Training course for churches offering spiritual care to older people

First published 30th June 2022

Bible Reading Fellowship is delighted to introduce a groundbreaking course to help churches equip leaders and members for ministry to older people.

The urgent need to prioritise the support of older people was highlighted during the pandemic and it's increasingly recognised that they thrive when their spiritual well-being is cared for alongside their physical, mental and social needs.

The Spiritual Care Series offers tried-and-tested training designed to give churches and carers the confidence, understanding and skills to provide such holistic care. It’s important for carers to learn how to offer sensitive, effective spiritual care to all those in their care, whether of strong faith, non-traditional faith or no faith. Developed in Australia, the Spiritual Care Series is now also well established in Canada.

The course is fully endorsed by Debbie Thrower, Anna Chaplaincy pioneer, and her team. Two leading practitioners in the field of spiritual care for older people in the UK, Professor John Swinton of the University of Aberdeen and Harriet Mowat, a Newcastle-based researcher in chaplaincy and spiritual care, have been involved in its development.

‘This is an ideal resource for churches, groups of churches and other organisations, who want to equip their members to offer good spiritual care to older people in the church, in the community or in care homes.’ – Debbie Thrower, Anna Chaplaincy pioneer

The course consists of eight two-hour sessions with video material to introduce each topic and provoke discussion. The course covers a range of essential skills, including reflective listening, and uses a mixture of learning styles. It can be run in person or entirely online, and a certificate is awarded to participants on successful completion. Pam Nobbs is an Anna Chaplaincy local coordinator who was part of a trial group and then went on to lead an online group through the material.

‘We were absolutely enamoured by it. We thought it was wonderful. It was such an excellent course. We all agreed how helpful it had been. It was an extremely professional presentation and it was totally relevant. It explored situations that all of us were likely to encounter at some point in our work with older people.’ – Pam Nobbs, Anna Chaplaincy local coordinator

The Spiritual Care Series comes as a package for two facilitators and six participants. The cost of £360.00 (£60.00 per person) covers one DVD, handbooks for facilitators and participants, access to The Bridge online learning environment and certification on successful completion. Additional participants can be added for £60.00 per additional person.

For more information and to order click here.

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