For the eight years I served as chaplain to the children of Intermountain Residential in Helena, Montana, I often wondered, “Is there hope for healing in this situation? Can God bring any light into this dark circumstance?” I wrestled to faithfully extend healing, hope, and love without being cliché, insensitive, or saccharine in my spirituality.
The truth that repeatedly came through, especially when children were affected by tragedy and trauma, was this: hope is absolutely necessary for healing. This hope is not that pain and trauma can be miraculously removed, but a firm knowledge that no matter our circumstance — we are never alone.
Though I am no longer the chaplain at Intermountain, I continue to serve in a new capacity where I seek to connect individuals, groups, and faith communities to the wonderful work that Intermountain is doing. Intermountain brings “healing through healthy relationships,” but it is simply impossible to capture the amazing work being done through therapists, teachers, mental health support, occupational therapists, psychiatrists, fundraising and office personnel, support staff, case workers, and so many others in a simple tag line or mission statement.
Historically, I’d try to bring pastors and supporters on to campus so they could