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Theological Training for Ministry - Henry

Having received financial assistance from the Cheshunt Foundation, Henry Fay, from Goring Free Church, was able to complete a Certificate in Theological Studies at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford to aid his position as a Lay Preacher. 

Continuing the legacy invested by the Countess of Huntingdon, the Cheshunt Foundation makes grants available to enable ministers and lay people to train and then continue with their theological education.

Henry’s story

"For the past 10 years I have been involved in church leadership as an elder at Goring Free Church. During this time, I have started to explore preaching as one of my gifts and have continued to take on other teaching and pastoral responsibilities such as small group leadership. 

In 2015 ill health forced me to retire from my full-time job as a GP and I found myself with much more time on my hands.  I saw this is as an opportunity to serve my local church in new ways, and felt led to pursue some theological study to equip me better for this. 

My aims in doing the Certificate in Theological Studies were to fill in the gaps in my theological knowledge, to stimulate my mind and spirit through studying scripture, and to equip me better for the lay pastoral ministry in which I am already involved. 

I was very blessed to receive financial assistance from The Connexion through the Cheshunt Foundation towards the cost of the course fees, for which I am most grateful.  

The course involved attending lectures for one day a week during term time and writing six essays a year. I really appreciated meeting other students from a wide variety of church and professional backgrounds, and discussing what we were learning together. In fact I enjoyed the course so much that I stayed on for a further year so I could get to grips with a biblical language.

Looking back on my studies I feel that it was a very valuable opportunity to become familiar with the theological ‘landscape’ – learning more about the Bible, and also what has been said and thought about God and his word throughout the ages.  I’ve come away with a long mental list of books I’d still like to read, ideas that I’d like to explore further and more hunger to keep studying God’s word.”  

Henry Fay

The support we give to our UK churches is to enable them to flourish and continue The Countess of Huntingdon’s mission, which includes sponsored theological education for ministers and lay people. All donations, no matter how small, are gratefully received to help us to continue this important work among our churches and fulfil the legacy we have inherited from the Countess of Huntingdon.