New graduates to lead Great Yarmouth church
2009: The Salvation Army in Great Yarmouth will soon be under new leadership with the appointment of a newly ordained couple who speak of God's calling to ministry at a young age.
Lieutenants Georgina & Rob Symons succeed Captain Nigel Byrne, who has been the local leader since 2004. This will be the Symons’ first appointment since graduating from The Salvation Army’s theological college this summer. They were recently ordained and commissioned as ministers of religion, officers in The Salvation Army.
The thirty-somethings testify to sensing a calling from God that was deep enough to wrestle them from comfortable lives into full time Christian ministry. Lieut. Rob, 33, says: “I was very happy at work as a training consultant in a bank... home, family and being part of The Salvation Army church in Oldham where I grew up. Gradually, after our 4-year-old daughter Naomi was born, something began to stir inside me. I felt there was more for me to do. I knew I had to serve the community and my sense of uneasiness didn’t settle until I applied for full time ministry.”
Burnley-born Lieut. Georgina, 30, sensed her destiny before her career as a district nurse even got started: “I had a deep inner feeling that I should be a minister while I was doing my A-Levels. My feeling was that I was far too young to take it seriously and forgot about it until about three years ago. I had run out of excuses! Rob and I decided that the time had come!”
The couple speak highly of Great Yarmouth having spent Easter in the area and getting to know their predecessor, Captain Nigel Byrne. “Nigel has started some great work here and we are really excited to be coming to Great Yarmouth. The Salvation Army is well respected here and we are looking forward to building on the links that have been made with all sections of the community.”
With a particular love for working with children and families, Lieut. Georgina expresses similar feelings: “Great Yarmouth will be our home so it will be wonderful to become an active part of the community, working within it in whatever form that may take.”
Captain Nigel Byrne expresses his thanks to the people of Great Yarmouth and beyond for their support and kindness during his time in charge and wishes the Symons a fantastic ministry and great success in Great Yarmouth. Captain Byrne who has gone on to lead the Cwmbran Salvation Army church in South Wales.
The couple will be officially inducted into the church in a special service on Sunday 9th August 2009 on Tolhouse Street, NR30 2SQ from 6pm. All are welcome. For more information call 01493 858 069 or 844 229.
Pictured above: Lieutenants Rob and Georgina Symons with their daughter Naomi and Captain Nigel Byrne.