Rejoicing as 24 men and women ordained deacons at Wakefield Cathedral

With Bishop NickTwenty four men and women begin ministry as deacons in parish churches across the diocese this July, following two packed services held at the weekend in Wakefield Cathedral. They include a former GP, a headteacher, a magistrate, and a former telecomms trainer.  

Start of second serviceThe services were held at 'Pertertide'- July 2nd. In the morning service, nine men and women who will serve as curates in the Leeds and Wakefield Episcopal Areas were ordained . Later, at 3pm, a second service was held for the fifteen men and women who will serve as deacons in parishes in Ripon, Huddersfield and Bradford Episcopal Areas.Service

Two services were needed to allow space for the many family, friends and supporters of the ordinands to attend – even then ticket numbers had to be limited.

WelcomeAn ‘ember’ card has been produced to encourage the diocese to continue to pray for those who have started ordained ministry – click here to download.

Leading the service was the Bishop of Leeds, the Rt Revd Nick Baines while the preacher at both events was the Revd Canon Charlotte Methuen.

Within the Church of England there are three stages of ordained ministry: deacons, priests and bishops. Following training at theological college, newly ordained deacons are appointed to a three to four year post of curate, for training alongside an experienced vicar. After one year, deacons are ordained priest.

(Below left- ordinands with Bishop Nick at the 11am service - right, ordinands with Bishop Nick following the 3pm service, both outside Wakefield Cathewdral)

Morning serviceAfternoon service


To serve in the Ripon Area

Julie Clarkson  Julie will serve her curacy in the United Benefice of Barnoldswick with Bracewell. Prior to her training on the Yorkshire Ministry Course, she was a Reader and worship leader in the Beeston parish, Leeds. Julie is married to Chris and they have two grown up children and five grandchildren. She has worked in the telecommunications industry as a trainer for the past 15 years. Julie enjoys travelling, reading and spending time with her grandchildren.
Ruth Donegan-Cross Ruth Donegan-Cross will serve in the parish of St John’s and St Luke’s, Bilton in Harrogate after training for ordination with the Yorkshire Ministry Course. Ruth is married to Guy, who is Vicar of a neighbouring church, and they have 4 children, John (20), Hamish (18), Toby (17) and Anna (14) plus a recently arrived puppy, Bess.  Prior to ordination she was Chaplain at Harrogate Ladies’ College. She loves films, novels, cooking and all things creative.
Stephen Hanscombe Stephen Hanscombe will serve in the Benefice of Bedale after training for ordination on the Yorkshire Ministry Course where he read for a B.A.  As a Self-Supporting Minister, Stephen will continue to work part-time as Co-Headteacher of Mill Hill Primary School in Northallerton.  He has worked in education for thirty years and has always felt this to be his original vocation.  Stephen earned a Choral Scholarship at Bishop Grosseteste College in Lincoln where he sang in the Cathedral Choir. Following ordination he is looking forward to combining his two vocations and continuing to hear God’s call.  Most of his spare time is spent walking his Labrador, Poppy.  Stephen also enjoys reading, singing, travelling and gardening and is cultivating a new interest in growing vegetables.
Alex ladds Alex Ladds Alex Ladds will serve in the parish of Broughton, Marton and Thornton and as School Chaplain at Giggleswick in North Yorkshire after training for ordination with the Lancaster and Cumbria Theological Partnership where he read for a Diploma in Theology.  Alex is married to Louise and they have two children, Isaac, aged 15 and Joseph aged 14. Prior to ordination Alex was a Teacher and Lay Chaplain at Giggleswick School.  Alex’s hobbies include fell-walking, long distance running (Completed the UTMB CCC 2014), swimming, rugby football, sport and clay pigeon shooting climbing, orienteering, cricket, athletics and self-defence. I enjoy reading, crosswords and visiting national trust properties.
Stroma McDermott Stroma McDermott will serve in the parish of Wetherby with Linton after training for ordination at Yorkshire Ministry Course where she read for an MA.  Stroma is married to Damian and they have three children (Eleanor, 18 years; Christian, 15 years and Cosmo 10 years). Prior to ordination Stroma worked as a Principal Auditor for 16 years with the Audit Commission, performing financial and governance audits across West and North Yorkshire for Local Government and Health Bodies before undertaking a Theology degree at York St John University  (thoroughly recommended!) where she went on to become the Chaplaincy Administrator.  As a contextual placement student she has had placements with Leeds Church Institute and the Church of the Epiphany, Gipton in Leeds. Stroma is a massive Elvis fan and loves music, going to concerts, the theatre, cinema and dance and things involving wine. She has recently taken up running, which she is slowly learning to dislike less!
Tim Madeley Tim Madeley will serve in the Ingleborough Team Ministry, based primarily at St John the Baptist, Low Bentham after training for ordination at Ridley Hall Cambridge, where he read for a BA. Prior to ordination, Tim worked in Employment Law after completing a masters at Law School in Leeds. Before beginning training for ordination, he spent a year as a Pastoral Worker at HMS Drake, Plymouth, working with the Royal Naval Chaplaincy Service and employed by the charity known as Aggie Weston’s. He is very keen on cycling, having ridden a few sportives (organised cycle rides) and been an avid watcher of the Tour de France since 1994. He recently trained for and ran the Cambridge Half Marathon for Christian Aid. He is keen to keep up the running and cycling after ordination. Other interests include playing the guitar, watching films and playing computer games.

