Our Pastoral Care Team
What we do:
When you hear the words, "Pastoral Care," what comes to mind? A gentle presence by a sick bed or perhaps some warm soup? Someone who knows how to listen?
Pastoral care is that, and more. It is connecting people during some of the happiest and some of the most trying times our members and friends can go through, and helping out in practical ways -- like providing rides, a quick visit or getting a 'fridge restocked after a rehab stay. Our Pastoral Care Team helps us reach out to one another in times of celebration, and in times of sorrow and difficulty.
The USNF Pastoral Care Team coordinates visits, rides, meals and other forms of assistance for members of our community who are in need. Our minister and other members of the team are available for hospital and home visits, and for short-term counseling.
Current members: Barbara Thompson, chair; Sara Hunt, Steve Kramer, Juli Kinsman, Sarah Osgood, Randi Poirier, and Reverend Janet C. Bush
If you would like some help or know someone who might:
The Pastoral Care Team can be contacted via email,
You may also email the office,
If you are aware of someone among us who might be grateful for some assistance, has a milestone we should celebrate, or a loss we should share or acknowledge, please let us know.
How you can be part of the team:
You can be part of our effort by becoming a Pastoral Care Volunteer. Volunteer a small amount of your time and energy to provide someone with a ride, run occasional errands, make and/or deliver a meal, or make a visit. Pastoral Care Team coordinators call volunteers with specific requests. If the request doesn’t fit with your schedule, they will contact someone else on the list, and ask you again another time.
Just send an email to the office, or talk with one of the members of the team if you would like to be on our list of helpers. Someone will be in touch with you to answer your questions and sign you up!
We try to stay informed about and to publicize community resources and programs that may be of interest. This is a partial listing. Please call or email the minister if you have a specific question or need.
Caregiver Support Groups
Jewish Family Services offers free caregiver support groups. Via Zoom as of 11/2021. Two Northampton area groups - Mondays 10-11:30 AM and Tuesdays 10-11:45 AM. FMI contact Cathy Chandler LICSW:
Services for Elders:
Elder Care Resources in Western Mass
Caring for an aging parent, relative, or close friend presents difficult challenges. It's not anything anyone wants to think about but planning ahead is important. If your loved ones medical need grow too extensive to handle on your own, you might consider looking for a long-term care facility. Here are a few helpful resources:
Franklin County Home Corporation
330 Montague City Rd, Suite 1
Turners Falls, MA 01376-2530
(413) 773-5555 Local
(800) 732-4636 Toll Free
(413) 772-1084 Fax
(413) 772-6566 TDD
Serves: all of Franklin County and Athol, Petersham, Royalston, and Phillipston
Western Mass Elder Care
4 Valley Mill Road
Holyoke, MA 01040
(413) 538-9020 Local
(800) 462-2301 Toll Free
(413) 538-6258 Fax
(800) 875-0287 TTY
Serves: Holyoke, Chicopee, Granby, South Hadley, Ludlow, Belchertown, and Ware
Highland Valley Elder Services
320 Riverside Dr, Suite B
Florence, MA 01062
(413) 586-2000 Local
(800) 322-0551 Toll Free
(413) 584-7076 Fax
Serves: almost all towns in Hampshire County, plus 8 towns in Hampden County
Therapists: If you have a primary care physician that person may have resources to help you find a therapist. We are sometimes able to help you find resources as well. Feel free to call or email Janet:
ServiceNet’s programs include outpatient behavioral health services; adolescent support programs; early intervention for young children; home health care; rehabilitation and residential programs for those with mental health issues, developmental disabilities, traumatic brain injuries, or addictions; and shelter and housing services for the homeless. Reduced fee programs are available. www.servicenet.org or 413 585 1300
Groups for young mothers: Resources for Young Mothers
Various support groups: A regularly updated listing appears weekly in the Daily Hampshire Gazette: http://www.gazettenet.com/living/health