Monday, 07 June 2021 15:32

Meet our ordinands: Ellie Launders-Brown

It was during my time in the choir that I first felt God’s calling on my life

Ellie Launders-Brown: to be ordained deacon in 2021

I am Ellie Launders-Brown, I am training for ordination at St Mellitus College South West Centre based in Plymouth and currently living and ministering in the diocese of Bath & Wells.

Before training I was an aircraft engineer, spending 14 years in the Royal Navy and a further 12 years as a civilian contractor.

I will be serving my curacy in the East Scarsdale benefice consisting of the parishes of Shirebrook, Pleasley, Upper Langwith and Whaley Thorns.

I grew up in a village called Whitburn, on the North East Coast just to the north of Sunderland.

I was baptised in the Methodist church, but I desperately wanted to sing.

After being told by my junior school music teacher I had the most untrainable voice he’d ever heard, I went to join the local parish church choir.

It was during my time in the choir that I first felt God’s calling on my life, but at that point, women couldn’t be ordained into the priesthood, and I had neither the maturity or the experience to know how to respond to that calling.

I have been with my partner Jo for 25 years and in a civil partnership 15 years. She was born in Derbyshire and is delighted to be returning home. We have two labradors Toby and Gypsy.

Reconciling faith and sexuality was a difficult time and being banished from the church simply because of who I am hurt me and cut deeply.

I felt disguarded and abandonded, but God never gave up on me and still kept calling me into ordained ministry.

When I finally answered this calling with a “yes”, I suddenly felt free, protected, needed and loved and I knew where my life was going and that God had a plan for my life.

Inclusion is important to me and it’s what drives me forward in my ministry.

I firmly believe that we are all “fearfully and wonderfully made” (psalm 139:14), and I look to seek out and welcome all who have been or feel excluded from hearing God’s message and make the church an inclusive and safe place for everyone.

I have a passion for choral music, nature and God’s creation and following the highs and mainly lows of Sunderland Football Club.

 

Favourite Bible passage: Isaiah 43:1 “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.”

Favourite hymn: And can it be – Charles Wesley, when I answered God’s call, the release and clarity that I felt resonated with the words of the chorus:-

My chains fell off,

my heart was free,

I rose, went forth and followed thee.

Last modified on Monday, 07 June 2021 16:38

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