Technology And Faith
Chris DiMaso | July 29, 2020
“But not finding any way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and let him down through the tiles with his stretcher, into the middle of the crowd, in front of Jesus.” Luke 5:19
Daily life is being affected by Covid in every way. Masks replaced smiles and staying at home replaced vacations. For the residents of Villa St. Francis, life looks much different too. Once the halls teamed with activity, now only nurses and CNAs travel the corridors. Shared meals and large group activities filled the dining hall, but now socially distant tables allow for staff breaks. The residents miss their friends and the fun activities they shared together. For the faithful, Covid has interrupted an important part of their life. With the restrictions on gatherings, Mass and Bible study have changed too.
In the New Testament, the Greek word ekklesia is used 115 times. Modern translations interpret this word as “church”, but the meaning is much more poignant. The literal definition is an assembly called-out from their homes to a meeting place. While “church” is a fine translation, it was never intended to mean the building. Ekklesia is about the fellowship of the people. For now, that needs to look different.
We celebrate Mass every day at Villa St. Francis! Residents aren’t allowed to join in person, but thanks to our television system, the worship service is available to everyone. We have two dedicated channels that are helping to bridge the gap during this difficult time. Channel 55 is a live feed from the chapel that allows Monsignor Burger to share the liturgy. A stationary camera captures the altar and pulpit. Audio is enabled which allows for residents to pray and sing as if they were in the chapel. Communion is delivered by nuns during the service to anyone requesting to receive the Eucharist.
As we at Villa St. Francis are responding to the changing dynamic of life in quarantine, we are also finding new ways to facilitate faith. A recent addition to our television system, channel 53, allows us to share YouTube videos with the residents. We aren’t sharing cat videos though, this channel is full of great content. One such example is Maureen Kelly’s Bible study. It wasn’t too long ago that residents would gather together to dive into God’s Word. As that isn’t possible right now, we are bringing it to them directly. For twenty minutes, Maureen shares the meaning of biblical stories and delivers sage application to resident’s lives. The video below is the first Bible study being shared with residents on the television.
Incorporating faith into daily life is one of the ways we are providing the best quality care to our residents.
CNA & CMA Classes Reopening!
Chris DiMaso | June 29, 2020
“Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness.” -Matthew 9:35
Villa St. Francis believes in giving back to the community and providing authentic leadership. That is why we offer a free CNA and CMA certification class with no strings attached. You could be on your way to making a difference in a healthcare setting. Your new career will give you a sense of pride every day as you touch the lives of people who need help.
Beginning in October 2019, the first class of CNAs began at Villa St. Francis. We continued those classes until the Covid-19 pandemic made it unsafe to continue. However, Director of Nursing James Njoroge, RN, is ready to reopen those classes. “Appropriate staffing and good employees are needed, we want to help fulfill this need,” explains James Njoroge.
According to a 2018 survey conducted by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing and The Forum of State Nursing Workforce Centers, more than half of the RN workforce is over 50, with over 1 million registered nurses reaching retirement age in the next 10 years (American Association of Colleges of Nursing). Meanwhile, baby boomers are hitting retirement age, and the future demand for qualified nursing care is expected to skyrocket, with the senior population expected to almost double over the next 30 years (US Census Bureau).
These statistics have been felt in the Villa St. Francis community. “We have many tenured, talented nursing team members who have been with us for years, but recently, we’ve seen the influx of similar applicants start to slow,” explains Villa St. Francis Director of Human Resources Kendra Unruh.
CNA and CMA classes are 90-96 hours of classroom time. The next round of classes begin August 3, 2020.
If you are interested in enrolling, call (913) 406-6344.
Gratitude In Action
Chris DiMaso | May 11, 2020
“No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15:13
When you love someone you would do anything for that person. Our frontline healthcare staff loves our residents. They are with them every day. Our staff listens to their stories, shares their hopes, and tends to their needs. The residents at Villa St. Francis are family and our staff loves them. It is that dedication that makes our staff the best.
Protecting our residents from pathogen transmission is always a concern, but now more than ever. Our staff takes care to keep themselves safe both in and out of our facility. They limit their exposure to others and take extreme precautions in their life. They aren’t worried about getting COVID-19 themselves, they are concerned that they could pass it on to the residents. They have made sacrifices because of their love for those they serve.
Their devotion is inspiring and we are honoring that by helping them with food. “These food packages are meant to help our staff, both financially and preventing exposure at the store,” said CEO Rodney Whittington. “We want our employees to know how much we care for them and appreciate their efforts.”
The bags, which appropriately say “thank you”, are filled with staples for a family of four. Each employee will receive bread, cheese, and meat for sandwiches and a side of chips. Cereal, oatmeal, and waffles for breakfast. Each package will also include milk and a selection of condiments to make the meals.
Villa St. Francis will be putting together over 200 packages for staff every two weeks. “Saying thank you just wasn’t enough, we had to put our gratitude in action,” said Rodney Whittington.
Thank You From Villa St Francis.
Chris DiMaso | May 1, 2020
“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” -1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Gratitude is not a feeling, it is a way of life. God calls us to be a thankful people. During this difficult time, it is important to take inventory of His blessings in our lives. For many of us, those include our family, friends, and home. Here at Villa St. Francis we have much for which we give thanks.
We are thankful for our frontline healthcare staff. They are strong and resilient. They are dedicated to protecting our residents’ health and safety. We could not provide the five-star care we are known for without them.
We are thankful for our residents. They are the reason we come in every day. Their bright, sunshiny faces light up the room. They have been understanding during this time, and we love them.
We are thankful for those organizations that have given their time, talents, and treasure to support us. We are grateful to be a part of a caring community. Organizations and people who share our mission are vital to our work. Here are some of those who have shown their love:
Catholic Community Hospice
Church of the Resurrection
Kansas City Hospice
Prince of Peace
And many more!
We give thanks for you. You support us, you pray for us, and you donate to us. Your financial gifts allow us to provide the excellent care we are known for at Villa St Francis. A donation of $25 will help provide personal protective equipment for our frontline healthcare workers. May 5, 2020 is #GivingTuesdayNow, an international initiative to provide for the needs of healthcare workers.
The form on the right is an easy way for you to make that gift right now. Please make your generous gift today.
How to make the greatest difference now.
Chris DiMaso | April 29, 2020
The greatest difference you can make right now is one you can’t see. Since mid-March, the Kansas City metro has been under a stay at home order. We have been sheltering in place with our families. Avoiding stores and minimalizing our public exposure. Many of us have even begun working from home. For the frontline healthcare staff of Villa St. Francis this looks and feels different.
Every day our loving staff comes to work to take care of our residents. They are the definition of essential workers. They are providing hands-on healthcare and working to prevent the transmission of COVID-19. They are taking extra precautions in their personal lives to make sure they stay healthy and safe.
You can make a difference in the life of our staff and ultimately our residents. You can donate right now.
Your gift of $25 will help provide masks, gowns, and cleaning supplies. The disposable nature of these items makes them ideal to prevent disease, but it also means they need to be replaced. We need your help in replenishing these critical supplies. You can also make an in-kind donation of medical-grade surgical masks, gowns, or cleaning wipes. They can be brought to our facility and left outside the front door during business hours.
Grand gestures from people all over the world celebrating healthcare workers are taking place. Parades and cheering from balconies are highlighted nightly on the news. Yet, the greatest way you can support our staff is by making your gift to help provide them the critical equipment they need. So while you won’t be able to see the effects your donation has, you can be assured of the good you’ve done. On behalf of our frontline healthcare staff; thank you for your donation. Thank you for staying home and flattening the curve. Thank you for your prayers.