To serve in the Bradford area

Robert Johnson Robert will serve in the parishes of St James the Great, Woodhall and St Margaret’s, Thornbury after training for ordination at The Yorkshire Ministry Course, Mirfield.  Robert is married to Lynne and they have three grown up daughters, Sarah, Rebecca, and Heather.  Their son Thomas still lives at home.  Prior to ordination Robert was a Reader in the historic diocese of Bradford and he will continue to work fulltime in his pastoral role at Parkside School, Cullingworth. Robert’s hobbies include supporting Bradford City, singing with two choirs, fishing, listening to music and reading.
Anthony Laotan Anthony Olanrewaju Laotan will serve in the parish of Holy Trinity Church, Idle, Bradford after training for ordination at the Yorkshire Ministry Course, Mirfield where he read for a BA. Originally from Nigeria, the most populous black country in the world, Anthony considers himself a 'Northern Lad' having lived north of England since his coming over to the UK 14 years ago. He is married to Amaka (means Beautiful) and they have three children (Jemima 10, Jasmine 7 and Joshua 5). Prior to ordination, he was a Reader in the then Ripon and Leeds diocese (now WYAD) and has worked as a Youth worker with various faith and mainstream organizations, the most recent being the Salvation Army/ SPACE initiative and St Luke's Church, Holbeck. Anthony is a passionate 'Match of the day' viewer (hopefully will get the football boots back on again and hopes Leicester wins the EPL for a change), loves Chinese food (takeaway or buffet), visiting new places and dancing to afro-gospel tunes.
Sue McWhinney Sue will serve in the parish of St John the Evangelist, Baildon, after training for 3 years on Yorkshire Ministry Course at Mirfield where she read for a BA (Sheffield) in Theological Studies. Sue has been married to Paul for 32 years, and they have two children, James, a Durham graduate now working for an engineering consultancy in Warrington, and Sarah, a Fine Art student at Glasgow School of Art. Sue was a GP principal near York before the family moved to Bradford in 2000, when Paul took up his post as a consultant physician at Bradford Royal Infirmary. In recent years Sue has been heavily involved in the life of her sending church, Bradford Cathedral, and she enjoys walking in the Dales and Northumberland with Paul, live music of all varieties (from early music to Scottish/Irish folk), theatre and visiting art galleries. However she draws the line at participating in the family passion for caving!
Nathanael Poole Nathanael will serve in the parish of St Johns, Great Horton, after training for ordination at Cranmer Hall, Durham, where he read for a BA. Nathanael married Lauren in the summer of 2015. Before training for ministry Nathanael worked with a fresh expression of church meeting in the city centre of Wolverhampton, where he was involved in coordinating worship and young peoples discipleship. Nathanael enjoys cycling, going to the gym, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and regular trips to the cinema.
Tim Roberts

Tim Roberts will serve in the parish of St. John the Baptist, Clayton after training for ordination at St. John’s, Nottingham where he read for a MTh. Tim is married to Emma and they have three boys called Joshua (7), Jamie (4) and Isaac (2). Prior to ordination he did a gap year at St. Marks, Utley which turned into a ‘gap-decade’ as he became the ‘church and community youthworker’ in which time he also got his youthwork and ministry degree. Tim loved his time at St. Marks and has spent the three years at college learning to embrace his new call to ordained ministry and is excited about serving in Clayton despite still coming to terms with ‘vicar clothes’. Tim enjoys spending time with Emma, being with friends, playing 5-a-side football, supporting Liverpool FC and being a climbing frame for his boys! 

