British Nurse Suspended For Offering To Pray For Elderly Patient

By Thaddeus M. BaklinskiCANTERBURY, UK, February 3, 2009 ( - Caroline Petrie, a nurse in Weston-super-Mare, 142 miles west of London, and a committed Christian, has been suspended and faces disciplinary action because she offered to pray for an elderly patient during a home…

Full article…

More good news from the UK…:rolleyes:
What do they do with all the hospice folk that offer New Age wisdom?

Hospices are the problem?

Over here it is the pro-euthanasia lobby that is against hospices.

Well also, if they allow one religious practice within the NHS, they would have to allow prayers from every religion (so long as employees practise it). The government should stay out of religion. What would you do if the government was Sikh? or Muslim?

It depends on the hospice, but yes, there have been problems here in the States with certain hospices as far as euthanasia & New Age philosophy.
I’d very much appreciate the prayers of anyone attending me, Muslim, Sikh, or whatever.

What about a satanist?

I kind of figured that question would arise.
Do Satanists pray? If they pray to God then I’d assume they had a conversion in which case, sure, I’d appreciate their prayers.

There are satanists who pray to Lucifer with a satanic rosary.

What I’m saying is that the government should stay out of religion.

I don’t think a nurse offering a personal prayer establishes a state religion.Our family’s had several folks in the medical field, including a doctor, offer prayers during illness.It’s pretty common in the US, especially here in the South. And we appreciate it.Maybe this is the downside to socialized medicine? If the state is involved you can’t offer prayer?
Perhaps things are perceived differently in the UK. I think that would be sad.
(I’d say no thank you to the satanic rosary, though.)

Hmm, but most hospitals have chaplains that you can ask for if you want spiritual advice, and most hospitals have chapels and prayer rooms.
Likewise, hospices have chaplains too, and they play quite an important role within that, at least in the main hospice in NI.
I admit this case is a bit sad, the nurse shouldn’t be disciplined so harshly.

I don’t think she should have asked at all, she is there in a professional capacity as a nurse. I do think it has been blown a bit out of proportion, and if it was me who’d been asked, I would have just replied ‘No, thank you’ and that would have been it.

However, the nurse in question **had been disciplined before for handing out prayer cards **which I find completely inappropriate. It seems she’s already been told not to ask patients if they’d like her to pray for them and ignored that instruction. She’s not been told not to pray for them, but not to ask them if they’d like her to and it’s the fact she has persisted in doing so that has got her into trouble now.

Suspension of Nurse Who Offered to Pray for Patient’s Recovery Sparks Uproar


The British nurse who was suspended without pay for offering to pray for a patient’s recovery has been reinstated and will return to work in the next few days.
Caroline Petrie, an evangelical Christian from Weston-super-Mare, was subjected to disciplinary action by North Somerset Primary Care Trust even though the patient was not offended and made no complaint.
Petrie, who was supported by the Christian Legal Centre, was summoned last week to a disciplinary hearing on the charge that she had failed to demonstrate a “personal and professional commitment to equality and diversity.”…

Ah, that key word :diversity.:rolleyes:


Thankfully the Apostles didn’t think this way! This world today has become full of people looking for a reason to hate each other. Christmas being a perfect example. Some non-Christian claims harrassment because they were wished a Merry Christmas. Always looking for the worst in people (and possibly money). Why is it that most of us never just think that the other person is just trying to do something nice for us and be appreciative???

This doesn’t happen as much in the UK as it seems to happen across the pond.

Here many secularists call it christmas, but it seems to be a bigger deal in the USA.

Here are three reactions to the Caroline Petrie incident.

A spokeswoman for the public sector union Unison said: “We’re pleased that Caroline Petrie has been welcomed back to work. The suspension was overly harsh, but it is an important reminder for nurses, and people in the public services more generally, that they must be sensitive to the diverse beliefs of the people they serve.”

Indarjit Singh, editor of the Sikh Messenger, said suspending Petrie, a community nurse who carries out home visits in North Somerset, was an “overreaction” and “poor judgment on the part of the hospital”.

Keith Porteous Wood, executive director of the Secular Society, said the trust had been right to suspend Petrie, on the basis that she had been warned on a previous occasion following an incident in which she had offered a patient a prayer card.

“There’s an important practical issue here,” he said. “Entering people’s houses and offering to pray for them makes it excruciatingly embarrassing for them to say no. They may fear it will sour the relationship.”

Bringing up the Apostles is not the best idea… all it does is reinforce the perception she was trying to evangelise and abusing her professional position to advance a personal cause :blush:

Nobody ‘hates’ the nurse, some just think the way she has behaved is inappropriate, and I happen to be one of them.

**"What do you do, then, if one of these evangelists comes into your house on another pretext – say, perhaps, as a community nurse, who had come to dress a particularly persistent wound on your leg?

You’re grateful for her ministrations, but then, suddenly, out of the blue, she offers to pray for you or offers you a little card she’s made with prayers on it. She’s a nice girl, and has been kind in your hour of need. But you aren’t a Christian, and you don’t want people praying in front of you or talking about their religion.

Now you don’t have a convenient door to close on her. You’re tucked in the chair with a bad leg, so you have to excruciatingly say to her: “No thank you” and see the reaction, as her winning smile fades and she seems hurt by your refusal.

Should she have put you in that situation? Should she have come into your home on a professional, nursing basis and then used that access to try to interest you in her religion? Of course not.

And that is why North Somerset Primary Care Trust was right to suspend Caroline Petrie who put a patient in just such a position. She blatantly broke the code of conduct which she had signed up to; it states quite clearly: you must not use your professional status to promote causes that are not related to health."**

This is just plain sad to me. From the article she did not force the patient to pray…she asked. And it appears that she had some inkling that is what the person needed.

Personally, I would call her form of nursing, holistic…body and soul and she should be commended not critized and definitely not suspended.

As a nurse, I have prayed many times at the request of my patients…of course there was no risk involved since I work in a religious hospital. The ones I prayed with admitted to me they were more ready and comfortable for surgery after we did that too…and the Baptist patients were the ones who asked for it more often than the Catholics…go figure.

My point of bringing up the Apostles is that they prayed, evangelized, drove out demons, etc., when it wasn’t allowed. They did it anyway. Had they not, Christianity would have most certainly died with them. It was not meant to imply that she was evangelizing. Just offering to pray for someone isn’t the same as promoting a cause. And in fact, many people, including nurses and doctors pray for the health of their patients, so it is related to health and complies with the code of conduct. The only thing she did differently was to let the patient know about it. Some studies have shown that when patients pray, many feel better which may be divine intervention or a placebo effect. Regardless, it’s a good thing for the patient. And by her letting the patient know she was going to pray for them just might have made them feel better even for a little while.

Should I offer something that I think is a good thing and my audience does not want it, I only hope that they would suffer through the excruciating pain of having to say “No thank you” rather than causing me to be suspended, fired, sued or whatever.

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