Tuesday, 5 January 2010


Having popped over to Fife over the week-end, I returned to a very snowbound Edinburgh to contemplate a bit of waiting for movement. Off I went to deal with bank stuff this morning and returned to Emmaus to get a phone call. Yes, it was my prospective employers saying: We'd like to offer you a job, full time, starting mid-March as a support worker in a house supporting 4 clients with Autism. Conditional (of course) on references and disclosure. Yahoo!

A long time ago, when I was trying to learn to play the violin (and I am living witness to the truth of the Jack Benny line about it sounding like the cat gut was still inside the cat!), I had to memorise a little mnemonic about scales. EGBDF. Every Good Boy Deserves Favours. I must have been good recently! To be honest, it's not really a line of work I'd have thought about 12 months ago. But my experience of being here and discovering (much to my surprise) that I am really quite good with people with learning or social difficulties - and a damn sight more patient that I ever used to be - made me think it was a possibility. One of the most satisfying periods in my life was when I was working in a hands on, no academic ability needed role with the homeless in London. A degree was pretty useless, but the ability to engage with the marginalised, to befriend, encourage and support wasn't - and I could do that. Hands on is what I got distant from with all the hoopla and expectations of Rectoring. Give me a person to support in need, be it sickness or bereavement and I was doing what I joined up for. Give me admin and management and I got stuck, worried, down and started to be a self-fulfilling prophecy of failure. This for me may be a return to the hands on alongside the weak priesthood I loved and not the servicing and propping up the Institution ministry I came to dread. I am so glad to have this new break and chance to go back to basics!! It's been a brilliant day. And Nina Simone says it all!


  1. YAY! Congratulations, frdougal! So happy to hear that you are getting back to your passion. And I LOVE the Nina Simone.

  2. Congratulations!! God bless you in this new venture!


  3. Well done, John! Warmest congratulations, and hopes for a new life of peace and blessing.