For the Huddersfield Area

Steven Harvey Steven will serve his title post in the parish of Holy Trinity, Huddersfield, after training for ordination at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford, where he read for an MTh in Applied Theology.  Prior to ordination, Steven served as a pastoral assistant to a group of churches in the Holme Valley.  Before that he was a theological student in Durham for a number of years, where he met his wife, Angela, a native of Texas.  He hopes to continue his studies by researching two of his favourite things: the Old Testament and preaching.  Steven and Angela have two young children (Jedidiah, 3, and Talitha, 1) who keep them on their toes.  When not chasing them around, Steven enjoys reading, writing and playing board games with friends.  Risk, anyone?!
Simon Scott Simon Scott will serve as a Self-Supporting Minister at Halifax Minster after training for ordination on the Yorkshire Ministry Course. Simon has a background in music and lives with his partner Peter on the hills above Halifax along with their Dalmatian – Bertie! Prior to ordination Simon has been the Reader at St Luke’s Norland for six years. Simon will continue to work as a primary Head Teacher after ordination and his hobbies include Model Railways and tinkering about with his 1953 Morris Oxford MO (or if he’s honest, ‘supervising’ other people’s tinkering)! Simon is very excited about joining the Minster team and looking forward to a fantastic Curacy there!
Cindy Sheard My name is Cindy Sheard, I am married to Alan and we have 4 daughters.  My journey towards ordination began some 20 years ago when I felt God calling me into something (not quite sure what at that time!).  I began attending my local church in Gomersal …  The calling remained over the years as I spent time as a stay at home mum, embarked upon a degree and other study and trained as a Lay Reader as I tried to discern what God was calling me to.  Eventually, I ended up working in my local Church Primary School and found the courage and confidence to answer God’s call on my life.  I am looking forward to continuing my journey of faith and living out God’s call as I serve a curacy (as a Non-Stipendiary Minister) at St Peter’s, Birstall with the Rev’d Captain Paul Knight.
Andrew Steer After studying at Ridley Hall, Cambridge, for a Diploma in Theology, Ministry and Mission, Andrew will serve in the parish of All Hallows, Almondbury with Farnley Tyas. Married to Jennifer, a Staff Nurse, they have two adult children – Jessica, a primary school teacher and Rachel, who has just begun teaching English in Japan. Andrew was a midwife in Leeds for 25 years, where he held various roles which included lecturing, management and also as a Supervisor of Midwives. Jennifer and Andrew served as Church Warden’s at St. John’s, Yeadon, where their faith was re-ignited and they discerned God’s call afresh. Andrew has a keen interest in the outdoors, particularly mountain and fell walking, where he is able to find a greater sense of God’s presence. He also enjoys cycling, ornithology, real ales and both folk and world music. He particularly enjoys Tuvan throat singing, but it’s best not to ask about that!

Being ordained at Wakefield Cathedral, 11am, July 2nd

For the Leeds Area

Alison Battye Alison Battye will serve in the parish of St Mary’s Whitkirk after training for ordination with the Yorkshire Ministry Course. She is married to Peter and they have two grown up children. On moving to Leeds in 1987 she worked as a secondary science teacher. After a few years as a full time Mum she then became a primary school teacher. She has also enjoyed working with children in church and as a beaver scout leader. In her spare time she enjoys hiking (mostly with family), singing and flute playing (with friends) and running (mainly alone).
Sonia Kasibante Sonia will serve at Epiphany Gipton and Oakwood churches after training for ordination with the Yorkshire Ministry Course at Mirfield where she read for a BA in Theological Studies with Sheffield University.  Sonia is married to Amos who is parish priest of St Agnes Burmantofts and St Cyprian’s Harehills and they have a daughter, Miriam, currently at university in Uganda.  Sonia was born and brought up in Guyana, and moved to the UK over 20 years ago.  She has a BSc in IT and Computing from the Open University and has worked in a number of administrative roles, including being church administrator at St Agnes’.  She has also served as a volunteer management committee member and chair of the Ebor Gardens Advice Centre which gives free debt and money advice.  Hobbies include visiting gardens, walking, going for drives in the countryside, reading, TV Documentaries (natural world, culture, current affairs), and listening to a variety of music
Jimmy Lawrence Jimmy Lawrence will serve the parish of All Saints, Otley after training for ordination at St. Barnabas Theological College where he read for a BA. Jimmy is supported by parents Barbara and Robin, his girlfriend Hannah, his brother and two sisters. Jimmy’s first degree at Leeds University was in Music where studied as a singer and choral conductor. He spent time working at Coventry Cathedral as a Pastoral Assistant during which time he locked himself in an outdoor cage, for a week, as a way of talking to people about how Jesus can set them free. Some of Jimmy’s loves include; excellent coffee, his ever growing library and cooking.
Hannah Lievesley Hannah Lievesley will serve in the parish of Farsley, Leeds, after training for ordination at St John’s School of Mission (formerly St John’s College, Nottingham) where she read Theology, Mission and Ministry for a Diploma in Higher Education. Hannah is married to Jason, who works in I.T., and they have two children (Alice, 14 and Isaac, 12).  Prior to ordination, Hannah worked in Higher Education administration, most recently as the Student Funding Manager at the University of Leeds. She loves the outdoors and especially enjoys getting out into green spaces with the family dog, Mia. Holidays are usually spent under canvas, around the Dales and Northumberland. Hannah studied English Literature for her first degree and has retained her love of reading and passed it onto her daughter. More recently, at college, she has re-discovered the pool-playing and card-sharp skills she developed during her teenage years. She remains unbeaten at snap.

