This week we meet Gill Hughes who serves at Kirkdale St Lawrence and St Paul.
Bishop James recently licensed 12 new Readers who now serve in parishes across the Diocese of Liverpool. Many of them have kindly agreed to share their stories with us. This week we meet Gill Hughes who serves at Kirkdale St Lawrence and St Paul.
Gill, who is originally from Kirkby, moved to Bootle 16 years ago, and it was the decision to have her children christened that brought her back to church after a 20 year gap. Gill said, “I never dreamt that God would call me into ministry! However, I did begin some training which was initially to help me work with children in a school setting, teaching them about Jesus.”
Gill says that after taking the initial step, her faith and commitment to attending church grew over the next few years. “I attended an Alpha course and began to take part in the services by reading the lesson or writing some prayers. Later I began to take a more active role in the church by becoming a member of the PCC and for a few years I was the Deanery Representative for St. Lawrence with St. Paul, and more recently I trained to be part of our Ministry Support Group (SMT).”
Gill says that she always felt her calling was to the role of Foster Carer but she was increasingly aware that God was calling her to further studies - and possibly the role of Lay Reader. “I struggled thinking I had to choose one role to play, yet God enabled me through prayer and fellowship to see that he was actually calling me to both. The beginning of my time as a foster carer was actually around the same time I began the course for Readership, and so with God’s Grace and help I worked through the course and enjoyed the fostering, and as I journeyed through I was encouraged and supported greatly by my family, church family and close friends.”
Gill adds: “God spoke to me throughout the course, giving me strength when needed and directing me. I feel called to working as part of a team in the Sunday school, alongside the bereaved and those who are housebound and the course has enabled me to look more closely at funerals and home communions which will, with God’s blessing, be where I will be playing an active role within the beginning of my ministry.”
Gill is also determined to keep developing her skills and understanding of her ministry by taking part in any courses that will enhance her ability, saying: “I will forever be listening for God’s direction and praying for his guidance and help which I know, through the power of the Holy Spirit, he will always be true to his promise to call and equip.”