A CHURCH worker has become a licensed lay minster after being admitted during a service in Worcester Cathedral.

Christine Hickman-Smith, of St Cassian’s Church, Chaddesley Corbett, was one of eight people from across the Worcester diocese who were admitted as lay ministers on Saturday.

To be admitted into the role, Mrs Hickman-Smith had to undergo two years of training.

Mrs Hickman-Smith said: “I found the training course beneficial, challenging, inspiring and rewarding, offering me a greater insight into the meaning and value of lay ministry. I have been stretched and I have learnt a great deal.”

Lay ministers in the Church of England are authorised to carry out preaching and teaching, including helping others to reflect on their faith and how it relates to their daily lives.

The service to celebrate the admission and licensing of new readers was led by Dr John Inge, Bishop of Worcester.

Dr Inge said: “Licensed lay ministers – or readers – bring an enormous amount to the life of churches and the communities they serve.

“People bring their own unique gifts and skills to ministry in their parishes, working with the ordained clergy to share their faith with others and offer care.

“I offer congratulations to all those who were admitted.”