Wednesday 9 January 2018: Miss Claire Henderson on her Journey of Faith
On their first meeting of the New Year members received an uplifting and inspirational talk from Miss Claire Henderson. Now in her first year at theological college in Dublin training to become an ordained minister in the Church of Ireland she shared her hopes for the future as she moves on from a difficult and challenging past. Claire’s difficulties began when she was student at the University of Ulster in Coleraine. In the run-up to her final examinations she had dismissed a pain in her groin as a sports injury until discomfort necessitated seeing a doctor. A diagnosis of Cancer – Hodgkin’s Lymphoma – and admission to Altnagelvin for Chemotherapy made her feel that her world had fallen apart. An adverse reaction to the treatment took her to death’s door and a struggle to find God’s purpose in what she was going through. But throughout her faith never waivered and she turned increasingly to her church for direction. Between bouts of hospitalisation she continued to teach Sunday School classes in St Columba’s and take certificated courses in Church Youth Work. Encouraged by her minister she became first a Parish Reader and then in 2014 a Diocesan Reader, conducting Sunday Services throughout the Anglican Dioceses of Derry and Raphoe. In 2018 finally restored to good health and fitness she responded to God’s call to candidate for the ordained ministry. In a vote of thanks to Claire Probus Vice-President Micheal Cooney remarked on the spring in her words and the uplift all had received from her testimony.