A drama lecturer, policeman, school teacher and even a chimney sweep are among 18 new clergy ordained by the Church of England in Lancashire.
Eight priests and 10 deacons were welcomed into the church and will serve parishes around the county including Preston, Leyland, Chorley, Garstang and Whittle-le-Woods.
Half of the 18 ordinands are under the age of 40. Ten are women and eight men.
Ordination services were held at Blackburn Cathedral and at three other churches in Preston, Whittle-le-Woods and Fleetwood.
The Bishop of Blackburn, Rt Rev Julian Henderson, who ordained five of the priests at the Cathedral, said: “Each year in our diocese we see a fresh group of men and women of all ages responding to God’s call to become a priest or a deacon in his church. Not only is it an exciting time for all of them, but it is also exciting for the parishes scattered across Lancashire.”
The Bishop of Lancaster, Rt Rev Dr Jill Duff, added: “I pray that each of the men and women taking this important step will be a beacon of hope shining brightly for people across Lancashire to see.”
The ordinands included Maureen Baldwin of Chorley St Laurence, Michael Hutchinson of Fulwood St Cuthbert, Elizabeth McLean of Fulwood Christ Church, Susan Salt of Garstang Fellside Ministry, Paul Davies of St John the Evangelist in Whittle-le-Woods, Peter Harvey of Leyland’s Wellfield Pioneer Church and Jonathon Wei Sing Lee of St Andrew’s Church in Ashton-on-Ribble.