Two Anna Chaplains from the Western Dales Mission Community have joined the network. Anna Chaplaincy lead for Churches Together in Cumbria Katherine Froggatt was there to congratulate them both and lend her support:
'A convoy of cars could be seen driving up Dentdale from Sedbergh to Dent on 20 November to attend the commissioning services for Revd Lindsay Gray at St Andrew’s Church, Sedbergh, and then at St Andrew’s Church Dent for Revd Christine Brown. It was a pleasure to be in this beautiful part of Cumbria sharing in these occasions. Revd Andy Burgess undertook the commissioning and prayers were led by Revd Becca Gilbert, pioneer minister working with the Anglican and Methodist churches in the Mission Community.'
Christine and Lindsay introduce themselves and their ministries in the Western Dales Mission Community in Cumbria:
Lindsay Gray: 'I retired from work as an industrial chaplain to join with my father during the last few years of his life with dementia. After his death, I wondered where God was sending me next, and I knew I wanted to be alongside others outside of church as well as in. I bought a caravan in Sedbergh and moved in during Covid. Being part of a community as well as helping out with churches during a challenging time has been a real joy and helped me find the next stage of my journey through life of being a chaplain in both community and church. Thinking and praying with others about how best to go forward with this made me aware of Anna Chaplaincy. Undertaking the training helped confirm that this is where God wants me next. A real thank you to all those who have helped me on the journey so far and will help me with company and prayer on the way.'
Christine Brown: 'I've lived in the quaint village of Dent for 40 years and know many of the local people. I was licensed as a lay reader in 1996 and ordained in 2011. Since 2000, I have been a voluntary chaplain in the Westmorland General Hospital in Kendal, work I continue to be involved in, with the added privilege of visiting local patients in Lancaster Royal Infirmary. When I heard of Anna Chaplaincy it seemed as though I was being called to use the knowledge I have already gained to further my voluntary work, connecting patients first visited in hospital and then visiting them when they return to their homes. We are hoping that Anna Chaplaincy will grow and places like Open House and such gatherings become hubs, where older people can enjoy each other's company and have their lives brightened and enriched by friendships, community and a knowledge that no one needs to be alone; places of hope, warmth and welcome.' Jesus said: "Love one another as I have loved you," I hope that it is Christ's love that will be shown to be alive in the meetings of our lives.'