Previous Diaconate

Tony (click for larger picture)

(1983 - 2009, 2011 - 2014)

I was born in Bromley, Kent, and grew up in nearby Chislehurst – attending Sunday School at the Elmstead Lane Baptist Church where I was also a ‘Life Boy’ (now known as Anchor Boys).

Some years later I was living in Chadwell Heath (Essex) and it was there, in 1977, that I discovered a personal faith and was baptised.

I moved to Whitstable in 1981 and, the following year, joined the Baptist Church in Middle Wall as I felt God telling me that there was a job for me to do there.  A year later I discovered the ‘job’ was to be part of the Diaconate and, a few years later, I became Church Secretary ~ and have been busy ever since!

I worked for BT (British Telecom, not Baptist Times!) for 36 years, but took early retirement in 2000.  I’m now busier than ever! I spent the next 15 years helping people get the best out of their computers and designing the occasional web site (like this one!) and, for the last two or three years I've been giving talks to groups and clubs such as WI and Rotary on subjects as diverse as ‘Flying for Fun’ and ‘My Life as a Film Star’ – great fun! (Click here for more details of that one!)

Beryl & Tony (click for larger picture)I met my present wife, Beryl, when I lived in Chadwell Heath – she was a member of High Road Baptist Church – and we enjoyed a strange life, spending the first nine years of our marriage travelling between our respective homes in two different counties!

However, in 2002, we sold them both and bought a house in Blean (near Canterbury) and are now living together!  Moving two homes into one was quite an exercise in logistics and we are still unpacking boxes but we now have more time to spend together ~ searching in card shops for birthday cards for one or other of our nineteen(!) grandchildren.

Recently, I have become even busier, creating and updating the church website and managing the "technology" in church. Beryl and I also produce the church magazine 'The Messenger' every two months.

So, after 26 years as a Deacon – many of which as Secretary – and many long discussions with God, I have decided that it is time for me to pass on the mantle of Secretary to someone else. So, in 2009, I stepped down – at least for a while!

Part Two!
Well, here we are again, two years later and back on the Diaconate – although not as Secretary this time – Jean is doing a great job at that!

But I might have known God would have other plans for me and these past two years have been eventful, to say the least: In December 2009 I had a heart attack – fortunately a relatively mild one – and, after about three weeks in three different hospitals and a by-pass operation, I was able to celebrate Christmas at home.

I spent the following year resting, recovering and recuperating and now feel able to take up the challenge of the Diaconate, once again.

Neon Blaze SE (click for larger picture)The time spent at home has also enabled me to indulge my passion for model helicopter flying!

Finally, in 2014, I decided that it was time for someone else to step up and for me to step down!


© Tony Harris 03/08/2015