religion in the workplace - page 10

There was a ghost story thread about posessed people dying and taunting the nurses after begging them not to let them die. It inspired the question: How many of you are religious, and do you ever... Read More

  1. by   Multicollinearity
    Quote from jojotoo
    What other religions is it accepable to make fun of?
    If you will look at the context in which this comment was made, you will see that this statement was not a general statement towards everyone of the Christian religion. It was a directed statement towards specific obnoxious proselytizers. The poster stated she was having a problem with strangers in the grocery store even, asking if she has found Jesus. I was referring to rude and boundary-lacking conduct by a small subset within Christianity.

    It is a statement I have only used once in real life, and I would use it again, if I needed to get someone who lacks boundaries out of my face.
  2. by   Indy
    "have you all lost him again" was hilarious... my poor keyboard!

    Seriously, I would have thought that being smack in the bible belt would land me a lot of interesting situtations regarding religion, especially at work. Well nope. I had one patient's daughter ask me if I was a christian, which I politely declined. She was puzzled and voiced that she thought someone so sweet must surely be a christian. I thanked her for the compliment and that was that. There was nothing offensive or rude in her behavior, in her way she was showing that she cared about me. I took it that way, anyhow.

    Another lady spent part of her evening talking about her church and the different age sunday school classes she used to teach. Somewhere in the chatter was a gracious invitation to come to her church. I told her I'd keep it in mind.

    Some part of me has become more tolerant than it used to be when I was younger. I think my developing self got the words religion and career mixed up somewhere because I spent an awful lot of time trying to figure out what religion I would be when I grew up, but I always knew I should be a nurse.
  3. by   CHATSDALE
    jojotoo, i know what you mean about the politically correct making fun of
    christianity but if someone asked a muslin woman why she was wearing a 'rag' on her head it would be considered insulting [not saying it would not be insulting but respect should not be doled out according to your own prejudices]

    trying to explain faith to someone who compares God to the toothfairy is like trying to explain plaid to a blind person
  4. by   LPNJessi
    I have had quite a few opportunities to "be there" spiritually for my patients. The majority of the patients at my work are the same religion as I am and so I know what things would be of comfort to them. I had one patient that had a very hard night and we talked for over an hour and she ened up coding in the am just as I was getting ready to give report. She came back to my work a few weeks later and she told me how greatful she was for me talking to her and how much it meant to her and that she was glad I took the time to be with her. I had another patient that knew she was dying and asked me about my beliefs. It ended up being a very spiritual experience and until she died she referred to me as the nurse that opened her heart and helped her thru a very hard time.

    I don't go around and pressure anyone to believe what I believe. I also have had others of different religions include me in the prayers and I felt very honored by them welcoming me. I personally don't think it really matters what religion you are as long as you are the best you that you can be and don't pressure others with your beliefs.
  5. by   queenjean
    Quote from CHATSDALE

    trying to explain faith to someone who compares God to the toothfairy is like trying to explain plaid to a blind person

    Aww, come on, dale, tell us what you *really* think of us.

    I did not realize that faith was a characteristic exclusive to believers in God.
  6. by   Roy Fokker
    I work in a Mennonite institution.

    My name badge carries our motto - and includes the declaration that all staff work in accordance of the principles of "our Judeo-Christian" heritage.

    I am neither Jewish. Nor Christian.

    I have often had to face situations where my patient has asked me "Do you believe in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior?" and I have always responded by stating that I prefer not to answer that question.

    Most of my patients respected that boundary and dropped the subject.
    Some of them became rather offended.
    One patient refused to have me as her nurse after that point.

    I understand the frustration some members (especially the non-believers) have expressed at being subject to proselytization. It is an invasion of my personal, private space to be subject to it without an invitation on my part. On average, I am approached about 4-6 times a year.

    I personally do not believe in god and reject the notion and concept of such an entity.

    However, I also live by Thomas Jefferson's principles on the matter:
    Quote from Thomas Jefferson
    But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg.


    I was raised in a very religious household.

    Both my parents are very devout, pious folks - deeply saddened by my personal lack of "belief".

    Be that as it may - knowing my parents allows me to appreciate the fact that good people can be both believers or unbelievers. Religion and belief in a god or gods has had positive influence on people as well as negative.


    I always make it a point of asking my patients if there is anything I can do for them to fulfill their spiritual needs. I may not be able to fulfill them personally (and I have refused to do it twice) - but I make it a priority to get spiritual support to those in need (It helps that the chaplains in my hospital carry 24/7 pagers!)


    I've enjoyed reading much of this thread.
    Please let us not turn it into an "us" vs "them" - it is my humble request.

    cheers,
    Roy
  7. by   elrondaragorn
    If some doctors recommend surgery out of greed when there is no need for it, are you going to say all doctors are bad? No! Religion is often blamed for the evil in the world because too many people abuse religion as an excuse to do evil, but religion is not the root of all evil. Look at Church History, an honest look at the lives of the saints and people in the modern world who sincerely believe and practice what they say they believe like Mother Theresa of Calcutta, St. Francis of Assissi, John Paul II, and so forth should give you a more balanced perspective. If the only information you get about religion is what you hear on the nightly news where anti-religious newscasters (and I'm a journalism graduate of Boston University, so I know what I'm talking about), are always painting the darkest picture immaginable by slanting the news, showing only the mistakes made by people in the past and present who claimed to believe, or did believe, but nevertheless sinned, I don't wonder why you think religion is the root of all evil, but it simply is not true. It would be more correct to say that evil people exploit religion as an excuse for their evil deeds.

