Farewell Event – Revd. Michael Crawford
By Margaret Sheard
We were invited to a lovely, but rather sad, occasion organised by Carol Blackwell-Gibbs and her husband James Gibbs who held a cocktail party at their home to say farewell to the Reverend Michael Crawford who took over the temporary duty of Chaplain of St Andrew’s Church in Girne for the period from 28th December until 12th April when the new lady Chaplain, the Reverend Wendy Hough, will be taking up her new post.
James Gibbs, who is a member of the Church committee, and Carol said how much they had appreciated and enjoyed Michael’s contribution to St Andrew’s during this short temporary time and they will be sorry to see him go and also his wife Jacqueline who was at the party with him.
I spoke with Jacqueline who told me they had been in Cyprus for some 10 years and they had a Parish for 5 years which was the Church in South East Cyprus in the Ayia Napa area and apart from spending a few months in the UK each year they still remain for the majority of their time in Cyprus. Michael and Jacqueline lived in Diss, Norfolk prior to coming to Cyprus, they have 4 children – 1 in Norfolk, 2 in South London and 1 son in America who is an actor. They also have 6 grandchildren. They are not sure yet of their plans for the future but Jacqueline said that perhaps there was a reason why God had sent them to North Cyprus and during their time here they had certainly loved the area and the people.
There were many people present to say their farewells and the room was buzzing with conversation, while Carol and James made sure glasses were topped up and food brought around. Carol must have been working all day to produce the lovely canapés which kept appearing such as little quail eggs, shaped biscuits, tartlets, all with a variety of toppings, sausages and dips. Everything was delicious and very more’ish.
Also at the party was John Tyrrell, the Dean of St Paul’s Cathedral in Nicosia, with his wife Carol, who has also come to the end of his 5 year contract and they will be leaving the island on 30th June to return to their homeland, Canada.
I also spent some time talking to Carol who had been a Nurse in earlier years and after discussing our various personal medical problems we talked about what the future will hold for John and Carol. They will be setting up home in Edmonton, Alberta so will be near to their family. They have 2 children, Ann who is a legal assistant for the Government in the Northern Territories, and Bruce who is married with 2 sons and is a senior school teacher. Carol said when they are settled back in Canada she will probably use her nursing skills with some voluntary work.
It was rather strange as while talking to Carol I realised I had met her and John some years ago and I recalled meeting them somewhere, which I cannot now remember, and they had just arrived in Cyprus for John to take up his new post as Dean. A small world indeed.
All too soon the party was at an end and everyone said their farewells, especially to Michael and Jacqueline and also to John and Carol and we wish them all a happy future wherever they may be.
The licensing of Reverend Wendy Hough as Chaplain of St Andrew’s Church, Kyrenia, will take place on Saturday 12th April at 3:00pm. The Ven Dr John Holdsworth, Archdeacon in Cyprus and Executive Archdeacon, will officiate. We hope to be able to meet up with the new Chaplain when she has settled in to acquaint people with the Reverend Wendy Hough.