Archdeaconry of Rochester
Jim Fletcher, Rector of the Parish of Fawkham and Hartley, married to Sarah with two young children.
Jim said, “Keen squash player, follower of cricket and supporter of Liverpool Football Club, but don’t let that put you off meeting me! Have always had a huge interest in ‘Vocations’ as my own journey to ordination was a long and winding one where I was supported by many wonderful people on route. I hope I can also provide similar support to those searching for their ‘calling’ in life”.
The Rev Suzanne Pattle is Priest-in-Charge at St Mary Magdalene Gillingham.
Suzanne trained for ordination at Trinity College Bristol, and following ordination in 2003 served her curacy at St Margaret's Rainham. She said, “Ordination was never part of the life plan, but a growing sense of God's call led to a period of exploration and questioning, which eventually led to where I am today! I have been a Vocations Advisor for Rochester Archdeaconry for about three years, and count it a privilege to hear people's stories, and to be part of their journey of discovering God’s call”.
Sue Jones from Frindsbury has recently joined the team.
Sue said, “In 2002 I started to consider how best I could serve God in our Parish, was encouraged to train as an Evangelist and commissioned two years later. As part of the Mission Team in Frindsbury with Upnor and Chattenden, I am involved with the Emmaus Courses; I enjoy walking alongside others in their journey of faith, looking at outreach opportunities and being involved in Baptism Preparation. I am looking forward to being part of the Vocations team”.
Chris Routledge, Assistant Curate in the Parish of Northfleet & Rosherville
Chris' vocational journey began in 1995 when, following a time in Brazil on 'Mission Experience', he spent a year as a Careforce volunteer before training as a Church Army Evangelist. He spent 9 years as 'Captain Chris' (including 6 years in Biggin Hill) before training for ordination at Cuddesdon. Now 'Father Chris', he is greatly enjoying serving his curacy in Northfleet and Rosherville. Chris has been married to Clare for 12 years, and they have a 2-year-old son, Nathan.
Archdeaconry of Tonbridge
The Rev Mark Griffin, Vicar of St Luke’s, Sevenoaks.
Mark has been involved with vocations work formerly in the Diocese of Canterbury and now in Rochester for the past 14 years. Mark is a Kentish man by birth, and has lived in Kent for most of his life. A keen cricket fan and an avid reader, Mark has headed up the Vocation team for the last eighteen months. He said, “It is a tremendous privilege to hear the stories and see new ministries growing, helping people to find where God is calling”
The Rev Rachael Knapp is Chaplain at Bennett Memorial Diocesan School.
Racheal is interested in encouraging vocation among young people, which is the focus of her role as a Vocation Advisor. She said, “I am mindful of those who helped me explore vocation in my teens so I hope that I too can play a part in encouraging others to discover the gifts God has given them”
Paul Clark, a Reader at King Charles the Martyr, Tunbridge Wells.
Paul offers vocations advice based on his own faith journey (27 years in the Plymouth Brethren and a further 27 years as a Baptist lay preacher) and work experience (as a solicitor) for 35 years in the City and, since 2003, in Tunbridge Wells. Paul is married to Sue, has four children, two step-daughters (all now aged between 30 and 40) and seven grandchildren.
The Rev Pamela Ive, Distinctive Deacon at Tudeley and Five Oak Green.
Initially trained and working for 9 years as a teacher, Pamela’s call led to ordained ministry. After training at Wycliffe Hall she was ordained in 1990 in the Exeter Diocese where she worked in 2 parishes as well as being involved in vocations work. After moving to the Rochester Diocese in 1999 she has worked in Tudeley and Five Oak Green as a Distinctive Deacon with her husband Jeremy priest in charge. She is passionate about helping others to discover or develop their vocations as well as affirming people where they are already using their gifts in serving God whether in church or beyond. Her own vocation is a work in progress.
The Rev Clifford Stocking, Curate of St Mary, Hadlow
After 18 years working on the railways and encouraging and training new train drivers; I eventually acknowledged God’s call on my life to Christian ministry. Now I can use those previous life skills to help and guide others on their Christian journey.
Archdeaconry of Bromley and Bexley
The Rev Sarah Corry a third year curate serving her curacy at St Paulinus Crayford, as well as wife to Don and Mum to two grown up children.
Sarah said, “I have a deep desire to help people recognise and fulfil their calling by God, whatever that might be, in much the same way as I was helped to recognise and nurture mine”.
Rev Andrea Ward, Vicar of St James, Blendon
Andrea was ordained in 2003 and served her curacy in Handforth, Chester Diocese. She has been vicar of St James, Blendon since 2007. Andrea is married to Pete, and both of them love the Lake District.
Andrea says: “I’ve always believed passionately that God calls each of us to serve him with the unique personality and gifts that he has given us. I’m very thankful for those who supported and encouraged me in the long process of discerning God’s call to ordination, and it’s a privilege to be able to help others discern God’s particular calling in their life.”
The Rev Paul Prentice, Priest-in-Charge of St Andrew, Orpington.
Paul served his Curacy at Bromley Parish Church, and is currently Priest-in-Charge of St Andrews, Orpington. Paul said, “One of my big interest’s in my Ministry is helping people to see and develop their vocation. God calls us in many ways to follow many particular paths in life and it is a real privilege to be able to assist those who feel they have a particular calling. I am married with two Children and although my parish is very needy it is hugely rewarding. Seeing people answer a particular call in their life is a hugely rewarding experience as well!”
The Rev Alison Newman, Associate Rector of St Nicholas, Orpington.
"You don’t look at all like a vicar!’ is a comment I have sometimes received. In fact ordained ministry was the last kind of work I ever thought I would be engaged in, as a mother bringing up six children. God certainly has a sense of humour! I might sometimes wear a piece of white plastic around my neck but essentially I am, as I believe everyone is, on some sort of spiritual journey. In my work with the vocations department I spend time encouraging people to think how God might be calling them to serve Him. How they might discover and use their individual gifts. Ministry was never intended to be the work of just the clergy! Maybe, like me, you might find yourself pursuing a path you had never imagined."
Andrew Towner is Associate Vicar to Christ Church Beckenham.
He was formerly curate in charge of student work and music at Christ Church Mayfair. Andrew loves the Psalms, on which he completed his Masters dissertation. He is married to Katie, and they have two young boys: Jonathan and Joshua. Days off generally include walks in the countryside, with (hopefully) time to eat good meals and read good books.