Personal experience and a desire to give something back has lead Honor Budden from St Agnes on a mission to bring pastoral work to life in the Eight Saints Cluster.

Honor became the first in St Day parish to undertake the Local Pastoral Ministry (LPM) training course in October and now plans to ‘hit the floor running’!

“I’m the first and only LPM in the parish at the moment but I hope that will change. I want to be able to serve parish members, the sick and the infirm but also get involved in things like baptism follow-up. It will be hitting the ground running really but I felt I just had to do something.”

Honor is no stranger to parish work. Her husband Clive was a parish priest in Somerset, Devon and Cornwall and Honor was right there beside him quietly involved in parish life and the diocesan speaker for the Mother’s Union in Bath and Wells.

A need to do something

When Clive died four years ago, Honor wasn’t sure what path to take but she did know she needed to do something. “I said to my priest that I didn’t want to be a bum on a seat. Because I was over 75 I knew I couldn’t be ordained or become a Reader and I knew that if I was going to do something, I was going to do it properly and that’s when Revd Canon Simon Bone and I talked about Local Pastoral Ministry and the course came up.”

Honor joined Revd Canon Anne Brown’s course in Perranporth. “I was a bit scared to do it at my age but I know there is still work to be done. The course was very interesting and it did make me stop and think. I know from experience how important pastoral work is.”

“Pastoral support is so important”

Honor says packing up their life and six-year-old son Thomas to travel to Chichester with Clive when he began his theology training was a wrench. “When your partner is a clergy person they need your support. You are there in the background and it is a big sacrifice. I thought when Clive died the diocese would be there for me but there is no spousal support and that’s what made me realise that pastoral support is so important.”

Honor says her LPM work is carrying on what she and Clive decided to do all those years ago. “I’m from a Christian family and it is just part of life. I want to show the love of Christ to the person in the seat. It really is putting your hands out there.”

While Honor may be the parish’s first Local Pastoral Minister, she is not on her own. “My priest has been wonderful, the PCC are very supportive and the churchwarden’s very enthusiastic!”

Honor says she is looking forward to the Service of Celebration of Lay Ministry, which will be held in Truro Cathedral in February. “My family are from Truro. My grandfather was involved in the construction of the cathedral, my son and I were baptised there and I was a bell ringer there for some years. That combined with the service being at Candlemas, a significant time for Clive and I, will make it very meaningful to me.”

The Celebration of Lay Ministry will take place at 2.30pm on February 2 in Truro Cathedral. All are welcome to come and support the Local Worship Leaders and Local Pastoral Ministers.