Blessing of the Hands Tradition Continues for Nursing Students

News Story: September 26, 2014

A total of 98 nursing students participated in Sacred Heart University’s third annual Blessing of the Hands ceremony in what has become a moving and meaningful tradition. The event took place in the University’s Chapel of the Holy Spirit on Friday, September 19, before a full house of family members and nursing school alumni.

“We began this program because we wanted to focus on tradition as that is a theme that resonates with the students,” said Kim Foito, clinical assistant professor of nursing. “The onset of the clinical experience is a milestone. The nursing faculty at Sacred Heart recognizes the value of spirituality, and this celebration embodies the great significance our hands represent in healing.”

After having their own hands anointed by Father David Buckles, the nursing faculty blessed the hands of the students. The group included juniors who are starting their clinical rotation and seniors who will continue this year.

“I truly felt blessed after the ceremony had ended. I think that it was such a beautiful ceremony that really encompassed so many different aspects. I felt the spirituality aspect of the ceremony and the presence of God upon all of us as we embraced our calling,” said Jamie Bennardo ’16.

I am really thankful for all of the hard work of the professors putting on such an amazing ceremony for the students and their families.”

Added Elisa Robiglio ’16, “My family and I thought that the ceremony was beautiful! It was very well put together and really caught the attention of the crowd. It made us nurses feel special.” 

“Ceremonies such as this are often held during Nurse’s Week to recognize the caring and competence of this profession. The hands are a critical tool for nurses, and we thought this would be a meaningful way to celebrate this stage of the students’ nursing education. We hope students will come away with a sense of spiritual awareness and realize their faculty are celebrating their commitment to caring,” Foito said.

“The blessing of the hands ceremony was very special because it made me think about all we are going to do with our hands as nurses in the future. Sometimes all the patient needs is a simple touch,” concluded Tara Rasmussen ’16.

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