New Anna Chaplain in Barrow-in-Furness
Updated: Oct 30
Meet Babs Lowes, one of our latest Anna Chaplains.
Babs is an active member of Spring Mount Church in Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, and is really looking forward to her new role of Anna Chaplain across the church of Barrow. She says:
'Barrow is a great town, with a big heart! I was born and bred here and extremely proud of that. It is mainly dependant on one major employer BAE and is noted for its shipbuilding heritage, which has suffered many cuts over the years. There are seriously deprived wards with much poverty in some areas. I love my town and totally believe in it and am part of the thriving community spirit here.'
Through her church, she says she has met some wonderful people, while doing family food parcels and children’s packed lunch 'doorstep deliveries'. She has been able to use these opportunities to give people the hope of God, through conversations and prayer.
Babs praises God, who has raised this amazing work, during this Covid period, at a time of uncertainty, lockdown and death.
'I sense that there has never been a time, when Anna Chaplaincy has been so needed, both here in Cumbria and nationally.'
Babs notes that everybody’s journey with God is unique and gives a brief outline of her own: 'It began with my care for my late mum, who was diagnosed with vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s. God began transforming me and growing me in patience, grace, compassion and joy. He let me see his work in restoring Mum to him, before she died.
'At the same time, I heard his call to be a Dementia Enabler and simultaneously had a call from the Revd Lucie Lunn from Low Furness and was subsequently taken into specific pastoral training, with her team.
'What followed was a meaningful and focused ministering in care homes, in different ways, to all who lived and worked there. I found this so joyful and knew this was God at work in me! I was subsequently commissioned as a Licensed Lay Minister, with a specific calling to dementia. Alongside this I facilitated, with the help of a small and gifted ecumenical team, the monthly dementia friendly Tea Service in Barrow.'
Anna Chaplaincy was laid on Babs’ heart at the Cumbrian Annual Dementia conference last year and she attended the Information Day just prior to lockdown. She has seen God move and strengthen his call in all respects.
Babs and members of her Barrow Anna Chaplaincy Steering Group, between them, have given the opportunity to all churches in Barrow to attend a zoom ‘information’ presentation and are beginning to network with partner agencies, care homes and schools, across Barrow.
'This is so exciting as it brings into play my life experience, God’s call and my passion for older people. All glory to God!'