pediatric spirital care

About Pediatric Spiritual Services


The Spiritual Services department supports Lee Health’s promise of “Caring people, caring for people.” We promote a healing environment by addressing the spiritual and emotional needs of patients, families, staff and volunteers.

Tending to patients’ spiritual concerns increases trust in their medical team and their overall satisfaction with care. Members of the Spiritual Services staff are available to listen to spiritual and emotional concerns, calm anxiety and help persons tap into their own spiritual resources.

Spiritual Services staff members are clinically trained and board-certified professionals who represent the highest standard of education and practice, including:

Spiritual Care Support
  • Prayers, invocations and blessings
  • Compassionate and active listening
  • Rituals, rites and sacraments
  • Sacred texts and religious resources
  • Crisis intervention
  • Connection with local faith communities
  • Pre- and postoperative visits
  • Parish Nurse Program
  • Pediatric/Pregnancy Bereavement Support Program
  • Interfaith chapel
Staff and Volunteer Support
  • Critical Incident Stress Response
  • New volunteer orientation
  • Crisis counseling
  • Memorial, funeral and wedding services
  • Spiritual assessments
  • Interventions
  • Care plans
  • Outcomes
End of Life Care
  • Goals of care discussion and support
  • End of life care decisions, discussion and support
  • Exploration of spiritual needs, concerns and values
  • Spiritual and cultural support
  • Spiritual rituals and prayers
  • Bereavement care and grief support
  • Ethical conversations around end-of-life care
Interdisciplinary Team Collaboration
  • Spiritual screening, assessment and plan of care
  • Religious/cultural resource
  • Patient rounds participation
  • Patient and family care conference participation
  • Ethics consultations and education
  • Advance Directives education and assistance

Spiritual Services Endowment Fund

You can play a major role in continuing the mission of Lee Health Spiritual Services. Your tax-deductible donation, made through Lee Health Foundation, will allow us to continue our efforts on behalf of our patients and community.

For more information, please contact the Lee Health Foundation at 239-343-6950 or visit their website at

Thank you for caring!

Make a Donation to Our Fund

Our Chaplains

Our full-time Chaplains are board-certified or board-certification eligible professionals endorsed from diverse faith traditions working full-time within our healthcare system. It is the belief of the staff of the Spiritual Services Department that spirituality is a natural dimension of every person. Spirituality has to do with relationship, relationship with God, with all creation and community and the journey of finding presence, purpose, and meaning through those relationships in sickness and in health. Chaplains are here to process that journey with you.

Chaplains Offer Hope

At Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida, we understand the anxiety that families experience when children face medical uncertainties. Sometimes illness of a child can lead the parent or child to experience spiritual and emotional distress. Whether medical conditions are potentially life-threatening or life-altering, emotional and spiritual support is crucial to coping.

Chaplains strive to promote spiritual health through empathy and presence.

Additionally, semi -annual memorial services are held at the Children's Memory Garden, providing healing support for family and staff.

Bereavement Services

The serious illness or death of a child or loss of a pregnancy is a tragic experience, leaving parents, siblings, family and friends in despair, with many unanswered questions. The cohesiveness of the family often can be shattered as family members deal with their grief. While grief can be frightening, it is normal.

Symptoms of grief can include the following:

  • Disbelief
  • Confusion
  • Helplessness
  • Pre-occupation
  • Anxiety
  • Sleep or eating changes
  • Lack of energy
  • Weakness
  • Crying or numbness
  • Overactivity or withdrawal

Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida recognizes the impact of fetal, infant or child loss and offers free ongoing support to the families of children who have died, are terminally ill or those who have experienced pregnancy loss. Professionals with expertise in the field of grief and bereavement work with families to help them through the grief process, identify and address potential problems, and make referrals when necessary.

Consultation and referral to doctors, social workers, mental health specialists and chaplains are available as needed. Support services are offered in the home, at the office or by telephone.

Bereavement Services Provided:

  • Ongoing emotional support for families touched by the serious illness or death of a child
  • Referral to community services
  • Educational materials
  • Grief education programs for community groups, schools, businesses and professional organizations

Who is eligible for services? Services are offered on both self-referral and referral basis.

For more information or to request services, contact the Pediatric / Pregnancy Bereavement Coordinator at: 239-343-6812.


Ethics Consultation Assistance for Pediatric Patients

Making decisions about your child's health care often involves difficult moral and ethical questions. You or your families personal beliefs, values, and goals may differ from those of your health care providers or other family members. If disagreement develops about care, a request can be made for review or consultation with the Ethics Consultation Group.

The Ethics Consultation Group can be comprised of doctors, nurses, social workers, administrators, legal counsel, chaplains, community members and others who have been trained to deal with moral and ethical issues. One function of the group is to support those who are trying to make these difficult decisions. The group does not make decisions; it serves in a consultation/advisory capacity, or as a resource for exploring options available to those needing assistance.

An ethics case review may be requested by anyone i.e., patient, family member, physician, nurse, hospital personnel, etc. This review can be helpful in bringing about resolution to many ethical questions, problems, or conflicts.

The following process has been established for requesting an ethics review:
  • Call Ethics Consult Request Phone Line
    • Lee Health: 239-343-5049
  • Contact Spiritual Services to initiate your ethics consultation request. Patients or family members may ask Nursing for assistance.
    • Monday through Friday - 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    • After Hours: Monday through Friday - 4:30 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. and weekends

Parish Nurse Program


In October, 1997 the Parish Nurse Program began its development and was acknowledged by Lee Health as an important health and spiritual initiative to connect the health system with the community. A steering committee was developed and a coordinator was hired to educate nurses and to provide leadership. The name Parish Nurse, Faith Community Nurse (FCN) and Congregational Nurse is used inter-changeably. Registered Nurses with active licenses complete a Foundations Curriculum which follows the Scope and Standards of Faith Community Nursing as set by the American Nurses Association. About 50% of FCN's are in a paid model and 50% are in a volunteer model of ministry. The decision regarding paid vs volunteer is at the discretion of the faith community leadership and the nurse.

