I started in a broadly evangelical low church with charismatic features but decided to train for ministry at a college in the catholic tradition attached to a monastery in Yorkshire called Mirfield. It was a bit like being at Hogwarts and thoroughly enjoyed my time there.
Whilst there, the college sent me to Romania to work at a children’s AIDS hospice, which proved to be a life changing experience and obviously influenced my decision to later become Chaplain to two churches, one in Bucharest, Romania and one in Sofia, Bulgaria.
The other part of my role was to be Archbishop Rowan William’s Apokrisarios (personal representative) to the Romanian Orthodox Patriarchate, but the most influential part of my role was a very moving encounter with the Orthodox church as a whole – their rites and theology - over three years living in Eastern Europe.
After Romania I spent many happy years as the vicar of two country churches in County Durham. It was during my incumbency in Gainford and Winston that the biggest upset in my life happened. This was the death of my first wife of 25 years, Alexandra in 2010, a massive shock to both me and our daughter Claire who is now 27 years old.
Currently, as vicar of a moderately large church in Tynemouth, I bring all of my varied influences and experiences to the post. I have a track record of growing congregations by instilling confidence and new life into the Christian message that is always down to earth and realistic. In this task I also use modern media to try and reach and change people. I had a very ordinary upbringing and a long and varied working life up until my conversion to Christianity in my mid-thirties so I have experienced many different employment scenarios.
In 2014 I met and married my wonderful wife Louise and we are a great team. Louise is also a committed Christian but also my rock and help. Louise is a medical doctor specializing in Geriatric medicine and it is because she was offered a Professorial chair at Exeter University that we are moving to the Exeter area.
Together we love walking, good food and wine, travel and have a fierce rivalry at scrabble! I am currently leading in the number of games won by 112 to 111!