Welcome to the Goldmine



Hello! My name is Phil and welcome to my little corner of cyberspace.

A little bit about this website

I’ve called this website ‘the goldmine’ because I hope it is a bit of a goldmine – insofar as there might be some golden nuggets on it (although that doesn’t mean you won’t have to wade through a load of rubbish to get to them).

I mainly blog about faith and life. I am a follower of Jesus, his life and teachings have a profound impact on the way that I see the world. I hope that if you already know Jesus, you might come across something on this site that may make you think ‘oh I hadn’t thought of it like that before.’  I also hope that if you don’t know Jesus yet this site might challenge you to think about who Jesus is and if he is saying anything about your life. Either way please feel free to comment in my posts, I’m happy to discuss and debate.

A little bit about me

As well as being a Christian I am a rugby fan, I support Wales and the Newport Gwent Dragons, (possibly making me a masochist). I am also a bit of a Geek, with a particular interest in Doctor Who. I’m married to my long suffering wife, Esther, who is fabulous! We have two beautiful daughters – Amelia Joy (Millie) and Magdalena Rose (Lena)

I am currently an ordinand in the Church of England, which means that i am studying at Ridley Hall, Cambridge to become a vicar.


On loan


This is an article that I wrote a number of years ago, but as the realization comes that in the not too distant future I will be ordained, it has gathered a renewed importance for me.

Jesus then began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a pit for the winepress and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and moved to another place. At harvest time he sent a servant to the tenants to collect from them some of the fruit of the vineyard. But they seized him, beat him and sent him away empty-handed. Then he sent another servant to them; they struck this man on the head and treated him shamefully. He sent still another, and that one they killed. He sent many others; some of them they beat, others they killed.

He had one left to send, a son, whom he loved. He sent him last of all,saying, ‘They will respect my son.’

But the tenants said to one another, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.’ So they took him and killed him, and threw him out of the vineyard.

“What then will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and kill those tenants and give the vineyard to others.  Haven’t you read this passage of Scripture:

“‘The stone the builders rejected
    has become the cornerstone;
the Lord has done this,
    and it is marvelous in our eyes’[a]?”

 Then the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders looked for a way to arrest him because they knew he had spoken the parable against them. But they were afraid of the crowd; so they left him and went away.

Mark 12:1-12

I stood in the queue at the check in desk of the library. Tucked under my arm was a little envelope. Inside that envelope was 30% of a CD of Pam Ayers Poetry. The Other 70% of the CD was in a variety of other places, mainly somewhere inside my CD player.

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Musings on Leviticus



A group of us at Ridley are working our way through the Bible in a year and today, with a sense of foreboding, we hit Leviticus. I say foreboding because, whilst Leviticus is the inspired word of God, it can also feel a bit dull at times. Laws about mildew in Israelite camps were clearly very important to the survival of the Jewish nation during 40 years traveling the wilderness, but as a 21st century reader it can feel slightly irrelevant to modern life.

So, I was very pleasantly surprised when God hit with something during my reading of the first 3 chapters of Leviticus this morning. Continue reading



This post is based on a sermon that I preached at All Saints Milton on 02/10/2016, you can hear a recording here



This may surprise you, but I am not the sharpest tool in the box. I can be a bit slow and bit oblivious to the things that are going on around me.

About 10 years ago, I was driving from Scotland down to Northamptonshire in a company car on the M6. I was in the middle lane, ready to overtake a lorry when I noticed in my rear view mirror that there was a police car with its sirens on. So I pulled over into the slow lane to let the police car past. Weirdly the police car then switched off its sirens and slipped back in behind me. ‘That’s weird,’ I thought, and pulled out again to overtake the lorry. Then the police car pulled out again and put its sirens on again. So once I had overtaken the lorry I pulled back into the inside lane to let the police car past. And again the police switched off its siren and slipped back in behind me. ‘Make up your mind Mr Policeman’ I thought as I pulled out again and checked my mirror. Sure enough he had followed me again.

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A Brexit Prayer


In the days following the EU referendum I have really struggled to know what to pray. Being on the rota to lead intercessions in church on Sunday forced me to sit down and write what I felt we as a church needed to say to God in response to the result. I’ve reproduced a large part of the prayers here in the hope that they may be of use to anyone else who may be struggling to pray post referendum.  Continue reading



Photo of Bishop Woodford House (where I had my BAP) by Liz Burke http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/2495079

Today is the anniversary of my journey through the valley of the shadow of death (or Bishops Advisory Panel as the Church of England calls it). For those who are unfamiliar with the ways of the Church of England, the Bishops Advisory Panel (or BAP as it is affectionately known) is the three day interrogation (I mean selection conference) that you are sent on before you can be put forward for training for ordination. Continue reading