By Rod Accardi
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth … and the one who was seated on the throne said, “See, I am making all things new.” (Revelation 21: 1 & 5)
This past spring the NACC celebrated its jubilee year, and we came together with gratitude-filed hearts as we honored the many gifts and blessings we have received. Gathering as a community of chaplains next year in Chicago, we will hear the words of sacred scripture proclaim, “Behold, I make all things new!”
Co-Creation: May our hearts be inflamed by the words of St. Francis and Pope Francis, “Praise to you, my Lord!” as we recognize that we are co-creators, responsible passionate partners in the care of our common home and future.
Transformation: Evidence-based spiritual care outcomes are transforming healthcare chaplaincy. As we wade into the waters of research literacy, may our eyes be opened to better understand, summarize, and explain research studies in light of our pastoral practice.
Resilience: Every day, chaplains enter the world of personal and social crises. May we breathe with the breath of God as we explore modes of spiritual well-being that enhance resilience for ourselves as well as those we serve.
Hope: Our ministry takes place at the intersection of the secular and the sacred, the medical and the moral. May we deepen our theological understanding of what it means to be people of hope, engaging ethical questions and supporting dignified choices in the midst of vulnerability, suffering and affliction.
The NACC is blessed to have an outstanding National Conference Planning Task Force working on the 2016 conference. Beth Lenegan serves as the plenary speaker chair, Lori Kaufmann as the workshop chair, Fr. Rich Bartoszek as the liturgy chair, Jim Manzardo and Kathy Ponce as the local arrangements co-chairs, and Jane Mather as the board liaison. David Lichter, along with Jeanine Annunziato and Andris Kursietis, are providing input from the national office.
I am honored to serve as your task force chair and look forward to seeing many of you next April in Chicago. We meet nearly every week to pray, plan, prepare, and provide for the needs of those who will be attending the Chicago conference and those who will be with us in spirit. In the coming months, members of the task force will publish articles in Vision offering further information about the plenary speakers and workshops, the retreat, and local attractions, as well as liturgical presiders and prayer opportunities.
Our graphic artist provided us with a logo that incorporates the symbols that depict this year’s theme: our hearts inflamed as passionate co-creators, the breath of God that sustains our resilience, the living waters that lead to transformation, and the hope that is rooted in Creation and the Creator — all held in partnership with the hand of God.
Join us in Chicago with your colleagues as we engage in Making All Things New!