A LEGACY of £2.6 million is to be shared by all the parishes of
the diocese of St Davids, in accordance with the wishes of Hazel
Jones-Olszewski, who bequeathed it.
Mrs Jones-Olszewski made her bequest to the diocese to be used
for "charitable church purposes". The legacy - the largest ever
received by the diocese - stunned diocesan officials all the more
because Mrs Jones-Olszewski had left her home parish of St David's,
Saron, on the outskirts of Ammanford, more than 20 years earlier,
and had come from humble origins.
She was born in Saron, the seventh of eight children, and
attended Sunday school at the church. At the age of 16, she went to
work in the offices of a bus company in Ammanford. She later
married the Revd Vernon Jones, and they moved to London, where
their son, Stansfield, was born. Her husband died, and some years
later Mrs Jones was married again, to a retired Polish army
After his death, Mrs Jones-Olszewski lived with her son at her
home in Chelsea, before spending her final years in a nursing home
in Kensington. Her son died suddenly shortly after she entered the
home, and Mrs Jones-Olszewski died last year, aged 84.
A diocesan spokesman said that it had no details of why Mrs
Jones-Olszewski had remembered the diocese in her will, or had left
it such a large amount.
He said: "All we know is that this ordinary woman did something
extraordinary, which will benefit a great many people in St Davids
diocese for many years to come."
The legacy was left to the diocese with two conditions: it
should stand as a lasting memorial, and be for the diocese as a
The diocese asked parishes and organisations to come up with
ideas about how the money could be spent. Most popular were ideas
about spending it on parish finance, children's and youth work, and
Accordingly, nearly £1 million will be spent on children's and
youth ministry; £1.5 million be put into diocesan reserves to allow
for a 6.4-per-cent reduction in parish share, so that all parishes
will benefit; and a further £150,000 will be spent on clergy and
A plaque will also be put upat St David's, Saron, commemorating
She has been buried alongside her son in Gunnersbury cemetery,