All articles by kamal

Ziyara Workshop on Islamic Chaplaincy

A virtual program addressing Islamic chaplaincy, its roots in the Quran, the Tradition of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and its application in palliative care. Speakers include Chaplain Sondos Kholaqi, Chaplain Sakinah Alhabshi, and Dr. Ramy Salah. Moderated by Dr. Kamal Abu-Shamsieh, founder and chairman of Ziyara.

Click here to watch the program

Accredited Spiritual Care Training in Malaysia

Ziyara Muslim Spiritual Care is launching its first international accredited spiritual care training in Malaysia. The six-week program (Feb 24 – April 3) is in collaboration with the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE) which accredits chaplains in the United States. The program is conducted jointly with Clinical Pastoral Education of Central California, Universiti Teknologi Mara in Kuala Lumpur, and the International Islamic University Malaysia.

Rev. Rod Seeger, ACPE Supervisor, will train a dozen of participants from different faiths and professions such as physicians, nurses, counselors, and spiritual care providers on spirituality in medicine, end of life care, spiritual assessment, how to respond to the spiritual care needs of patients from diverse faiths and ethnic backgrounds.

The pilot program is small and interactive. Participants will spend 60 hours in classroom and group interaction at UiTM, and 180 hours of clinical time with patients in different healthcare institutions.

Ziyara Trains Saudi Military Chaplains

Ziyara Muslim Spiritual Care was invited by the Ministry of Defense in Saudi Arabia to train men and women chaplains in Saudi military hospitals.  A three-day conference took place on February 11 in Riyadh and drew over 250 participants from across Saudi Arabia who listened to speakers addressing spiritual care and religious support.

Chaplain Kamal Abu-Shamsieh led training of military chaplains in three locations in Saudi Arabia. Training was conducted at Prince Sultan Medical City in Riyadh, King Fahd Military Hospital in Jeddah, and the Al-Hada Military Hospital in Taif.

The visits aimed to provide Saudi chaplains with skills to conduct  spiritual care assessment of needs and to provide spiritual care to patients. Numerous bedside training sessions took place while visiting injured Saudi soldiers who sustained head injuries and limb amputations.Donate today to support Ziyara’s educational training programs. Click here to donate.

You can mail a check payableMuslim Spiritual Care Service1868 East Everglade Ave
Fresno, CA 93720As a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization, your contributions are tax-deductible.  Our tax-ID 54-2166181

Thanks for your wonderful support,

Chaplain Kamal Abu-Shamsieh
President, Muslim Spiritual Care Services

Indonesia’s Council of Scholars Endorses Ziyara

The Majelis Ulama Indonesia (MUI), the highest clerical body in Indonesia, has issued its endorsement of Ziyara Muslim Spiritual Care and supported our model for end of life care.

Ziyara Muslim Spiritual Care was invited to present its end of life program before the National Shariah Board of Indonesia and the National Fatwa Committee. The presentations took place in Jakarta on Wednesday, December 12, 2018. The support of the Fatwa Committee of the Majelis Ulama Indonesia is crucial for training spiritual care providers in hospitals across Indonesia. We are grateful for their support and endorsement.

The National Shariah Board has approved our request to train spiritual care providers in Indonesia and issued its recommendation to the Islamic Health Institution Network of Indonesia (MUKISI) to include the Ziyara model in end of life care as part of the standards for certification of Islamic hospitals.

The Ziyara delegation included Kamal Abu-Shamsieh, and Ziyara board members Chaplain Taqwa Surapati and Sakinah Alhabshi. In addition, we were joined by members of Ziyara International Board of Advisers, Dr. Endy Astiwara and Dr.Burhanuddin Hamid.

Ziyara Improves Spiritual Competence in Indonesia – Workshop and Training on Hospital Spiritual Care Service was successfully held on Tuesday (11/12) and Thursday (12/13). Two speakers and practitioners from abroad were presented at the event. They are Kamal Abu-Shamsieh and Taqwa Surapati. This workshop discusses in depth the matter of spiritual guidance carried out in the hospital.

