It has been a pleasure since the New Year to get to know the new Hall Manager at St James', Gerald Lee, and his wife Mariana. Gerald is an ordained minister in the Methodist Church and has already been called on to lead worship and a Lent Group session.
Gerald was ordained in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, in 1991 and was a Youth Pastor at the church where Val and Dale Gravett were members.
Gerald and Mariana first came to England in 1999 with their two teenage children (now grown up and married with children themselves), and for a time Gerald was based in Guernsey, while Mariana was working in England.
However in 2014 they settled in England running a coffee shop in Clapham whilst living in High Wycombe. Mariana has a background in catering so there were home-made cakes! Eventually the strain of the hours and travelling became too much and they sold the business.
They then spent time in France and Spain, hoping to set up a retreat house, but when things didn’t work out, they finally returned to England.
When Dale and Val decided to retire to Lincolnshire they mentioned to the church that Gerald might be interested in the post of hall manager at St James’ and everybody is delighted with the outcome.
We look forward to many happy years of working together in the mission of the church at St James’.