• Where: Victoria, British Columbia
  • Current ministry: Canadian Armed Forces Chaplain
  • Years in ministry: 9

How and when did you know you were called to ministry?

I grew up in the church and was very involved in the life of the local United Church congregation wherever we were living as a family. When I was in high school and I was considering what I would do with my life, I had some mentors who suggested to me that they thought I had the skills and abilities to be an ordained minister. I listened to what they had to say, prayed about it, and eventually began the discernment process when I was in university.

Why did you pursue ministry in The United Church of Canada?

The United Church of Canada was not so much a choice as a birthright; it was the church of both my parents and my extended family. Diversity of faith within a family wasn’t something I knew about until I was older and had friends whose parents were of different faith traditions. Discerning a call to ordained ministry for me was synonymous with discerning a call to ministry in the United Church of Canada.

What has been the greatest part of entering ministry?

Living and working alongside other people in community has always been the greatest experience of entering ministry. I have found that there is a profound loneliness for many people; yet within the church there is a true community—not without its challenges, but a true community of people who share their lives.

What has been your biggest challenge in ministry?

Sometimes there are needs which are so profound that they cannot be met even within the most supportive church community. This has been challenging and humbling.

If someone said they wanted to be a minister, what would you tell them?

I would ask that person how they are currently engaged in ministry in the context in which they find themselves. Ministry is a response to the gratitude one feels to God; by recognizing need and responding to it we are each fulfilling our calling as members of the body of Christ. If an individual is interested in ordered ministry as an expression of that calling, I would celebrate that discernment.

Any other comments about your ministry and vocation?

As a Canadian Armed Forces Chaplain, I am honoured to minister in an exciting and dynamic environment. I have served alongside some of the finest Canadians I have ever known as they have carried out their duties as soldiers, sailors, and air personnel at home and on operations around the world. I have had the privilege of being with them in Afghanistan as well at sea in the Pacific. United Church chaplains play an important role in the spiritual and religious care offered to women and men in uniform and their families, and it is something of which we can all be proud.