Anna Chaplaincy

Anna Chaplaincy at Time to Talk Befriending  has been developed in response to older people telling us that their spirituality is important to them but they are no longer connected to a Church or places of worship as a result of being housebound or unable to get out without support. The main purposes of an Anna Chaplain through Time to Talk Befriending is to offer spiritual support to our scheme members, their relatives and staff who look after them. Our in house Anna Chaplains and volunteers who we call Anna Friends  seek to promote the spiritual welfare of older people in the wider community, particularly those facing challenges living independently.

Our Anna Chaplaincy service is respectful to the cultural and religious beliefs of all faiths and to those searching for meaning in their lives. The Anna Chaplaincy model we provide at Time to Talk Befriending is thanks to a partnership with the Bible Reading Fellowship. Debbie Thrower is the Founder and Pioneer of Anna Chaplaincy. For further information please visit their website:

Our Anna Chaplaincy service is available to scheme members upon their request. The service we provide includes;

Working with older people:

  • Helping older people reflect on their spiritual journey, including the healing of memories and dealing with outstanding issues such as guilt or lack of forgiveness.
  • Offering spiritual support so that older people may live more peacefully in their last years and prepare to face the end of their earthy lives.
  • Acting as a signposting gateway to meet the needs of older people in church and in the wider community.

Supporting relatives and carers:

  • Helping and supporting relatives to understand better the spiritual issues that older people face in the latter stages of their lives.
  • Helping and supporting relatives with the responsibilities of caring for older people in their family.

Supporting staff working with older people:

  • Helping staff to understand better the spiritual issues that older people face in the latter stages of their lives.
  • Offering spiritual support to staff working with older people in their care.

Working with churches:

  • Helping inform and coordinate the church’s work with older people.
  • Helping churches identify, recognise and appreciate the value of the contribution that older people can make to church life.
  • Encouraging churches to understand the needs of older people, using them in the best ways and supporting the work undertaken with them.
  • Encouraging and enabling younger generations to consider what constitutes ‘successful ageing’ and so prepare for more positive experiences in older age.

Working with the community:

  • Helping volunteers to understand better the role of Anna Chaplains and Anna Friends.
  • Helping volunteers to understand when and how to call upon the Anna Chaplain to support those living independently in the community.
  • Developing partnerships with local voluntary groups, and running joint events and activities.

Working across the generations:

  • Building partnerships with local schools and groups (Girl Guides, Scouts, choirs, etc.).
  • Increasing understanding of how young and old can learn from each other and enjoy each other’s company.
  • Breaking down stereotypes.

Our Anna friends, who are volunteering their time, will be providing a menu of prayer, spiritual reflection, devotional studies, worshipful music, Holy Communion and support to access places of Worship. This is implemented/carried out upon request of our scheme members once we have undertaken an assessment of need.