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My dad passed may 25th......

Wanted to update you all. It was faster than we thought it would be. It's been very difficult to move on.

To make this "religious"in nature-do you think an atheist daughter can properly provide for her dying fathers Christian/spiritual needs?

This is what I did to help my dad-I contacted hospices chaplain the catholic church in our area and my friend whom my father knows very well who is very spiritual. My father than told me what he preferred-my friend, and I had her come several times to pray with him and talk with him privately.

It was of upmost importance to me that my dad felt at peace upon his passing.

Have you ever been in a position to provide spiritual guidance to a loved one who didn't share your beliefs? Was it difficult or did it come as an act of love?

Answer Question

Asked by sahmamax2 at 8:45 AM on Jun. 8, 2013 in Religious Debate

Level 37 (88,208 Credits)
Answers (17)
  • I am so sorry to hear this, I have never had to do this, but I would in a heartbeat, definitely an act of love, hugs to you...

    Answer by older at 9:00 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

  • I am so sorry for your loss. I have never been in that position either.

    Answer by DJDNY at 9:03 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

  • I am so sorry. Yes, I have aided someone who was dying and they had different beliefs. At times like that it is all about what the dying person needs, not what the caregiver needs/believes. It is an act of is the right thing to do. You helped put him at peace. You are a good daughter. hug

    Answer by silverthreads at 9:11 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

  • If you did what he wanted you to do, then I think you gave him exactly what he needed. I don't think you necessarily need to share someone's beliefs in order to help them when they need it. As long as you can be respectful of their beliefs and supportive of what they want, what they need, and do what they ask, that's really what matters.

    I'm very sorry about your father.

    Answer by wendythewriter at 9:22 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

  • Thank you all for your condolences.

    Comment by sahmamax2 (original poster) at 9:36 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

  • My love and hugs to you and your family during this difficult time.

    Answer by virginiamama71 at 9:39 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

  • I'm so sorry for your loss. But yes, I think that people of different beliefs can be there for each other in those moments and meet their needs. It sounds like you did just that. I agree with the others that you don't need to share someone's beliefs to be there for them and see their needs and wishes met. I'm sure it meant a lot to him to have you there with him, and that he got the peace he needed. <3

    Answer by bandgeek521 at 10:17 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

  • So sorry!

    I had to do this for my mother. She had an old friend who was in the process of joining the priesthood,and he ended being a huge help on multiple fronts. The actual priest assigned to the hospital was also from the school she'd attended as a child, so that gave them some connection, too. I think that's all that mattered more than anything I thought about it all - people who "got" what she needed. In some respects, I think it's easier for an atheist or someone a completely different religion than if they were the same faith but different denoms, then the tug of war of which version is right begins. As long as it's about them, not you, that's all that matters.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 10:31 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

  • do you think an atheist daughter can properly provide for her dying fathers Christian/spiritual needs? 

    Absolutely so long as they follow the dying father's wishes, which you did and went above and beyond to ensure he was content in his passing. It isn't about religion at that point so much as it is making sure they knew they were loved and making the transition easier.

    My condolences on your loss. 


    Answer by KristiS11384 at 10:45 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

  • I'm sorry for your loss. But yes, it sounds like you could, and did, provide what your dad needed because you love him. It wasn't about what you believed at that moment, it was about what he needed, and you came through as an act of love.

    Answer by Ballad at 11:11 AM on Jun. 8, 2013

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