better. Whether we are the one offering this gift or the person who is being forgiven, the blessings flow both ways. To me, forgiving one another for being flawed human beings is an important key to a reasonably serene life. However, this mutual understanding is not always easy to come by. Recently, I’ve been thinking deeply about the type of forgiveness that is often desired when families are faced with the illness and death of a loved one. For expert insight into this unique kind of reconciliation, I turned to Pastor Tom Holtey, a chaplain with Hospice of the Red River Valley based in Fargo, North Dakota.
In his 20 years of experience with parish ministries and 10 years of hospice work, Holtey has guided many families through difficult dynamics and end-of-life issues. He confirms that forgiveness is a common topic of interest during this emotional time. Hospice chaplains like Holtey use a wide range of resources in their work, many of which are non-denominational. In the following passages, Pastor Holtey explains in his own words how he goes about helping those who request his guidance.
Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories. “I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.” ...Craig William Dayton, Film Composer
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