Wednesday, 15 October 2008


I've been tagged by Sam and asked "to list five people, living or dead, who influenced my spiritual path in a positive way."

1. Sam Ritchie, my dad. His infectious enthusiasm for the Gospel has never been diminished. He has taught me what grace is all about, not least through his ministry as a prison chaplain to some of the most hardened and dangerous of offenders.

2. May Ritchie, my mum. Her steadfast faith and love of God is at the heart of her life and ministry alongside my father. She taught me how to pray.

3. Chris Hingley, my tutor while I was an ordinand at Wycliffe Hall (85-87). I learnt so much from him and the rest of the staff about Christian community (which makes what has happened at Wycliffe all the more painful).

4. Justin Rees. Justin, the son of Tom Rees (famous for his Albert Hall evangelistic campaigns) headed up the evangelistic work at Hildenborough Hall where I was based in 1980/81. A gifted evangelist who encouraged my emerging ministry and showed me that there was more to life than playing drums in a rock band.

5. Various friends and colleagues in the Diocese of Chelmsford - whenever I am tempted to despair of the church their faithful service and commitment remind me of what it is all about.

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