Married couple Mark and Emily Hudghton are both being ordained as Deacons at the same ceremony, Emily will be based at Stockton Parish Church and Mark at Shildon, St John.
Emily, 27, studied English and Related Literature at The University of York before completing a Postgraduate Certificate of Education at the University of Sheffield. She was also the Youth Work Advisor for a church in York for a year in between.
Mark, 28, is the son of a vicar. Between 2007 and 2011 he studied for an Integrated Masters (MEng) in Computer Systems and Software Engineering at the University of York and became Chief Technical Officer (CTO) for a technology start-up company.
Emily said: “I met Mark in the first term of university, and we are celebrating our fifth wedding anniversary this summer.
“We both began to feel called to ordination in our teenage years, a sense which developed as we went through university together. We entered the formal discernment process at the same time, shortly before we got married.”
Mark said: “I first felt God calling me to ordained ministry when I was 17 – this sense of ‘calling’ came in the form of a thought that I should be a vicar that wouldn’t leave me alone and a sense of peace and excitement when I prayed about it. At the same time, despite not having said anything to anyone about it, quite a few people out of the blue started telling me that they thought I’d make a good vicar, that they felt God was telling them that’s what God wanted me to do.”
Emily and Mark will be ordained as Deacons by the Bishop of Durham on Sunday 2nd July 2017 at 10am in Durham Cathedral.