Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Where are you located?
A: The chaplaincy offices are on the second floor link, crossing over Jefferson Park Avenue. Chaplaincy visitors should go to Patient and Guest Services (first floor lobby) or the information desk.
Q: Do you have a Catholic priest on staff?
A: Our chaplains contact priests from St. Thomas Aquinas Church, the local Catholic parish serving UVA. The priests respond readily and are available for emergencies. Note that, according to Roman Catholic belief, the Sacrament of the Sick should be offered before death, so we encourage families to make requests before the death, if at all possible.
Q: Why isn't there a Bible in my patient's room?
A: Literature circulated between rooms and patients can carry germs, so we do not stock Bibles in patient rooms. If you need a Bible or other sacred or devotional literature, contact us at 434.924.2642 or ask a staff member to contact the on-call chaplain.
Q: Are your chaplains professionally trained?
A: Yes, all of our chaplains have extensive training in spiritual traditions and social sciences. They all complete our Clinical Pastoral Education training. Staff chaplains and faculty are board-certified by the Association of Professional Chaplains.
Q: Can I get married at the hospital, and/or will a hospital chaplain perform the ceremony?
A: People sometimes hold marriages in our facilities, and our chaplains do conduct services for patients and staff. However, because spiritual life is an ongoing process, we hope that people will involve their faith group in a process such as marriage. We encourage people to use clergy or leaders from their own faith traditions for these very personal services.
Q: Will hospital chaplains baptize our child?
A: We provide baptisms, especially in extreme situations. However, it's preferable that your own clergy conduct such services. If necessary, we'll help you contact your clergy member to make arrangements for a baptism at the Health System.
Q: Will a hospital chaplain perform our loved one's funeral?
A: Chaplains are available for such services, but we encourage families to be in contact with a local clergy or religious leader first.