Introducing our new ordinands 2021

Miriam Bier Hinksman

"Originally from New Zealand, I came to the UK in 2012 to teach Old Testament at the London School of Theology, and biblical preaching and teaching remain a core part of my vocation. Alongside this ministry of the word there was always a long suspected, slow-burning call to the ministry of the sacrament, which suddenly became ‘live’ in late 2016. It’s a real gift to now be able to begin my ordained ministry in the Bridge Benefice, and I am thankful for God’s faithfulness."

Karen Burgess

"Hello! My name is Karen, I am married to my husband Martin, we have been married for 39 years and have two adult children and are blessed with four amazing grandchildren. My current working role is with Ignite and I am based at Sittingbourne . I have been a Christian since my early teenage years and felt God’s calling for long time, thankfully God is patient if not persistent in his calling. I first explored God’s calling through authorised lay ministry in children’s ministry, worship leading and funerals and bereavement, but God was still calling. I explored more, and after three conversations with Bishop Trevor, who eventually said “I think I know you well enough now to say this…….Karen, just get on with it!” I knew that it was time that I did just that. It has all been a challenging but wonderful experience that has enabled me to meet and learn from some wonderful people."

Nicholas Carpenter

"I have been a civil servant for 40 years and had looked into a suggested calling in my 20s. This did not feel the right time for both of us with two young children.

"I was at a New Wine worship and teaching evening at St Mary Bredin, listening to Paul Harcourt teach on prophecy. A young Christian said he saw a picture of me in a pulpit. I could easily explain this away as inexperience. After this event a Lutheran Pastor approached me who was visiting from Sweden. He told me that he felt God was saying this was my time, a time to mobilise. I could still attempt to bat this away as coincidence. Two weeks later I was at Harrogate at a New Wine leadership conference. I happened to be in the front row with nowhere to run. Nicky Gumbell was speaking and at the end I felt compelled to go forward (which was only one metre in front). A New Wine leader, Mark Melluish, prayed for me and said he felt God was saying that I had to give what I had been given, away to others. I felt I could not ignore this call on my life any more and had the vocation tested. This has led me to this point and I await the next three years at the Six benefice with anticipation. Perhaps I will receive an answer as to why he called me to be ordained 4 days after my 60th birthday."

Claire Coleman

"Since early childhood I wanted to serve and honour God in everything that I did. Through school, university, secular work, overseas ministry and church employment; this was my goal. I resisted the call to ordination for a long time - but eventually at one of the hardest points in my life, acknowledging God's faithfulness and love, I responded to this call with Isaiah's words of 'Here am I; send me' and now I look forward to walking in that ministry in Ramsgate at both St. Luke's and St. George's."

Andrew Edwards

"For many years I worked in charities, supporting the community development work of churches and other organisations in Africa and Asia. I thought work in overseas development was my final vocation but God had other ideas and I am happy to be now starting a new adventure as an ordained minister, supporting the people of God in their vocation here in Kent. During my training for ordination I was fortunate to work as an Ignite Enabler at St Martin’s Maidstone and this exciting experience helped me to see what wonderful things God can do in a church that is seeking to ‘make room for all’. I am looking forward to returning to St Martin’s as Deacon and to continuing to learn from and with the people of the parish, about what God is calling us to be and to do in His beautiful and fragile world."

Jack Greenhalf

"I grew up in East Sussex and became a Christian in my late teens. I began to feel called to ordained ministry a few years later but decided to continue with my career as a Police Officer. Fifteen years later, married for the second time, and with three adorable children in tow, I realise just how much growing I needed to do! I am told that nobody ever feels quite ready to take this step, but with the love and support of the Holy Spirit, my family, and my colleagues, the adventure ahead seems a little less daunting."

Susan Manners

"This call has been 20 years in the making.  I first started feeling a nudge from God when I was around 30 but living in Malaysia for work I couldn’t see how it could possibly be.  Having worked in education for 14 years overseas it seemed a crazy idea.  Some years later, I was back in the UK and a churchwarden, over a period of three months, seven different people from all parts of my life asked me if I had thought of being ordained and I finally got the message.  It hasn’t always been easy but God has provided for me through challenges in an amazing way."

Anthea Mitchell

"I was raised in the Greek Orthodox tradition and attended a Catholic school so faith was a big part of my early life, albeit it a slightly confused part! My Anglican identity has developed very slowly over the last thirty years, and God has somehow brought me (sometimes kicking and screaming) to this next part of my journey. I feel a very strong calling to ministry in the workplace and will continue in my present role as a hairdresser and salon owner where I enjoy relationships with a diverse range of people in the community. I hope to bring a little of the light and peace of God to those unlikely to wander into our churches, and trust that God will meet people in that space and begin to draw them to God’s self."

Debra Scoble 

"My journey of faith has certainly been one that has dragged me out of my comfort zone! Responding to God's call to follow him, even on the path to ordained ministry, has meant fully accepting my identity as a beloved child of Christ, a task which has been tearingly difficult at times. But the certain knowledge of being known and loved by Christ, held by the Father and enabled by the Spirit, has remained tangible throughout even the darkest of days. The opportunity to minister in God's name among His people here in the outstandingly beautiful Elham Valley is a wonderful privilege - and I am excited to see what the future holds!"

Caroline Turvey  

"I knew that God was calling me into ordained ministry ten years ago. A bolt out of the blue on a dog walk with friend and I really said, 'who, me?' And so here I am, about to be ordained Deacon and obediently stepping into the unknown, and yet completely known and made secure in God. From the moment I watched Jesus of Nazareth as a child, many moons ago, I fell in love with the person of Christ and consider it an honour to be his hands and feet through ordained ministry. It's been a long journey, really tough at times, but my faith, my passion, a deep joy and God's faithfulness have sustained me and will continue to give me strength as I join the team at Kingsdown, Creekside, and High Downs benefice."

Jenny Walpole

“Before training for ordination, I worked at Wandsworth Prison on a mentoring and befriending project. I was a Licensed Lay Minister in Stepney, and previously a Verger at St James’s Church, Piccadilly. I first heard the call from God in 2005 and so you could say I’ve taken a scenic route. I pray that my ministry will be characterised by a radical welcome, sharing God’s love with those on the margins. I’m delighted to be serving my curacy in the heart of the city and look forward to getting to know the people of St Dunstan, St Mildred and St Peter. I hope they will teach me to be deeply rooted as Deacon of Christ.”