Ken Gardiner - Christian thoughts and teachings

About Ken Gardiner

Ken Gardiner

I was born in 1927 at Wimbledon, South West London. I performed my National Service in the army, where I issued civilian clothing to those who had done the fighting in the war, which had ended a few months before I was called up. After this I was employed by Lloyds of London, the Insurers. A year later I transferred to the head office of a major insurance company in the city of London. At the age of 30 I knew I was called to offer for ordination within the Church of England. However, I was married with a child and, whilst the Church was willing to pay for my training, they had no funds to provide for my family while I was at college.

Two years later the Bishop of Southwark, Mervyn Stockwood, started a ‘Night School for Priests’ – the Southwark Ordination Course. I was one of the 99 men who applied to join and, with 32 others, was accepted.. Remaining at work, I paid for my training during the three years involved. In 1963 I was ordained in Southwark Cathedral and was appointed as stipendiary assistant curate to Holy Trinity, Sydenham. In 1967 I became curate at St. Michael’s, Macclesfield with responsibility for the daughter church of St. Andrew’s (now All Saints). In 1970 I was appointed vicar of St. Philip & St. James, Walderslade, Chatham where I served until my retirement in 1993. I became an Honorary Canon of Rochester Cathedral in 1988.

I happily acknowledge that my roots are strongly evangelical but I sometimes wonder whether more fundamentalist evangelicals would still regard me as ‘sound’, particularly as I claim also to be a Charismatic with a Catholic Faith and a high doctrine of the Church. I prefer to say simply that I am the person I am, a Christian.