November 27, 2021: Transitions?
Autumn has a quality of its own, but it is also a transition between the life of summer and the dormancy of winter. Change can be sudden, as with a storm; or slow, as the trees vary as to when they change colour and drop their leaves; warm days follow cold days – but if you take the long view, the overall direction is clear. There are several things in the current headlines that this could apply to!
Last month, the AHPCC Exec met face-to-face, for the first time in nearly two years. We were able to talk together, plan together (more on next year’s Conference, soon!), and eat together, but above all, perhaps, to be together. The risks are still there, of course, and the need continues for wise and considerate infection control measures; but we have so much to get used to, even to relearn, in simply being together once more – and, for all the benefits of on-line meeting, how important face-to-face contact is.
‘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: November 26; November 25; November 24; November 23; November 22; November 21.
If you wish to read Tom’s earlier daily thoughts, you can find them on his website at ‘swallowsnest’. 27/11
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
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
Barnabas House in Worthing, together with Chestnut Tree Children’s Hospice, are advertising for a full-time pastoral care lead. The closing date is November 10th.
You can access further information for this vacancy via our Vacancies page. 27/10
Spiritual Care Assessment and Measurement webinar
Hull York University, University of Bristol, University College London, and Hospice UK are promoting a half-day research webinar on November 25th on Spiritual Care Assessment and Measurement. You can access further information about this and other events via our Training Events page. 19/10
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
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
Sammy Found A Treasure
Excellent children’s books on bereavement are like gold – both valuable and rare! Check out ‘Sammy Found A Treasure’, which was first published last year in Buenos Aires, but is now also available in English – and helpfully, the full text is available on its website, along with some useful resources. 29/9
Papadopoulos et al (2021) ‘Towards a National Strategy for the Provision of Spiritual Care and Support in Major Health Disasters’
This major report on Spiritual Care and Support provision during the COVID-19 pandemic in England, which some of our members contributed to, has now been published. The study, funded by the Burdett Trust for Nursing, was conducted by the Research Centre for Transcultural Studies in Health, headed by Professor Irena Papadopoulos, and based at Middlesex University, London. You can access both the Full Report and the Executive Summary by clicking on the respective links. 29/9
Interfaith Week, November 14-21
Interfaith Week is an annual event, which can be very helpful for networking and strengthening relationships, and a useful opportunity to deepen relationships and understanding with different faith communities…
“Inter Faith Week offers an excellent opportunity for chaplaincies to reach out, bring people together, and showcase the work that they do.”
Ideas for Chaplains;
“Inter Faith Week is an excellent opportunity for hospices to strengthen their links with local faith and belief groups and enable their work to become more widely understood and supported.” Ideas for Hospices. 29/9
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.
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!)
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.
In your prayers today please remember the patients, staff and volunteers of Trinity Hospice, Clapham Common, London