Bob Stewart has been serving at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital as a Eucharistic Lay Minister giving Holy Communion to Catholic patients and families at the hospital for two years. Before he endured two strokes in May of 2011, Bob began his time at St. Jude as an avid platelet donor. His experience has helped him appreciate the good health that he once took for granted. The strength and courage shown by the children of St. Jude has given him his own strength to accept his personal health challenges.
“I remember once in the Blood Donor Center, I met a young patient who was nine or ten. A staff member introduced me to her and told her I was a platelet donor. The patient, with a beautiful smile on her face, said ‘thank you.’ I felt great after that. She touched my heart,” shared Bob.
Bob loves witnessing the miracles that happen at St. Jude every day. Visiting patients and families on inpatient units is part of his volunteer job and he admits it is not always easy, but it is always worth it. He is here to make someone’s day a little better and if giving them comfort and assurance is the key, he will do it.
“It is my prayer and hope that by giving the children and their families communion they know they are never alone and Christ is always with them,” said Bob.
Since volunteering at St. Jude, Bob has been speaking to other organizations about the benefits of volunteering and the great return you get back from it. He has also been a Big Brother and has worked in supporting the Mentoring Program at Youth Villages. He is currently an active volunteer for The Memphis Italian Festival and a fundraiser for his parish school, Holy Rosary.
Bob hopes he can serve St. Jude for many more years. “Volunteering here has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. It is simply great to be a small part of this wonderful hospital,” said Bob.