In an article on Chaplaincy in London in the time of covid (full article here):
Ellie Barrett, Strip Club chaplain and Nightlife Ministries Coordinator for Third Space Ministries, Soho
“God probably hates me for what I’m doing” is often the perception of faith in the industry I work in, so the biggest breakthrough for me has been to show that whatever your life choices, you are a person and God does love and support you. We’ll usually go in pairs to the different clubs and spend about an hour sitting in the changing rooms or the breakout area so that when the girls are coming for breaks, they can sit and chat. We offer spiritual, emotional and pastoral support so if people just want to chat, that’s fine and if they want to talk about faith, that’s also fine. I’ve been blown away by how much people want prayer though and are starting to pray themselves, even without necessarily having faith. People are in the industry for different reasons and some enjoy the job but others don’t. Sometimes they need our support just for the night if they aren’t prepared for a situation that they’re in, or often it can be about family or friends or wider stuff that’s going on in their lives. Occasionally one of the girls might want to invite us to talk to her customer, so we’ll chat to him but the men aren’t our focus. During the lockdown conversations have been on the chaplaincy phone regarding mental health issues and not being able to do the work, or the fact they’re spending more time at home when, in some cases, home life isn’t that great. However, for those who were already thinking about making a change, Covid has given them a chance to take stock and a lot of them have chosen to go into new careers which are more stable at the moment. It’s been eye opening to me that I can still feel like a chaplain even though the clubs have been shut down for over a year. Since I started I’ve built some close relationships from seeing people on a weekly basis and going forward I’ll probably take those relationships with me. Even if they no longer need me as a strip club chaplain I can still be there as a support or a friend to them.
MyHouseYourHouse featured the Soundcheck ministry (link here):