The workshop was organized by the Indonesian Islamic Health Effort Assembly (Mukisi). And Mukisi, in collaboration with RSI Sultan Agung Semarang, RSI Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University, Sari Asih Ar-Rahmah Hospital, and IMANI Consulting .

Located in two Islamic hospitals, namely Syarif Hidayatullah UIN Hospital and Sari Asih Ar-Rahmah Hospital. The workshop also invited foreign speakers and participated in various types of hospitals, both private and regional.

“The workshop yesterday also came from parties from the RSCM, where the hospital became the national reference for all hospitals in Indonesia,” said Yuli Setiawan, as the committee of the event.

The background of this workshop is to improve the competence of all hospital elements in spiritual guidance for patients and families. Because, so far there have been no guidelines or standards for such spiritual guidance.

“In the Patient and Family Rights at the Hospital it is only explained that patients and their families have the right to receive spiritual guidance from the hospital, without any clear standards or guidelines,” he stressed.

Therefore, the existence of this workshop hopes to open the paradigm of spiritual counselors in hospitals. In order for patients and their families to receive comprehensive and comprehensive spiritual guidance. Comprehensive and comprehensive spiritual guidance covering spiritual, psychological, and social.

Then, the event was filled by two speakers as well as practitioners from abroad. They are Kamal Abu-Shamsieh and Taqwa Surapati. Inviting them as speakers is not without reason. The speakers have different methodologies from Indonesia.

“In America, these practitioners conduct spiritual guidance to patients and their families in a comprehensive and comprehensive manner,” Yuli explained.

Because of this they were invited to discuss the methodology. The workshop consisted of three main materials, namely material for fundamental, technical, and direct practice. The existence of this practice is also the reason why hospitals are chosen to be the place for this workshop to take place.

After theoretical and technical, then they do role play for the material that has been taught. “We invite representatives of a number of three patients in the auditorium to do role play, ” he added.

Then, they were divided into teams to visit directly to patients. The team does not only consist of spiritual guides. He said in one team not only consisted of spiritual guides.

“There are doctors and nurses in one team, they practice and visit patients directly,” said the man who was also the committee at the workshop.

The workshop was held with the hope that the hospital and its spiritual counselors would improve. “We hope that hospitals in Indonesia will have competent HR supervisors,” he concluded. Competent by guiding spiritual patients and families in a comprehensive and comprehensive manner. (ipw)

For details, Indonesia Workshop

Expansion of Training Programs in Malaysia

On behalf of Ziyara Spiritual Care Services, Chaplains Kamal Abu Shamsieh, Sondos Kholaki, and Sharif Rosen traveled to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to share approaches to spiritual care and train Malaysia spiritual care providers, clinicians, and volunteers between October 6-9, 2018. Presentations and training were conducted at An-Nur Hospital, the National Cancer Institute, Al-Islam Specialist Hospital, Hospital Kuala Lumpur (HKL), UiTM (Universiti Teknologi Mara) Medical campus, and the International Islamic University (IIUM) on topics such as spiritual care at the end of life, prophetic pastoral care, basics of spiritual care, and palliative care.

On Sunday, October 7, the Chaplains participated in a pre-conference training in partnership with palliative care specialist, Dr. Diana Katiman, supported by Dr Shahnaz Alqudsi and Dr Harith Rosdi. The all-day training was hosted by UiTM (Universiti Teknologi MARA) Medical campus and was attended by medical specialists, faith leaders, and spiritual care providers.

The main training seminar took place on October 8 & 9 at Malaysia’s largest hospital, Hospital Kuala Lumpur (HKL), a government hospital with a capacity of over 2000 beds. Conference attendees included spiritual care providers from across Malaysia, and delegates from Singapore, Brunei, Indonesia, and Thailand. The conference included supporting messages from YB Fuziah Salleh, Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of religious affairs, Dr. Azman Abu Bakar, Deputy Director-General of Public Health, and Dr. Ishak Masoud of the Federation of Islamic Medical Associations.

Chaplains Kamal Abu Shamsieh, Sondos Kholaki, and Sharif Rosen led several spiritual care sessions addressing the foundation and theology of spiritual care, end-of-life care, and spiritual care visits. The attendees engaged in a series of role playing and for some, actual pastoral visitations in the hospital supervised by the Chaplains who offered feedback about the spiritual care providers’ interactions with patients.

