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Pastoral Care Team

NYU Winthrop Hospital’s Pastoral Care Team

Our spiritual care team includes staff chaplains, volunteers, a rabbi, priests, and community clergy from many faith traditions. Our chaplains provide support to patients and families of all faiths – and those not identifying with any particular belief system. The chaplains are board certified or eligible for certification, meaning they have completed their theological and clinical training. NYU Winthrop chaplains are available to:

  • Speak with you about your diagnosis
  • Provide counseling on faith-related issues
  • Offer prayer, perform rituals and blessings
  • Advocate for families as they make difficult decisions
  • Work with the interdisciplinary care teams on the medical units
  • Help you contact your own spiritual leader

The spiritual care team operates under the auspices of the Hospital, is governed by HR policies, and wears a NYU Winthrop ID badge. Every team member is committed to keeping your contact with us confidential at all times.

The Pastoral Care Team

Reverend Karen Jones
Director

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Reverend Jones leads the Hospital’s efforts in raising awareness of the spiritual dimension of healing, while cultivating an understanding of, and respect for, the diverse beliefs, values and faith traditions served by NYU Winthrop. Reverend Jones earned a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Tennessee State University. She holds a Master of Arts in Christian Education with an emphasis in Pastoral Care and Family Ministry from Scarritt Graduate School in Tennessee, and a Master of Divinity degree from Union Theological Seminary in New York.

She received her clinical chaplaincy training at Beth Israel Medical Center and completed a year of residency at New York Presbyterian-Brooklyn Methodist Hospital, where she was also a staff chaplain. Prior to joining NYU Winthrop, Rev. Jones served as Director of Field Education at Union Theological Seminary and Pastor of Congregational Care. Rev. Jones is a member of the Association of Professional Chaplains and the Spiritual Care Association. She is ordained and endorsed by American Baptist Churches, USA.

Reverend Jayan Daniel

Staff Chaplain

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Chaplain Daniel holds a Bachelor of Theology from Church On The Rock in India and a Bachelor of Arts from Harvest College in Australia. He also earned a Master of Arts from Madras University and a Master of Divinity from Church On the Rock. He was introduced to chaplaincy in the United States, where he received chaplaincy training at NYU Langone and completed a year of residency with Lutheran Services in Eger, Staten Island. He is active in congregational ministry as an Associate Pastor at Living Water Church in Bellerose, NY.

Sister Mary C. Chikezie

Staff Chaplain

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Sister Mary C. Chikezie is a Roman Catholic Nun in the Congregation of the Daughters of Mary Mother of Mercy for over thirty years. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Educational Science at Salesian University Rome, Italy and her Master of Arts degree in Philosophy at St Thomas Aquinas University, Rome, Italy prior to her moving to the United States in 2006. She served as an instructor at St. Joseph and St. Peter Seminary, Mission, Texas, Diocese of Brownsville for three years while serving as a chaplain at Rio Grande Hospital, McAllen. Sister Mary completed her CPE Residency at Valley Baptist Hospital, Harlingen, Texas, in 2009 and became a Board Certified Chaplain (BCC) in 2012 with Association of Professional Chaplains (APC). Sister Mary also served as Staff Chaplain II at Mercy Hospital, Fort Smith, Arkansas, for seven years before joining NYU Winthrop Hospital.

Christian Costeines

Staff Chaplain

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Chaplain Costeines received a Master of Divinity degree from Nyack College/Seminary and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from Ohio State University. Before joining NYU Winthrop Hospital, he served as a Chaplain Intern at New York Presbyterian Allen Hospital in New York city, and completed a CPE Residency at the St. Albans Community Living Center—VA New York Harbor Health System of New York. Prior to his work as a chaplain, Chaplain Costeines worked as a Publications Administrative Coordinator with Chosen People Ministries of New York.

Rabbi Anchelle Perl

Hospital Rabbi

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Rabbi Perl serves as our Resident Rabbi. He is the spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Sholom Chabad of Mineola and Director of the Long Island Chapter of the National Committee for the Furtherance of Jewish Education. He is also a chaplain at the Nassau County Correctional Center, radio host of ‘Jewish Talk’ and appears on weekly webcasts and the Annual Chanukah Telethon. The rabbi works closely with the Pastoral Care Department, the Patient Relation’s Office and the NYU Winthrop Administration, to address the spiritual needs of the patient, the family and the Hospital’s physicians and support staff.

Father James Kinyua

Roman Catholic Priest

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Father Kinyua is an ordained Roman Catholic priest. He attained a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies from the Tangaza University in Kenya. He completed his chaplaincy residency at Mary Washington Hospital in Fredericksburg, Virginia. He is a member of the Franciscan Missionaries of Hope which is based in Kenya. Father Kinyua works under the endorsement of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rockville Center on Long Island.

Father Damian Umeokeke

Roman Catholic Priest

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Father Damian Umeokeke is an ordained Roman Catholic priest of Catholic Diocese of Nnewi, Nigeria. He earned a Master of Pastoral Theology from St. John’s University, Jamaica, New York and Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and Theology from Seat of Wisdom Major Seminary Owerri, Imo State, Nigeria. Rev. Damian completed his chaplaincy training at Queens Hospital in Queens, New York and Beth Israel Medical Center, New York. Before coming to NYU Winthrop he served Beth Israel Medical Center, New York and Elliot Hospital Manchester, New Hampshire. Presently, he is assigned to serve NYU Winthrop through the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rockville Center.

Sangeeta Gnanaseelan

Department Secretary

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Before relocating to the United States, Sangeeta worked in the Hospitality industry. She earned both a Bachelor of Arts in Hotel Management and certification in Microsoft programs from the National Institute of Information Technology in Chennai, India. Her heart’s desire, to be employed in an environment where her gifts and skills could best be utilized, came to fruition in her current position as the secretary in the pastoral care department at NYU Winthrop. Sangeeta assists in providing administrative support, and is a welcoming face for the department.

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