Serving and receiving
It may be that Anna Chaplaincy would work well in your area. For example:
- Do you know how many care homes there are in your area?
- What pattern of visiting do they receive from any of the local churches?
- How have the population patterns changed in your area in recent years and how well do you appreciate the gifts, talents and contributions made by people in later life in your worshipping communities and beyond?
An Anna Chaplain could help to inspire, equip and enable others to volunteer to visit and set up initiatives that benefit the older age group. There may be people with a particular vocation to this ministry who, given the opportunity to be or work alongside an Anna Chaplain, would find deep fulfilment.
Unlike other chaplaincies to a single institution, like a prison, hospital or hospice chaplain, Anna Chaplaincy is community based. It is for people in residential homes and others who may still be living independently and struggling for whatever reason. It is ecumenical and makes no differentiation between people of strong, little or no faith at all (see Anna Chaplaincy to Older People).
If you would like help to assess the needs of older people in your locality - Contact us. We can give advice on:
- how to go about recruiting an Anna Chaplain - drawing up a job description/person specification, costs involved, practical considerations
- your training needs and signpost you to the right courses and resources
- thinking through issues like accessibility and safeguarding.
Above all, we aim to convince you that you can't afford not to address the issue of serving the older people in your area better. The Gift of Years believes this is a key priority the church is being called to address in the 21st century. The field is ripe for mission to older people who, otherwise, so easily feel overlooked, abandoned and unloved.