Monday, September 16, 2013


Mother and Infant statue at St. Vincent Women’s Hospital, Indianapolis, Indiana

For I too was a son to my father,
    still tender, and cherished by my mother.
Proverbs 4:3 (NIV)

Seven years ago, 2006, I saw this statue in the waiting area at St. Vincent Women’s Hospital in Indianapolis, Indiana.  It spoke to me of the tender care provided by mothers to their infants.   This is an icon of tenderness!

More recently, I have heard the strong but tender voice of Jean Vanier who articulates a contemporary theology of medicine.  He is the founder of the L’Arche communities where tenderness is at the center of the care.  That tenderness leads to a wonderful spirit of gratitude and joy. You can find that same gratitude and joy from others like the minister, Nadia Bolz-Weber, and the scientist, Natalie Batalha.

What is common in these images, voices and messages is what occurs in the lives of healing agents.  The good news is there are new virtual spaces like “On Being” with Krista Tippett that allow us to hear the words and see the actions of tenderness.



Levin J.  "And let us make us a name": reflections on the future of the religion and health field.   Journal of Religion & Health.  48(2):125-45, 2009 Jun.
Hage, M. L. (2013). The Nature of Healing. Retrieved from
Hage, M. L. (2013). Residential Learning. Retrieved from
Hage, M. L. (2013). A Theology of Medicine. Retrieved from

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Rounds are Over!

Ready for Rounds

On September 1, 2013, I attended my last clinical morning rounds.  This activity and habit has been a part of my life for almost 50 years.  It has been a method of learning, teaching and caring for patients.  There are certainly other important methods, but this has been a key to sharing information.

This activity has changed remarkably.  In the past memorization was key.  We needed to remember the history, physical and laboratory findings of each patient that we saw.  We then had to be ready to answer questions regarding the pathology and management of the disease.  Today, the patient and disease information exist in the “peripheral brains” (clinical computers and databases) of the clinical team.  What hasn’t changed is getting the clinical history from the patient, family and other team members.  We still need to sit, listen and touch patients.

It is a strange feeling to close these chapters of clinical learning and teaching.  The rounds that would sometime seem endless have stopped.  The reality is that others need to be the “rounders” that learn, teach and care.



Gonzalo JD.  Masters PA.  Simons RJ.  Chuang CH.  Attending rounds and bedside case presentations: medical student and medicine resident experiences and attitudes.  Teaching & Learning in Medicine.  21(2):105-10, 2009 Apr-Jun.

Tariq M.  Motiwala A.  Ali SU.  Riaz M.  Awan S.  Akhter J.  The learners' perspective on internal medicine ward rounds: a cross-sectional study.
BMC Medical Education.  10:53, 2010.

Hage, M. L. (2012). Vocation & Retirement. Retrieved from