Yes, I’m not on the hill now that school has let out. I’m doing CPE (clinical pastoral education) at local Portland Emmanuel Legacy hospital by the Rose Garden. I’m moving into a house just down the street. So for you local folks, I’m going to be downtown (starting end of this week). I’ll be living there until mid/end of August when the assignment ends. Already I can tell this is going to be extremely stretching and challenging. I will be a chaplain intern at a trauma hospital, the one that gets most of the life-flight cases, burn victims, and surprisingly: lots of births and preemies. In reality, though, they do just about everything. It took almost an hour and a half just to walk through all the major wards – it’s a very big hospital with lots of different assignments. I wouldn’t be able to spend even one week in each ward before my internship ends.
I must admit that I am apprehensive of my meager abilities to actually say or do anything right in all of the tremendous emotional and spiritual needs. Thank goodness they seem to have a good training and mentoring program. I just had my first day; but it certainly makes you feel vulnerable, weak, and turn outside of yourself for higher spiritual guidance.
If any of you happen to stop into the hospital, look me up. I’ll be on the regular on-call rotation shortly and will be in 5 days a week and some weekends.