For the Wakefield Area

Angela Brownridge

Angela will serve her curacy in the parish of Holy Cross, Airedale with Fryston.  She trained for ordination on the Yorkshire Ministry Course at Mirfield, prior to training/ordination Angela was a Lay Pastoral Minister for 13 years.  She works for Wakefield Council in a Main Branch Library, and sees this as an important part of her ministry.  Angela is married to Darren who is a keen motor cyclist, and they have ridden  in the UK, Europe and the USA.   Angela and Darren have two children Hannah aged 26 and Joseph aged 24.  Angela likes spending time with her family and friends and finds reading and fell walking enjoyable.  She is looking forward to serving as a curate in Airedale.

John Fisher

John will serve in the parish of Darton, Staincross and Mapplewell after training for ordination at the Yorkshire Ministry Course, Mirfield where he read for a BA.  John is married to Maureen and they have two sons Luke 25 and Matthew 23.  Prior to ordination he worked for Environmental Health and prior to that within the mining industry. He has also worked within the community as a Local Magistrate and as a Scout Leader in Pontefract. His extensive voluntary work has earned him the award “Making a difference” from the local authority. John’s hobbies include: Scouting which has taken him all over the world and helped him build up an interesting international scouting portfolio: Hiking, he has enjoyed running an informal local hiking group: Kayaking, John and his family especially enjoy the waters of the Lake District such as Derwent Water and Coniston. His big passion however is motorbikes and motorbike racing and he keenly follows the MotoGP visiting many circuits both here in the UK and overseas.

Kate Reynolds

Kate Reynolds will serve her curacy in the parish of St Mary the Virgin, South Elmsall, after training for ordination at Yorkshire Ministry Course in Mirfield, where she studied for a Foundation Degree in Theology.

Kate is married to Kevin and they have three children and five grandchildren.  She is to be ordained a self-supporting minister and will continue working as a support worker for The Saviour Trust, and as a Christian Schools Worker in her home parish of All Saints’ Pontefract.  Kate is a fan of theatre, cinema, live music and also enjoys cooking.

Lucy Savage Lucy will serve in the parish of Ossett and Gawthorpe after training for ordination at St. John's School of Mission where she read for a BA in Theology for Ministry.  Lucy is a single Ordinand, daughter of Jenny and Edwin Savage and sister to Robert,  Judith, Matthew and their respective partners.  She enjoys spending time with her 6 nephews and nieces who she is immensely proud of.  Prior to ordination she read for a BA Hons in Music at The University of Nottingham, worked 2 years as Parish Assistant for The Benefice of Fulbourn and the Wilbrahams in Cambridgeshire, and spent 3 months with her sister's family in New Zealand.  In addition to New Zealand, Lucy has trekked to Base Camp of Everest in Nepal and visited our Diocesan links in The Sudan as a placement with college.  Other hobbies include singing, Irish dancing, socialising with friends, knitting and sewing.
Tim Stevens Tim will serve at Wakefield Cathedral, after training for ordination on the Yorkshire Ministry Course where he read for an MA in Liturgy.  Tim is married to Jolene and they have two children, William aged 3 and Bethany aged 1.   Prior to ordination he was an organist in Headingley for over ten years, where he was also involved in work with students.  He has worked in retail for fifteen years, most recently for Asda where he has been based in their head office in Leeds for the last 4 years.  Tim likes to spend as much time as possible enjoying his family, who like to join him in walking trips (although some of them get carried more than they walk!), and is currently exploring as many railways as possible with his son and as many parks and zoos as possible with his daughter.  Tim also enjoys music, both playing and listening, and demonstrates an eclectic taste. 


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