The Revd David Downing, a United Reformed Church minister in Derby, has found a new role for himself – as a model! David was among seven priests and ministers from different traditions, who took to the catwalk to model formal and leisure wear for clergy, at the Christian Resources Exhibition North in Manchester.
David, who is minister to a group of churches in Derby and chaplain at Derby University, said of the experience: “As someone who doesn’t robe for Sunday church services, I thoroughly enjoyed wearing such beautiful regalia. Modelling is something I have never tried before, but who knows what doors this could open? There’s a Fashion Studies course at the university, so I may be able to offer my services there!”
The fashion show, which featured designs by four different suppliers of clerical clothing, was filmed for regional television, and David was invited to appear on BBC Radio Derby to talk about the experience.
The Christian Resources Exhibition North was held at Event City, next to the Trafford Centre. It was the first time it had been to Manchester for nine years. One of the organisers, Stephen Goddard, said: “We were delighted; more than three thousand people attended over two days. The exhibition offered local churches the opportunity to see and buy niche products they might not find on the High Street – everything from candles to communion wine and pews to puppets.”
Photo shows David Downing on the catwalk. Photo credit: Laurence Cremetti