December, 2017



We Are Social


Like us on Facebook        




Upcoming Events



Jan. 27:

"Christ Reveals Himself in Tears" presentation, Pastoral Center (see article)


Visit the Pastoral Care Ministry's Website for a complete list of events.






Monthly newsletter: 

   English    Spanish       




Caregiver Information









Did You Know





Information on Alzheimer's Disease and dementia



Are you providing pastoral care to an individual or family impacted by Alzheimer's disease or other form of dementia? Are you looking for information on best practices or helpful tips to assist them? The Alzheimer's Association offers free support to pastoral care ministers and clergy either by phone or in person. For more information, contact The Rev. Dr. William Hinrichs at or 518-867-4999, ext 203.





Mental Illness and Coping with the Holidays



Mental Health Ministries has put out a wonderful guide providing helpful tips for coping with the holidays for people who have a mental illness, their families and friends as well as their faith communities.  Read more.


Circle of Care: A Guidebook for Mental Health Caregivers 

"Circle of Care is designed to guide unpaid friends, family, and neighbors who care for someone with a mental health condition. The fact sheets are intended to assist these caregivers with finding help for the specific challenges identified in the On Pins and Needles study.

The Guidebook emerged from On Pins and Needles: Caregivers of Adults with Mental Illness, a national study on mental health caregiving conducted with the assistance of the National Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health America and released in February 2016.





Alzheimer's Caregiver Conference




"Save the date for the 2018 Caregiver's Conference, March 28 at the Albany Marriott. This will be a day of education, support & up-lifting motivation for family caregivers. Attendees will learn the skills necessary to provide quality care for a person with Alzheimer's or dementia. Over 50 exhibitors will provide an extensive overview of local support services. This is an inspiring day that can be life-changing for a caregiver, and in turn their loved one. More information coming soon!"



Director's Reflection


Come all ye Faithful

..."Just as Christ came into this world as a baby to bring us new life, I experienced a spirit of new life in the giving and receiving that I witnessed this particular day in the interaction of these children with the elderly."... Read more




 Pastoral Care Ministry 

 - Ongoing Enrichment -





"Christ Reveals Himself

in Tears"

Yervant Kutchukian, Presenter


Please join us on Saturday, January 27, 2018 for a FREE presentation, 9:00 am - Noon at the Pastoral Center.

In Pastoral Care, we often meet the tears of those we serve. How can these tears be a source of healing for those we minister to, as well as a catalyst for our own transformation and growth? We shall explore how we see Christ through the lens of tears-both of those we serve and our own-and how these can be a source of healing and hope for the receiver and giver of care. Further information and registration information can be found here




Helping elders celebrate the season when in an assisted living or nursing home


"No matter what reason lies behind the move to a facility, when people move from the family home to an assisted living center or a nursing home, they still need to feel they are at home. This feeling of "home" is often highlighted during the holidays, when tradition commonly comes into play. Help your loved ones celebrate, even if they are not cognitively able to take part in festivities. In your heart, you'll know you did the right thing." Read more




Pastoral Care Ministry

- Different Perspectives -


The Diocesan Commission on Pastoral Care with the help of the Information Technology Department recently produced a set of mini interviews with Parish Leadership, Pastoral Care Coordinators and both recipients of parish pastoral care as well as pastoral care volunteer visitors.  These videos were highlighted in The Evangelist 12/7/17 article "Volunteers are needed to be face of Jesus for homebound".


The videos can be accessed here, and also viewed on the diocesan youtube webpage, under playlists.

Parishes might consider using one or more of these at a gathering of potential volunteers as well as with current volunteers, using the reflection questions which are included with each video for a deeper discussion.





Mental Health Ministries 


"Rev. Gregg-Schroeder began to speak out about her own journey with depression while serving a church in San Diego. Her books, "In the Shadow of God's Wings: Grace in the Midst of Depression" and the accompanying "Group Study Guide", were written during this time.

When Susan took a sabbatical in 2001, Mental Health Ministries began with the release of their first media resource, Creating Caring Congregations, through a partnership with PMM. That relationship resulted in award winning resources on mental illness. "Creating Caring Congregations" and "Mental Illness and Families of Faith" received Telly Awards for excellence. It was also during this time that Susan became recognized as a national speaker, consultant and writer on spirituality and mental illness. As a result of this growing ministry, she did not return to the local church. Mental Health Ministries continues to collaborate with other faith based groups to provide resources to help erase the stigma of mental illness in our faith communities." 

Access more information and resources regarding Mental Health Ministries here.




Why Joy Is a Gift For Advent, 

Not Just Christmas 

(& Thoughts From Pope Francis)


By Ashley Osmera 

"Joy is a funny thing.

It's a word that is thrown around to describe as many types of circumstances as one can think of. People speak of joy in many ways. They will say they are overjoyed that:

  • they had enough coffee grounds left to make one last cup of joe
  • they recently found out that they are expecting a child
  • they made it on time to a meeting despite horrible traffic
  • they just confirmed that their cancer is in remission

Google defines joy as "a feeling of great pleasure and happiness," and basically asserts that joy is a simple emotion, such as being angry, happy, or sad. If this is indeed true, then living joyfully depends on the presence of a circumstance which invokes happiness, relief, or the absence of distress.

However, for the Christian, joy is much more than a fleeting emotion. Instead, Galatians 5:22 lists joy as the second fruit of the Holy Spirit, meaning that joy is a gift that we receive from God through the Holy Spirit.

There is a "but" here. Just because joy is a gift that we receive does NOT mean that our role is purely passive. Joy is a gift we can seek out, and a gift that we can dispose ourselves to receive more readily and more consciously."   Read more.






  Join Our Mailing List  


Diocesan Commission on Pastoral Care | |  Pastoral Care Ministry Website |
Phone: (518) 641-6823
Fax: (518) 641-6841




Copyright © 2012. All Rights Reserved.