Tuesday, August 31, 2010

bill fosdike

Our lovely friend, Bill Fosdike, sadly died just over a week ago at the age of nearly 87. Moira+I got to know him and his family shortly after we’d got married at the end of 1972 and went to live in Summertown, Oxford. He was the Rector of St Michael’s and All Angels Church in Summertown. We became very close family friends (his wife Ruth is our Ruth’s godmother) and have fond memories of shared holidays in Cornwall, garden picnics, epiphany suppers, mowing church lawns, producing the weekly “teamsheet” shared service leaflets, church wardenship, the formation of ecumenical parish, voting in favour of women priests… not to mention lots of building committee stuff (amongst a whole host of other things).
He was a lovely, articulate, wise, inspiring and gentle man and became very much like a second father-figure to me. He was a great listener and one of the ironies about his own death is that there must be dozens, if not hundreds, of families to whom he became a massive support when they experienced the death of a family member. Another irony is that one of Bill’s first parishes was St Francis’s Church in Bedminster, Bristol (about a 10 minute walk from our house). What I didn’t know until very recently was that he had been a Major in the Indian Army (his Regimental Centre was near the Himalayas). He celebrated the 50th anniversary of his ordination in 2005.
Moira+I attended his funeral earlier today at St Mary’s Church, Kidlington and, as one might have imagined, the church was absolutely packed with family, friends and colleagues wanting to pay their respects to a very special man.
Photo: Bill christened each of our daughters (from left to right: Ruth, Hannah and Alice).

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