Pastoral Visitors

Welcome! Thank you for your interest in the spiritual care of BWH patients.

The Pastoral Visitors Program, established in 1979, is a supervised program for volunteers who provide spiritual support to patients. Usually there are ten Pastoral Visitors. All PV’s bring their diverse backgrounds and life experiences to the group and to their patients.  BWH is a large, urban, academic medical center, and patients come from near and far for excellence in care. The Joint Commission, which accredits hospitals, requires that spiritual care be given to patients in ways that support their individual spiritual needs. The Pastoral Visitor’s role is to access the spiritual needs and resources of the patient and help the patient stay connected to them during their hospitalization. BWH Spiritual Care embraces an interfaith model of spiritual care while providing faith specific support as needed. Chaplains visit patients from all religious traditions and those who find their meaning of life elsewhere.

Pastoral Visitors provide care to patients from September to May. They participate in a required group supervision meeting on the first and third Thursdays of every month from 4:30-6:00pm. The expectation is that PV’s will visit patients for two or three hours twice a week between the hours of 9am and 5pm Monday through Friday. PV’s choose their visiting days and times in September and keep them until May. The program works best for those who have sufficient flexibility to provide consistent coverage for the hospital. We welcome your inquiries at any time by phone. Interviews and applications must be completed by August 1. One unit of CPE or its equivalent is required. Applications and hospital orientation take about six weeks to process.

Click here for an application to the BWH Pastoral Visitor Program. Thank you for your interest in our program.

Ruth Delfiner, Staff Chaplain

Rev. James Ojo, BCC, Staff Chaplain

Spiritual Care Services Office, 617-732-7480 


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