Case Studies

(updated August 2016)

My name is Simon Embleton and I was licensed as a Reader in October 2015 and I thought that I might share with you, in this case study, some of my reflections from my first year of licensed ministry.

I serve in the parish of St. John, Whorlton, in the West Deanery and the church is situated on Stamfordham Road about half a mile from Westerhope village.

The first reflection that I would like to share with you is that this first year has been extremely enjoyable. I have received an enormous amount of encouragement from our congregation and ministry team and feel really blessed that I am able to excercise a Reader ministry in such a lovely (suburban bordering on a rural) setting.  

One of my aims as a Reader is that my ministry encompasses both church and secular life.  As well as preaching between eight and ten times each year and assisting on Sunday mornings, I am also sometimes called upon to take the reserved sacrament into peoples homes and into residential care homes in the parish, I feel so priviledged in being able to do this and, for me, is an important part of reaching out in both mission and ministry bringing the gospel message to all.  

I'm involved in leading Advent and Lent group sessions alongside my Reader colleague, Anne Morris, and our Vicar.  In this past year I was very keen to to set up a men's group and this group has been meeting every six weeks on a Saturday morning at various coffee shops around the parish and surrounding area.  I am pleased to say that the men in church have supported this and we enjoy being able to get together outside of the 'church' setting to chat and enjoy a coffee and even a scone!!  

I'm a member of the Westerhope C|ommunity Partnership (WCP) which is a non-politcal group of local residents who work together keeping our village a pleasant place to live and so, among other projects we have taken on, we hold an annual Village Summer Fair within the village itself trying to raise money helping to buy bedding plants and flowers for decoration throughout the village.  I am also a member of the Westerhope Churches Together where representatives from  local churches of different denominations get together and organise ecumenical events and occasional services including an ecumenical service during the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.  

Recently I have been co-opted onto the Reader's Board in my capacity as social media editor, working alongside the Reader's secretary and Val Cowan in keeping the Newcastle Reader website, Facebook and Twitter sites up to date with upcoming events and announcements on all things 'Reader' related.  I am involved with the Reader Selection and Recruitment group, headed by Sue Hart, our Reader selection coordinator.  This group works together in promoting Reader ministry across parishes and Deaneries and allows me to pursue a keen interest I have in vocations and particular vocations to Reader ministry.

This has just been a snapshot of my first 12 months but as you can imagine I'm looking forward to welcoming our new Readers at the licensing service on 1st October 2016 and for what the future holds.

Other case studies are in the process of being compiled. These will be added to the webpage when they have been submitted. Many thanks to the Readers who said they would like to contribute.  If any Reader, or indeed trainee Reader, would like to give a short case study on your experiences, please do not hesitate to email me on thank you.