Hazel switches from school staffroom to a life in church

THE Church of Ireland diocese of Cork, Cloyne and Ross has acquired its third woman deacon following the ordination of a former English teacher.

Hazel Minion (56), was ordained by the Bishop Paul Colton at a special ceremony at St Fin Barre's Cathedral on Monday night and will take up a posting in the parish of Templebreedy, an area which covers Crosshaven and Nohoval.

Ms Minion, a single woman who was born in Wicklow, taught at Aston School, on the Blackrock Road, in Cork City from 1979 1996.

"In 1996 I became lay chaplain at the school which has 520 pupils. It's a job I will continue to do because I just love the children," she said.

Her late ordination, she explains, was due to her true vocation creeping up on her over quite a long period of time.

"It gradually grew on me. I felt this was a way in which I could serve the diocese and the community and bring something in the way of God's joy to others in my own humble way," Deacon Minion said.

She will be one of three women deacons in the diocese, but only until June 24 when the other two become priested.

"I'll be on my own then but after a year I'll be priested (made a Reverend) as well," she said.

Deacon Minion will join Rev Daniel Nuzum in serving the Templebreedy parish which she describes as having a "moderately large" Church of Ireland community.

"I'm looking forward to the challenge and I'm very grateful to all the people who helped me along the way," Deacon Minion said.

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