After eleven years as Vicar of Church of the Saviour (affectionately known as CoTS), Reverend Sarah Patten and her family are soon to leave our shores for the UK.
Originally arriving in Blockhouse Bay in 2008 with just her mum to help her settle in as she took up the post at COTS, Sarah now returns to her native England with a husband and family. Sarah and Murray met at a Christian singles ball to which she had taken some of the young people from the church.
Recalling highlights of her time at CoTS - the children’s holiday programmes, Christmas at the Beach events, and the many church socials she and her team organised, common themes emerged: team effort and people having fun. Alpha courses are also a highlight cherished by Sarah which offered opportunity to explain the Christian faith and the love of God which is close to her heart.
Her new role as Principal for Wellbeing & Ministry Development in the diocese of Nottingham will be quite different from her role as Vicar, drawing on skills from her early career as an HR training consultant in a High Street bank in London. “It feels like I’ve come full circle”, she says.
Excitement at this next phase of life is tempered by sadness. “After eleven years here, Blockhouse Bay has become ‘home’ for me”, says Sarah. “It’s the longest I’ve ever stayed in one place and I’ve grown roots here. It’s where I got married and started a family, and I’m sad to be leaving my Kiwi church family.
“But there’s lots to look forward to - getting my weekends back, being involved in church as a parishioner, reconnecting with old friends and family, and attending my brother’s wedding in November.”
Sarah’s last Sunday at Church of the Saviour is 18th August.