Jessica Jasper

Jessica Jasper

Hardin Memorial Health

Some people lead no matter where they are. Jessica Jasper is one of those people, said Beth Jackson of Hardin Memorial Health.

She calls Jasper, “a wonderful leader inside and outside the halls of the hospital.’’

Jasper, 35, is the Director of Pastoral Care at HMH. She lives in Elizabethtown with her husband, Roger, and two children, Paul and Anna.

“She directs and oversees spiritual and religious pastoral support services for patients and their families, medical staff, employees, volunteers and daily visitors,” Jackson said. “This is a very taxing job — physically, mentally and spiritually — but Jessica is a daily encouragement to so many.”

Jackson said Jasper facilitated HMH’s neonatal intensive care support program that includes infant bereavement classes for BirthPlace staff. She is on the Perinatal Loss Council and the Kentucky Perinatal Association. She also implemented a pet therapy program at the hospital, Jackson said.

“Working as a small town hospital chaplain is not always the easiest job,” Jasper said. “I have to wake up each day willing to walk through the darkest valleys with people and every day I sit with people on the absolute worst days of their lives.”

But she loves her job.

“I love it because I didn’t always have someone during my rough times and I strive to be the person that I needed during those times,” Jasper said. She said, in the past, she wasn’t always supported as a woman in the ministry and being recognized in this way is humbling and affirming.

“My calling here on earth is to sit with people in their pain, to remind them that they are loved,” she said.

Jackson said Jasper’s love of humanity and devotion go beyond her daily duties. Jasper will soon go on a trip to Africa a to assist refugees and AIDS patients and to tour the workings of an emergency department there, Jackson said.

Becca Owsley can be reached at 270-505-1740 or bowsley@thenewsenterprise.com.

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