Grace Prescriptions


It’s astounding to think of the number of opportunities afforded us in the medical profession to meet people in times of their deepest need. As Christians in this field, we are called to become the visual aids of what God is like to those who may never step through church doors. If you haven’t already, we encourage you to read the story about a woman whose life was dramatically changed by the love she encountered from a Christian surgeon. Stories like these remind us of the deeper meaning of our work in medicine.

There’s no substitute to the fulfillment that comes from encountering our patients with the love and kindness that God has called us to show. But as a Christian medical professional, treading the waters where faith and medicine intersect can seem murky with the feeling of being ill-equipped to approach the topic of faith with patients.  Yet it is this patient–provider relationship that provides such rich ground to plant seeds of spiritual hope in patients as they face their hours of deepest hurt and fear.  Every interaction is spiritually significant.

On the weekend of February 6-7th, Siloam will host Grace Prescriptions – a conference designed specifically for Christian medical practitioners to become equipped to integrate their faith with their practice.  Formerly known as “The Saline Solution,” Grace Prescriptions is a training paradigm pioneered by the Christian Medical and Dental Association.  Written by Bill Peel and Dr. Walt Larimore, the curriculum is designed to explore the topic of spirituality in healthcare and equip those of us in the medical profession to integrate faith into our practice.

These have been exciting weeks of preparation for a weekend we truly believe will bring refreshment and a new sense of purpose to those eager to integrate their faith with their practice. If you, or your team, are interested in finding out more about this event, please visit our event website here.

We would love to see you there!

Duke Divinity School Announces New Fellowship Program

With the goal to equip Christians to faithfully engage their vocations in health care, Duke Divinity School has announced the creation of a new fellowship program open to students and practitioners in health professions.


Dr. Farr Curlin, a long-time friend of Siloam and a regular speaker at the Christian Community Health Fellowship conferences, is leading this initiative and we invite you to consider their announcement below:

Theology, Medicine, and Culture Fellowship Announced

The Theology, Medicine, and Culture (TMC) initiative at Duke Divinity School is pleased to announce the creation of a new fellowship program for Fall 2015.

We invite students and practitioners in health professions, as well as others with full-time vocations to health-related contexts, to participate in a program of theological formation that will equip them for faithful, disciplined, and creative engagement with contemporary practices of health care.

TMC Fellows will study in one of the residential master’s degree programs of Duke Divinity School (MACS, MTS, MDiv, ThM), and will combine this academic study with structured mentorship, retreats and seminars, and church and community-based practica.  Through special grant support, the Fellowship will offer students tuition grants of at least 50 percent for the first year of study with additional scholarship support available on a competitive basis.

Current applicants to any of the degree programs at Duke Divinity School are eligible for the fellowship.  To apply, please:

1.)    Indicate your interest in the fellowship in the personal statement that is submitted with the degree program application

2.)    Submit a separate 1-2 page Statement of Interest in the fellowship to

The applications for this fellowship will be considered on a rolling basis.  We strongly encourage applications be submitted by March 1.  For more information please see:

Our vision is that the TMC Fellowship will equip the Church’s ministers and its healers with an imagination for faithfully engaging their vocations with respect to health and medicine—that they would be salt and light in the varied contexts and communities they inhabit.

For more information about the TMC initiative, see

More gift ideas for the toughies…

If you have a tough person to buy for this Christmas season, consider a gift to Siloam in their honor.  Here are a few options…

Bus Passes

Siloam is a short walking distance from the bus line. The gift of a $10 Metro bus pass will help our patients who struggle with transportation to make their clinic appointments.

Community Health Outreach

Siloam is committed to equipping and training “lay health workers” within our patients’ diverse ethnic communities to foster healing and wholeness among their own people groups. They are the experts on their rich cultural histories and traditions, and they know best how to reach their own people. Siloam provides health education, resources and encouragement to these lay health workers – and they in turn provide the same to their communities.

Your $250 gift can help cover the cost of transportation, educational materials and resources for lay health workers.

Check out more options at our website:

Love endures…

At all times—but perhaps more in times of difficulty—we need to be reminded of what is true. Regardless of what seems to be happening around us, the Eternal is good; His love and faithfulness will endure forever.

Psalm 100

A psalm. For giving grateful praise.

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
    Worship the Lord with gladness;
    come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the Lord is God.
    It is he who made us, and we are his,
    we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving
    and his courts with praise;
    give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
    his faithfulness continues through all generations.

