Shady Grove Adventist Hospital Adds Kosher Pantry (Photo)
Shady Grove Adventist Hospital celebrates the grand opening today (Nov. 13) of the Bikur Cholim of Greater Washington Kosher Pantry, located on the hospital’s third floor. Together with the kosher meal options currently offered to patients, this will ensure Shady Grove Adventist also meets the dietary needs of families and visitors who keep kosher while they visit loved ones undergoing treatment.
“It is important to us at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital that we don’t just treat the disease someone may be facing, but that we care for the whole person – and their entire family, as well. We strive to be mindful of their physical, mental and spiritual needs,” said John Sackett, president of Shady Grove Adventist Hospital.
“Bikur cholim” is a Hebrew term that means to visit, comfort and support people while they are sick. To keep kosher is to follow dietary restrictions in accordance with Jewish law.
“This is a very important addition to the services we offer, and it is key for us in meeting the needs of a diverse population,” explained Ismael Gama, associate vice president of Mission Integration and Spiritual Care for Adventist HealthCare. “This is one of the many ways that we address both the medical and cultural needs of families while they are with us as we demonstrate God’s care.”
Representatives from Shady Grove Adventist Hospital and Adventist HealthCare and donors from regional Bikur Cholim organizations will celebrate today’s opening of the Kosher Pantry from 12:30-1 p.m. During the ceremony, Rabbi Sholom Raichik, director of Chabad of Upper Montgomery County, will affix a traditional Mezuzah – a parchment scroll with Jewish verses from the Torah – to the doorframe of the new kosher pantry’s home near the Evergreen Family Lounge.
Planning is underway to build a second location of the Bikur Cholim of Greater Washington Kosher Pantry at Washington Adventist Hospital in Takoma Park, Md., also part of the Adventist HealthCare system.