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Convincing Article

Lisa Burkhart's article, "A Click Away: Documenting Spiritual Care" has convinced me that computers can indeed help us provide even more whole-person care to our patients. Burkhart shows that computers, rather than causing our care to become cold and impersonal, can truly enable us to increase the "heart and soul care" we provide to our patients-if we take advantage of the opportunities offered by the computerized health records that are rapidly coming our way.

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Thanks, Dr. Burkhart, for providing this insight, along with a wealth of information describing the many nursing diagnoses, interventions and outcome scales related to spiritual care which are already accepted and supported by our nursing leaders and freely available for our use. Praise the Lord for putting these resources at our fingertips. Now it's up to all of us to continue to develop and use these resources.


Harriet Coeling


Cleveland, OH


JCN Not Living Up to Its Name

In your winter 2005 JCN, the article "Mentoring for Spiritual Care Giving" by Cleda Meyer was upsetting. The articles in your journal should reflect the name of your journal. The name of the journal that contains this article would more appropriately be titled the Journal of Spiritual Nursing. The article mentioned that we are to provide spiritual care without violating the "separation of church and state." However, the Constitution doesn't contain those words. As Christian nurses, our faith needs to be our priority in all we say and do. Yes, I need to respect the beliefs of my patients, but if I'm given an opportunity to share my Christian beliefs with a patient, I need to make the most of that opportunity.


Angela Acker


Rib Lake, WI


Editor's Note: You are right in your concern that nurses understand the principle of separation of church and state derived from the First Amendment. Many nurses are concerned about sharing their faith because this principle is misunderstood and misrepresented. Dr. Meyer clarified that patients are guaranteed freedom of religious expression, noting "what is important for nurses is respecting the beliefs of our patients-not avoiding spirituality or religion" (p. 40). Dr. Meyer was advocating that nurses can (and should!!) share their faith without violating this principle.-KSS


Got a Spiritual Care Question?

Is there a question about spiritual care that you'd like us to address in the FAQs in Spiritual Care column? Send your question. Look for a response in future issues of JCN. Write to or PO Box 7895, Madison, WI, 53707.



The winter and spring 2005 JCNs, Vol. 22, no. 1 and no. 2 have the wrong expiration date for the continuing nursing education tests. The tests will expire in 2007, not 2006 as printed.


looking ahead

Fall 2005: Faith-Based Nursing Education/Technology


[black small square] Christian Community Online?


[black small square] Operation Jessica


[black small square] Navigating Clinical Failure



Winter 2006: The Aging Population/Gerontology


[black small square] Spirituality and Aging


[black small square] Changing Long-Term Care


[black small square] Parish Nursing-Ministering to Elders


[black small square] Spring 2006: Men's Issues


[black small square] Men in Nursing


[black small square] Health Screening? Not me!!


[black small square] Living with Prostate Cancer



Summer 2006: Caring in Nursing


[black small square] Christian Caring?


[black small square] Memories of Caring