Church Link News: November 2014

Welcome to the November edition of the Church Link News. This month we are introducing you to our new senior chaplain, and giving you an insight into one of our homes in Salisbury. It’s been a busy month receiving wonderful harvest donations from the local community. Throughout the year our Drop In Centre welcomes homeless and vulnerable people who have so little of their own, and the donations and practical support they receive makes a real difference to their lives.


An introduction from our new Senior Chaplain, Rev Keith Thomasson 

Hello. I am delighted to be appointed as the new senior chaplain. I am excited to work within the whole organisation to support the chaplains, to help develop spirituality and to help to resource our contact with the many church communities that are such a support.

I enjoy using the arts to try and explore meaning in our living, to connect with spirituality and where possible faith. I have enjoyed working with community music organisations that build relationships and develop wellbeing. In Bristol I ran a choir for those new to singing and currently am involved with a family of brass bands in Andover (Test Valley Brass).

I am open to the questions people bring as a starting point for enquiry into faith. I work with the story of our lives to try and connect with God’s story and the wonderful diversity of human encounter explored in the scriptures.

I am ordained as an Anglican Deacon and Priest. I have a background that has embraced ecumenism. I have sung in the choir of the Roman Catholic Cathedral in Liverpool, and regularly enjoyed a dual citizenship within Anglican and United Reformed/Methodist Congregations. I met my wife Anne Claar, who is Dutch, whilst we were theological students at the Ecumenical Institute in Bossey, Geneva. We studied alongside people from a variety of cultures and churches with membership of the World Council of Churches. The deep reconciliation that underpins the worship of Taize is important to me.

I live with Anne Claar and our three children Susannah (9), Reuben (7) and Johan (6) in Romsey. I enjoy being in the south yet miss Lancashire, my first home.

I am joining Alabaré Christian Care & Support from a background in teaching, parish ministry and school chaplaincy. I believe in the shared ministry of all the baptised and think that in the local Body of Christ, we all have a gift to offer in service. I look forward to visiting you and hearing how you support and pray for the work of Alabaré. I also look forward to exploring how the service users of Alabaré have space to belong and bring their gifts into the local churches.

I wish to learn from you and alongside you. Please do make contact with me and pray for me and our shared task.


Keith Thomasson


Please keep in your prayers...

Imjin House, Gloucester

opening on the 5th November


Emmaus Community

Our Emmaus Community is a supported living service which delivers person centred support and accommodation to adults with learning disabilities, who wish to live with other people who share the Christian faith.

Click here to read more.


Become part of the Alabaré Network by becoming a Patron, Trustee, Ambassador or Volunteer

Our team at Alabaré isn’t made up of a single office of staff. Beyond our base at Riverside House we are lucky to have a rich network of staff, ambassadors, trustees, volunteers, and patrons, who work hard to ensure that we provide the best level of support possible across all our homes and services.

For further information please contact Jo King.

The newest member of the Fundraising and Marketing team is our wonderful volunteer Judith. She regularly worships at Salisbury Cathedral, and has a services background. She chose to work with us because of our links with veterans and to work behind the scenes in an administrative role.

“My experience working at Alabaré has been very positive and welcoming. I feel that I am an integral part of the team, but without being taken advantage of. Everyone is very flexible and I was able to try a couple of roles with the charity before choosing a specific area to volunteer in.

The Fundraising and Marketing department is an interesting and diverse place to volunteer. I have much more insight into the demands of the fundraising work that goes on in the charity and the creative marketing activities.

Even though I’m a volunteer I look forward to coming in and working with a great team!”


WANTED - Volunteers & Venues for our 2015 Sleep Out

Join us for our biggest fundraising event of 2015 and help raise funds to support homeless people in your area. Last year we had 80 participants in 4 different venues, and raised over £5,500! We want to make 2015 the best year yet. Could you support us by organizing a Sleep Out/In with your friends, colleagues or family? We can provide you with sponsor forms, leaflets, and advice on what you need on the night. Maybe you could volunteer at one of the established events?

Please contact Heather or Rosie in Fundraising for details of an event near you.

Tel: 01722 344478             Email:

Read all about our 2015 Event!  



To all the generous churches, schools and community groups that have made us the benefactors of their Harvest services.

Including... Tiddlywinks Nursery, Christ Church Primary School, Crazy About Knitting, St John's the Evangelist, and Queensway Chapel.


And also special thanks to Coombes Cider Farm Caravan Park that raised £776.26 for Wales Homes for Veterans.

We just wanted to let you know.....

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