Current Program

Faith Community Nurses who are partnered with Lee Health meet monthly for a collegial, educational, and spiritual connection. Currently, Lee Health has 28 nurses in an ecumenical group of many denominations.

Community Outreach and Congregational Health and Wellness is a primary function of the group. This is accomplished through hosting community health fairs, various health programming, and direct health counseling and education. Parish Nursing continues to grow in importance as part of the continuum of care between Lee Health and the community. "Bringing a spiritual component to the encouragement of health and wellness makes for a successful plan to focus on whole person health," shares Manager Nancy Roberts.

Our Roles

Parish Nursing is a specialized practice of professional nursing and its primary focus is the intentional care of the spirit. Faith and healthcare are clearly linked and spiritual care is central in promoting holistic health. Parish Nurse's provide holistic health services addressing the needs of the body, mind and spirit in the individual faith community. In unity with the mission of both the faith community and LMHS Parish Nurse Program, the parish nurse roll provides a unique alliance between faith and health and is an important liaison between pastor, parishioners, healthcare system, physician, and community resources.

There is a difference between a nurse in a church and a parish nurse--not every person is called or qualified. The parish nurse bridges two disciplines, nursing and ministry, and must be prepared in and responsible to both. Qualities needed for this role include a deep commitment to their own spirituality as well as the healing mission of the church. Determination of spiritual maturity is evidenced through the completion of a spiritual autobiography and interview process with the pastor, parish nurse director, and other faith community members.

Completion of the endorsed Basic Parish Nurse Preparation Course is required, in addition to attending monthly PN meetings to share worship, experiences, resources, encouragement, and organizational issues. The new "Scope and Standards of Faith Community Nursing" states that the preferred minimum preparation for an RN or ARNP entering this specialty of nursing is a baccalaureate or higher degree in nursing, experience in using the nursing process and knowledge of community resources.

The majority of Parish Nurses are BSN prepared and several have Masters with degrees in nursing and business administration. In addition, all of our Parish Nurses have taken the Basic Parish Nurse Preparation Course that is endorsed by the International Parish Nurse Resource Center.

Partnering Faith Communities/Parish Nurses

Fort Myers
Pat Epifanio, RN
St. Luke Episcopal Church
Jeri Titsworth, RN
Thomas A. Edison UCC
Ann Sluiter, RN
St. Michaels Lutheran Church
Diane Spears, RN, MSA
Mount Herman Ministires
Cindy Romeis, RN, ARNP
First Christian Church, Fort Myers
Karen Reed, RN
Unity Church of Ft. Myers
Lori Uhrig, RN, BSN
St. Hillary Episcopal Church
Pine Island
Caryle Regan, RN, BA
St. John Episcopal Church
South Fort Myers
Marilyn Kranich, RN, MS
Peace Lutheran Church
Lynda Hagman, RN, BSN, PhD.ed
Zion Lutheran Church
Helen Tuffy, RN
St. John XXIII Catholic Church
Judy Bayleat, RN
St. John XXIII Catholic Church
Nancie Burke, RN
St. John XXIII Catholic Church
North Ft. Myers/ East Ft. Myers/ Alva
Pat Epifanio, BSN, MS
All Souls Episcopal Church
Judy Greenstreet, RN
Good Shepherd United Methodist Church
Paula Hanson, RN
Tice United Methodist Church
Gwen Wilkinson, RN
Grace Shores Methodist Church
Barb Kilbride, MS, BSN, RN
Alva Countryside Wesleyn
Deb Carney, RN
Alva United Methodist Church
Cape Coral
Nancy Roberts, RN, BSN
Christ Lutheran Church
Joanne Sanford, RN
Christ Lutheran Church
Yolette Osselin, RN
Kings Way Christian Center
Haitian Faith Community Outreach
Greta Burch, RN
Faith Presbyterian Church
Fort Myers Beach
Ann Fossum, RN, BSN
Chapel by the Sea Presbyterian Church
Nancy Walker, RN, ARNP,
St. Peter Lutheran Church
Bonita Springs/ Sanibel Island/ Naples
Sheila Morales, RN, BSN, MS
Hope Lutheran & Amigos En Christo
Rosanne Rechlin, RN, MSN
St. William Catholic Church
Linda Convertine, RN, BSN
Sanibel UCC
Deborah Stephens, RN, MBA
Sanibel Community Church

Lee Health Parish Nurse Program Roster- March 2017

Fort Myers
Nancy Roberts, RN, BSN
Christ Lutheran Church
Joanne Sanford, RN, BSN
Christ Lutheran Church
Yolette Osselin, RN
Kings Way Christian Center
Haitian Community Outreach
Greta Burch, RN
Faith Presbyterian Church

More information about the Parish Nurse Program can be found in Lee Health Spiritual Services.

Contact Us

Phone Information

Main Spiritual Services Phone Number - 239-343-5199

You may call our chaplain to schedule an spiritual consultation, ask a question or request information:

  • Golisano Children's Hospital of Southwest Florida: 239-343-5199
  • Bereavement Coordinator: 239-343-6812

Chapel Location

The Chapel is located at:

  • Golisano Children's Hospital of Southwest Florida
  • 1st floor (across from the Gift Shop)
  • Open 24 hours a day


You may email the Spiritual Services Department at:

Lee Health Pediatric/Pregnancy Bereavement Program is located at HealthPark Medical Center - 4th floor. You may email the Bereavement Coordinator at: