What to say when someone is sick

Are you unsure what to say to someone who has a serious illness?  If so, take a look at this open letter to Senator John McCain, published on CNN's website:

Dear Senator McCain, thank you for your lifetime of service to America. Cancer sucks. Glioblastoma is a rough diagnosis. I'm so sorry you have to deal with this. I'm glad you have expert oncologists and surgeons working with you, and that you have such an abundance of loving support from family, friends, and us, your fellow Americans.We are all wishing you the best, Sir.

Godspeed.

This short note accomplishes several goals of pastoral care:  acknowledge the reality of what's happening, express empathy, remember all there is to be thankful for, and reiterate the support of caring people.

I join with many others in praying for the senator.  I pray for all those close to me dealing with cancer.  Godspeed indeed.

(This letter is just a portion of a larger opinion piece.  See my next blog post for more on the idea of a "battle" against cancer or other serious illness.)

Original post on CNN.com: http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/21/opinions/cancer-is-not-a-war-jardin-opinion/index.html

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