For those who are ill, grieving or caring for friends or family, Jewish Healing Network (JHN) offers the comfort of human connection, the spiritual support of Jewish tradition, and a sense of community to alleviate loneliness and isolation.
Jewish Healing Network, a program of Jewish Child & Family Services in collaboration with CJE SeniorLife, the Chicago Board of Rabbis, and Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago offers a wide range of holistic programs and services which embrace body, mind and spirit:
- Bereavement workshops and loss specific groups provide support for individuals who have recently experienced a death.
- Community programs featuring expert speakers provide information and connections to support and resources.
- JHN partners with local hospices to ensure that their advanced illness services are religiously and culturally sensitive and reflective of Jewish values - life is honored, human dignity is respected, and patients and their families are treated with kindness.
- Professional trainings offer social service and healthcare professionals, clergy and synagogue leaders’ opportunities to learn about illness and loss related topics.
- English and Russian Prayer Pamphlets that feature Jewish prayers and psalms are available for hospitals, hospices, nursing care patients and their families, and other organizations.
- Pastoral counseling for those struggling with spiritual or religious issues related to illness and loss is offered by a Rabbinic Chaplain and Counselor.
- Bikur Cholim trainings give synagogue communities the skills they need to sensitively and compassionately provide comfort and care to sick and struggling congregants.
Chronic and Advanced Illiness Support
The comfort of palliative and hospice care is healing for the spirit at the time when we can no longer assume there will be a cure of the body. The Mi-Sheberach, the central Hebrew prayer for the sick, asks for “refuat hanefesh u’refuat haguf”, healing for body and soul. Sometimes, the body will not heal or be cured; we still ask for healing of the soul. Rabbi Dr. Joseph S. Ozarowski, BCC
Jewish Healing Network partners with local hospices to ensure that they are able to provide services that honor Jewish traditions and values. JHN provides training for hospice staff and volunteers, Jewish Chaplain services, English and Russian Prayer Pamphlets and an array of educational programs.
Who will make medical decisions if you are not able to do so yourself? JHN can help you to think about those decisions and create a plan to communicate them to family, friends and doctors.
Bereavement Programs Infused with Jewish Values
- Nechama: To Comfort the Bereaved Among Us is a one-time session for those who recently experienced a loss. Learn what you might expect and what tools might help you travel the road of grief.
- Loss specific support groups are facilitated by JCFS and CJE SeniorLife experts.
JHN publishes pamphlets of Jewish prayers and psalms. All pamphlets are available for the cost of production and there is space for organizations, programs and communities to personalize with stickers that have their contact information. Pamphlets include:
- Jewish Prayers and Reflections on Healing (English)
- Jewish Prayers and Reflections on Healing (Russian)
- Prayers for the Caregiver
- Vidui - Prayers for the End-of-life
- Prayer for Persistence for those with chronic illness
I am with you in times of trouble, I will strengthen you and honor you . . . -Based on Psalm 91:15
Our board-certified chaplain is available to provide pastoral counseling and guidance for individuals struggling with spiritual or religious issues related to illness, loss and other issues. If you have questions or would like to make an appointment call 855-ASK JCFS or email email@example.com .
- Caring for an Aging Parent - a video from Sanctuary
Sudden Loss and Grief - presentation by renowned grief expert Dr. Kenneth Doka. From the Lauri S. Bauer Foundation for Sudden Loss Conference on
- Help, Healing, Hope and Loss
JHN is supported by the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, the Jewish Federation’s Fund for Innovation in Health (underwritten by the Michael Reese Health Trust), the Lauri S. Bauer Foundation for Sudden Loss and other generous supporters.
THE JHN STAFF TEAM
Elizabeth Siegel Cohen, JHN Program Coordinator