I’m sure you are aware that our parishes of Stretton and Appleton Thorn have a good history of training curates: you might remember some who began their ordained ministry here and went on to other things in the diocese and beyond. Since I arrived, I have let it be known that I would welcome the chance to work with a curate. I am pleased to say that Bishop Peter asked me to consider someone who is due to be ordained in July this year.
The person in question is Mrs Ruth Mock. Ruth is currently the Diocesan Family Life Officer, based at Church House in Daresbury, supporting parishes in their work with families. She is a former primary school teacher and mother of three boys – one doing finals, one doing A levels and one doing GCSEs this summer. I believe Ruth will be a great asset to our mission and ministry.
After consulting the Wardens and PCCs of both parishes, I let the diocese know that we would be very happy to work with Ruth and she said that she would be happy to come.
I am pleased to announce that the bishop has offered the post to Ruth and that she has accepted.
I should say that the post is subject to various conditions, but, all being well, Ruth will be ordained deacon on Sunday 2nd July this year.
Obviously, a curate is not simply an “extra pair of hands” – although that would be very useful, of course. We are responsible for providing her with an experience of parish ministry that will set her up for the rest of her life as a priest in the Church of England. Her job title will be ‘Assistant Curate’ and we would expect her to be with us for up to three years.
You will be interested to know that Ruth is married to the Revd David Mock, currently vicar of All Saints and St Barnabas in Macclesfield. David is going to be the next vicar of Barnton and he will be welcomed to his new post on Monday 26th June. Ruth will, of course, be living in Barnton and will travel in to work here with us. She will have a base in the parish office at St Matthew’s Church Hall.
I’m very excited at the prospect of working with Ruth: I think she has a lot to offer and I hope that we will be able to provide her with a good experience at the start of her ordained ministry.
Please pray with us for Ruth and David, and their family, as they prepare for the next stage of their life and ministry.