Site of new chapel for OSF Saint Joseph Medical Center is blessed in Bloomington

An artist's rendering of the new chapel for OSF HealthCare St. Joseph Medical Center in Bloomington.

BLOOMINGTON — Groundbreaking and blessing ceremonies took place on June 5 for a new $1.2 million chapel to serve patients, their families, and the staff of OSF HealthCare St. Joseph Medical Center.

The 3,000-square-foot chapel will be located at the hospital’s main entrance and will nearly double the size of the existing chapel.

The St. Joseph Chapel project has been funded entirely through the generosity of donors in the Bloomington-Normal area, including several persons involved in the OSF HealthCare Ministry.

OSF HealthCare leaders and donors take part in a ceremonial ground breaking for the new chapel at OSF HealthCare St. Joseph Medical Center in Bloomington. (Photo courtesy OSF HealthCare)

“At OSF HealthCare, we are fortunate to create environments where faith and healing are inseparable,” said Lynn Fulton, president of OSF St. Joseph. “The chapel is a physical space within the hospital set aside as a place of worship, a place of prayer, and sometimes a place of refuge for our patients and mission partners.”

The new brick and stone addition will feature circular-style seating accommodating 74 visitors. Chairs with kneelers will replace pews, providing more accessibility for those who are in a wheelchair, use a walker, or are on a hospital gurney.

Sister Judith Ann Duvall, OSF, chairperson of the board of OSF HealthCare, said the chapel will be a welcoming place for all regardless of their religious affiliation.

“The chapel is available when patients and family members are grappling with issues that directly affect their health and well-being,” said Sister Judith Ann during the June 5 ceremonies. “In the process of coping with crises, guilt, loneliness, pain, anxiety, fear of death or fear of some other loss, the chapel serves as a place to focus on spiritual strength and encouragement.”

Deacon Gayle Cyrulik, manager of chaplaincy serves at OSF St. Joseph, led the prayer of blessing, asking God to “bring this construction to successful completion and that his protection will keep those who work on it safe from injury.”

Construction is expected to take about 10 months.

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