    Quote from coral0033
    I certainly do not want to see Religion in the work place. Today it seems as though "Religion" is the root of all evil. If called upon to praywith a patient, i will do so; but surely I WOULD NOTLIKE TO SEE PRAYERS BEFORE AND AFTER WORK
  8. by   elrondaragorn
    A patient who takes their beliefs seriously will care whether you think they will care or not.

    Quote from CRNI-ICU20
    I don't think a patient who is scared, or hurting, or facing a big surgery gives a tinker's darn whether you are a Buddhist, a monk, an animist, or someone who worships chicken feathers and crystals....I think they care about having a HUMAN BEING at their bedside that is connecting and engaging in their crisis.....it isn't about religion....that's just what usually divides us....it's about loving another human being ....which is what unites us.
    Pretty simple.
  9. by   elrondaragorn
    It is presumptuous to say that you understand reality sufficiently enough to rule out the possibility of malevolent beings, and it is possibvle to know that there are right and wrong beliefs, whether you think there is a right or wrong belief or not, but that is a discussion for a philosophy thread. If you're interested I'll start one.

    Quote from casi
    Depends on how much pain I was in and how much I wanted to die. It would be no different then someone praying over me that God take me into his arms and relieve me from my pain.

    I personally don't believe there is a right or wrong religion. I also have a hard time believing in evil/demonic creatures/gods, so prayer to any higher/lower being with good intention in my name is fine with me and rather flattering. It shows that someone cares.

    I can see how those that hold strong beliefs and believe that other religions are wrong/evil/etc. would be made uncomfortable by someone of a different religion offering to pray for them. People fear differences and those things that they don't understand.

    I'm curious how hospitals meet the spiritual needs of someone who is of a non-Christian religion. I've always assumed that chaplains are specifically Christian. Are my assumptions wrong?
  10. by   Multicollinearity
    Quote from CHATSDALE
    trying to explain faith to someone who compares God to the toothfairy is like trying to explain plaid to a blind person
    I'd have to disagree. I was a true believer the first 22 or so years of my life. I still remember how I used to scoff at non-believers and the thoughts that ran through my mind. Just as the sun rises in the East and the sky is blue - I believed in Christ and Christianity. So I do understand faith and in particular, Christianity.

    Many of my agnostic and atheist friends have the same experience of going from being believers to non-believers.

    So I'll leave it at that because this thread isn't about me. Just please don't assume that non-believers don't understand faith. Many of us do.
  11. by   ElvishDNP
    People who are annoying in the supermarket asking "Have you found Jesus?" etc. are doing what they feel is obedience to Christ's command to go and preach the Good News. Whether they are going about it correctly is, well, up for plenty of debate. My personal feeling is that their intentions may be very good but their methods leave something to be desired, often turning people off to what they are trying to preach.

    I feel that 'preaching' the Gospel is best done one-on-one, with someone with whom you've built a relationship. But the best preaching of the Gospel is non-verbal. You set an example. I don't mean this to sound like I have all the answers. I surely don't. And I, being a human being, am NOT always the best example. What I mean to say is that, if you really walk the walk, I've found that people will notice.

    In any case, in any faith, I've also found that people don't care what you believe until they believe that you care. THAT is a million-times better witness than walking up to a stranger in a grocery store and asking him if he's 'found Jesus.' Always reminds me of Forrest Gump: "I didn't know I's s'posed to be lookin' for Him."
  12. by   nurseangel47
    Having once been a hospice nurse, I was asked by almost all of my patients in their final days that hadn't been saved and such if I believed in Heaven, etc. and we were given a wonderful opportunity to discuss the hereafter and our beliefs, both me and the patient. Kind of added to the whole death and dying experience in my opinion. A very personal thing for the pt. to feel comfortable enough to open up that way and it helped them to not fear death as much. Some even got saved with the chaplain helping them and with loved ones present. It was very sweet and spiritual.
  13. by   caroladybelle
    Quote from multicollinarity
    Just respond, "Have you all lost him again?!"

    Sorry. I couldn't resist.
    Actually my answer was, "Of course, I found him - he was wedged in between the sofa cushions, along with some change, stale popcorn and a TV remote."

    As for the individual that is upset about disrespecting Christianity with this kind of response, it is very disrespectful to ask such a question of a stranger or someone that one is not on close terms with. Much like asking about, "how much money do you make?" or "When will you be having Babies, FINALLY?", it is rude. Thus an equally rude response is acceptable.

    I have also had Christians sling enough snide comments about my religion that this one would be minor. The Preacher's wife/charge nurse that referred to negotiating a car price as "J-wing the price down" comes to mind. There are all sorts of discrimination against other religions that do not raise an eyebrow amongst Christians.

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