Ten years ago today, I was made a deacon. That was the day I moved into ordained ministry, started wearing a dog-collar, (and a suit!) and began work at St Ninian’s Cathedral in Perth, where I served my curacy.

To be honest, I don’t remember that much about the service now. Fr Kevin Pearson preached. I cannot remember what he preached about, but I know that he did use the vintage Fr K method, which is to declare a text at the beginning of the sermon, say it again, say it again with feeling, say it again and add a bit, and then preach on the bit he has added. Highly effective.

I do remember the hurly and burly as I entered the church that night, feeling very self-conscious in my dog-attire. What amazed me was the number of people who immediately assumed that I knew the answers to questions, especially in relation to keys to different parts of the building.

Before being ordained, I remember my training rector saying to me that I was about to go through one of the most stressful life events that there was. He was right, and nothing really prepares you for what it feels like to be treated as an ordained person by people who know what they think an ordained person should do and say.

However, I very much enjoyed my first year of ordained ministry, when I was a deacon, but still not yet a priest. Being a deacon is a wonderful ministry and very much a part of who I am now.


  1. Happy independence day.

    What I remember is Kevin summing you up perfectly, your glittering performance, Br Damian looking after you, and the mask falling completely (just for a moment) as exhaustion hit in the kitchen afterwards.

    oh yes, and Bailly Pies.

  2. Jimmy McPhee says

    When I was 19 in 1972 I lived with my family in Perth
    I began to read a gideons new testament and pray I prayed that the Lord would reveal his will to me. One evening while walking to a dance at the salutation hotel with my brother we met two girls handing out leaflets on the street for youth outreach meetings at the church of the nazarene in perth,.
    I took this as an answer to my prayer and I began attending the church, at the time it was in milne st .
    AT the same time my uncle Jimmy who I was named after asked me to be a godfather to his son Shane, the christening was at st ninians cathedral. After the christening I was talking to the minister and he invited me to the service on sunday I didn’t like to say no so I went to the sunday morning service.
    You will know that most of the pews in st ninians face steps that lead up to the communion table.
    There was a part in the service where everyone knelt and I followed suit and did the same and while I was kneeling the Lord appeared to me above the steps that lead to the communion table as I was looking at him I saw a movement at the right hand aisle and looking over I saw what I can only describe as a soul or a spirit of a man walking along the aisle he walked up to the Lord knelt down before him and worshipped with his hands on the floor and his head on his knees.
    after a few minutes they disappeared.
    So for this reason I’ve always felt an affinity with the episcopal church.

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