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November 2019 Newsletter

Director's Note, Spirit of Giving: Thank you!, Upcoming Events, Community Events, Did You Know?, and Talking Turkey Over Turkey.

Health Ministries Network (HMN) is a non-profit that initiates, develops and supports faith based health ministry in northwest Washington.

Dear HMN community,

There is much to be thankful for this November. We had a wonderful Spirit of Giving lunch event and raised more than $7,000 for Health Ministries Network! That includes 28 individual gifts and 20 business sponsorships. These funds are essential to continuing our services of seeding new health ministry, and providing foundational and ongoing educational opportunities.

Perhaps most importantly, we honored the more than 100 faith community nurses and health ministers who serve in our region. Thank you to each of the faith community nurses who shared about their service as Angel awardees. We also honored Rev. Bobbi Virta of United Church of Ferndale with the 2019 Clergy Champion award.

If you missed the event, please consider supporting Health Ministries Network with an online donation.

With a thankful heart,

Amelia Vader Executive Director


Spirit of Giving: Thank you!

This year’s lunch was a wonderful event because of the community created by FCNs, HMs, partners and supporters! Thank you. Click here to see photos and read about the 2019 Angel Awardees, Clergy Champion, and more.


Upcoming Events

November Meeting

Friday, Nov 15, 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM

Silverado Memory Care Community, 4400 Columbine Dr., Bellingham Silverado will provide a hot lunch and attendees will have opportunity for group discussion and for a Virtual Dementia Tour. We hope to see you there! . This meeting is free and all are welcome, especially those interested in health ministry! A light lunch will be provided.

December Meeting

Friday, Dec 20, 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM

First Congregational Church, 2401 Cornwall Ave, Bellingham

Please join us for a for our December meeting, program TBA. This meeting is free and all are welcome, especially those interested in health ministry! A light lunch will be provided.

Clergy Breakfast: Building a Health Ministry

Wednesday, Jan 22, 2020, 8:00 AM – 10:00 AM

First Congregational Church, 2401 Cornwall Ave, Bellingham

Join us for a hot breakfast, learn what health ministry can do for your congregation and how to get started. Whether you have an established health ministry or are interested in learning more, we hope you'll join us! Open to clergy, pastors, rabbi, and anyone interested in health ministry.


Community Events

In an effort to connect our volunteers with relevant resources, we publish community events in our monthly newsletter and on our website. Email to add your own.

Holiday Party

Thursday, Nov 14, 5:30 PM – 8:00 PM

Roosevelt Community Center, 2303 Moore St, Bellingham

Please join the Whatcom CHW Network for an evening of merriment.

Realities of Advance Medical Interventions

Wednesday, Dec 04, 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM St. Luke's Community Health Education Center, 3333 Squalicum Pkwy, Bellingham

Learn what their outcomes could mean for patients in the short and long term.


Did You Know?

In an effort to connect our volunteers with relevant resources, we publish news and announcements in our monthly newsletter and on our website. Email to add your own.

Take control of opioids, take back your meds

About 75 percent of opioid misuse starts with people using medication that wasn’t prescribed for them, usually taken from a friend or family member. Simple steps like safely disposing of unused medications can stop them from being misused. Go to to find a take back location near you.


Talking Turkey Over Turkey

Courtesy of Micki Jackson, Realities of Advance Medical Interventions Organizer

Who gets the wishbone in your family? What better time to "make your

wishes known" about your end-of-life healthcare choices than at a family

and friends' Thanksgiving gathering?

Believe it or not, advance care planning (ACP) for your end-of-life

healthcare wishes and the holidays go together. I encourage you to

seize the opportunity when grandma and grandpa, Aunt Mary and Uncle

Jack, you, your kids, your friends -- multiple generations, are united

at the table -- and "talk turkey, over turkey" about your wishes, goals,

and values. A little known fact: advance directives are intended for all

adults 18 years of age and up.

To ease into your conversations you might want to get a few decks of

the card game "Go Wish," available in English and Spanish at

Our community is setting the standard in Washington state for

promoting the benefits of medical ACP, but we can do better. Accepting

death's inevitability lets us sort out the significant from the trivial,

the spiritual from the material, to better focus on the time we have to

live and love. One healthcare provider has described a completed

advance directive as "a love letter to those we adore."

Given today's medical landscape, the less prepared we are, the more

unpleasant, traumatic and protracted our last days are likely going to

be. Preparing to the extent possible to lessen stress and gain greater

peace of mind when a crisis hits that may signal end of life, is also a

gift to those we care about.

A small team of community volunteers offers the presentation, The

Realities of Advanced Medical Interventions, which is followed up about

a week later with an ACP workshop. This model supports good

decision-making before accident or illness occurs. Our presentations and

workshops for the community are free, including notary service for those

who complete their advance directive.

If your service organization, book club, employees/employer, faith

community, union membership, student club, or other group would like to schedule a

Realities of Advanced Medical Interventions presentation and follow up

advance directive workshop, please let us know.

Contact: Micki Jackson, (360) 201-7840;

The outcome of this important activity is to say to those you love, "I

care about you." So, let's talk turkey, over turkey while we can still

speak for ourselves.



Help us support the invaluable work of faith community nurses and health ministers in northwest Washington by donating today!


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