“Here I Am”
Last Friday, on a very grim day for this nation, four young women chose to light candles against the darkness, and to say “Here I am” to those who suffer.
Brittany Carroll, Amber Coleson, Samantha Guillory, and Tara Roe-Sanchez took The Nightingale Pledge in a candle-lit ceremony at Jasper’s First United Methodist Church. As LVN candidates in Angelina College’s nursing program, they have completed the first phase of their classroom studies and practical experience, and now look forward to taking their state board exams. All intend to work towards the RN.
Brittany Carroll and Samantha Guillory received their caps and pins from their lead instructor, Lisa West, RN, MSN, FNP-C. Amber Coleson elected Whitney Franklin, RN, BSN, for that honor, and Tara Roe-Sanchez was privileged to be capped and pinned by her mother, Patti Hooks, herself a new RN.
Sharing the solemn joy were the new nurses’ families, friends, and their other instructors: Liz Powell, RN, MEd; Charlet Blades, RN, MSN; Jacquelyn McClain, RN, BSN; Winifred Ferguson-Adams, RN, MEd; and Amber Murphy, RN, BSN.
Although many nursing schools have dropped The Nightingale Pledge, along with capping and pinning ceremonies, Angelina College knows that nursing is more than a state-licensed occupation; it is a vocation grounded in faith; it is a vocation that says “Here I am.”
Advent is the perfect time for men and women to respond to the call to nursing through The Nightingale Pledge, for just as our Blessed Mother said her own “Here I am” to God, so do nurses.
There is perhaps no higher calling, for in emergency rooms, home health, ICU, clinics, hospital wards, missions, operating rooms, ambulances, medevacs, aboard ships at sea, and in the desert aid posts, nurses, to those suffering from disaster, disease, and the murderous follies of mankind, are the constant “Here I am.”
On this happy night there were photographs and cakes and congratulations, but after that there will be long shifts and sleepless nights and impossible demands upon their nursing skills and their energy. There will sometimes be victories and happy endings, but there will also be many losses and sorrows. To this sacred calling, Brittany, Amber, Samantha, and Tara have said, without hesitation, “Here I am.”