The visits and speaking engagements were coordinated by Sakinah Alhabshi, Ziyara coordinator in Malaysia. She is a spiritual care provider with interest in palliative care chaplaincy, who volunteers with hospice care as well as psycho-social disaster relief missions through Mercy Malaysia.

The generous hearts and eager minds of the hosts and attendees in Kuala Lumpur deeply impacted the visiting chaplains from America, who returned to their respective homes after an intensive week with a renewed appreciation for the art of spiritual care, not only in their local community but for the ummah across the world. Pain, loss, and suffering know no cultural, linguistic, or religious bounds, and the revival of the Prophet Muhammad’s (s) Sunnah of compassionate care remains the key to addressing these needs in restoring wholeness.

Oman Spiritual Care in Palliative Care Conference 2017

Chaplain Kamal Abu-Shamsieh conducted a two-day conference on spiritual care in palliative care on Sunday and Monday, February 19 & 20, 2017.

The program was organized by the Oman Cancer Association and drew an interdisciplinary group of 160 individuals. The attendees included physicians, nurses, social workers, and chaplains associated with the Ministry of Islamic Affairs in Oman.


Spiritual Therapy in palliative Care in Amman, Jordan

Muslim Spiritual Care Services introduced the concept of spiritual care to Amman, Jordan in the first of its kind conference that focused on Palliative Care and spiritual care.

The two-day conference was held at the University of Jordan in Amman/Jordan on December 7-8, 2016. The main themes of the conference included spiritual therapy, spiritual assessment, and meaning of spiritual care. Additional themes included symptoms and pain management, end of life issues, home care, psycho social aspect of palliative care, and complementary therapies.

The conference was organized by the Arab Society of Palliative Care and co-sponsored by the School of Nursing at the University of Jordan. The minister of health in Jordan Dr Mahmoud Al-Sheyyab​​ addressed the audience on behalf of Princess Mona Al-Hussein.


For more information about the conference, please visit:

Chaplaincy Training in Saudi Arabia and South Asia

Muslim Spiritual Care Services recently completed two Islamic chaplaincy training seminars in Saudi Arabia and South Asia.

Chaplain Kamal Abu-Shamsieh led six (6) chaplaincy seminars at various hospitals in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and in Banda Aceh and Bandung in Indonesia between January 25 and February 1.  In addition, a three day training seminar was conducted in Jazan, Saudi Arabia on February 18, 2014.

The chaplaincy seminars includes sharing the foundation of Islamic chaplaincy and conducting a series of role plays to train chaplains the art of Islamic chaplaincy.

The seminars in Malaysia and Indonesia were organized by the Al-Islam hospitals while the Saudi tour was per the invitation of the Ministry of Health

A Donation of Prayer Rugs at Stanford Hospital

george Muslim Spiritual Care Services donated 10 prayer rugs to benefit the Islamic Chaplaincy at Stanford Hospital and Clinics. Ms. Mona Ayish, a spiritual care volunteer with the Islamic Chaplaincy at Stanford Hospital, recently made a request for prayer rugs to be used during the Friday (Jum’a) prayers at the Stanford chapel.

The Islamic Chaplaincy at Stanford Hospital organizes a weekly Friday prayer that starts at 1:10 PM for patients, their families and staff at Stanford Hospital.

The gift was received by Ms. Ayish and Dr. George Fitzgerald, director of Spiritual Care Services at Stanford Hospital.  “Once again, thank you so much for making Stanford a place where Muslims feel welcomed, free to practice their faith, appreciated and included as a partner for the Common Good“, said Chaplain Kamal Abu-Shamsieh, director of Muslim Spiritual Care Services.

“Thank you Muslim Spiritual Care Services for the donation of the prayer rugs. I am grateful that Stanford Hospital Spiritual Care Services is accommodating Muslim patients, their families and staff”, said Ms. Ayish.

To become a Muslim spiritual care volunteer at Stanford Hospital, email Chaplain Abu-Shamsieh or fill out the Volunteer Form