Geoff Pinnington was appointed as a Local Missional Leader at Speke, St Aidan on February 5th. He has spoken to us about his new role.
Geoff is married to Gill who is Acting Rector of Speke. They’ve been married for 30 years and have one son, Michael who lives with his wife Jo and son Thomas James, in Abingdon. So they are also proud Grandparents.
We spoke to Geoff about his background, “I came to Liverpool in May 1980. My home town is Beeston, Nottinghamshire. God called me to come to Liverpool when I was 21 years of age. When I arrived I had no job, no home and no real security. However, God blessed me beyond my wildest dreams and soon I had somewhere to live, a job and a Church to belong to - St. Andrews, Clubmoor.
I met Gill, we married, had our son and started training as Readers. We moved churches to be nearer to where we were living, St. Luke's, West Derby, completed our Reader training in 1989 and settled into our new ministry there. I was Sunday school leader for over 15 years at St. Luke's and I had always been a member of The Boys' Brigade from the age of 8, and continued my membership in Liverpool, serving first at the 32nd Liverpool Company at St. Andrews and then starting the 70th Liverpool Company at St. Luke's where I was Captain for 10 years. In 1994 I was appointed as the full time Development Officer for the Liverpool Battalion of the BB, a post I held for 12 years. In 2000, Gill became Curate at St. Bartholomew's Church, Roby so my Reader ministry transferred with her to that church. I helped out with the 1st Roby Company of the BB and Gill and I had four very happy years with St. Barts.
In 2006 Gill and I came to Speke, where we are now and we are into our 9th year with the lovely people there. I am also serving in the Diocese as a Child Friendly Church Award Adviser under the expert direction of Sue Mitchell. Her & I became advisers at the same time and we have a delightful team all committed to promoting excellence among the many armies of volunteers in our churches working with children and young people.”
The challenges Geoff will face in his new role are varied. “Speke is a challenging parish in which to work with people having all sorts of spiritual and social needs.” Geoff continues. “We have two churches, St. Aidan's & All Saints. Both have their own style of worship and bring church, but our people truly have hearts of gold especially in their hospitality and generosity. Challenges involve the developing of Children's work & Men's work coupled with outreach at All Saints Church, where I will primarily be based.”
Geoff has already started looking for spiritual opportunities “So far I have secured links with our local schools, giving talks to classes in church and letting them explore the church for themselves. We have organised one event for men and already been blessed with one new man regularly attending our services each week. Outreach is slowly taking off with the hall being hired by community groups for various activities. So already I am seizing every opportunity I can to make All Saints Church become central and key to the lives of people living in West Speke.”
God’s will for Geoff is very clear to him. “God is calling me to step out and undertake a greater depth of leadership than can be found in the Reader Ministry alone. I am still a Reader and wish to continue in this ministry but being a Local Missional Leader means taking on the responsibility of growing God's Church through missionary vision that I believe God has called me to along with the preaching and teaching ministry that I already do as a Reader.
I will have a share of the responsibility for the growth of God's Church in Speke alongside Gill.
I will not just be a supporting role, which I have been pleased to be, but rather a complimentary role with a vision to share. I will have a part to play in developing local people to test out their skills and become the church God wants them to be.
I believe this is part of my continuing journey in ministry with God and I have no doubt that there are exciting challenges and opportunities ahead. I am just so humbled by the fact that God chose me for this exciting journey, a journey I am so keen to tread.”