Source: New International Version (NIV) and The Voice

Struggling to find just the right gift…

If you have a tough person to buy for this Christmas season, consider a gift to Siloam in their honor.  Here are a few options…

Gift Cards

Many of Siloam’s patients struggle to put healthy food on the table for their families.

A $10 gift card can make all the difference in a patient’s ability to buy nutritious food. Gift cards can also be used to purchase someone’s medications at a nearby pharmacy.

Refugee Hygiene Welcome Bags

Siloam sees more than 90 refugees each month for their required health screenings upon arrival to the U.S. We welcome each family or individual with a personalized bag filled with items like soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodorant, shampoo and conditioner which are not covered by food stamps. These items will help make their transition to their new life a lot healthier.

Your gift of $75 can help provide hygiene products for up to 20 newly arrived refugees.

Check out more options at our website:




Grace in the Exam Room


Dabney’s voice sparkles as she tells the story.  It was the peak of the summer in 1967 as she hurriedly tried to mow the lawn before her son’s birthday.  A misstep quickly turned into a serious injury and she eventually found herself in the office of a foot surgeon in her small town in Florida.

There was plenty to preoccupy her thoughts as she went in for her first visit, but entering into the doors, she immediately felt something she had never felt before, it was the presence of complete peace. Not yet a Christian, she could only describe it as “the most wonderful thing I’ve ever felt…When I went in to see the doctor, I was so overwhelmed by what I was experiencing that I completely forgot about my foot.

When she arrived back at her house, she excitedly told her husband what she had experienced and that she couldn’t wait for her follow-up appointment to have her stitches removed.  Whatever it was that she was feeling she wanted to experience more.

Her foot eventually healed and the stitches removed, but her moments with this surgeon were etched in her mind in the years that followed as she wondered what she had experienced at this place.

It was 4 years later that Dabney Mann prayed a prayer of salvation and several years later before she discovered that the surgeon that she had been so impacted by was also a Christian.  But when she traces back the lines of her redemption story, this encounter signifies her first time connecting the idea of God with love through the care that the staff at this office embodied.

As a medical professional, you may never know the full impact that your encounter with a patient has on their life.   Our days fill with faces, names, ailments, and medical knowledge.  In the busyness and rushed pace of things, it can be easy to grow desensitized by the demands of time and the steady stream of diagnoses to give.  As a Christian in medicine, you can start to feel a disconnect between faith and your work in medicine.  Slowly the sense of calling that led you into your career can fade by the demands placed on your time.

It was this need that drew Dr. Walt Larimore and Bill Peel together to write a curriculum called “Grace Prescriptions” (formerly known as Saline Solution).  With a desire to partner their visions of faith/evangelism in the workplace and ministry in medicine, they have linked arms with CMDA by offering seminars and workshops for the Christian medical and dental community for the past several years.

As a faith-based non-profit clinic for the uninsured, Siloam Family Health Center is excited to host Grace Prescriptions for the greater Nashville community on the weekend of February 6-7, 2015.  Our hope is that you and members of your practice can come and be encouraged with ways to integrate your faith with your practice.

This seminar is designed to be a place for medical professions to gather and address the struggles they face and teach practical ways to bring grace into the exam room.  We want to see you equipped and encouraged to see medicine as more than a career but as part of your calling as a Christian engaging the world around you through medicine.

Paul writes in Colossians 4:6 to make the most of every opportunity, to “let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt.”

dabney2There are patients just like Dabney that enter the halls of our practices who are eager to hear the Gospel.  For that surgeon, he may hardly have been aware at how deeply this lady with a stitched up foot was being impacted by the kindness that he and the members of his practice were offering to her – or how that experience with God’s love would one day take Dabney to over 16 different countries preaching the Gospel..

The grace that we show is like salt that brings flavor to the truth that people need as we become the visual aids of what God is like to those who may never step through church doors.  It’s this grace that fills your days with purpose as you’re made more aware of the heart of God in what you’re doing.

More information & registration for this event can be found here.  We hope you will mark your calendars for February 6 and 7th and prayerfully consider attending.  We’d love to see you there!

Lunch Discussions at Siloam

Whole-person care is a word that gets thrown around inside the walls of our clinic daily.  Inspired by the way that Jesus healed in the Gospels, we recognize that when a person is ill, more is ill than only the physical denominators of their health, but their feelings, emotions, heart and spirit also play a part.

