A chapel can usually be found at the heart of most Good Samaritan Society locations.
“It’s my favorite room in the whole building,” Good Samaritan Society - Maplewood administrator Susan Jensen says of her center's place of worship.
At the faith-based organization’s skilled-nursing facility in Maplewood, Minnesota, it’s a relatively new addition with a unique feature.
"Those are the stained-glass windows from Roseville Good Samaritan," Society CNA Lisa Corcoran says. “They were salvaged and saved in Maplewood. That was one of the nice things coming here – it was seeing the windows that we saw every morning in the dining room (in Roseville). Very happy they saved those,” Lisa says.
When the Roseville nursing home closed in 2009, some staff and residents transitioned to Maplewood – including Lisa, a Society employee for 38 years.
When Lisa is near the decorative glass, she thinks of "all the people I’ve met, staff and residents I’ve taken care of."
'It always calms people'
Fitting these frames into the chapel project at Maplewood seems to have worked out in painless fashion.“(Roseville) had a beautiful stained-glass window in their entryway. We just thought it’d be a nice continuation that we could incorporate that,” Susan says. “Prior to having the chapel (in Maplewood), they used to have to worship in the dining room."
After a strong fundraising campaign, Maplewood staff and residents can now cross paths in the sacred space. It’s been a staple and hub of activity since 2011.
“If you need to take a break and you need to quiet yourself and you want to think, it’s open all the time. We leave it open 24/7 for families, residents and staff,” Susan says. “We use it as kind of a community room, but it always calms people.
"Opening the door for more opportunities to live out your faith on campus.
“When you shut (the chapel doors), it makes the cross. When you come in down at the entryway and look down the hall, you can see the cross,” Susan says.
Whether it’s hosting church or moments of peace, the chapel fits with the mission of the Good Samaritan Society. The organization is approaching 100 years of service in September.
“I think that’s pretty good. I think that’s, boy they should have some kind of big celebration for that. 100 years is, that’s pretty good,” Lisa says. “They’ve played a very important part in many, many lives."