Parish Nursing - Health & Hope Ministry

My dear friend, I pray that everything may go well with you and that you may be
in good health–as I know you are well in spirit.
" 3 John 1:2

Parish Nursing is currently supporting the following activities to promote wellness of body, mind and spirit within our church and our community, to Christ's glory! If you would like to join our group to promote health and hope, we welcome you!


  • Linda Merkle, RN, Faith Community Nurse, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 571-309-0353
  • Marie Pfancuff, BSN, RN, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Backpack Buddies

(Community Outreach)

Packing and delivery for the 2018-19 school year will begin again in August. We will also be having a book sale to raise money for food, so please save your summer reading books and donate them to the cause. Contact Linda for information on donating.

OSW provides weekend meals for 25 students at Tolbert Elementary twice a month, and 37 students at Harper Park Middle School twice a month. These meals go home in the backpacks of children identified by school counselors as being at risk for hunger over the weekend due either to lack of funds, or parents working and unavailable. The food provided, such as mac and cheese cups, can be easily prepared. Milk, breakfast foods and healthy snacks are included for 2 days. More than 12,000 students in Loudoun County are considered "Food Insecure."

Shopping and delivery team: Beth & Gary Cummings, Heike Wood, Linda Merkle

To make a financial donation to support this ministry: Make checks payable to OSWLC and write "Backpack Buddies" on the memo line. Food items may be placed in the brown bin in the narthex closet. We are always in need of individual mac & cheese cups, Chef Boyardee cans and shelf milk.

Civitan Events:

Karaoke & Bingo for
Special Needs Adults

Next Karaoke Party is July 7, 2018 (2 to 4 pm)

Quarterly, Our Savior's Way, in partnership with the Greater Loudoun Civitan Club, sponsors karaoke and bingo parties to provide a fun day out for adults with special needs who live in group homes in the greater Washington D.C area. Help is needed with set up, during the party, and clean up.

Contact: Elaine Senft, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Comfort Dog Ministry

OSW will be getting its very own comfort dog in the Fall of 2018. You can follow the new dogs being trained by Lutheran Church Charities on their Facebook page: LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs in Training. Which one of these beautiful dogs do you think will become a part of our church family? Do you have a passion to help spread comfort to a hurting world? The OSW Comfort Dog Ministry Team is forming!

To financially support this ministry: write "Comfort Dog Ministry" on your check made out to OSWLC.

More information can be found here: Lutheran Church Charities K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry,

Jen Marr and Nikki Deacon, Top Dogs

Bulletin Board /

Resources & Events

Check out the Narthex Parish Nurse bulletin board for current health information: 

Lyme Disease is epidemic in the Mid-Atlantic Region. Throughout the summer we will share information on prevention and treatment of this very serious disease. Need more information?
Contact Marie Pfancuff: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Life With Cancer information is available with workshop, meeting, and support group dates.

Columbarium Applications and "5 Wishes" (Advance Directive forms) are available.

OSW Columbarium information

Visual Faith has been added to our Resource section (see below for websites).


Prayer Group

Prayer Shawl Ministry

Prayer Group is forming that will meet regularly at the Prayer Garden to pray for our people, our church and Open Arms, our neighborhoods, our country and our missions around the world. Meet us the third Sunday of each summer month, June 17, July 15 and August 19 from 9 to 9:30 am.

We will also be Prayer Walking in the evenings during VBS, July 22-26. Join us for fellowship and exercise! More events are planned for the Fall.

Contact Anita Born: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

If you love to knit or crochet, there is a group who work individually to create beautiful shawls for distribution to those who are ill, hurting, and in need of comfort.

Do you know someone in need of a prayer shawl

Contact Linda Merkle: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.




Heart Health

Lyme Disease

Visual Faith

  • (contact:Connie Denninger, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)
  • Facebook page for Visual Faith Ministry

FAQ about Parish Nursing

What is a parish nurse?

A parish nurse is a registered nurse who has completed a Basic Preparation Course in Faith Community Nursing developed through the International Parish Nurse Resource Center in consultation with the Health Ministries Association and the American Nurses Credentialing Center. A parish nurse may also be called a Faith Community Nurse. Parish Nurses are volunteers or may be paid by their church.

What does a parish nurse do?

The parish nurse functions as a health educator and patient advocate, giving referrals for community services and also for prayer and presence in times of illness and loss.

Parish nurses link health care and spiritual care in today's high tech world, bringing back what has been done by the church for over 2000 years.

Parish nurses may plan seminars, classes, support groups, health screenings (blood pressure) and offer services such as blood drives, flu shot clinics (conducted by outside agencies or health care systems.)

How does Parish Nursing work with the pastors?

Parish nurses work with the pastors and other church staff to determine needs of members.

Parish nursing is a ministry which may assist pastors in helping parishioners cope with the absence of health in the physical, spiritual or emotional areas of a person's life.

Do parish nurses work alone?

Parish nurses may train volunteers from medicine, pharmacy, social work, nutrition and psychology as well as other areas that assist health care. Parish nurses welcome others to serve as volunteers, visitors and leaders of programs.

When did Parish Nursing start?

Parish nursing was started in 1984 by Rev. Granger Westberg, a Lutheran pastor in the Chicago area. Most denominations now have parish nurses and many churches in Loudoun County have parish nurses.

What is Parish Health Ministry Team?

At Our Savior's Way Lutheran, the Parish Health Ministry Team will consist of members who are interested in congregational health ministry. This will include nurses and those from other disciplines within health care.

Is Parish Nursing a visiting nurse service?

No. Parish nursing is not a visiting nurse service, nor a substitute for home health care or regular medical care by your physician or nurse practitioner.

Parish nurses do not give direct hands-on care or perform invasive procedures. By the scope of the Nurse Practice Act, parish nurses do not do dressing changes, foot care, give injections, administer medications, etc. Referrals will be given to agencies that provide the care needed.

Can a parish nurse visit me?

A parish nurse may visit you at home or in the hospital. Please ask a pastor or call the church office. We are available for prayer support during illness, to help you understand the health care system and to encourage good communication with your physician and health care team.

Can I help?

Yes, volunteers are welcome to join us!


Parish Nursing at Our Savior's Way Lutheran Church is sponsored in part by a grant from Wheat Ridge Ministries.
"Lutherans seeding new ministries of health and hope in the name of the healing Christ."

For more information on Wheat Ridge Ministries, please visit their website at

Contact Information

43115 Waxpool Road, Ashburn, VA 20148
Phone: 703-858-9254
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Prayer requests: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Sunday Worship Services

8:00 AM – Traditional
9:30 AM – Traditional (1st, 3rd Sundays)
9:30 AM – Contemporary (2nd, 4th Sundays)
11:00 AM – Contemporary

Holy Communion celebrated at all services
Nursery available Sundays 7:45AM – Noon

9:30 AM – Bible Study and Sunday School
11:00 AM - Bible Study

Our Mission

The mission of this church is to reach broken and hurting people with the saving and healing message of Jesus Christ.