The Venerable John Green – Assistant Priest
I grew up in London’s East End, in the heart of the Docklands. With a life-long interest in radio and electronics it was no surprise that I studied Applied Physics and ended up working in electronic engineering. As another life-long interest was music and, especially, the pipe organ, it was again no surprise that when our local parish church was rebuilt and a brand new pipe organ installed, I soon ended up as Assistant Organist. When Jan and I married in 1977 I was an electronics engineer who did lots of things for the Church but three years later Jan found herself married to an ordinand studying for the Ordained Ministry at Lincoln Theological College.
Our first son was born while we were at Lincoln, and our second arrived when I was Assistant Curate in our first parish, St Michael and All Angels West Watford. After three years in Watford we moved to the parish of St Stephen with St Julian in the city of St Albans, where I looked after St Julian’s, a dual-purpose church and hall on a large estate. Here I was involved in a number of local groups, not least with the Sea Cadets at TS Verulam. To cut a long story short, my relationship with the Sea Cadets blossomed and in 1991 we moved to
Gosport on the south coast where I joined the Royal Navy as a Chaplain.
After fifteen years of ministry afloat and ashore, including two years as Chaplain of HMS ARK ROYAL, I found myself selected to be Chaplain of the Fleet and Archdeacon for the Royal Navy. Five demanding but interesting years sped by in a flash and it was soon time for me to retire from the RN at the grand old age of 57 – the navy is largely a ‘sport’ for young people!
However, after eighteen months of twiddling thumbs it was clear, to Jan at least, that I wasn’t quite ready for retirement and, providentially, within a matter of weeks I found myself in the role of Acting Archdeacon of Coventry. Six months later, in December 2012, I was appointed into the post proper, which I held until September 2017 – by which time we decided I was ready for retirement.
During our time on the south coast Jan gained a BA in Social Policy and Administration, an MA in Church and Community studies and trained and qualified as a teacher. She taught Religious Studies, Philosophy and Ethics in several schools until leaving the profession when I became Chaplain of the Fleet.
In 2018, with both our sons well-settled, we decided it was time to embark on another adventure. So we sold-up, moved onto a motorhome (together with our two dogs and two cats) and headed north. The plan was to enjoy the journey but also to find a place to settle down. By the end of 2018 we had found our home in Culkein Drumbeg and moved-in on New Year’s Day 2019 – and we’ve not regretted it for a moment.
We now have six grandchildren and our first great-grandchild; we enjoy observing and learning about the wonderful widlife in Assynt; and my life-long love of radio and music persist. I’m a licensed radio amateur (callsign MM0ACN although not very active at the moment) and I dabble with making music in a small, improvised home studio. Jan enjoys travelling as well as being creative in our small garden – and we like undertaking DIY projects together.