“It amazes me to this day that God has called me to do this work and that I am able to do it with confidence.”

Primary Media
Doreen Hewitson, Designated Lay Minister
  • Where: Tilbury, ON
  • Current Ministry: Congregational
  • Years in Ministry: 3 full-time, 1 part-time, 3 student placements

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

In 2005 I had the opportunity to attend Worship Matters in Halifax with the Director of Music, Sharon Stepniak. One of the workshops that I attended was about taking scripture and making it a “reader’s theatre” using scripts. I was hooked. I went back to my home church and started doing this with the children during sharing time. This was my first call.

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

I enjoy the openness and inclusiveness of The United Church of Canada. I have been a member of the United Church all of my life, although I have experienced worship in other denominations. It wasn’t until I had children that I was active in the church and I enjoyed all of the aspects of the United Church that I was involved in.

What has been the greatest part of entering ministry? 

I would have to say the daily work of ministry. It is never the same from day to day and I can honestly say it is never, never boring! As with any position there are aspects that I don’t particularly enjoy, but they are very few. I get great satisfaction in being with the members of my congregation.

What has been your biggest challenge in ministry?

My biggest challenge in ministry would have to be believing in myself and my call. I began the educational component at the age of 50 and did not have much experience with public speaking. It amazes me to this day that God has called me to do this work and that I am able to do it with confidence.

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

Go into the discernment process. This process is a wonderful opportunity for discovery of your personal faith, your self, and your faith journey. Take any lay leadership courses available to you as they help you to understand how worship and prayer are shaped and interact together, give you an understanding of where the church came from, and help you to grow in your faith.

Any other comments about your ministry and vocation?

I love what I do most of the time! Working with people, being able to socialize as part of my job without anyone telling me I socialize too much (even though I am an introvert by nature)—and I enjoyed the DLM learning circle residential learning program when it was at Calling Lakes. There are no greater joys in life than walking with people on their faith journey, whatever path that may be.