Holiday at Home and Autumnal plans
When I last wrote I was in the midst of helping to plan Holiday at Home at both Hatfield Road and Marlborough Road Methodist Churches. Well. I’m pleased to report everyone had a super time, the images shown here give a flavour of the fun and friendship experienced over the four days. Huge thanks go to all the volunteers who made it happen, and it helped show us that with careful Covid protocols in place it was possible to run a safe and fun event indoors.
As we head into the Autumn, preparations are in full swing for restarting Friday Day Care on 1st October. Some of the committee members were treated to a tasting session hosted by HILS (Hertfordshire Independent Living Service). We tried a selection of hot dishes to see if they could provide the lunches for Day Care. Everyone was pleased with the offering so we hope to use them. It is worth anyone contacting HILS (based at St Albans Jubilee Centre) if they struggle to cook meals for themselves due to mobility or food grocery shopping is becoming too difficult. The meals were nutritious and tasty, and can be delivered to your door. HILS is not-for-profit and supported by Herts County Council so they try to keep their prices low. The Friday Day Care team meet again this week to make final arrangements for the restart – a wonderful return for a much-loved group.
Care home ministry is still very difficult as the restrictions remain very tight for them. I recently met with the new Vicar of Sandridge, and already have a relationship with Tara’s Retreat care home in the village (where my mother lives), so will be working with her leading a regular Hymns and Crafts worship service. I have sent a questionnaire out to ministers across St Albans about their care home ministry so hope to have a better picture soon of how they are finding things. So far the responses show regular worship has only just returned in care homes, some remains online and some services are set to resume in October, I will chase the rest of the responses soon to get a better picture, but access remains very difficult. I continue to visit several housebound people regularly to offer support and friendship. I hope to visit more people as the weeks continue.
In relation to getting the word about Anna Chaplaincy in the city and beyond, Rev Rosemary Fletcher and I were interviewed in early September by the Bible Reading Fellowship about my new role here in St Albans. I hope later in September to host a Zoom Café for St Albans Diocese, on older people’s ministry and Anna Chaplaincy. I continue to forge links with St Paul’s on Hatfield Road and am planning to work with their Reader, Yvonne Gee in local ministry with older people, and MRMC’s links with St Peter’s enables me to meet with their Reader Margaret Tinsley regularly.
As we head towards October I am planning the afternoon worship sessions which I hope to offer at both churches, dates to be announced shortly, and continue to get to know people, groups and organisations locally who support older people. I am hoping to be part of the Old People’s Day Roadshow in the city centre in mid-October and I look forward to updating you on how I’m getting on in a few weeks.
Do get in touch if you have any ideas you’d like to share with me, it would be lovely to hear from you.