The importance of chaplaincy in later life

16 March 2022

by Crispian Acher, Head of Chaplaincy – South, MHA

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I’ve been involved in pastoral ministry as a Methodist presbyter for just over 20 years, half of that time has been in chaplaincy. I went into chaplaincy because I believe that all people matter, and being a chaplain means being able to get alongside others from all walks of life. Chaplains walk in the cracks, they are often the glue that can hold a community together through good and hard times, and they are able to shine a light in the dark places.

In my position as a Head of Chaplaincy at MHA, I am passionate about helping chaplains be the best they can be. This means we try to ensure that chaplains are supported in the same way that they support residents, families, and our colleagues, and that they have the right training and resources to carry out their work. They spend time getting alongside others, sharing in an activity, or having a cuppa. They don’t just ask ‘how are you?’ but ‘how are you really?’ The chaplain acts as a listening ear, a confidante, a sounding board, or a trusted friend for residents and colleagues.

As well as being a good listener the chaplain will be involved in a whole host of other activities. On any typical day, they could be found helping settle in a new resident, leading a worship service, planning for a special event, gathering a handful of others who want to take part in a discussion, meeting with local clergy to arrange others to take services and visiting a resident who might be in the hospital.

MHA is unique in having such a dedicated chaplaincy service, providing pastoral and spiritual support. Every week I am encouraged by our chaplains’ commitment and dedication to helping others be aware that they matter.  Residents, families, and colleagues often share the difference that they make, and chaplains themselves share inspiring moments of encounters where something for someone has changed for the better.

Help fund chaplaincy at MHA

Help fund chaplaincy at MHA

Our chaplaincy service is provided free of charge to residents so can only be made possible thanks to the generous charitable support of people like you.

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