North Norfolk Baptist minister set to celebrate the launch of his 35th book

Rev Patrick Coghlan of Worstead Baptist Church, who is celebrating the launch of his 35th book. Pict

Rev Patrick Coghlan of Worstead Baptist Church, who is celebrating the launch of his 35th book. Picture: KAREN BETHELL - Credit: Archant

A north Norfolk Baptist minister with a twin career as a writer has just published his 35th book, and, with another two titles in the pipeline, he looks set to hit the 40-mark before the end of next year.

Born in Loddon, Rev Patrick Coghlan, 62, says he received his calling when he rushed up to the pulpit of his local church as a four-year-old.

'I was told to get down immediately but, to me, it seemed a very natural thing to do,' he explained.

After leaving Norwich School at 16, Mr Coghlan joined the youth team of Canaan Christian Centre, Sheringham, playing piano accordion for the group at a number of north Norfolk churches.

A lifelong horse enthusiast, he set up his own riding school in Norwich in his late teens, which he ran for ten years until going to work for his father – a community pharmacist.

However, his childhood dream was never far from his mind and after a minister friend suggested he consider joining the church, Mr Coghlan completed a distance learning course and, in 1995, took on the job of trainee pastor of Neatishead Baptist Church.

He was ordained in 2000 and, four years later, became pastor at Worstead Baptist Church, also taking on the role of chaplain and counselling manager at Aylsham Care Trust and running outreach ministries at local day centres and residential homes.

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He launched his writing career seventeen years ago when his first book, entitled Anytime Chats With God, was accepted by a Christian publishing company, and the father-of-two has since gone on to publish titles ranging from horse-themed family novels, to a 'Creating the Church at Home' series for housebound elderly people and those living with dementia and their carers.

He has also written books inspired by his own 13-year battle with depression, and says that, when it comes to trying out new ideas, his congregation at Worstead is his first port of call.

'They are very supportive and feedback is very important spiritually,' he said. 'I tend to try out new material at church so that by the time it comes out as a book, you have an idea of whether it will keep people's interest.'

Rev Coghlan will be signing copies of his latest book, Still Valued and Blessed, at a launch event at Aylsham Care Trust Centre from 10am-4pm on November 4 and from 2pm-4pm on November 5. Refreshments will be available, with quilting, arts and crafts also on show.

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