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Former heroin addict now pioneer curate reaches those on the edge

Ex-heroin addict Rev Darren Howie has shared his testimony with the BBC about his conversion and getting free from drugs.

It was when a prison chaplain came into his cell and told six and a half stone heroin addict Darren Howie that he would die when he left prison unless he turned his life around, that the Scot began to respond to the hope held out in the Gospel.

Now Darren works as a pioneer curate at St Peter's Church in Derby, with a ministry to the homeless, those with addictions and ex-offenders.

He writes on the church website:

"I was born on the West Coast of Scotland in 1975. I’m married to Joanna and we have a 6 year old daughter and twin boys. I also have an older son, who has a son of his own, which makes me a granddad I suppose.

"I have worked for the church in some capacity for over 10 years now, excluding joint leading a Fresh Expression in Scotland and more recently working as a support worker in Teen Challenge, a Christian community that supports people in overcoming addictions.

"I now serve as a Pioneer Curate here at St. Peter’s in the City, Derby. I have a particular interest in ministry among the homeless community, those with addictions, and ex-offenders. St Peter’s is the perfect context for this type of ministry and I’m heavily involved in two particular projects which engage with these people groups. This involves being the Mentor Coordinator and Referral Lead for our new initiative, Inside Out, which supports people leaving prison and those at risk of offending.

"I’m passionate about and love practical theology and I have been privileged to study this over the past five years. The sacrifice and grace of my family has enabled me to complete my MA in Ministry and Mission. I’m also passionate about birds and love reading. I’m partial to the weekly episode to Match of the Day (if I can stay awake enough to watch it these days), and I also crave the odd Netflix boxset as a means of recreation and soul therapy."

Click here to watch Darren's testimony on the BBC website.

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