Salt & Light
Remember when you were a nursing student? Think back to the stresses you experienced. How did you keep going? What was significant about your faith journey in those formative years?
Nursing students benefit from a supportive community, and Nurses Christian Fellowship offers a caring place. NCF groups provide genuine friendships, where students study the Bible, explore how to follow Jesus in life and nursing, and express God's love to classmates and faculty.
Since 1948, NCF has partnered with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship to offer real hope to generations of students on our nation's campuses. Nursing schools are often a neglected corner for campus ministries, but we are passionate about planting viable groups so that more nursing students experience the grace and peace of Jesus Christ.
This good news will define their lives—and their nursing practice—in the years ahead. God has given us numerous opportunities to invite nursing students to place their hope in Christ through NCF ministry. It's a privilege to walk with them to graduation—and into nursing practice.
Find out more about NCF student ministry at http://ncf-jcn.org/students.
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This is a common question for members who have joined the NCF professional network. You'll find all your member benefits at http://ncf-jcn.org/member-benefits.
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NCF members serve God's purposes in nursing. We are connected to each other in Christ. We hope you are encouraged by being part of a fellowship that supports your faith and your profession.
It's about relationship—that's how Christy Secor, DNP, RN, distills her new role as Professional Ministries Director with Nurses Christian Fellowship.
“I believe God created us for relationship; he made us to be in community with each other. When we are under stress, whether personally or professionally, we can move to isolate ourselves. This leads to burnout and compassion fatigue.”
“Sleep deprivation, burnout, compassion fatigue, workplace violence—these are the realities nursing students and professional nurses face each day. The statement, ‘you can't pour from an empty cup,’ is true,” Christy observes. “As nurses, our hearts want to give. Sensing that call to help others is why many of us chose nursing. We need to be filled.”
Christy speaks from experience with burnout; it was through relationships that she was refreshed and strengthened. Her doctoral work focused on strategies to reduce nurse compassion fatigue.
Christy, pictured here on the right with NCF Director Kathy Schoonover-Shoffner, discovered NCF while teaching nursing students. She has worked in military and civilian hospitals and in long-term care, so she is well aware of the challenges nursing students and nurses are experiencing.
Looking forward, Christy is highly interested in NCF members. “We want to know your story. Your story matters. You matter. NCF is a place where your voice can be heard,” she said.
Christy is pursuing better ways to communicate with students and nurses and to hear about their experiences. She is excited to build connections.
“What are aspects of NCF that our nursing students and nurses enjoy most?” she's asking members. “How can we continue to support our student nurse leaders and their faculty advisors, as well as our nurse group leaders?”
Reach out to Christy with your NCF experience and suggestions for ministry at [email protected].
From the NCF Director—Guest Editor
In the years since I retired as the Director of NCF, I have listened to lots of nurses' stories. I've had the joy of connecting with nurses who have asked me to help them learn about NCF, find or start a new NCF group, or become a member of NCF. I most enjoy listening to their stories and hearing how God led them to contact NCF. They sensed a need to find other Christians in nursing, and when they search the Internet, they discover NCF.
Nurses share that they want to do more for Christ in nursing, but they don't know what more is. Some share that they are praying with co-workers, some are gathering with staff for a short Bible devotion before the start of their shift. Many of the nurses' stories involve painful struggles of the past, and some need encouragement and prayer for peace and guidance now. The most common thread has been that nurses did not know about NCF until this time in their lives, but they felt compelled to connect.
In past months, several nurses have started NCF groups in their local areas. They want to create space for nurses to share their stories, hear about God's story, and apply what it has to say about their nursing.
What's your story? Do you want to do more for Christ in nursing? You can explore nurse ministry information on the NCF website and connect with NCF staff. We'll listen to your story and pray with you about what you might do to bring nurses together to follow Jesus with their whole lives. Let's work together to make NCF known among nurses and students!
—Jane Hall, MS, RN, NCF National Director, 2010-2016
Many hospitals face perennial challenges of managing staffing turnover. But imagine a more extreme case—that every 2 years, the entire workforce turns over. What does leadership look like? And how would you go about building a sustainable culture for the work environment?
This is the challenge that many NCF chapters face. Many nursing programs last only 2 years, so student chapters experience complete turnover every other year. As a result, one of the top priorities of all chapters is the rapid development of new leaders. If a given NCF class is unable to raise up a new leadership team, the chapter will likely dwindle significantly and eventually disappear.
The beginning of the second semester is the most important time for raising future leaders. Right now, student leaders and faculty advisors nationwide are busily identifying and training future NCF leaders. Whether they are using our Online Leadership Academy or other leadership development resources, they are investing in the next generation of student leaders. They are tackling this turnover challenge head on!
And here's the amazing part. Despite the odds of these chapters surviving, they almost always do! By God's grace, he continues to provide leaders, year after year.
Will you take a minute to pray for our NCF student chapters? Ask God to encourage the right leaders to continue our NCF ministries across the United States.
—Timothy Lin, MA, NCF Student Ministries Director and Senior Area Director in Kansas with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA
NCF members who need help with their JCN print subscription or online account should contact LWW Member Services at 866-489-0443 or [email protected].