January 17, 2022: Backdrops

Most pictures have both background and foreground, regardless of the subject. This can produce some impressive contrasts; while not taking notice of the overall composition can lead to some delightfully unintended results.
In a sense, time is similar, with the present ‘foreground’, set against the backdrop of the past or future – we face today with both memories and hopes. As we approach Christmas and New Year, we still have so much uncertainty alongside our plans for celebration, family time, or simply peace and quiet; but with it, always, the hope of a better New Year.
Part of our spirituality includes being able not only to face the present, but to anticipate the future – to combine realism with hope – to embrace the background as well the foreground, whatever they hold.
On behalf of the AHPCC Exec, may I wish you the best for Christmas, and for 2022.


‘Thought for the day’ from Tom Gordon

Tom Gordon is a former AHPCC president. You can find Tom’s thought for today here.
Recent thoughts: January 16; January 15; January 14; January 13; January 12; January 11.
If you wish to read Tom’s earlier daily thoughts, you can find them on his website at ‘swallowsnest’. 17/1


Current Vacancies

St Luke’s Hospice in Sheffield is advertising a part-time (22.5 hrs) chaplaincy post. The closing date for applications is January 19th.
You can access further information for this and other vacancies via our Vacancies page. 7/1


AHPCC Membership Renewal

Don’t forget that your 2021 AHPCC membership expires on December 31st! If you need to renew your membership, or you wish to join the AHPCC, you can download the Membership Form here. 21/12


Carol Service

As chaplains linked to the NHS, we’ve been warmly invited to the 2021 NHS Carol Service in Durham Cathedral!
Ths will be a traditional Carol Service, complete with a choir recruited for the occasion.
The service is organised by the North of England Care System Support Unit on behalf of NHS organisations in the North East, and will be held in the cathedral on Thursday 16th December, 6:45 pm for 7:30 pm start.
If you’re based in the North East of England, or if you’re in the area at the time, you would be very welcome.
You can now reserve your place with a free ticket via Ticketsolve – Durham Cathedral, or for more information, contact Simeon Nichols. 24/11


A new book from Bob Whorton

Bob is a former AHPCC member, and was our chaplain for this year’s Annual Conference in May. Bob has emailed to say that he has recently had a new book published…
‘Two Grains of Wheat’ is a novel about breakdown and loss in ministry, with hope on the other side. One of the characters is a hospital chaplain and the other the warden of a community. Both are in supervision.
Margaret Whipp writes of the book: ‘Honest, immersive, and truly moving, this novel lifts the veil on breakdown in ministry. Compelling reading for practitioners, supervisors, and all who care about the soul of Christian ministry.’ You can find this book, which is available in both paperback and kindle, with more information, via Amazon. 14/11


Light Up A Life is coming soon…

Keith Morrison has emailed to ask: Does anyone have resources / poems / readings for Light up a life (or whatever you do that might be similar) that they can share? Send your responses to Keith (president) or to Mike (editor). We’ve had a few suggestions for poetry already, including The Well of Grief, by David Whyte; Farewell My Friends, by Rabindranath Tagore; Beannacht, by John Donohue, and This is the time to be slow, also by John Donohue. We also have a new poem by Simon Newman, who works in Rowans Hospice:

These Lights, by Simon Newman

Around the lake we gather to celebrate our memories with light.
Candle lights dancing upon the lake, this dark December night.
These lights we are lending, are of those that we hold dear.
Those no longer with us, those no longer here.
Of those sadly gone and from whom we are apart.
Those special ones we miss and love, that still light up our heart.

Those we remember, like stars, resplendent and bright.
Sentinels above, keeping watch over us this night.
These lights bring us here together, a common bond between us all.
Glistening out upon the lake as night begins to fall.
Each one a treasured thought, reflecting star lit sky.
Of that special person to whom we said goodbye.

As this night moves on and candles dim, the memories won’t wane.
We can return those flames back to the hearts, of all from whom they came. 19/10


Annual Conference

All the 2021 presentation material remains available, but has now moved to make room for the 2022 Conference Information due soon. You can now access both the slides and the videos via our Previous Conferences Page.
Next year, we plan to be back at the Hayes – don’t forget to put the dates (May 23rd-25th, 2022) in your diary. 19/10


Covid-19 Latest Information

Posts relating to Covid-19 tailed off over the summer, but with the current sharp rise in reported infections, there have been several new items. Also, with the rollout of vaccinations and an expansion in asymptomatic testing, these should become available to everyone working with patients, in any setting and in any capacity. We have a dedicated Section on our News Page, where you can find everything Covid-related in one place.


AHPCC Membership

Is your AHPCC membership paid up and current? If you wish to join the AHPCC or renew your membership, you can download the Membership Form here. Membership is for the calendar year, but applications received after October 1 will cover the new year.

How to get an automatic alert to new posts on Facebook (please don’t forget to Like or Follow us!)

Click here for step-by-step instructions

If you’re new to this website…

Whether you’ve worked in palliative care for years or you’re new in post, we hope you find this website helpful. It’s regularly updated, and alerts also appear on Facebook, especially for new vacancies. Contributions of articles and resources are welcome. New items appear on this page for six to eight weeks, but after that, you can still find most of them in the main body of the website. Gary and Mike.


PrayingIn your prayers today please remember the patients, staff and volunteers of Brian House, Blackpool

View or download a list of prayers for each month
January | February | March | April | May | June | July | August | September | October | November | December