Portsmouth Cathedral was the venue for a host of ordinations on Saturday, each with their own story to tell.
A car crash in France prompted Amy Webb to realise it was her calling to become ordained as a clergy person in the Church of England.
But I was alive and so were the girls, and I felt that God was saying to me that my life could end at any time and what was I going to do with itAmy Webb
The car rolled over twice with Amy and her daughters, then aged seven and five, inside. Although the car was totally destroyed, miraculously none of them were hurt.
The 40-year-old, who was worshipping at St John’s Church, Fareham, is now preparing to become the curate in the villages of Botley, Curdridge and Durley.
Amy, whose husband left her after the birth of her second daughter, said: ‘When the car came to rest in this field, I had this amazing sense of God’s presence in the silence.
‘It was a desperate situation – I’d bought the car with my divorce money, the insurance didn’t cover it, and I lost the ferry ticket in the crash. But I was alive and so were the girls, and I felt that God was saying to me that my life could end at any time and what was I going to do with it.’
Among the others who were ordained was father-of-two Chris Richardson. He was worshipping at St Jude’s Church in Southsea, but has moved to Gosport ahead of starting work as curate in Alverstoke.
He said: ‘It will be a huge privilege to have the time to serve God. I enjoy the pastoral side and sharing other people’s journeys, although I know that can be hard as well. I love sharing God’s Word and seeing how it applies to people’s lives.’
- Among those who were ordained deacon: Stephen Dent (to serve at St Faith’s, Lee-on-the-Solent), Kate Marlow (to serve at St Cuthbert’s Church, Copnor), Darcy Chesterfield-Terry (to serve at St Mary’s, Fratton), Chris Richardson (to serve at St Mary’s, St Faith’s and St Francis, Alverstoke), and Amy Webb (to serve at All Saints, Botley, St Peter’s, Curdridge, and Holy Cross, Durley).
- Among those who were ordained priest: the Rev Jane Isaac (already serving at All Saints & St Michael’s Churches, Ryde), the Rev Barbara O’Sullivan (already serving at St Mary’s, Fratton), the Rev Garry Roberts (already serving at Holy Trinity & St Columba, Fareham), and the Rev Mark Williams (already serving at St Mary’s, Portchester). The Rev Luke O’Maoil Mheana (already serving at St Michael’s, Paulsgrove) was due to be ordained priest at St Michael’s Church last night.