The Revd Mark Rodel Pioneer Minister and Vicar
Mark is passionate about helping people to encounter, embrace and live-out the life-transforming story of Jesus in ways that take their own stories seriously
Mark is our Vicar and Pioneer Minister. He is also a tutor in Pioneer Ministry at St John’s College. Being a Pioneer Minister means that Mark is charged with looking at opportunities to explore faith and community with people who would find traditional church off-putting. Mark is based in the parish on Sunday, Monday and Friday and at
St John’s on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Saturday is for time with his family.
Before moving to Nottingham in 2012, Mark was previously City Centre Pioneer Minister in the heart of Portsmouth, where he led a tiny and struggling parish congregation into new territory. Together they moved out of the parish church building and into one of the nearby tower blocks, sharing breakfast and stories with resident families as ‘the Sunday Sanctuary’. You can read his reflections on that story here. Before that, as curate of St Jude's, Southsea, he helped establish ‘Friday Fridge’ – a late night drop-in and chill-out event for pubgoers in the area.
Before ordination, Mark worked for 13 years as a graphic designer. He graduated in Visual Art from Winchester School of Art in the mid-90s and later trained for ordination on the Southern Theological Education and Training Scheme (STETS) course, based in Salisbury. Alongside his pioneering work in two parishes in Portsmouth, he completed an MA in Theology for Christian Ministry and Mission, also from STETS. As part of that he developed an interest in spiritual practices of discernment, particularly in pioneer ministry.
Mark came to faith in his early teens and has a broad church experience. He has been part of house-church, Baptist and URC church communities but found his spiritual home in the Church of England. His background is evangelical and charismatic but he has been profoundly influenced by catholic and contemplative spirituality and theology too. Mark has long been concerned with people at the margins, both of church and society and is passionate about helping people to encounter, embrace and live-out the life-transforming story of Jesus in ways that take their own stories seriously.
Mark was born in London and grew up in Kent. He moved to Portsmouth twenty years ago chasing a girl who, happily for him, is now his wife. He and Barbara, a primary school teacher, have three children - Elliott, Toby and Lois. Mark loves the cinema, contemporary art and photography. He's interested in science too - especially cosmology and particle physics, though he makes no pretense to understand either! He enjoys cooking and occasionally runs, especially when he has rather too much enjoyed his own cooking or when he needs to console himself about the fortunes of Portsmouth FC.
Give Mark a call on 07590 208803 or email him on firstname.lastname@example.org