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Our New Curate writes…

Hello all, my name is Natalie, and by the time you are reading this I will – God willing – be the Curate in the Maund Group of Churches.

A curate is a member of clergy who has recently been ordained a deacon or priest and is learning what it means to be a clergyperson alongside a more experienced priest (it’s a bit like a junior doctor, who ‘learns on the job’ alongside more experienced doctors).

I will be working alongside and learning from Revd Paul Roberts, getting stuck into the worshipping and working lives of the various villages across the benefice.

I may be joined on occasion by my dog, Bertie (although I’m not sure he’s well behaved enough to join me in church services just yet!) who lives with me, my civil partner Jo, and our two rabbits Teddy and Eda.

I hail from the depths of the West Country, having grown up in a village on the Somerset/ Devon/ Dorset border and lived at home with my parents, younger brother, and a small menagerie of pets throughout my studies in my local town and then at the University of Exeter.

Clearly deciding that Somerset wasn’t far enough West for my liking, I moved to Cornwall where for two years I lived as part of a new monastic community of people all exploring our various callings and discerning our vocations. During this time, I tested my sense of calling to the priesthood, and was recommended to train for ordination.

Having said I’d never leave the South West, God surprised me by calling me to train at Cranmer Hall… all the way up in the North East, in Durham! It was there that I met Jo, who was in her final year of training herself, and was able to experience a few months of ‘normal’ college life before the pandemic changed all of our lives.

I’ve spent the past year hopping about between Durham and Hereford, where Jo has been serving as curate in the West Hereford Team, and am thrilled to now be fully present in Herefordshire.

On the 4th July, I will be ordained a deacon. ‘Deacons are ordained so that the people of God may be better equipped to make Christ known.’ says the Church of England’s Ordination of Deacons service.

‘Theirs is a life of visible self-giving. Christ is the pattern of their calling and their commission; as he washed the feet of his disciples, so they must wash the feet of others.’

In other words, deacons commit themselves to a life in which, through serving and loving others, people may see Christ. This is done in a number of ways in all areas of life, not just at church on a Sunday!

I’m excited to be joining you as your deacon – to serve, love, and work with you for the next few years – and thrilled that this is the place to which God has called me.

My prayer is that we will grow in our love for Christ and for one another as we share our gifts and learn and grow together.

Every blessing


For those who are keen to explore God’s story. We are hoping to offer confirmation classes – junior and adult – for those who wish to explore their faith towards confirmation. At this stage we are awaiting guidance as to when confirmation services can be held, but if you are interested on your own behalf, or have a child aged 10 or above who would be interested, please do register your interest with me; (rector@maundchurches.org.ukor 01568-797863).

Date: 01/07/2021

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