Phe always knew God “wanted something else” for her

Revd. Sister Phaedra Pamphilon
Revd. Sister Phaedra Pamphilon

After becoming ordained as a Deacon in 2014 Revd. Sister Phaedra Pamphilon has now been in her role as a Curate for just over 18 months.

Phaedra, 52, was first ordained in Deacon July 2014 at Lincoln Cathedral to All Saints, Gainsborough and then ordained a Priest in June 2015.

Phaedra said: “This is a first post and very much a learning role, regardless of how much experience i may have had in the past in other careers.

“We all start our ministry in Ordained ministry as Curates.

“Being Ordained is not like any other role. To begin with it is very much about ‘who’ I am, not ‘what’ I am.

“So its not about applying for a job as such as, but more about believing that this is who God believes you ‘to be’.

“Then you have to go through a process to discover if other people think God has ‘called’ you to be ordained as well.

“Then your Bishop sends you on a three day conference so that his/her advisor’s can decide whether you are ‘called’ by God.

“Once they say ‘yes’ then they send you on a three year course where the process of discernment continues.

“When your course has finished you meet with your Bishop again, who has lots of information on you from your lecturers and your own vicar, to decide if every one still believes this is what God wants of you.

“So you see the process is a long process and for me it took five years in all before I was ordained Deacon.”

Phaedra says the rewards and challenges are many and varied. She says she thinks the biggest reward is that each day she believes that this is who she is and where she is meant to be.

Phaedra said: “That is encouraging and fulfilling and serves to strengthen me when the challenges come. I love everything I do, especially working within the community.

“It is a huge privilege to be at the most important moments of people’s lives, when they want their child Baptised, when they want to get married and also when they want to say ‘farewell’ to a loved one.

“I also love working in the schools and being spotted when Im out and about and children calling out, ‘Hello Rev. Phe!’”

Phaedra worked in Medical Physics for 20 years, specialising in Cardiology. She was then a Hospital Chaplain for a couple of years before she was asked to run two projects empowering families for a local authority.

She said: “I think I always knew God wanted something else for me but friends from my school days have all said me being a priest was not a shock to them.”

Phaedra has been married to her husband, Antony, for 25 years and theyhave three children.

In her spare time she enjoys cycling, walking, seeing friends, watching her husband play the drums in a local band ‘Blind Man Running’, seeing her youngest son play guitar, dancing and driving her red MX5.

Phaedra said: “My ambitions are to keep growing as a person in the love of God and to be able to share Christ’s love in Gainsborough.

“I believe that each and every person is a loved child of God, it’s a shame that so many people feel worthless and sad, and yet God wants to love them for who they are.”

“One of my biggest achievements is having people say ‘thank you’ for what I’ve done for them and say that the service I’ve taken for them has really meant something is very important.

“I hope that whatever I do, I am able to bring God’s love for each person into that situation. But I guess, my biggest achievement while being in Gainsborough, was to be asked to go and study in Jerusalem for two months last year.

“I was the only one from England to be asked and it was such an honour to really learn and understand what is going on in Israel and Palestine.”