“What are you doing for work at the moment?”
“Are you working yet?”
“Are you still at uni?”
“Why did you study that degree?”
“You should do a masters”
5 questions that I guarantee someone will ask you after you’ve graduated. If you haven’t had post graduation blues yet, or experienced a sense of helplessness after university…are you even human!?
I promise you, this soon shall pass. And you will find your niche and work a job you love. Work hard, persevere, research and get out of your comfort zone!
Nine times out of ten you may not be fortunate enough to walk straight into your dream job.
– Motivational Speech Over –
The funny thing is, only this morning did I remember that I actually told myself
“I’m going to get a new job in September.”
So when I was blessed with a new job, it wasn’t until I settled in that I realised, “Wow, I spoke about this months ago”
Speak it into existence!
Without further ado, introducing Siobhan (Shiv) Cunningham the new Children’s Ministry Director at City Gates Church.
In short, I’m the manager of the Sunday School at my local church. I have the opportunity to plan session/curriculum, fun events and trips for the children, help direct a Christmas production and many other exciting things within the church.
I HAVE MY OWN OFFICE!
I am blessed.
A little background info didn’t hurt nobody…
I’ve been involved in the Children’s Ministry since I was 15, so that’s what…10 years of experience 🤓
I started off as a Sunday school teacher, involved in planning arts and crafts activities for the kids.
This is something I loved doing but wasn’t entirely passionate about it until I began to lead classes, direct the notorious dance videos and get more involved with the children.
Lo and behold, 10 years down the line working with children has become a huge priority in my life.
In the beginning of the year, I took some time off to really rest/pray/plan and I actually decided to step away from the children’s ministry…
I believe that was an extremely pivotal moment. There was a shift going on that I had no clue about.
I remember stepping back into the ministry after being off for weeks and feeling like:
“I should be here…no I shouldn’t….should I!?”
I spent time praying, fasting and really trying to hear what Gods plan was I received the following words that I wrote down:
I felt as if my time at Sunday school was over. When in fact my role had changed significantly. When I wasn’t there I felt burdened and that I should be there. However, I knew that I had to step away to an extent so that others could essentially step up.”
And step up is what they did.
I remember coming back and I left the room because I felt as though me being in the class was a somewhat distraction to the developing leaders.
So instead I became a shadow and tidied/cleaned and observed from a distance.
Don’t get me wrong, people who tidy and maintain a class room are equally as important. But for me, someone who has a heavily upfront persona…to be in the background was humbling.
All that happened in the beginning of the year… it wasn’t until July/August that I was offered the job. The funny thing is, I kind of knew it was coming and I remember saying to myself
“If they asked me this last year, I definitely would of said no.”
City Gates Church has played a huge role in developing me as a leader and a worker in the secular industry.
I have been volunteering here since I was 15 and I’ve had many pastors, leaders and mentors who have invested time, said prayers and supported me through the many highs and lows of life.
At this church I learnt how to lead large groups of people, work with children/youth, plan huge events and speak to crowds of up to 400 people and so many more things!
I won’t lie, after receiving the offer, I did have my concerns. It is really important to my family and I that I don’t stray away from my degree/career path/vision… and that I won’t.
Whilst I work at church I’m still studying and developing in my field of Sports Therapy.
Everything is lining up just the way God intended it to be. This season of me being more involved in the church is definitely part of the greater plan (but that’s between me and God).
It has been a week since I started and everyone has been so supportive already.
It’s my duty of care to look after all volunteers and ensure the safety and well being of the children. And this is something I thrive in doing!
When I’m there it doesn’t feel like work because I’m working with friends (shout out Shae and Joseph)
…plus I’m literally always there.
It is definitely and honour to be called a staff member and be rewarded for all the hard work and efforts I’ve put in to grow God’s Kingdom in the heart of Ilford!
Yes, i will be involved in Girl Talk, City Gates Youth and the Choir… all the things that make me happy.
But now it’s time to grow into this new role, get creative and bring some new exciting things to the church!
Watch this space!
– Tracy took a tour of my new office –