THOUGH HE reminded his bishop that Moses received his call when he was 80
and went on to serve another 40 years, the Revd Raymond Jewell, priested last
weekend in Gloucester Cathedral at the age of 78, said he was
not sure if he could manage 40 more years. “But I’ll certainly give it my best
It has been the fulfilment of a lifetime’s calling, he told me. Converted
when he was seven, he never lost the thought that God needed more hands to do
his work; and in due course he joined the Church Army in 1956 (“the first
married man to be accepted for training”) and served 40 years as an evangelist.
He retired officially in 1983, but carried on working for the CA on a
voluntary basis. Three years ago he moved with his wife to Tuffley in
Gloucester, where he has been helping Canon Marilyn Sharland, who describes him
as “a magical man”.
The Bishop of Tewkesbury, the Rt Revd John Went, ordained him deacon
in January 2004, saying that he had been doing virtually all the work of a
deacon for years. Last Saturday he finally realised his lifelong vocation, when
he was one of 13 deacons to be priested.