What has been the most formative period of your life?
I’ve lived in Christian community for 36 years and living in community has made me the person I am. My most formative years have to be when I lived at Anchorage, a community house in Birmingham which opened in 1983. I was in my early 20s, still at university – young, keen and energetic! It was exciting as Birmingham was the first big city we had church-planted in and the church was expanding. The teamwork was great, we supported and cared for each other and worked as very close family. Who I am and the way I do things now stems from that time.
What do you most and least enjoy doing?
I enjoy life when things work well and I’m getting something right. I’m a heating engineer and I like to do a job well. It’s very satisfying to get a letter from customers showing their appreciation of my service.
I volunteer at Coventry Jesus Centre drop-in and I’ve enjoyed success in making long-term friendships with some of our homeless or vulnerable visitors. It’s been so good to feel appreciated by them.
I least enjoy getting up in the mornings and speaking in public.
So, as a Christian, you have chosen to take a celibate vow? Why is that?
In no particular order: I feel God called me to it, the Bible suggests it is a good thing and I like it. I like it because it suits me or, should I say, I suit it – my temperament, my emotional make-up. Jesus said the gift of celibacy can be for those that can accept it and I’m able to accept it. The gift of celibacy serves the church well.
I chose celibacy when I was 21. Looking back, I was very young but fortunately I have no regrets.
You’ve always had a strong role working alongside children and teenagers in the church. Why have you chosen this?
I enjoy it. I’ve been working with teenagers since my mid-twenties. These days I lead “Lamb’s Club”, a Sunday morning Bible group for primary school children; I also sometimes do the ‘kids’ spot’ in the Sunday church meetings. It keeps you young; after all, they are our future.