Parish: Collier Row St James & Havering-atte-Bower St John
I was born in Harold Hill, Romford in 1981. I grew up in Collier Row, Romford, where I attended Clock House Junior school and then Bower Park secondary school. I never finished secular school properly so achieved only 3 low GCSE’s but bloomed academically later in life in my early to mid-30’s when I completed my BA honours degree in Theology and Youth Ministry and then most recently my Masters degree in Christian Leadership.
I have 2 older siblings and I was mainly raised by my Grandmother. My mum currently lives in Spain and my dad passed away in December 2017.
My family were, and are, atheists or agnostics so there was no talk of church or God throughout my childhood and wouldn’t be until my own journey began which led to my commitment to Christ in my mid-twenties.
I have worked as a landscape gardener, sheet metal worker i.e. welder, and most significantly as a youth worker for the last 19 years in both secular and faith-based organisations in full and part time capacities.
I have been married to my wife Sarah for 10 years and we have been together for 16 years. We don’t have any children but feel called to be spiritual parents to the lost. We currently live in Tower Hamlets, East London, and will be moving to St James and St Johns in Collier Row for my curacy.
I love going to the gym 3-4 times a week and weight lifting, listening to music and enjoying some me time. I like to hang out with my wife, my friends and just watch movies and read. But most importantly I love to laugh and make other people laugh too.
Parish: Hornchurch St Nicholas (Elm Park)
Born in Walthamstow, aged three I moved with my parents and older brother to Lower Sheering, Essex. I attended the village primary then moved to a large Comprehensive in Harlow. This was quite a change and an ‘eye-opener!’ I studied anthropology at university and, after a few false starts, trained as a teacher.
I now live with my wife Stephanie and two adult sons in Hornchurch.
University made me a confirmed atheist but life experience, against academic theories, made me reconsider.
We began attending Church and I became a Christian at an Alpha Course. Soon I was reading lessons, preaching and running services. Finishing the Course in Christian Studies I was asked if I’d considered ordination? No I hadn’t! I resisted for quite a while but knew in my heart it was what God wanted and have been based at St Laurence Upminster during training.
Parish: Church of the Good Shepherd, Collier Row
I was born in the Rush Green but have grown up in Romford all my life. I went to school in Romford and even got my first job as a teenager working on Romford market. I hadn’t grown up in a Christian household. School wasn’t really my thing, I found it difficult at times but had fun along the way!
Following that I wasn’t really sure what life had to offer me. I explored all that the world had to offer, finding spiritual moments along the way but still felt as though something was beyond my reach.
At 20 I had a son and felt that maybe I should start to take things a bit more seriously. I joined the army but broke my leg just days before my basic training was about to begin and somewhere along the journey God found me. I later came to faith at the Church of the Good Shepherd and married Hayley, the mother of my son, in 2008. We have seen our son grow up into teenager and have a daughter of 8 years old. I have studied with the Church Mission Society in the unique training mode of pioneer ordination.
I have been looking at how we can listen to the world and respond to it in creative ways to engage people on the edges to develop what church looks like for them. I do very much look forward to the new adventure that awaits me.