Heath and Healthcare

What does the ELCA teach about: health, healing, and health care?

The ELCA Social Statement “Caring for Health: Our Shared Endeavor” was adopted in 2003 – now nearly 20 years ago!  Think back for a moment on healthcare during the last 20 years and you will see that this statement only scratches the surface of our present healthcare challenges and advances.  Still, at 20 years old, the ELCA social statement on health, healing, and healthcare maintains some clear assertions:

  1. Health is a shared endeavor.  There is an individual, societal, and governmental responsibility to promote health, healing, and healthcare.
  2. Health is good for its own sake; it also is good for living abundantly in relationship with God and in loving service to our neighbor in the vocations to which God has called us.
  3. In a flawed world, we do not always achieve perfect or ideal health.  However, we ought to continue to promote and seek out and pursue the best possible well-being of body, mind, and spirit.
  4. Care provided at the end of life (such as hospice or palliative care) is a faithful decision that can be made by the patient, family, and healthcare providers.  The faithful need not be concerned that this shows a lack of faith in God’s healing.
  5. As a church, we are called to advocate that all individuals have access to quality, affordable, comprehensive healthcare.

As always if you are interested in reading the entire social statement, you can do so on the ELCA Webpage. If you would like to talk about any of the social statements, let me know – I’d be happy to sit down with you and discuss!

Pastor Sharilyn