Chaplain’s ministry reaches across the miles

Vancouver | August 2, 2018
Chaplain's special cross delights New Zealand toddler
From Bethlehem to Vancouver to New Zealand, little wooden cross reminds all of God’s presence

As Scott Young was going about his work as a chaplain at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center in Vancouver, Washington, little did he know that his prayers and ministry would touch someone halfway around the world.

He was in the intensive care unit that day and found himself listening to Michelle Richards, a nurse in the unit, talk about her young nephew, Corey, in New Zealand and the difficult illness he was battling.

Scott happened to have a cross with him that day. PeaceHealth chaplains will sometimes carry special crosses, handcrafted of olive wood from the area around Bethlehem, Palestine. On occasion, they will give a cross to patients, families and staff as a reminder of God’s presence.

Chaplain's special cross delights New Zealand toddlerIn that moment, he felt moved to give his cross to Michelle and she said, “‘I know what I want to do with this cross.”

A few weeks later, Michelle returned from a trip to New Zealand to see her sister and nephew. She thanked Scott for his prayers for Corey and sent him a heartwarming photo of the little guy holding his special cross.

Thanks for the difference that you make as you minister each day to help others in need. As Scott learned that day with Michelle, you never know how far it will go!

(If you’re wondering how Corey is doing, there have been some positive developments, but he could still use a lot more prayer.)