Hi, I’m Kate. I’m married to Bill with two grown up children who live separately from us.
I am the Pastor of this church, being a relative newcomer to Colchester, though I was born in Essex. I have lived and worked in each of the East of England counties over many years. My previous pastorate was in a small village in Bedfordshire, out in the countryside.
I became a pastor after a long career in nursing. As a nurse, I worked in a wide variety of clinical roles in hospital and in the community, and then moved to teaching, research and management. Nursing aims to provide holistic care of people wherever they are and helps to form a good foundation for ministry. Being a pastor is challenging and exciting as you walk alongside people as they journey with God and see him at work in their everyday lives.
I’m keen to make church more accessible to all ages and backgrounds and truly become a place where people can be themselves and have fun – but do this remembering ‘that the Lord, he is God. It is he who made us and we are his’ (Psalm 100:3).
The thing that attracted me to Orchard Baptist Church was the people! They definitely know God and want to be a community of believers who are prepared to work together for the common good. They do this in the light of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, a man who lived 2000 years ago in a town on the edge of the Sea of Galilee.
Discovering what Jesus did and said has been a wonderful spiritual adventure for me which started when I first read the gospel of Matthew at the age of 14. I believe that he came to live on earth and showed us a pattern for living which is so much better than all other approaches known to humankind. The Bible teaches us that this example was possible because he was not just a man, but the Son of God, who gave everything so that we can continue to live beyond our earthly life. The giving of his life for ours means that we are able to walk with God forever, humbly recognising that though we may get things wrong, God will always be loving and kind toward all who turn to him for forgiveness and who want his help to do things better.
I am keen to enable others to realise their talents and enjoy them enthusiastically, both in their everyday lives and in sharing them with the church. I aim to encourage individual spiritual development and to maintain a healthy fellowship so that we can encourage one another and build each other up as we learn to praise God wholeheartedly. ‘God looks on the heart, not on outward appearance’ (1 Sam 16:7).
My guiding principle in sharing faith is ‘always be prepared to give a reason for the hope that is within you but do so with gentleness and respect’ (1 Peter 3:15). That means allowing people the space and time to reflect on any thoughts and feelings that they have about God; being ready to prayerfully explore their questions; and being prepared to act as a signpost towards the Bible in a way that make sense in everyday life.
I relax whenever I can by spending time with friends and family. My hobbies include walking in the countryside or coast, sewing, reading, watching TV, playing music or going to concerts, cinema and theatre.
Hi, I’m Linda; I was born in Watford but have lived in Colchester for over 30 years. I’m married to Brian and we have 3 grown up children, a son in law, a daughter in law, and a lovely granddaughter who exhausts us when she visits!
I am a Learning Support Assistant, having worked in both a local Junior School and for the last 6 years at Colchester Sixth Form College. I enjoy working with individuals and helping them to do their best.
For most of my life I have been involved in going on Scripture Union holidays for young people, and for 30 years I led a sailing holiday which happens every summer on the Norfolk Broads. It is something really special seeing people have amazing fun and exploring their faith in a non-threatening atmosphere.
I come from a family that has always encouraged me in my faith and I made a significant step of faith whilst at another Christian holiday when I was 12, being baptised when I was 18. Jesus has always been important in my life, and I seek to know His peace and presence in all the ups and downs of everyday living.
My favourite bible verses include Isaiah 40 which talks about how amazing God is, and Philippians 4 v 13 which says “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
At church I am the Secretary, sometimes play the piano or lead worship, and lead a homegroup. For fun I enjoy walking, knitting and puzzles.
I am married to Linda; we have three grown up children, two of whom are married, and one grandchild. I have been teaching Maths for nearly forty years and been at the Sixth Form College in Colchester since it opened in 1987. I cycle to and from work and it is often as quick if not quicker than trying to drive. I enjoy longer cycle rides occasionally and walks with Linda regularly. I play guitar in church and have been the treasurer for a while but I did have a break for three years from this. I also help with odd jobs and Toddlers which fits in to my timetable at work as I am now part-time.
