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  • Debbie Ducille

Archbishop Justin’s meeting with Anna Chaplains and Anna Friends in Maidstone in Holy Week

The Anna Chaplains and Friends in Maidstone were delighted when they were invited to meet with the Archbishop of Canterbury for afternoon tea when he visited Maidstone during Holy Week.

Anna Chaplain at St Martin’s (and Maidstone Anna Chaplaincy coordinator), Sue Yeo reflected afterwards:

‘The afternoon tea was held in The Grove Residential Home, Maidstone, where the staff looked after everyone with cups of tea, coffee, and the most delicious cake produced by their cooks. The Archbishop showed genuine interest in our ministry and how we reached out to residents, including those with dementia, and to the staff of the residential homes we visited, as well as visits we make to elderly people in our community. We talked about the services we take, the ideas we come up with to aid those with dementia take part in all the things we present. We talked about how we are there for the residents’ spiritual needs. We also talked about any problems we may encounter in our ministry, and the Archbishop asked how he may help to “up the profile” of Anna Chaplaincy; at the time we were rather taken by surprise and failed to respond, however, I have spoken to the national Anna Chaplaincy team who work with all other areas of the country about coming up with some answers! It was a lovely afternoon, and we all went away feeling very uplifted, and positive for the future of our ministry.’

Anna Chaplain Erika Catchpole from St Nicholas Allington said of the meeting:

‘Archbishop Justin spent Holy Week visiting churches and projects in Maidstone Deanery. It was wonderful he chose to affirm his appreciation of Anna Chaplaincy volunteers over Afternoon Tea together – and out of 20 care homes we cover, he chose to meet us all in one of the three homes that I visit monthly – (with keyboard, Communion and fellow Anna Chaplain Irene Shepherd, from Tonbridge Road Methodist).’ 



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