Fulfilled living in later life

Wednesday 22nd June 2022

Double celebrations as Bethany Christian Home marks its 50th anniversary and the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee

For our home in Plymouth, 10th June was a day filled with fun as Sally Lear, Activities & Community Engagement (ACE) Facilitator, explains

We held our 50th anniversary/Platinum Jubilee celebration in the car park of the home, giving it a street party feel. Those living at the home were joined by friends, family, former colleagues and special guests, including Chris Penberthy the Deputy Lord Mayor of Plymouth and his consort Darren. After a warm welcome, a very tasty anniversary/Jubilee cake made by Jackie, our home’s catering manager, was cut by Beryl, a family member (as we call those who live us), with assistance from Margaret, a volunteer.

Mike Baker, one of the home’s original trustees who had attended home’s opening ceremony, then led a short service of celebration. He spoke about the history of how the building came to be a care home and the significance of its name being Bethany, chosen because of the vision for it to be a place of rest and restoration like the biblical Bethany.

We praised God in the sunshine as we sang ‘To God be the glory’ and ‘Praise, my soul, the King of heaven’. Refreshments, including Pilgrim Biscuits (our charity’s official biscuit) made by our family members were then enjoyed by all.

Pilgrims Friend Bethany Anniversary1

Following refreshments guests were then encouraged to go into the garden as another of Bethany’s original trustees, Dr Robert Sibbald, planted a plum tree to mark the Queen’s Jubilee. A special rose had also been planted for the occasion to mark the 50th Anniversary of the home.

Following this, family member Pat read a poem she wrote for the Queen’s Jubilee, family member Jennie read a poem, and family member Mary led us in a prayer. We ended the afternoon with everyone joining in to sing the National Anthem.

Although it was a lovely sunny afternoon there was quite a strong breeze and whilst we were taking some group photographs the hat of one of our family members flew into the air. I managed to catch it quickly, to cheering, but it then flew out of my hand straight away, to much laughter.

The Deputy Lord Mayor said that he had recently attended many Jubilee celebrations but that this was the first ‘120th celebration’ that he had been invited to. What made this an especially important and memorable occasion for many is that it may be the last significant anniversary that many of those who were involved in establishing the home will be able to actively participate in.

For us at Bethany Christian Home, it was lovely to host an event which we could invite guests to and create some happy shared memories after not being able to do so for so long. Thanks to the teamwork of the wonderful staff and volunteers who made it all possible!

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