Thanksgiving, Gratitude, and Hope

Published on August 16, 2019

White Oak During the day

Thanksgiving, Gratitude, and Hope

The ribbon-cutting for the Adventist HealthCare White Oak Medical Center  took place on Thursday. It was an incredible day for our community and all those who have worked so tirelessly to achieve this milestone. There will be a great deal of activity for the next few days as we prepare to officially open the new hospital on Sunday, August 25.

My mailbox—both digital and post—has been filled with cards, letters, and notes of encouragement as the day for opening the new hospital has drawn closer.

It has been a thrill to receive mail from so many of our retired employees and physicians.  So many wonderful people have had an up close and personal view of the development of the new hospital. These are longtime team members whose tenure at WAH is measured in decades. They have given so much to help fulfill our mission.  And they continue to stay connected to our mission and the communities we serve. They know how much this new hospital means to enhancing the environment of healing they’ve been so committed to over the years.  Through the voices in their letters I hear both confidence and pride as they express enthusiasm for the new and modern hospital that will sustain our mission well into the future.

Leaders from across our company have written to me expressing appreciation. Paralleling their gratitude are expressions of humble thankfulness for the privilege we now have to enhance our systems and processes for delivering high quality care. Not surprisingly, they affirm specific features of the new medical center: private rooms for our patients, the creation of a warm and inviting environment, access to parking, technology that will enhance our care, space to spread out! It is so exciting to be a part of the Adventist HealthCare team at this moment!

Perhaps because we are moving to a more centralized location in our service area, I have also heard from many from our community. Overwhelmingly, they affirm the enhanced capacity for service the new hospital affords us. This has been an area of particular focus for us in the planning and development of the White Oak Medical Center, and I share their enthusiasm for the accessibility our community will have to excellent healthcare services at the new hospital.

Some of the most gratifying mail has come to me from leaders from our sponsoring organization—the Seventh-day Adventist church. As they recount the ways our organization has grown and matured, I am reminded again and again of the sacred calling inscribed in our statement of mission: “We extend God’s care through the ministry of physical, mental and spiritual healing.”

And I appreciate the way that these leaders link our 112-year history of service in this community to extending God’s care well into the future. For many decades, in fulfilling our God-given mission of providing care for our community, we have also helped to train and inspire health professionals. We are confident in our hope that the new Adventist HealthCare White Oak Medical Center will be used by God in a powerful way as a center for healing, education, and health.

Someone shared with me a few short sentences written by Ellen White, the visionary leader and co-founder of the Seventh-day Adventist church, who first helped focus our work in health and healthcare. These words written more than a century ago still resonate with clarity and hope: “You need a strong hold from above. Exercise faith, and leave the results with God. When you have done your best, be of good courage. Believe, believe, and hold fast.”*

I hope that this is what we have done and will continue to do. To exercise faith, and leave the results with God.

*Ellen G. White, Letter 121, 1904

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