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Department: NCFI Your Global Connection

Cultivating Christian Community in Indonesia

Sinaga, Juniarta; Kumala, Inawati

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doi: 10.1097/CNJ.0000000000000835
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JUNIARTA SINAGA

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Religion is deeply woven into Indonesia's traditions. Growing up in a Christian family, I was ingrained with the notion to “mind your own religion” until I learned that Christianity is more than a religion. Since then, I have strived to integrate my faith into my workplace. Through my struggles, I realized that I desperately needed a community of Christian nurses who can hold me accountable or bring me back to the Gospel when life and work become challenging.

I joined Nurses Christian Fellowship (NCF) Indonesia in 2007. Being part of NCF Indonesia has been instrumental in building my professional network with people worldwide. I am thankful for a community that helps me grow spiritually and redirects my focus on things of eternal value.

Nurses Christian Fellowship Indonesia consists of 100 members from clinical practice, academia, and the public health sector. Since the pandemic emerged, it is crucial to get support from the community as it is easy to become distracted and discouraged. When we as nurses are fatigued and under immense pressure, we can lose perspective and no longer treat patients or our jobs as a God-given privilege. Nurses Christian Fellowship Indonesia provides seminars addressing mental health, psychosocial support, and Christian meditation to equip nurses with tools to cope with their stressful routines. Having others support us in prayer and remind us of God's grace moves us away from a complaining heart and negative attitude to find more joy and purpose in our vocation.

We strive to integrate our faith into our work. One way in which NCF Indonesia equips nurses is through Saline Process Witness Training, which teaches participants how to be salt and light in healthcare settings. This training has been widely conducted throughout Indonesia. Together with other Christian healthcare organizations, we have built a solid partnership that allows us to collaborate in providing trainings for healthcare workers at least once every 6 months.

The current challenge for NCF Indonesia is reaching young nurses. There is a generation gap in the committee that we desire to fill with young people. Each member is encouraged to invite younger members to become part of the global community of Christian nurses through Nurses Christian Fellowship International. As a part of the “middle generation” who also teaches at a Christian nursing school, I have an opportunity to invest in a small number of students. I believe that God is at work, and my work for him is never in vain.

INAWATI KUMALA

As a nurse of 3 years in an intensive care unit, I have seen a lot of suffering. Some people lose hope and sometimes nurses can assist in restoring hope. This is my calling as a Christian nurse.

It has not been an easy journey for me as a Christian nurse. With heavy workloads, I often neglect to care for my patients spiritually. This is a daily struggle. I am thankful for the invitation to attend the Saline Process Witness Training provided by NCF Indonesia. Being a Christian nurse is not only a challenge when I am with patients, but also when I am with my colleagues. I have witnessed my colleagues seeking relief in meaningless entertainment after heavy shifts, which made me realize the importance of a community of Christian nurses who can strengthen and build up one another.

My involvement in NCF Indonesia began near the end of my final year in nursing school. At that time, there was no NCF chapter in our province. We subsequently formed a prayer group consisting of six people. Three years later, we have an NCF Indonesia chapter in my province and I am involved as a committee member. I am thankful for God's provision of a community that helps me grow not only professionally, but also spiritually.

InterVarsity Christian Fellowship