First female reverend for Winscombe and Wrington
REVERAND Mary Burgess is due to be inducted at the two chapels on Sunday
PARISHIONERS of two chapels in Wrington and Winscombe will soon have their first female reverend.
Reverand Mary Burgess will become the leader of The Lynch Chapel, in Winscombe, and Wrington Chapel from Sunday, when she will have her induction service.
The 55-year-old has moved to Wrington from Solihull, near Birmingham where she has been a reverend for nine years.
This was her first post as a reverend and previously she spent five years in Zambia, where her husband John, aged 55, was a minister.
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Whilst in Zambia, Mary worked with schools and women's support groups as a volunteer, whilst also looking after their two sons who were young at the time.
Barnabus, now aged 26, is a network manager for a school in Sutton Coldfield, and Nethanael, now aged 24, wants to become an author.
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Mary decided to become a reverend as a result of being a devoted Christian throughout her life.
She said: "It was made clear to me by God that he wanted me to become a reverend and help in his work.
"I rebelled against it for a while but eventually I did what I thought was right."
Mary trained for four years at Queens College before her first job in Solihull.
She said: "It is such a privilege to be a reverend and I think it is something that you should share with others so you can do God's work well."
Mary and her husband moved to Wrington in August so she has already had a chance to meet people in the village before her induction service, which will be held at the Lynch Chapel.
She said: "Everyone has been so welcoming and I feel so at home. I am very excited to be here and am looking forward to working with everyone.
"When I walk the dog in the morning I feel like I am going to wake up from a dream, I feel like I need to pinch myself."
Those attending Mary's induction service will include about 80 of her friends from Solihull and 15 of her family members, including her brother Arthur who will be travelling from Geneva in Switzerland.