Hospital Chaplaincy at Caswell Clinic
Happy Birthday Caswell Clinic - double figures! Birthdays and anniversaries are important markers of time.
My contact with Caswell probably began in about 2008. I was already helping to provide a few hours religious and spiritual support for patients in Glanrhyd each week after our parish (Pen-y-Fai) had been approached the previous year by Mental Health Services. The vicar's timetable was already quite full and so I was asked if I would be willing to help out. It was Rob C, who months later, approached me to ask if I would visit someone in Caswell and later if I would hold a Christian service for those who wanted it. I'm still doing these things, but hopefully I have learned to adapt as needs change with time. It is important always to be learning.
A chaplain must be available to people of all faiths or none. Their job is not to judge or to try to convert people to a particular way of thinking, but to go wherever there is a request and first and foremost to listen. Every request is different, we all have a story, sometimes people want re-assurance, sometimes they want to ask questions, sometimes they want to be able to continue in their faith tradition, All the staff are involved in supporting these things and I'm just an added extra. I don't have all the answers. I do know that I gain from meeting people and that visiting Caswell is not just a one-way thing.
I have come to think of Caswell as a kind of Oasis, a good place to come, a positive place. Whether we live, work there, or like me, just visit, it becomes part of our story.