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Helen takes the next step

Thursday, 12th February, 2015

Next week holds a special occasion for lay minister Helen Ferguson. Next week holds a special occasion for lay minister Helen Ferguson.

By Erica Visser

Social worker Helen Ferguson had been deeply involved with the Anglican Church for 20 years when she decided to take the next step.

On Friday, February 20 at 7.30pm, the mother of two and grandmother of three will be ordained as a deacon at the St Peter’s Church in Lane Street.

Mrs Ferguson will remain as a deacon until July when she will be ordained as a priest.

She grew up in Broken Hill as the eldest of six siblings and said her Christian faith was instilled at a young age.

“I’ve been involved in the church all my life. I was baptised, confirmed and married. I’ve always found it a source of strength,” Mrs Ferguson explained.

“I’ve become more mature in my faith in recent times. I’ve done a lot of theological study and, combined with my social work skills, I can offer faith and strength to those around me.

“The people I see through my work are people who are in strife. While the church doesn’t come into my everyday work, I hope I can give them a sense of encouragement.”

Mrs Ferguson said that it was the church’s difficult task to stay relevant but there was still very much a need for religious faith in a modern society.

“All of the churches in Broken Hill work together...They’ve got to make it relevant for today. I see a lot of people who turn to drugs and other illicit things as a way of coping.

“...I understand how young people can fall away from the church with all of the other distractions going on. 

“When I was 18, I lost touch for a while and it wasn’t until I had my own kids that I returned. I knew they needed that stability.”

Mrs Ferguson’s siblings, who are now spread out all over the country, will come from as far as Darwin and Sydney for next week’s ceremony which is open to the public.

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