“The moment I first set foot at Worth there was a peace that I had never experienced before.” Those are the words of Angela Mutongerwa, who is one of our Forerunners at Worth.
The Forerunners are a team of youth ministers who work closely with pupils on their journey through Worth. In our latest ‘Meet the Forerunners’ feature, we ask Angela what drew her to Worth, what the Forerunners do and why their work is so important.
What attracted you to Worth? As someone from a faith background, I was attracted to the faith aspect of the School and I wanted to experience how Benedictine values are lived out in everyday life. Another reason I was attracted to Worth was the beauty and tranquillity of this environment. The moment I first set foot at Worth there was a peace that I had never experienced before and I thought what a joy it would be to journey with students in their faith in a place that speaks so profoundly of God through nature.
Where were you before you came to Worth? Before coming to Worth I was working for the NHS as a nurse at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham in their oncology and haematology department. I come from a family of nurses so it was no surprise to my family when I pursued a career in nursing, however throughout my teenage years I had always been involved with chaplaincy and when the opportunity arose to work full time for the Chaplaincy at Worth I had to take it.
What do you do within the Forerunners team? I am the Team Leader of the Forerunners. This involves managing the Forerunner community and ministry on a day-to-day basis. I also empower students to facilitate outreach activities and I mentor student leaders on a fortnightly basis.
What is your best moment of the week? I am the Forerunner attached to St Catherine’s and my best moments are when I am in the House chatting with the girls about everyday life, It is nice to see them with their friends and spending time together. Lots of great conversations have come out of this and I look forward to those rare occasions. I also enjoy the Confirmation preparation sessions we have with the Year 10s; they are so funny and have a lot of joy and enthusiasm. It is a real joy helping them prepare for the sacrament of Confirmation.
Tell me something interesting about yourself. I was born and raised mostly in Zimbabwe. My first language is Shona which is what I speak at home; because of this a lot of people think that I am American because I have an American sounding accent.
Thinking about the work of the Forerunners, what stands out Worth from other schools? Membership to the Worth community is a lifelong membership; ever after graduating from Worth, you are still very much a part of this community. We recognise here that Christ is at the heart of our community. This does not make the community exclusive, but one which has a clear reason for being and functioning. It also means that the education we are offering to our students is one in goodness, truth and beauty.
In three quick soundbites, how do the Forerunners help students? We are a listening ear; we offer the space for students and staff alike to be themselves and talk about the joys and challenges of faith and life; we are here to support students in their faith journey.