Hello! I’m Rev. Chris Wyckoff. It’s okay to call me Chaplain Chris. It is my privilege to serve as chaplain at Signature Healthcare, Chapel Hill. Besides getting to know my new position, prioritizing my responsibilities, and responding to the unknown and unforeseen events that come up daily, I have been trying to figure out just how to make a post to this page. Figuring this out has been quite a journey. I’ve never experienced anything quite like it. I’m learning to deal with not having control over something that I do have control over in other environments. But isn’t that much like our lives? Our journey takes us to different places, and different places require that we change our ways of being and knowing and doing.
But, I’m finally here. This journey started over 25 years ago. Assisting my family with the long term care needs of my grandfather and grandmother in my late teenage years planted the seed of my compassion for the cared for and the caregiver alike. In 21 years of ministry, I have served elder congregations, nursing homes, and retirement communities as a minister and senior pastor. My doctoral studies focused on a vision of God as the ultimate, divine elder and honoring the voices of our elders and their need to be centerpieces in our houses of worship and our communities. I have had my own health challenges that have shaken me body, soul, and mind. To overcome and remain healed, I have had to establish a pattern of good stewardship over my own health and well-being. It was my desire to become a chaplain to serve those for whom God has given me this heart. I’m grateful that Signature has given me an open door to serve this way.
I’m finally here. This means, if you are reading this, we are here together. Something, very likely a life changing event, has brought us together. This pivot in your life is likely an unexpected turn, but our being here together is no accident. I was meant to walk alongside you at this moment. I may speak words of wisdom as we walk. I may say some things you may not want to hear, but are necessary for you to come to accept. I may only listen. I may help you clarify your thinking. I may be a companion in silence. For whatever reason we are here together, I believe it is God’s reason that we are together. I’m finally here and so are you. Let’s make the most of our time, however long it may be, and set our sights on being the best we can be to our loved ones, to each other, and to ourselves.