Lending a hand

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Kindred Healthcare and Cherry Hill Manor held a Blessing of Hands for Healthcare Heroes event outside on Tuesday afternoon, with a few dozen people attending the ceremony.

“At a time when so much is being asked of you, our health care workers on the front lines of medical care, it’s good to remember that sometimes we ALL need a healing touch,” the event flyer reads. “We all seek to be encouraged and supported as we face challenges in the days ahead.”

Folks gathered for the event, where the chaplain recited a “Prayer for Our Hands,” after which each attendee was asked to come forward individually. Two different rituals were offered – the chaplain could pour water from one bowl over their hands, letting the water flow freely into another bowl; or they could anoint each health care worker’s hands using cotton balls and olive or lavender oil.

“It’s not clear where or when the Blessing of the Hands originated, but many suspect it’s been around at least since the time of Florence Nightingale,” the flyer says. “Many institutions observe this tradition, their numbers adding to the power of the ritual.”

Cherry Hill Manor executive director Katie Gerber said the event “went well,” and that about 15 people attended each of the two blessings. (Submitted photos)

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