Debbie Thrower is best known to many people as the face of Songs of Praise and as a newsreader. Nowadays Debbie is also a Lay Deacon with Winchester Cathedral and involved in the Gift of Years Project, otherwise known as Anna Chaplaincy.
Anna Chaplaincy is named after the faithful older widow in Luke’s gospel story of Simeon and Anna. The approach is now central to a national initiative from the Bible Reading Fellowship called The Gift of Years – ‘resourcing the spiritual journey of older people’.
In a society and church increasingly made up of older people there are more and more people who feel themselves to be beyond the interest and concern of the wider community. In a society and church often focused on youth and families, being an older person can be isolating and challenging.
Anna Chaplaincy seeks to accompany older people at this stage of their life. It is an ecumenical, community-based chaplaincy approach to promoting the spiritual welfare of older people. Anna Chaplaincy is a person-centred, non-judgemental ministry for people of strong, little or no faith at all.
It is a way of offering spiritual support to older people, especially (though not exclusively) to those living in residential and nursing homes and sheltered housing complexes, and to their relatives and the people who care for them.
Debbie is coming to talk at our church on Wednesday 27 January at 7.30 pm, and all interested people are most welcome to join us.
You can find out more about The Gift of Years here.