Reflections in Ministry

The following reflection was written by current RMC, Ashley Pickert.
“After being in Philly for a couple of months, people would ask me: so is it what you expected? Not at all. Coming into the program, I was looking forward to all the medical experience I was going to gain. I would learn how to use medical equipment and become accustom to the hospital jargon and terminology. It would assist me in being ahead of my fellow medical students later on. I never thought those things would become the least important part of my experience. In four short months my eyes have been opened to the most vital part of being a good doctor: the patient himself/herself.
It began by volunteering with the Healing Consciousness Foundation under Dr. Beth DuPree. She and her foundation work with patients by focusing on the whole person rather than just the problem itself. It became very apparent to me early on that a doctor may shrink a tumor through radiation and chemotherapy or remove the cancer entirely through a mastectomy, but without looking at why the problem occurred in the first place, the chances of recurrence increased exponentially. The foundation provides not only medical care but reiki, acupuncture, personal fitness counseling, nutrition counseling etc. In this way, the mental as well as the physical plights can be taken care of and the patient can move forward in a much better light than when they arrived.More specifically, I have learned that I can get a blanket or a glass of water for a patient, but my presence itself is much more valuable. Although many people have great support throughout their cancer journey, some are forced to go it alone. Receiving a cancer diagnosis can be devastating enough with family or friends surrounding a person, let alone by themselves. Going through treatments day after day and being sick constantly, can wear someone down and they can fall into a depression. Probably my favorite part in my ministry is being present for people in whatever way I can. If I am able to have a conversation with someone, hold their hand while they are getting biopsied, smile as I walk by, or even just to sit with someone as they receive treatment especially with those who are alone, I feel like I have had an accomplished day. For the most part that is truly what a patient needs: someone to care.

Looking forward to being even more enlightened, inspired, and amazed in 2016.”


Like a child!

“For it is good to be children sometimes, and never better than at Christmas, when its mighty Founder was a child Himself.” – Charles Dickens

This month’s RMC day was all about getting in the Christmas spirit! We took a step back from the everyday busyness to enjoy each other’s company, engage in prayerful conversation and take in the beauty of Philadelphia at Christmastime with childlike wonder!

During the RMC day we were able to visit a number of iconic Christmas attractions in the city: the Macy’s Holiday Light Show, which has been around for over 50 years; Dickens’ Village, a walk-through experience of the beloved tale A Christmas Carol; Reading Terminal Market with its Holiday Railroad display; and the Christmas Village at Love Park, modeled after the traditional Christmas markets in Germany.


As we took in the sights with childlike wonder, I was reminded of what Jesus said in Matthew 18:3: “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” What a gift to see things with the excitement of a child! What a gift this Advent season to wait for the arrival of Christ with childlike anticipation!

Thank you, God, for this day of joy, excitement and hope. Thank you for reminding us that it is good to be children sometimes!