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Businesses bring in chaplains to help during stressful holidays

Screen Shot 2016-12-06 at 11.37.50 AMThe holidays can be a stressful time, and some companies are bringing in workplace chaplains to help ease those feelings for their employees.

Marketplace Chaplains provides help, hope and healing in more than 700 companies in North America along with the UK and the Far East, helping hundreds of thousands of employees and their family members cope with the joys, stresses and hurts in today’s workplace.

The chaplain services are confidential, non-denominational and voluntary to companies which use this unique workplace tool to reach out to employees and their family members in need.

A fast food employee, who was initially afraid to talk to a chaplain, said about her first interaction with a Marketplace chaplain, “I am glad I did because this is a great service you provide us with. I felt like something was removed from my chest after I talked to you.”

“I already feel lighter just talking for a few minutes,” another bank employee reported, “I can feel the stress lifting off my shoulders.”

Many companies, including many served by Marketplace Chaplains, shift into special or extra hours during holiday season or see extra demands related to their jobs.

“We have many employees who save up days to take off during the holiday season and it can create longer hours for others,” said North Dallas Bank CEO Mike Shipman. “We have customers who save up all year for the holiday season, but it may not be as much as they want. It can be stressful.”

North Dallas Bank, with multiple locations in the Dallas area, is the longest-serving continuous company Marketplace Chaplains has served for more than 25 years. “We want to put actions to our words,” Shipman said of the longtime association and the bank’s concern for its employees.

Marketplace Chaplains is available to companies on a 24/7/365 basis and make regularly scheduled visits to the workplace, passing through stressful times in employees’ lives during the holidays and every other time of the year.

“I talked to an employee who shared feelings of discouragement after the passing of her mother and feeling of confusion and disconnection with the rest of her family,” said one Marketplace Chaplain. After a few chaplain visits, the employee responded, “Thank you for being there to listen and help me.”

Marketplace Chaplains Executive President and CEO Doug Fagerstrom said the positive feedback the chaplains receive from the chaplains’ contact is typical in the stressful holiday and every other time.

“Recently, I heard an employee share with our chaplain the struggle his wife is having with cancer. The chaplain offered to help. With tears in his eyes, the employee was deeply encouraged with new hope and peace. These stories are repeated every day in over 3,900 locations.”