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Saint James Roman Catholic Church
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Reflection Questions on Sickness, Dying, and Death
As part of the ongoing work involved in the writing of my book, please consider sharing the story of your own serious illness, or the sickness, dying, and/or death of a loved one. Perhaps you have dealt with a serious disease or are living with either a chronic illness or are in the dying process. You might have been (or currently are) a caregiver for someone who is in this process. Please fill in the contact information below. After completion, please submit the form via email or send this to the Parish Center to the attention of Marcy Kelly. Thank you.
Email Address (Optional)
Phone Number (Optional)
Check all that Apply
Family Member or Friend of the Patient
Briefly explain your role in the situation
Please answer the questions that apply:
When you or a loved one got a negative diagnosis, what did you experience? How did you feel and how did you react? How did your family and friends react/respond?
What were your greatest fears and anxieties?
Was it difficult to talk to others about the situation honestly? If so, in what ways?
Did your inner dialogue change? If so how?
Was it difficult to focus on ordinary routines and present experience? If so, how?
During the experience of chronic illness or being in a prolonged dying process, did your priorities change? In what way?
Were you able to acknowledge that you needed help from others or was it hard to accept other’s help? Explain.
Where, to whom, and what did you turn to for support?
Were you very impatient or frustrated with your caregivers (or patient)? If so, how did the impatience or frustration manifest itself?
Were you (or the patient) able to make it easier for the caregiver to help, and if so, how?
How did your family system bear the stress of the experience?
What hindered or made this time more difficult for you or your family?
Were you able to, during the illness, reach out to others in a loving way or did you become self-absorbed? Please explain.
How did your relationships change?
Did these experiences inspire you to mend a relationship? If so, how?
Did this experience empower you to grow (emotionally, spiritually)? What did the experience teach you about life, yourself, and God? (Did your image of God change, and if so, in what way?)
Did you get any spiritual support (e.g. Anointing of the Sick, visitation, etc) ? If so, what was your experience?
Did any religious practices help you? If so, describe.
What else helped you to work through the experience?
How did your life change?
What surprised you the most?
After the death of a loved one, how did the wake time help/hinder your grieving process?
After the death, how did the funeral mass help/hinder you to better understand the working of God in the deceased’s life and in her/his death? Please explain.
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