In early April 2016, Ian Hilder was inducted as co-pastor of Shepshed Word of Life Church, Leicestershire.
Ian was formerly pastor at Copse Chapel in Clevedon. In Shepshed, the church had agreed to look for an additional pastor, preferably an older man, with experience and proven ability, who was looking to move on from fruitful ministry. Pastor Hilder had begun to realise his ministry in Clevedon was coming to an end and was looking for a new opportunity.
Roger Hitchings, once moderator in Shepshed for Belton Street Baptist Church, made the link between the two churches. The Shepshed Word of Life church asked Ian to preach on two successive Sundays in January 2016. Following two church meetings and the unanimous recommendation of the current elders and deacons, Ian was called, at the end of February, to be minister in a part-time, three days a week capacity, for three years.
Chaired by co-pastor Simon Clarke, the induction and welcome meeting saw Roger Hitchings read from both 2 Timothy 4:1-5 and Acts 5:12-21, as well as leading in prayer.
One of the Shepshed elders, Stan Braybrook, gave the history of the call and Ben Phipps, a deacon from Copse Chapel, commended both Ian and his wife Hilary to the church. Another Shepshed elder, Chris Jones, led the induction itself.
Pastor Dia Moodley from Spirit of Life Church, Bristol, gave the sermon, emphasising the need to ‘preach the Word’. He also spoke from Acts 5, underlining the fact that gospel ministry has been entrusted to preachers of the Word, not to angels.