"I have absolutely loved being part of the MES scheme this year. The ministry team at Mancroft is one of the most loving and supportive environments that I have been fortunate enough to be involved in. They have really helped me to grow in confidence and have definitely made me consider my vocation.

There have been many healthy challenges over my time here so far. One of the most prominent examples is my experience leading services and study groups. This has been challenging as it has pushed me out of my comfort zone and enabled me to gain more experience talking to groups of adults. 

A further example is the Sheppard Scholars’ theology days at St Martin in the Field’s. Having never done any theological study before, I have found it very challenging when reading the designated books, as I started to think more deeply about my own faith and how to apply the knowledge that I have gained in everyday situations. Although a challenge, it has become one of the highlights of my time here.

Another of the many highlights so far has been Noah’s Ark – the weekly parent and toddler group. I love the sense of community, as well as playing with the children and chatting with the adults and building the bond between the group and the church. It has been a pleasure to see some new faces at our children’s events, particularly the Crib Service on Christmas Eve, which we ran for the first-time last year.

This year, I planned an Easter Holiday Club, which is also something that hasn’t been done in my Church before. I am highly passionate about children’s and youth work in churches and absolutely loved working on this. I greatly enjoyed planning all the activities – it taught me a great deal about organisation, and I was very much looking forward to seeing it come to fruition. However, due to the Covid-19 situation, this wasn’t to be. Instead, the holiday club went online, I created craft and song videos for children featuring our mascot Clueless, the crocheted donkey. This was a very different ministry to the one I thought that I would be delivering, which I found quite difficult to accept to start with, but eventually had a lot of fun trying out something new.

One of the most important things that I have learned from this is how to cope when things don’t go the way I wanted them to, regardless of the amount of planning and preparation I do as I never know what will happen in the future. Another thing I have learned this year is how to approach pastoral encounters with individuals. Pastoral meetings are very new to me, and as such have found it very interesting to observe others and learn different techniques to manage a wide variety of situations."