How to drop subtle hints with my nursing students about faith. - page 7

by HappyWife77 20,566 Views | 130 Comments

Hi all! I am a new clinical nursing instructor and am wondering how to drop hints if possible about having faith. Especially as these are future nurses. I know that carrying the love of Christ shines bright and that in of itself... Read More


  1. 10
    Quote from tigerRN2013
    While I think that it is sad that America has gotten to this point, many people are very hostile to the Christian faith and will attack it (and you) whenever possible. If you were muslim, jewish, buddist, or other, people would receive it happily, but unfortunately it is culturally acceptable for people to treat Christians with disrespect. After you gain your students respect on a nursing instructor level, they will be paying attention to your life choices and see your faith and respect/learn from it as well. I was one of two Christians in a class of over 100 students, and by the end of nursing school, they all knew what my faith was and respected it. I received the class award for compassion and caring because I do try to treat people in a loving Christian way and they felt that. I think you are right that having home in God makes such a difference for sick patients (or anybody), but it is not something that can be taught directly in school.
    Nobody is attacking her religion here. What we are saying is, please don't push religion onto people who may not be receptive, and to please recognize that nursing school is not the place to promote religion. I am not religious, but I live an breathe many of the same values. Caring for others with compassion is not exclusive to the Christian faith. If one's faith is what one choses to credit with the values they present in life, that is perfectly fine, and a person of faith can lead by example without encouraging students to pray.

    I would be as uncomfortable with an instructor encouraging me to (for example) pray to Allah as I would an instructor encouraging me to pray to God.
  2. 0
    Quote from Glycerine82
    I think It's appropriate to point out that everyone should have a place to go to gather themselves. Be it prayer, meditation, moments of silence, boxing, the gym etc. Let them know they don't have to do it on their own and let them know its OK, and welcomed to have outlets. Let them decide what they want those outlets to be, and if they want to approach you privately about what outlets you choose to use they can. Then they can decide for themselves what works. Thats my advise. I understand wanting to witness, but I find its not always welcomed and can actually turn people away all together from Christianity.
    Great Advice!
  3. 0
    Quote from tigerRN2013
    While I think that it is sad that America has gotten to this point, many people are very hostile to the Christian faith and will attack it (and you) whenever possible. If you were muslim, jewish, buddist, or other, people would receive it happily, but unfortunately it is culturally acceptable for people to treat Christians with disrespect. After you gain your students respect on a nursing instructor level, they will be paying attention to your life choices and see your faith and respect/learn from it as well. I was one of two Christians in a class of over 100 students, and by the end of nursing school, they all knew what my faith was and respected it. I received the class award for compassion and caring because I do try to treat people in a loving Christian way and they felt that. I think you are right that having home in God makes such a difference for sick patients (or anybody), but it is not something that can be taught directly in school.
    I agree with you completely !!'m Good point
  4. 17
    Quote from tigerRN2013
    While I think that it is sad that America has gotten to this point, many people are very hostile to the Christian faith and will attack it (and you) whenever possible. If you were muslim, jewish, buddist, or other, people would receive it happily, but unfortunately it is culturally acceptable for people to treat Christians with disrespect.
    I am sure I am not the only individual who would be just as unhappy for people of any faith, not just Christians, to attempt to push their personal religious beliefs on me in the classroom or workplace. I've just never seen that happen with anyone from another faith -- just certain "flavors" of Christians.

    It always seems odd and interesting to me that so many Christians immediately perceive themselves as being persecuted and mistreated whenever any limitations are set on their "freedom" to push their views on others without permission or invitation. It's not an "attack" or "disrespect" -- we're just not interested.
  5. 7
    Quote from elkpark
    I am sure I am not the only individual who would be just as unhappy for people of any faith, not just Christians, to attempt to push their personal religious beliefs on me in the classroom or workplace. I've just never seen that happen with anyone from another faith -- just certain "flavors" of Christians.

    It always seems odd and interesting to me that so many Christians immediately perceive themselves as being persecuted and mistreated whenever any limitations are set on their "freedom" to push their views on others without permission or invitation. It's not an "attack" or "disrespect" -- we're just not interested.
    You have to be the "right kind of Christian," too. Some faiths, albeit Christian faiths, don't count. They would be calling for the instructor's head on a pike if a Mormon/Jehovah's Witness/Seventh Day Adventist, etc. nursing instructor would want to "drop subtle hints" to their students.
    Last edit by OCNRN63 on Jul 12, '13
  6. 0
    Quote from Katie71275
    I just graduated and we as students prayed before each test The teachers prayed with us. It wasn't anything that they started, but we would call them "announcements".
    I hope you attended a religious school.
  7. 5
    Quote from Not_A_Hat_Person
    I hope you attended a religious school.
    It shouldn't matter. I went to a Catholic hospital based diploma program ~30y ago, and religion was not shoved on us. The only time I heard prayers was in clinical when they prayed the "Hail Mary" over the loudspeaker in the hospital.

    I'm looking at online RN-BSN programs and ruled out two due to the strong emphasis they had on religion.
  8. 4
    Faith is not required to help others and teach people the ways of nursing. We can all remember to be kind, compassionate and more tolerant, and everyone's values should be respected.

    I work with someone who is Seventh Day Adventist, and we have had some interesting discussions. However, she does not openly discuss her faith with coworkers or patients. She is respectful of the fact that not everyone holds the same beliefs, which is the way it should be.

    Sometimes faith and spirituality will provide a deeper connection with a particular family or patient. HOWEVER....we must all be mindful that suspending our personal beliefs and values is essential to nursing care.

    If you truly strive to be Christian, then respect for other people's cultures, beliefs and values would seem to be most Christian- like, correct?

    This is why, for me personally, religion has no basis in my life. I believe in compassion and spirituality to guide my daily living and my practise. There are far too many religious zealots out there (Christian, Muslim, etc...name it) who believe their way is the only way, which is a huge turn off. Live and let live.
    OCNRN63, elkpark, Fiona59, and 1 other like this.
  9. 3
    As a nursing instructor you can find out what faith related nursing careers there are. Google "Parish" nursing, or community faith based nursing, etc. and then let students know about these options. There are various faith related medical systems, many actually.It is not a secret.
    I recently visited a well known State University Med Center and in the hospital, next to the ER, was a prayer/meditation room. It was beautiful, it had a waterfall. It offered pamphlets- all designed the same, the difference being one Christian, another Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim. within each, their prayers.

    side note ...I notice many people responding to your post with a programmed response, something repeatedly said and heard in media, secular news, songs. But I think, as in example of the Med Ctr I just visited, people are finding common ground and this is a good thing. To get rid of the hysteria:-)

    Blessings
    joanna73, Esme12, and Fiona59 like this.
  10. 4
    When you are on the clock your job is to teach them how to be good nurses.
    Whether or not they are "saved" or follow any particular moral or religious compass is only your off duty concern.

    Let one easily offended student report your conduct and you will be looking for another job.
    OCNRN63, mama.RN, elkpark, and 1 other like this.


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