Faith perspectives on palliative care

People of various traditions share faith perspectives on palliative care

How do we support the spiritual needs of patients who are terminally ill? Watch the following videos to learn more about various faith perspectives on palliative care, including: Bahá’í, Tibetan Buddhist, Celtic Pagan, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Representatives of these faiths share a brief outline of their beliefs and how they apply in end-of-life situations. They offer practical advice concerning appropriate ways to interact with a patient and their loved ones in the lead up to death and the period immediately following.

Collaborative project

This project was initiated by chaplains at the Queensland Children’s Hospital, to help medical staff understand and support families as they sit with their terminally ill children. They reached out to the Queensland Faith Communities Council, which collaborated with faith communities in South-East Queensland and the Quality of Care Collaborative Australia to produce this series of informational videos.


Sylvana Simon, a retired nurse, outlines Baha’i some teachings and principles, including a holistic perspective about material and spiritual health. She shares how to support Bahá’ís and their families as they approach the final stages of life’s journey.

Faith perspectives on palliative care: Bahá’í

Tibetan Buddhist

Venerable Tenzin Chodron, a Tibetan Buddhist who works with Karuna Hospice Services Ltd, Brisbane, speaks about her beliefs and practices about end-of-life issues. Karuna Hospice Services Ltd provides in-home palliative and spiritual care and counselling to people with terminal illness to live well and die peacefully.

Faith perspectives on palliative care: Tibetan Buddhist

Celtic Pagan

Join Linda Ward as she shares about her Celtic Pagan tradition and how people of this and similar traditions may choose to practice their faith in the final stages of their earthly journey. Linda is a Pagan Elder and member of Pagan Hearth Inc in South East Queensland.

Faith perspectives on palliative care: Celtic Pagan


Christianity is such a diverse religion that it is useful to hear some different ways in which Christians and their families might approach their final days. Reverend Heather Griffin is a minister of the Uniting Church in Australia. She seeks to explain ways in which this diversity may manifest at the deathbed of a loved one.

Faith perspectives on palliative care: Christian


Swami Atmeshananda from the Vedanta Centre at Springfield Lakes gives a brief summary of Hindu beliefs from his perspective as a Monk of the Ramakrishna Order. He covers topical issues around beliefs and practices immediately preceding, following and at the actual time of death.

Faith perspectives on palliative care: Hindu


Phillip Zavelsky from the Brisbane Jewish community invites viewers to engage with him as he talks about his faith and traditional Jewish practices around the time of death. This video is of use for anyone who is caring for a person of Jewish faith in their final weeks of life.

Faith perspectives on palliative care: Jewish


Imam Mohammed Azhari and Shabina Vayani from the Gold Coast Islamic community give an overview of Islam from their own faith perspectives. They also share some helpful advice about caring for Muslim men and women as their health declines, including issues around modesty and diet.

Faith perspectives on palliative care: Muslim

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Elder John Rea from Brisbane shares his perspective on palliative care for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He describes beliefs and practices as they or their loved ones head into the final days of their earthly journey.

Faith perspectives on palliative care: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints