Terry Halloran is a retired computer programmer. He has been a volunteer chaplain at San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital since 2004. Terry is a lay member of Blessed Kateri Catholic Church in Beaumont.

Terry grew up in Orange County. He completed his studies for the priesthood at St. John's Seminary in Camarillo. Ordained in 1960, he served in parishes in Claremont, Los Angeles, Long Beach and Lancaster. He also spent two years in Mexico.

Terry has been blessed with enough training and experience to speak and read Spanish fluently. In his hospital ministry he mostly listens to patients. If they wish, he reads selections from the Bible and prays with them and their visitors. Sometimes he is called to the bedside of a Catholic patient who is near death. He gives the sacrament of Reconciliation if no parish priest is available.

Terry is married and has two married sons and several grandchildren.

Ministry to Catholic Patients

Updated July 7, 2009

Catholics of past generations could always expect a priest to come and pray with them in times of illness. Not any more. Many large parishes now have only one priest, or no priest at all except on weekends.

Catholic patients who wish to receive Holy Communion in the hospital can call or have a family member or friend call the local parish on a weekday during office hours. The parish phone numbers are 951 849-2434 (Banning) or 951 845-2849 (Beaumont). Usually a lay minister of the Eucharist will bring Holy Communion to the patient the next day.

Catholic parents generally have their children baptized when they are infants. Sometimes in emergencies infants are given Baptism in the hospital. When no priest or deacon in official ministry is available, a lay chaplain or nurse or family member can perform the ceremony.

Catholics have another sacrament called Anointing of the Sick. It used to be called the Last Rites. Any Catholic who is seriously ill can receive this sacrament in church or at home, or in a hospital or other care facility. Because Anointing of the Sick is given only by a priest in official ministry, Catholic patients rarely receive this sacrament at San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital. It's far more likely that a lay chaplain or a family member will lead a short worship service of Scripture reading and prayer at the patient's bedside.

Most Catholics understand that the sacraments of the church are optional. Informed Catholics welcome the ministry of hospital chaplains of every faith. God's grace is everywhere.

Terry Halloran may be reached at: 951 769-2489

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