The Pastoral Care Volunteer Program is an outreach of the First Unitarian Church in San José. The purpose of Pastoral Care is to support the community including illness, convalescence, grief, and loss.

We all experience the feeling of loss or transition at one time or another. Pastoral Associates bring with them the caring presence of our Beloved Community for support in times of illness,convalescence, grief, and loss.

Pastoral Associates serve those in the First Unitarian community who are hospitalized or homebound due to chronic or acute illness. In addition, we offer spiritual and emotional support for grief and loss through compassionate listening and visitation.  We also provide practical logistical support through specific services to individuals and their families. These services are free of charge.

A Pastoral volunteer, under the supervision of the ministerial supervisor, provides the following services:

  • Home / hospital visits
  • Spiritual / emotional support
  • Practical support
  • Respite for caregivers

Confidentiality is strictly maintained.

Circle of Support

Have you experienced a loss recently—be it of a loved one, a job, or a beloved pet? You are welcome to join our ongoing Circle of Support. Led by FUCSJ Pastoral Associates, the group provides gentle and caring support to those experiencing loss.
We will meet online at 5 p.m. on second and fourth Mondays. To join, please contact Pastoral Associate John Hurd,


Some questions you might have about Pastoral Care are:

If my family member has a pastoral care volunteer visiting, does that mean that I am not meeting their needs?
Not at all. A Pastoral Associate is meant to provide additional support and relief for family and friends.

How often will a pastoral volunteer visit?
The frequency of visits will be determined by the people who are visited. A visit generally would take place every week or two and last about an hour.

What if I cannot think of anything to say?
The pastoral volunteer will try to support you in whatever way you determine is best. It might be by simply listening and responding, without giving advice or making judgments.

What if I cannot afford it?

We do not charge a fee for this volunteer service; however should you wish to make a donation, it will be gratefully accepted.