A story of what working at the
Airport Chaplaincy office can be like
A quiet voice was at first unnoticed. But again she repeated... “Hello” “Is anyone there?” We were talking in the office portion of the ministry, just in the back of the Meditation Room. She repeated, “Is any one there?”
Two of our desks are crowded into this office with files, chairs, and supplies for the ministry. When I heard this soft voice, I responded... “Yes, we’re here!” I waited, “Please come on in.”
Through the door came a woman who truly looked disheveled. Carrying her luggage, and handbag, she was also weighed down with a ‘back pack’. The large piece of luggage dropped as she slumped into one of our two guest chairs, and just began to cry.
My associate moved closer to comfort her and I stood to my feet, moving around the desk I was at to be closer. I sat down beside her and just gave her permission to ‘unravel’. “I’m here in Seattle to visit my dying father. Three months ago, they diagnosed him with cancer, and now he has very few days to live. I placed my hand on her shoulder and just listened.
My heart was deeply touched. Cancer had also taken a dear friend of mine recently, and I identified with how helpless she was feeling. I was sensing those feelings myself. I believe that we go through tough times in order to identify with others who are going through their tough times.
As her tears subsided, she just sat there taking in the peace that this little office can afford. Often with the Airport so hectic, this little space is where people feel safe enough to ‘just be themselves’. We welcome that!
“Is there anyway you can help me just help me get to that Norwegian Hospital downtown. I smiled... She looked at me, a little taken back. I quickly explained, “You mean Swedish Hospital.” Yes! she said with embarrassment. “It’s okay, they often get confused.” I let her know that it was a major job to go downtown with all that luggage, and asked, “Do you have anyone who can help you – once you get downtown?”
“Oh yes. I have a brother and his family in this area.” We called him and left a message of her safe arrival. Then we continued, “she will be going downtown to see her father, but leave her luggage here at ‘Ken’s Baggage’ – where you can leave things for a short period and come back for them.” I walked her to Ken’s and then out to the bus loading area and handed her the tickets she would need.
“Thank you! When I first found you, I thought all this would just be overwhelming. Now, I know that when God is with us, ‘all things are possible!’
Walking back to our office, I connected with my Associate and we prayed together for her safety and direction to find her way. The reminder came to my heart again, that this office and Meditation Room are not here by chance... Many people, down through the years, have given time after time to see that we can pay the lease and provide for times just such as this. We give God all the honor and praise for His blessing these thirty-two years.