Ministering During COVID-19

Aug 25, 2021

Meet the Rev. David John Peacock, Shelby Baptist’s New Director of Pastoral Care

Rev. David John Peacock playing guitarIn a world where the fear and sadness brought on by COVID-19 captures almost every headline, Shelby Baptist’s new director of pastoral care aims to bring hope in a time when needed most. We sat down with the Rev. Peacock to learn more about him and his plans to continue offering the valued service of pastoral care to patients, families and staff at Shelby Baptist.

Tell us about yourself. What’s your background?
I was born and raised in Vermont, but my love for running brought me to the South to run track at Auburn University. From there, I went on to receive my master’s at the Beeson Divinity School at Samford University.

What brings you to Shelby Baptist?
I am very familiar with Shelby Baptist as I did my chaplain internship and residency (here). I was also a clinical chaplain here not too long ago. I am returning to Shelby Baptist five years later, after I served at another local hospital as a chaplain.

How long have you been in ministry?
I have served churches all over the country for 20 years as a pastor and church planter.

What new ways will you bring to the team to support the needs of patients, their families, staff, volunteers and others during the pandemic?
I plan to use the ministry of presence, music and a new reflection phone line (available at 205-620-7969) to minister to people at the hospital. The new phone line is a resource for people to call in and hear an encouraging message at his or her convenience. In a time where people are so busy, we found it necessary to provide a resource for people to have access to at any time.

What’s one thing you already like about working at Shelby Baptist?
I love how friendly people are and how they value chaplaincy.

What are some of the reasons patients or staff may reach out to you?
The chaplains in the Pastoral Care ministry at Shelby Baptist provide a variety of services to patients and hospital guests such as ministry of presence, music, prayer, assistance with advanced directives, grief counseling and family care conferences. We also are available for staff who have served so courageously during COVID.

We hear a lot about health and wellness during this pandemic, but how important would you say spiritual and mental health are during these times, especially for our employees?
I believe that spiritual and mental health are serious issues during this pandemic. Chaplains can provide help for our employees to meet them right where they are by offering a non-judgmental presence and active listening. We as chaplains can encourage employees to embrace self-care in their own unique ways.

Lastly, what do you like most about your job?
I love building relationships with people and being there for them in the good and bad times.

When Chaplain Peacock isn’t serving, he can be found enjoying life with his wife of 29 years and their two daughters. He also enjoys running, playing guitar and can’t wait to get back to traveling.

We are so excited to welcome Chaplain Peacock back to Shelby Baptist and look forward to all he will do support our hospital.