Your ministry team

Leading you to God

The ministry team is made up of the Rector and lay people. Running the Sunday services is a big part of the ministry of the church and services are led by the Rector, the Licensed Lay Ministers and the Lay Worship Leaders. The wider pastoral work is covered by the Rector and the Lay Pastoral Assistants. The team, as a whole, aims to be the visible and accessible face of the church in the wider community. We are involved in our local schools, social clubs, community groups, care homes (and the pubs!).


The Rector

Lydia Cook

Lydia spent 5 years training for ministry at Oxford and was ordained in 1996. Rural ministry has been her sole focus throughout her ordained life and she has worked in the Dioceses of Peterborough and Oxford and moved to Salisbury Diocese 10 years ago.

Lydia has mostly worked as a self-supporting minister, meaning that she has combined parish ministry with secular work. She has done a variety of jobs including being a cook, running a pre-school and being a smallholder.

She is enjoying being back in full time ministry and lives at Shillingstone Rectory with her husband and two teenage sons.


Lay Pastoral Assistants engage in the ministry of care, hospitality, practical help and sometimes the discernment of ongoing, more in depth care for people. The foundation of pastoral care is listening and lay pastoral assistants engage deliberately and intentionally in listening to others. They share in the daily prayer life of the church.
LPAs assist the Rector in the provision of pastoral care to the whole parish. The cure of souls assigned to the Rector is then shared with others, providing a better level of care.

Lay Pastoral Assistant

Mrs Carolyn Angelucci

Carolyn moved from London to Dorset six years ago. When she lived in London she worked in the banking sector. She has been an LPA for four years and lives in Child Okeford with her partner Simon.

Mrs Abi Rudd

Abi moved to Child Okeford 4 years ago. As a mother of 2 she was quickly welcomed into the Messy Church family and is now one of the Messy Church leaders. Busy with family, school and church life, Abi was surprised that God called her to be an LPA. She has put her heart into supporting the ministry team and parishioners in the challenges and blessings we share in our lives today.

Lay Pastoral Assistant

Mrs Ruth Allen

Ruth and her husband Keith moved into Child Okeford in 2013 and Ruth retired shortly after that. She had been very involved in her previous church and very quickly became involved at St Nicholas. Church life is important to Ruth and she is very aware that there are many folk who need Christian comfort. Becoming an LPA is a way of showing God’s love for us all.