Friday, 25 June 2021

Former missionary inducted as minister

PARISHIONERS of Stoke Row Independent Chapel have welcomed their new minister.

PARISHIONERS of Stoke Row Independent Chapel have welcomed their new minister.

Rev Mark Taylor, who moved to the village with his wife Rosie last month, was inducted during a packed service on Saturday.

The 59-year-old previously worked for a Christian radio station in Worthing and prior to that he had been a pastoral minister in Zimbabwe, where he and his wife Rosie grew up.

He also runs a charity called Onesheep, which designs websites and mobile phone apps for people who are conducting overseas missionary work.

The Taylors have been married since 1978 and have three grown-up daughters and three grandsons. They moved to Stoke Row to be nearer Oxford, where two of their children live.

Rev Taylor was recommended for the post by regular worshipper Nikki Steiger, who knew him from one of his churches in Harare.

Several members of his old congregation, whom he had not spoken to in more than a decade, found out about his appointment through Facebook and flew over to attend his induction.

Also present were ministers from eight other churches in South Oxfordshire. Worshippers enjoyed tea and refreshments at the village hall afterwards.

Rev Taylor said: “We’ve had a fantastic time since moving here a few weeks ago. Everyone has been so warm, welcoming and helpful.

“We don’t have any specific plans yet but we want to become a part of the community and ensure our ministry has a positive impact.

“Seeing people from my previous churches was a lovely surprise and it was great to see them getting on so well with the villagers afterwards. We’re very excited and hopeful about our future in this lovely little village.”

Rev Taylor replaces David and Sonia Jackson, who retired earlier this after six years in post.

The couple have moved to Birmingham, where they have family.

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