The Blessing of the Hands

May 20th, 2011

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By , BSN, RN

National Nurses Week 2011 has come to an end for this year. However, in one Florida hospital system the nursing staff is truly feeling blessed after the week of recognition. Nurses with Baptist Health South Florida look forward each year to one Nurses Week activity above all others. More than all the pizza parties and ice cream socials, more than all the free umbrellas and tote bags, the nursing staff looks forward to the Blessing of the Hands.

In honor of the dedication, commitment and tireless effort of their registered nurses promoting and maintaining the health of their communities, Baptist Health South Florida recognizes the entire nursing staff employed by the hospitals and in their satellite locations. The Blessing of the Hands touches the very hearts of the dedicated nurses employed there.

The ceremony was performed Friday, May 13, for the many RNs employed by Baptist Outpatient Services. Chaplain Renato Santos, the Director of Pastoral Care Services for Baptist Hospital led the invocation and blessing.

"This ceremony is the one thing we really look forward to during all the Nursing Week activities," said Marrice King, BSN, RN, CNOR. It is the one thing we never want removed from Nurses Week."

"May the work of your hands bring healing to all the people you touch. May the God who formed these hands guide them to bring the healing touch of life."

With these words, Santos anointed the hands of the nurses in attendance with the blessed oil.

Tina Jones, RN and Chief Nursing Officer for Baptist Outpatient Services, talked about the importance of the ceremony. "So many hospitals have done away with Nurses Week in favor of Hospital Week, which recognizes everyone who works for a hospital. Baptist thinks it is important to single out each group who works within the hospital for the fine work they do," Jones said. "Baptist is very committed to its faith-based origins and this ceremony really embodies that commitment."

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