Bishop praises Philippa for new role in church - The Evesham Observer

Bishop praises Philippa for new role in church

Evesham Editorial 28th Oct, 2022   0

A NEW lay minister for a Harvington church was one of four appointments made during a ceremony at Worcester Cathedral.

Philippa Heenan, who will serve at Harvington Church in the ARCH benefice, was among those admitted to the office of Reader during the service conducted by Bishop of Worcester, the Rt Rev Dr John Inge.

Readers are trained and licensed lay ministers in the Church of England authorised in particular to exercise a ministry of preaching and teaching.

They undergo a two-year training course which ends with the award of a Certificate in Higher Education by the University of Durham before being admitted to the role.

After being licensed they carry out a wide range of tasks within their parishes and beyond, especially helping others to reflect on their faith and how it relates to their daily lives.

“Church and faith have been at the centre of my life since I was a young child but for me service was always in Mission and practicality (Treasurer, Secretary, fabric),” Philippa said.

“The path to Reader Ministry has been a natural progression that posed an academic challenge which I have relished and a new way of serving which felt right as life changed, children left home, and the need for more help became evident within the ever-growing clergy workload.

“I look forward to my years ahead, serving and partnering the community to help lead and teach, support, and sustain, encourage, and spread the Good News of Jesus.”

Those admitted and licensed along with Phillipa were Julie Berrow who will serve in the parish of St Barnabas with Christchurch in Worcester, Cary Taylor-Stokes who will serve at St Wulstan’s Church in Worcester, and Richard Weatherill who will serve at Great Malvern Priory.

Bishop John said: “Lay Ministers play a very important role in our churches, sharing their faith with others and serving them in God’s name. I was delighted to be able to license these four people to this very important role.”

The Archdeacon of Worcester, Robert Jones, preached at the service, reflecting on the reading from the book of Proverbs.

“We all have a lay ministry which goes back to our baptism – it is a reminder of who we are as Christians,” he said.

“Your job as ministers is to rejoice in God’s world and delight in the human race. May you bless your parishes and those to whom you minister as you hold on to the glory of creation.”

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