The concept of Hospitality entails welcoming in sick and needy people, fostering health, accompanying people and being committed to the most vulnerable in every age and every society, adopting a wide-ranging concept of universality and encouraging professionalism.
The present situation is viewed in terms of Care Centres, Hospitals, Health Centres, Social Services and Communities of Brothers. These are pluralist Centres, with a social commitment that we share with many other Institutions whether public, ecclesial or private, whose motives and vision we share. This special predilection for the most vulnerable people, due to sickness or lack of resources, is the reason why we establish and implement international social action and healthcare programmes. We view cooperation as something that joins us all together, each one with our own specific commitment. Professionals, Cooperators, Brothers, Volunteers and Benefactors make it possible to implement many programmes of action in the most disadvantaged and deprived spheres, and to maintain care projects in countries in other poorer continents. We accept the limitations of science by avoiding forms of futile aggressive therapy or other treatments which impair the dignity of the person. It is for this reason that we are keenly interested in setting up and promoting palliative care units with our philosophy of accompaniment, pain alleviation and offering humanisation in the final stage of life.
What is important to the Hospitaller Order of Saint John of God is the “manner” or “style” of our work. This is why we foster respect for individuals and for their autonomy, doing all we can to prevent dependency and paternalism. The Order is therefore receptive to new professional and social criteria, to new actions and to the cultures and distinctive features of every environment and situation.
The values that guide and motivate the development of the Order of St John of God are:
- Occupying a permanent place in history based on meeting the needs of the person, applying the concept of Hospitality and the humanisation of care.
- An institutional philosophy which reaches out in dialogue. An institution with a Christian identity which promotes and practises respect and dialogue with people holding other views and beliefs, viewing them in terms of their own specific identity. A wager on the possibility of multicultural and inter-faith coexistence, placing a special focus on welcoming in migrants.
- Offering welcome and a central place, with an anthropological approach that appreciates and defends the dignity of every person, and their rights and duties, and which fosters all their potential.
- Universality translated into action directed as a matter of priority at the most disadvantaged and deprived groups and countries, avoiding any kind of ideological, religious or cultural slant.
- The Order is not seen as the mere sum total of people, but is a cultural model which we have enriched and handed on to one another throughout history, based on shared sensitivities, experiences and reflections. The sense of belonging and involvement bring added-value to the work of each individual.
- Efficient care requires a constant effort to offer employment an structure and responsibilities which are transparent, honourable and fair.
- All the human and material resources are used for the mission of service and for attending to all those who need it.
- Fidelity to the original purposes of the Order by constantly modernising and updating, through training/formation, research, and adapting our structures.
- The desire to offer a creative project to incorporate and bring together people and sensitivities, demonstrating a global, wide-ranging and out-reaching vision.
No. 43 of the General Statutes of the Order lays down the following principles: ·
- The focus of the attention of all who live and work in our hospitals or other centres must be the person for whom we are caring;
- The rights of people who are sick or in need must be upheld and defended, taking into account their personal dignity;
- We are committed to the defence and improvement of human life;
- We acknowledge the right of the person in our care to be duly informed of his/her state of health;
- We fulfil the requirements of professional confidentiality, making sure that they are respected by all those who come in contact with the people in our care;
- We uphold the right to die with dignity, respecting and giving attention to the rightful wishes and spiritual needs of the dying, in the awareness that human life is limited in time and is called to fullness in Christ;
- We respect the freedom of conscience of those for whom we care and those who work for us, while insisting that the identity of our hospitaller centres be accepted and respected;
- We enhance and promote the qualities and professionalism of our co-workers, encouraging them to participate actively in the apostolic mission of the Order; in keeping with their skills and areas of responsibility we include them in the decision making process in our apostolic works;
- We reject the pursuit of material gain; thus we observe just economic norms and demand that these be respected.