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Kindness of strangers

09 August 2013

IN THE same way as the apostles were sent out, Ben Bradshaw took no food or drink with him when he set off on a 25-mile walk on a day when the temperature was more than 30°C. He hopes to be made deacon in Exeter Cathedral in September, and he was walking the entire parish boundary of the Braunton Mission Community, in Exeter diocese, where he will be assistant curate.

Currently, he is working there as a lay minister with the Priest-in-Charge of Braunton, the Revd Ann Thorne (above), who will be his training incumbent after his three years of training for ministry at the College of the Resurrection, Mirfield. (He hopes to be an Oblate of the Community of the Resurrection).

His walk through fields and along Devon beaches was a fund-raising one to raise money for St Brannock's, Braunton, which needs more than £7000 to complete its urgent roof repairs; and - the last I heard - he had already received more than £1000.

His faith in the kindness of strangers was justified when he met a farmer who invited him home and "gave me a good meal and lots of squash - I had seven glasses in a row." He was very tired by the end of the nine-hour walk, and badly bitten by bugs.

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