Spare time:I am a keen reader and enjoy most authors including Thomas Hardy. I enjoy SciFi films and series as well as action, comedy and murder mystery. My favourite author is Terry Pratchett who manages to mix mystery with humour and very bad puns. I am happy to try most DIY and have found YouTube videos a good source of advice when tackling an unusual task. I prefer to try to fix things that are brokenrather than bin them straight away but this means that there is a store of spare parts which might come in useful one day in our house (or our children’s for that matter!).
Favourite meal:I think I would go for Christmas dinner, especially if I didn’t have to cook it myself.
I have recently enjoyed trying to experiment to recreate some recipes where we had pre-prepared packs and a list of ingredients (but no quantities) which results in some interesting meals.
Favourite verse:Proverbs 3 v5 &6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Never rely on what you think you know. Remember the Lord in everything you do and he will show you the right way.
I am a teacher and have been for twenty eight years. I am married to Julie and have a son called Samuel and a daughter called Anna.
Spare time: reading, running, orienteering and spending time with my family.
Favourite Bible verse: I have a few Bible verses but the one I keep coming to is Jeremiah 29 “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord; plans to prosper you and not to harm you, give you a hope and a future.”
Favourite food: I really like Chinese food with sweet and sour coming out on top.
Favourite holiday destination: Crete.
Influential book: The book that most intrigues me is “Captain Corelli’s Mandolin” which, forty years after reading it I still find amazing.
Read more about Richard’s story here.
I have been married to David since 1975, I have three children and three grandchildren. I work as an Office Manager for a local accountancy firm.
Spare time: I love to paint – I prefer acrylics or pen and ink, but I also use watercolours; I enjoy photography, particularly photographing landscapes and close up flora and fauna.
Favourite Bible verse: Ephesians 3: 20 – “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory….”
Favourite holiday destination: Cape Town, South Africa; my favourite place in GB is the west coast of Scotland
Favourite food: a plate of chilli or a home cooked Sunday roast with crispy roast potatoes.
Favourite book: ‘Nine O’clock in the Morning’ by Dennis Bennett, after reading this book I asked God to fill me by His spirit and so I started my Christian journey.
I am married to Ronnie, have 2 grown up daughters and am now a proud grandmother to Poppy. I was brought up in a Christian home and gave my life to Jesus when I was 14. After travelling around while Ronnie was in the RAF we came back to settle in Colchester in 1989 and I started to worship at Orchard and have been here ever since. There have been many ups and downs at Orchard but I have always felt it to be my spiritual home. I teach in the Sunday School and am part of the Welcome team.
I work for Beacon House, a Christian charity that supports homeless people in Colchester. I find this both challenging and rewarding. Meeting people there, often at their lowest point, reminds me that Jesus came to save the whole world and that he loves each of us the same. The passage that inspired me to work at Beacon House is Matthew 25, v34-46, and it reminds me that what I do for the guys who come to us I do for God and that is truly humbling.
In my spare time I love to sew and am interested in all things textiles, I am also a fair weather gardener and enjoy walking and reading.
My vision for Orchard is to share the good news of Jesus with the local area and for the Church to become the hub of the community.
One of my favourite verses is Colossians 3:12-14 from The Message, “So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offence. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it.” I feel that God is really speaking to me and I know I don’t achieve it but it’s what I aim for.
Main Pastimes-Reading, history, science fiction, fact, crosswords.
Favourite Book The ragged trousered philanthropist written by Robert Tressel (Noonan) I read this when I was 16yrs old and often refer to it. Thought provoking at the very least
Favourite Film. The Searchers. Starring John Wayne, a complete unexpected ending.
Favourite Bible verses. Joshua 24 v 15 But for me and my house we will serve the Lord.
Also, Matthew 10 v 8 Freely you have received freely give.