The idea of Anna Chaplaincy was pioneered by former Meridian TV presenter Debbie Thrower and the concept was taken up by the Christian charity BRF. There are now dozens of Anna Chaplains across the UK. As well as offering spiritual care Anna Chaplains support older people and their carers wherever they may be, in residential care, in congregations, in their own homes and in the community. Anna Chaplains also have a role in helping the elderly to reflect on their spiritual journeys, to listen to the wisdom they have accumulated, and to advocate on their behalf in churches and local communities.
Bishop Jonathan made care for older people one of his two main priorities, in his presidential address at the April 2022 meeting of the Portsmouth Diocesan Synod, aiming to create a network of Anna Chaplains across the diocese.
St John’s are here to serve the older members of the village community and a new initiative is the recent appointment of Mary Close as a dedicated Anna Chaplain.
Mary’s role is part of an ecumenical, community-based, chaplaincy network promoting the spiritual welfare of older people, for people of strong, little or no faith at all.
It is an enormous privilege to be allowed to listen and share some of another person’s story and Mary’s work will be to promote the spiritual welfare of older people in the wider community, particularly those facing challenges of living independently.
If you would like to meet with Mary to have a tea and a chat please contact her on 07394 371360 or by email.