My story: Steven Fletcher

Steven is currently an assistant curate at St Day Parish Church as well as sometimes helping out with other services across the Eight Saints Cluster.

But his relationship with the church started when Steven was just five years old. “I first went to church with my school and I had an overwhelming experience. That feeling has stayed with me all my life and it has grown and grown along with the knowledge that I’d always be a priest. All I wanted to do as a child was to go and visit churches. I wanted to be in these places and sense God.”

Despite this Steven, who is originally from Penryn, didn’t make the church his career after school but rather journalism. “I’m a typical Cornishman, a storyteller and I always enjoyed writing essays and stories when I was at school. I ended up doing a week’s work experience at the West Briton and they offered me a job there and then so I left my A-Level course, joined the newspaper and did my journalism training while studying for my A-Levels in my spare time.”

After completing his training, Steven and his best friend went travelling in Europe for a year. “I ended up working as a shepherd in the mountains of Italy but the sheep didn’t like me and I kept getting head butted! I’m hoping I will be a better shepherd now!”

It was while he was abroad that Steven realised his belief in God was not unusual. “It wasn’t until I went abroad that I discovered most people believe in God. In England it felt like I was the only one. I suddenly realised ‘I’m not as weird as I thought’ and that was comforting.”

Having returned to the UK and become chief reporter at the Falmouth Packet, Steven was then put forward by his church St Michaels and All Angels (Penwerris) in Falmouth as a potential ordinand.

Steven said: “I was recommended to go on the Aston training scheme which was for people who are perceived to have a vocation but needed more life or educational experience. They wanted me to leave Cornwall and work in a city so I left the Packet and went to Liverpool for two years and worked in a church on a big council estate. I loved Liverpool even though I got mugged and lost my front two teeth!”

After gaining a sociology qualification, Steven then went on and did the three year certificate in theology at Cuddiston in Oxford. He was then ordained at Truro Cathedral in 1992 and began his life in the church as an assistant curate in Newquay. It was here that his plans took an unexpected twist.

“After nine incredibly difficult months I left the church and went back into journalism. I had a home in St Just in Penwith and got a job with the Cornishman newspaper which lasted over 20 years.”

Even during this time spent in secular life, Steven still continued to promote religion in all its forms. And Steven says being a journalist is actually not that dissimilar to being a vicar. “As a journalist or a vicar you are involved in the life of the community, people come to you with their problems, you try to provide assistance and you stand up for what is right.”

Five years ago Steven’s life took another turn when three members of his immediate family became gravely ill and he left his job, sold his home and moved to St Day to take on the role of full time carer.

Steven joined his local church and got involved in its activities. “The church community were so welcoming to me and allowed me to be a member of the congregation until I was ready to start volunteering. It was through the congregation at St Day Parish Church asking me to help them that I felt called back to Ministry. Although I am a full time carer first and that is my primary responsibility, I have been taking part in the life of the church whenever possible and getting to know the churches in the cluster.”

Steven says he feels like the prodigal son returning. “It’s all down to the people of St Day. They called me out of their congregation to be here again. Plus they all know me from around the village and pub! I don’t wear my dog collar all the time and everyone knows me as Steve. It’s still a proper Cornish community and I have family roots going back a long way here.”

Steven says he is a Cornishman and all his life he has had a vocation to Christianity and the Cornish but he is also keen to work with other faiths and points out that the Eight Saints Cluster has the only mosque in Cornwall. “I had a home in Tunis for many years and I have very close friends in the community there. I’ve worshipped in many mosques and I’m hoping to get involved in Dor Kemmyn, the new multi faith building in Truro.”


Ensuring that children and young people as well as adults are kept safe whilst in our care in an integral part of our diocese life.