60-year-old Mr Ray was admitted to St Luke’s Hospital for palliative care due to severe gangrene in his left foot. Despite being acutely aware of the gravity of his condition, he declined amputation, fearing potential complications.
Chronic health issues, including schizophrenia, had prevented him from working and going to church for a long time. The only constant in his life was his deep passion for music. As a music composer, he was proficient in the violin, piano, and er hu.
To support his emotional and psychological well-being, the ward’s pastoral counsellor made daily efforts to build a connection. In one exchange, Mr Ray candidly expressed his longing for a serene passage from this life.
When asked if he would like to visit the hospital’s chapel, Mr Ray’s countenance brightened immediately, responding with genuine enthusiasm. Upon entering the chapel, he was visibly moved by the sight of the cross, his face graced with a broad smile. Seeing his favourite musical instruments in the chapel brought a further smile to his face.
A touching moment ensued when Mr Ray requested for a ten-minute period of silence for a reflective prayer before the cross. In this poignant juncture of his life’s journey, Mr Ray found peace and solace in the presence of Christ within the walls of SLH chapel.
In the subsequent weeks, while Mr Ray’s health began to rapidly decline, the ward’s multi-disciplinary team continued to care for him holistically, maintaining comfort, peace and quality of life in his final days. Mr Ray returned home to the Lord in March 2023.
Palliative care is one of the core areas of care provided by St Luke’s Hospital. This year, themed “Celebrating Silver – Circle of Life”, SLH’s annual fundraising campaign aims to raise awareness and underscore the importance of holistic palliative care and support in maintaining the quality of life for patients at the end-of-life.
♡ To donate, please visit https://www.giving.sg/slh/charitydinner23