The Rev. Jonathan Kester, vicar of our sister parish Emmanuel Church in West Hampstead, London, is on sabbatical and in residence at St. Michael’s through May.
“We’ve been praying for each other for so long that it seems only right that we should know each other better,” Jonathan says via Skype.
West Hampstead is a “reasonably prosperous village within the cluster of villages that is London,” Jonathan says. He has been Emmanuel’s vicar — the Anglican equivalent of rector — since 2013.
“I’m passionately committed to Emmanuel’s serving the whole community,” Jonathan says. After an 11-month building process, Emmanuel has just opened four new rooms that will serve everything from senior care to artists’ exhibitions.
St. Michael’s parishioner Jeff Jeffreys, father of Rhian and Delia, has been worshiping at Emmanuel for some time now as his company has relocated him back home to the U.K. “It’s a vibrant, diverse parish with a lot of young families,” Jeff says.
The night before the Skype chat, Jonathan attended a Passover seder at a nearby synagogue along with fellow clergy and several imams. “There we were, the three Abrahamic faiths all together — peaceably,” Jonathan says.
Images: Fr. Jonathan and Emmanuel Church