The free national line, which was set up in April 2020 amid the first Covid-19 lockdown when churches were closed by law, offers music, prayers and reflections as well as full worship services from the Church of England at the end of the phone. It is is based around 'Hymns we Love', the gentle evangelistic series for older people.
Since then the line - which is available 24 hours a day on 0800 804 8044 - has been receiving around 20,000 calls a month, providing support particularly to those who found themselves even more isolated and cut off as a result of the pandemic.
Pippa, a qualified Occupational Therapist, is Pastoral Care and Seniors Minister at Holy Trinity Church in Claygate, Surrey, where she set up “Connections” – one of the largest church-based gatherings for older people in the UK.
She is also an Ambassador for the Charity, Faith in Later Life.
“Receiving the letter to say I had been nominated for an MBE was a huge shock and a wonderful surprise,” she said.
“Over the last year or so, the importance of supporting and valuing our older people has been thrown into the spotlight.
“However, I did not expect or ever imagine my specific work to be recognised in this way and it is truly humbling.
“My hope and prayer is that this MBE would create an opportunity to ensure the voice of older people is heard inside and outside the church.”