Helena del Pino

image of Helena del Pino

How do we discover and have the courage to live the ever evolving life we are called to? My journey has led me into all sorts of unexpected places and situations. Some full of joy and some full of sorrow and some just downright bewildering or frustrating. However, the right person has always appeared at the right time to help me envision the future and find the right pathways to be able to flourish.

I am now vicar of Bretton in Peterborough, a parish with economic, educational and health challenges. It is a rather different environment to my pre-ordination role of school chaplain at the Cathedral school in Peterborough. I serve on a self-supporting basis, running my own yoga therapy and mentoring business alongside ministry. I am a poet and an artist and the arts are now part of our parish's missional service.

My former career as a lawyer was cut short by a diagnosis of MS about 25 years ago. It shouldn't have been so but discrimination and paternalism pushed me out of my job. Although the church has enabled me to flourish, I am very aware that all sorts of institutional barriers do remain in place. As well as personal experience of disability, I had an interrupted curacy when my teenage daughter developed a life-threatening illness and I became a full-time carer overnight.

All in all, I know what it is to have to hold together ministry, disability, other work and caring responsibilities while also continuing to listen to God's call on my life. It is a testament to the support I have received that I am now able to offer to hold space for others wondering how to move forward.

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