Dan Fountain illustrated this brilliantly in an address he gave to the World Congress of the ICMDA in Durban in July 1998, drawing from a case study found in Mark 5: 25-34 – the healing of the woman with the hemorrhage.

Considered unclean by the social structure that surrounded her, her daily condition was one of abandonment, rejection, and despair.  Her life became defined by her illness and her hope for a cure had long been extinguished.  Yet hope was awakened the day that she heard stories about this man named Jesus and the accounts of the way He healed people.  With no other direction out, she knew that she needed to somehow encounter this man for her healing.

One day she hears that He’s passing through her town and she steps outside of the boundaries of what was allowed by her society.  She, unclean, reaches out as Jesus walks by and touches the hem of His garment, instantly healed.

Painting by Howard Lyon

Painting by Howard Lyon

Dan Fountain continues the narrative: “He [Jesus] knew she had been physically healed. We doctors are usually delighted when we have healed someone physically. Could Jesus not be content with that? No, because the woman herself had not been healed; her life had not yet been restored. Jesus wanted to heal her as a whole person, so he called her back to him. As she lay prostrate on the ground before Jesus, waiting to hear words of condemnation, she heard instead two absolutely incredible words [“My daughter…”], and these two words healed her.

… What heals the broken heart and the wounded spirit? What heals the heart is simply a word spoken to the depths of the spirit of the sick person. It is a word that is understood by the spirit of the person in such a way as to resolve the psycho-spiritual pathology – the fear, the conflicts, the anxiety, the guilt, the despair. When this word heals the inner pathology, the whole person can be healed.”

The question is: Is it possible for us to heal our patients in this way?  And if so, how?

Beginning November 18th, Siloam Family Health Center will be featuring a lunch discussion on whole-person care every 3rd Tuesday of the month.  All members of Siloam staff, volunteers, trainees and members of the Nashville medical community are welcome to attend.

An article will be selected that focuses on what it means to offer whole-person care with Dr. Morgan Wills facilitating a discussion around the topic presented.

If you are interested in attending, please RSVP to me at to receive the reading for the discussion and bring your lunch to join us while we discuss what it means to offer whole-person care.

This week we will be spending time discussing “The Healing Team” from Dan Fountain’s book God, Medicine, and Miracles.

If you would like to read the full length of his 1998 address, we encourage you to read the article here:

Cost-Conscious Care

Editor’s Note: One of the features of completing a clinical rotation at Siloam is learning about “poverty medicine” – delivering cost-conscious care. Andrew Wu, a 4th year Vanderbilt medical and master of public health student recently rotated at Siloam.  Andrew writes of his experience…

Wu, Andrew - VMS-IV - with Dr. Snader 10-2014

Dr. Brent Snader serves as a preceptor to 4th-yr Vanderbilt University School of Medicine student Andrew Wu.

One of my first learning experiences was an opportunity to learn how to practice in a cost-effective manner. A patient needed to be screened for colon cancer, which is normally done with a colonoscopy. However, due to financial constraints for this patient population, the alternative strategy of a fecal occult test was used in lieu of colonoscopy at this clinic. I found it interesting that these “alternative” methods were actually the standard for this particular patient population. In nearly all of my training, I was used to having almost unlimited resources at my fingertips. I could order labs and procedures without thinking much about the cost since they were either allowed for educational purposes or simply because the hospital could afford it. However, practicing at Siloam has allowed me to taste a bit of the reality of the cost behind the medical practice and how to appropriately adjust for it.

Looking for opportunities to give yourself to?

We often blog about medicine being a calling…one, to which practitioners are motivated by God’s tug on their life to pursue.  P.K.Lee - MSF in Sierra LeoneUnfortunately, “a not-so-funny thing happens on the way to the forum.”  Their motivation to practice medicine shifts.  As one of my colleagues often states, “many go into medicine to do good, yet come out of medicine to do well.”  Here is an opportunity to do good…and, possibly get back to that original “calling.”

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) helps people worldwide where the need is greatest, delivering emergency medical aid to people affected by conflict, epidemics, disasters or exclusion from health care. On November 6, 2014, medical and non-medical professionals are invited to a late afternoon presentation from 5-6:30 in Vanderbilt University Medical School’s, Light Hall, Room 208,  to learn more about how they can join Doctors Without Borders’ pool of dedicated aid workers. For readers outside the Nashville, Tennessee area or otherwise unable to make the meeting, more information about opportunities can be found at this link: