Name: Sherry L. Christ
Work: Staff chaplain at Good Samaritan Regional Health Care Center, Mt. Vernon, IL.
NACC member since: 1994
Volunteer service to NACC: Interviewer
Book on your nightstand: “When the Trees Say Nothing: Writings on Nature,” by Thomas Merton
Books you recommend most often: “The Wounded Healer,” by Henri Nouwen
Favorite spiritual resource: Reading poetry
Favorite fun self-care activity: Shopping
Favorite movie: “Home Alone,” 1990.
Favorite retreat spot: Manresa Jesuit Retreat House in Bloomfield Hills, MI. (I am originally from Grosse Pointe Woods, MI. I have been in southern Illinois for only three years.)
Personal mentors or role models: Fr. Tim Shepherd, SJ, and Sister Laura Smith, SSJ
Why did you become a chaplain? I began my training in 1983 in the seminary. In 1985 I had to stop my theological training to have a baby. Katie was a miracle baby because we tried for nine years to have her. In 1989, my husband Jerry was suddenly killed and that inspired me to join CPE. Today Katie is married to Marshall Geltz and works for Pepsi Co, as a human resource manager.
Famous/historic mentor or role model: Jacqueline Kennedy because her husband died like mine … in front of her. She was a young widow and single parent … like me. Her courage during that time truly helped me get through my loss and raise Katie (Catherine Cory Christ).
Why do you stay in the NACC? The organization has tried hard to make us professional chaplains and I think that is how it should be. This way we have accountability to our peers and an authentic ministry.
Why do you volunteer? I want the applicants for certification to have a wonderful, fulfilling time through the process.
What have you learned from volunteering? It has taught me to work with others in a very disciplined way. It also allows me to pass along wisdom to the new chaplains. One thing, if you stay with a career in chaplaincy, you gain enormous wisdom. I just want to give back as I was given to.