Singing hospice brings joy to terminally ill
WILMINGTON, Del. - March 8, 2012 (WPVI) -- When you think of someone in hospice care you usually think of a sad, solemn event, a terminally ill patient, and inevitable death.
But a one-of a kind hospice program in Delaware, is offering its patients joy and an uplifting experience.
A hospice caretaker has been coming to a home in Wilmington for the past two years, but what she brings to the patient inside is not only unique, it is invaluable.
Chaplain, A'shellarian Anthony comes to Charles Black's home once a week. She offers spiritual counseling and prayer.
The Delaware Hospice Center supports families in southern Chester, and other Delaware counties and Delaware.
It's the only non-profit hospice program in the state, and the only one that offers hospice specialists who sing.
The Chaplain and her patient have more in common than they realized; raised in the Baptist church, both have a love of gospel music.
"I think singing lifts the soul and connects us back to God, and it really is soothing," said Chaplain A'Shellarian Anthony.
Charles' wife, Doris died last June. He is now suffering from Parkinson's disease and looks forward to the chaplain's visits and their singing.
"I think it helped him deal with the loss of my mom," said Sheridan Black. "I just don't know what we as a family would do without them."
Charles's daughter and grandson are in a good place, knowing their loved one is at peace and vice versa.
"I find that the patient is sometimes more concerned about the family. As we sing, everybody's anxiety level goes down," said Chaplain Anthony.
"I'm prepared. I've had 86 years, 86 wonderful years," said Charles Black.
delaware, local/state, lisa thomas-laury
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