Soul Support

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Soul Support
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A young dancer's last hope--a bone marrow transplant--has failed. A homeless man, in the final stages of AIDS, refuses to speak. A newly retired woman has just received a terminal diagnosis and is wailing in despair. What can we learn about death, dying, and the human spirit as we journey with a hospital chaplain into sickrooms like these? Soul Support tells true stories of people coming to terms--or not--with their final days. It offers intimate, behind-the-scenes accounts of the many ways patients, their families and friends, and hospital staff all deal with death and dying. It speaks to readers reflecting on their own mortality or the life-threatening illness of a loved one, and tells of the sometimes-astonishing events that can occur when people are in their last hours of life. The book tells not only their stories, but also the chaplain's. It relates how she listened and learned and stumbled and grew. Soul Support speaks to believers and nonbelievers alike, providing information, inspiration, and hope. ""Soul Support is both a thoughtful presentation and a brilliant modeling of the chaplain's craft at its finest. . . . [T]his is a Wisdom transmission in the classic sense of the word, meaning that the stories and parables convey a deeper unitive meaning, opening out onto universal truth."" --Cynthia Bourgeault, Episcopal priest, author, and retreat leader ""Soul Support is much more than a chaplain's compelling memoir, it is a guide for anyone with a seriously ill loved one or friend. When two friends faced sudden life-threatening illnesses, nothing in my professional life had prepared me to help them or to deal with my own grief. Soul Support, with its many moving accounts of patients and families facing the end of life, gave me the courage and tools I needed."" --Clint Stretch, director, The Center for Spirituality in Nature ""Maxwell's many riveting and poignant stories of encounters with a broad range of seriously ill and dying people are a great gift. The stories reveal the amazing fruit born of her sustained desire to be present, soul to soul, with each very different person, as she opens to the promptings of the loving Mystery who she deeply trusts is always present. . . . I expect you will find it both a valuable education and a personal blessing."" --Tilden Edwards, founder and senior fellow, Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation ""Maxwell gives word and witness to some of the most profound encounters of the human spirit and the mystery of God. Soul Support will deeply touch all who read about the sacred space of those facing their own mortality, and those who dare to journey with them."" --Jan Naylor Cope, provost, Washington National Cathedral, Washington, DC Joan Paddock Maxwell was trained and served as a chaplain in three acute-care hospitals in the Washington, DC area. During six years as palliative care chaplain, she served patients with life-threatening illnesses. The co-author of two previously published books, she received a Master of Theological Studies from Wesley Theological Seminary and was endorsed as a hospital chaplain by the Episcopal Church. She lives in Washington, DC with her husband David.
Publication Date: 
June 20, 2017