Helen Weaver


So the adventure begins

My name is Helen Weaver and I was born in Scotland in 1957. Now you know my age you are thinking how young I look, aren’t you?!!

I lived the majority of my single life in a town called Kirkintilloch. I know it’s a mouthful and hard to spell, so we call it ‘Kirkie’ for short.

I am the eldest of three children and my family still live in Scotland. I currently live in Leicestershire, England but how did I get to the town of Loughborough from Scotland – well herein lies an adventure. Sit back, make yourself a cup of tea and read on.

I was brought up on a council estate in Kirkie. Mum and Dad always worked hard and we all picked up that work ethic from them. I had a very happy, normal, fun childhood with parents who obviously loved me and my brother and sister.

Mum and Dad were committed Christians so my brother and sister and I toddled off to church and went to Sunday School every week. The church we attended was lively, exciting and fun so believe it or not we really enjoyed going. (Yes, I did say church was fun, exciting and lively!! Now I wonder if that has smashed some of your preconceived ideas about church). We were always very hospitable as a family and Mum used to stand for hours at the weekend baking lots of delicious cakes for us and our visitors.

Dad conducted the choir and Mum sang in it. Dad also played in the Salvation Army brass band. He played cornet, trumpet, French horn – you name it – he played it! Maybe that’s why two of my favourite films are Brassed Off (about a brass band) and Mr Holland’s Opus (about a music teacher and how one man can make an impact on many people’s lives, sometimes without even realising it)!

The adventure continues

As a child I saw my parents’ devout faith in God and their faith outworked in practical care and hospitality. When I was a teenager I made the decision to become a Christian. I remember praying a prayer asking God to forgive me for the things I’d thought, said and done wrong and for God to help me to follow Him. You may think it was because of pressure from my parents that I did this – but it wasn’t. They never applied any pressure. I wanted to discover the reality of this Jesus that they so obviously loved and served … and phew here began the greatest adventure of my life.

Before I made this decision, even though I was young, one of the areas I really struggled with was the fear of dying. It was so real that I used to lie awake at night worrying about it. After I became a Christian I can truly say I no longer struggled with this fear. I was at peace with God. I remember reading some verses in the Bible in John Chapter 14 verses 1 – 6 where Jesus said:

“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going.”

“No, we don’t know, Lord,” Thomas said. “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?”

Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.”

These are powerful words with a powerful message that made a huge impact on my life. This was the first time I realised the Word of God was alive, life-changing and relevant for today. It was also the first time I realised a person’s life doesn’t need to be governed by fear and turmoil. I can honestly say I felt at peace.
Now peace is not an easy thing to find and maintain in this fast paced world of ours. Everyone seems so busy and stressed and this may be how you feel, but I know that Jesus can bring you a peace that goes beyond all human comprehension (even in the midst of difficult circumstances). It’s true – I’ve experienced that peace personally – and so can you.

I’ve learnt this … you can go to a supermarket and buy a piece of bread, a piece of cheese or a piece of anything you like, but one thing you’ll never buy is a piece of peace. Only Jesus offers that! After all He is known as the Prince of Peace.

The adventure continues

I was a very quiet, introverted type of girl as a teenager. (Okay for those who know me now that may be hard to believe. Phil, my husband, says I must be making up for lost time!!) I enjoyed studying at school and got some excellent results in my exams. When I left school I worked for three years as a Secretary in the Bank of Scotland in Glasgow.

Then I really felt God wanted me to go to Bible College in Birmingham. (How I chose that college and got there is another story in itself)! Anyway at 20 I left home and went to college never having lived away from home before and for me this was a massive culture shock!!

It was there I met a rather dashing young man called Phil Weaver who I later married. However, I had no idea at that time that Phil would become a vicar! I think we were both shocked at this! Looking back perhaps we shouldn’t have been so surprised, after all we had both gone to what you might call ‘Vicar Factory!’

We’ve had various churches in Runcorn, Merthyr Tydfil, Loughborough and Watford and then in 1996 we came back to Loughborough for a second time to start a Christian charity called New Springs UK.

Family adventure

Phil and I have two sons, one of whom is married and they have two boys so that makes us proud grandparents.

Now just because Phil and I are Christians and vicars it doesn’t mean we are immune to the problems of life. We have had our fair share of difficulties but God has proved Himself faithful in helping us through each situation.

Some of the situations we have faced include: serious medical conditions, health problems, mid-life crises, menopausal problems, challenging issues with our boys as teenagers and young adults, bereavements, false accusations thrown at us, personal debt problems … amongst other things. So as you see we are not perfect – anything but – just normal!

But I can truthfully say that in all of these situations, no matter how tough times have been, (and sometimes it has been dire), I can honestly say God has proved Himself and has been faithful and helped us work through our pain, mistakes and challenges.

So that’s a little snippet of my story. It really has been an adventure – sometimes a roller coaster! And who knows what God has for me in the future – my adventure continues!

No doubt you have a story to tell yourself – a bit of an adventure. But has it been an adventure of fear, lack of peace, of tough family issues, turmoil, stress and hurt, financial issues, a lack of purpose with the feeling that something’s missing and there must be more to life than this.

In truth you may be thinking – I wish my story or adventure could be different. I wish I could change it. It’s not unusual for people to think ‘I wish I could start again.’

Well, I do believe you can change your adventure. You can’t do anything about your past but you can leave your past with God and start afresh with Him. I believe Jesus has got a new adventure waiting for you and it even reaches into eternity.

You too can begin an adventure with God!

So what now? I guess there are three options.

  1. You may be thinking ‘what a load of rubbish’ and throw this leaflet away!
  2. You may be thinking ‘I’d like to know a bit more about authentic Christianity and a personal walk with God.’
  3. You may be thinking ‘I’d like to make that decision to become a Christian and follow Jesus for myself.’

Firstly, if you think it’s all a load of rubbish I want to say ‘thank you’ for taking the time to read my story. I trust that something I’ve written may stick with you and I hope you found it interesting.

Secondly, if you want to explore Christianity further you can check out what’s called an Alpha Course on the web http://www.alpha.org (if you’re in the UK), or Google: ‘Alpha Courses’ in the country that you live in. Or even contact me and have a chat.

Thirdly, if you do want to begin a new adventure with Jesus and have a fresh start, then you can begin by praying the following prayer aloud:

“Lord Jesus Christ, I know thus far I have lived my life without you, and that I have sinned in my thoughts, words and actions. There are so many good things I have not done. There are so many wrong things I have done. I am sorry for the things I’ve done wrong and turn from everything I know to be wrong. You gave your life upon the cross for me to bring me forgiveness, and you rose again to give me a fresh start and a home in Heaven. Gratefully I give my life back to you. Now I ask you to come into my life as my Saviour and Lord. Help me to serve you and live for you. I thank you for coming into my life. Amen.”

If you’ve prayed this prayer this is only the beginning of your new adventure with God.

So, thank you for reading my story. I trust you’ve found it interesting.

God bless,

Alpha Course

Explore Christianity

The Alpha Course allows people to explore the Christian faith in a relaxed setting over ten thought-provoking weekly sessions. The courses are free and are usually run in the evening and include a meal or refreshments. To find a course near you go to alpha.org.

Find a Church

Find a Church

Find a Church run a brilliant website listing the details of more than 42,000 UK Christian churches. Simply tap in your postcode for help to find a great church in you area. Go to findachurch.co.uk.