Meet our new Deacons - Jayne van den Berg-Owens

This week we meet Jayne Van Den Berg-Owens who serves in the Kirkby Team Ministry.

In July, Bishop Richard ordained 17 new Deacons, all of whom will serve in parishes across the Diocese of Liverpool.

They have each agreed to share the stories of their path to ordination with us. This week we meet Jayne Van Den Berg-Owens who serves as part of the Kirkby Team Ministry.

Jayne Van Den Berg-Owens

Jayne, 45, is originally from Kirkby and is married with three children. She previously ran her own driving school business with more than 50 franchised instructors and 2000 pupils training at one time. After being selected for ordination training, Jayne left the driving school industry and focused on training in listening and pastoral skills by working as a Crisis Carer in West Lancs.

Jayne has had her faith from an early age and has always been involved in some kind of lay ministry such as music and outreach projects within the local community and counselling. However, she felt drawn to teaching and evangelism around ten years ago and prior to ordination was a pastor for house-groups and helped write and develop study materials for bible study groups.

A major part of her lay ministry during this time included developing and implementing a three-year discipleship programme for Christians. The ‘Living Discipleship’ course is intended to encourage, equip and empower ordinary men and woman for living out their faith in their daily lives. This course was enormously successful allowing the participants to identify and follow God’s call in their own lives to both lay and ordained ministry.

Jayne’s new role in the Kirkby team ministry is a real homecoming. Jayne said, “The church where I will be serving in Southdene is in the same area where I grew up as a child. From the house where I am now living I can see my first marital home! As Bishop James Jones commented earlier this year, if I were to take up a post in Kirkby it would be like going back to my ‘roots’ – and that is exactly what it feels like!

"Being a ‘Kirkby lass’ from a working class background, I am not what many would consider to be a typical Deacon either socially or intellectually. Nevertheless, Kirkby was the place where God planted the seeds in my heart for future ministry, and I pray that by his grace he will allow them to bear fruit in my home town. I look forward to meeting friends from the past and making new connections as I serve the people of Kirkby.”