My father’s family was quite illustrious and some were famous! They were well-educated gentry. My parents were both English and so is my family heritage, traceable back to the 1700’s in Alfrick, Near Great Malvern, Gloucestershire. They were gentlemen farmers, where two brothers owned adjacent farms: Great Buckman’s farm and Little Buckman’s farm in Alfrick, near Great Malvern and the Malvern Hills. Around the 1850’s my Great Grandfather, Professor James Buckman was Professor of Botany, Geology and Natural History. Also known as a Palaeontologist. He left Cirencester Agricultural College in Cirencester, due to difficulties with the new Principal, who was a devout churchman, who disagreed with the Professor’s more liberal views which aligned with Charles Darwin. Consequently, several staff and students left with The Professor, who commenced an experimental farm at Coombe House, Bradford Abbas.
His Father-in-law John Savory of Savory & Moore’s in Bond Street, London, bought the property with four hundred and sixty acres and leased it to his son-in-law, Professor James Buckman, whilst he and his students researched and cross-pollinated plants and vegetables on their experimental farm. Professor James Buckman was known for his experiments; genetically engineering the wild parsnip and removing the wild roots, which grew on the original vegetable; consequently, we do not have these roots on the parsnips we buy today. He also domesticated the tomato and grew several varieties in his greenhouse and sold the fruit to the nearby markets.
Professor James Buckman was also a known for his work in Natural History, Palaeontology and the study of the Lesser Ammonites. Sadly, his wife died from Scarlet Fever, eleven days after the birth of their fifth child, my Grandfather Percy Warner James Buckman. After the death of his wife, Professor James’ children grew up in London with their Grandparents John & Martha Savory, 22 Sussex Place, Marylebone, London. Opposite Regents Park. Who owned Savory and More of Bond Street, London and was Apothecary to Queen Victoria. On the Estate in Bradford Abbas, my Grandfather, Percy Warner James Buckman wrote some of our family history in a Journal, for his children. He tells of evenings spent with local celebrities like Thomas Hardy and Charles Darwin. There are also some quaint stories about life in the English Countryside in the mid-nineteenth century. One of which was that an old farm hand, who lived over the stables, was ‘afeared of the telephone’, which the Professor had invented and installed between the big house and the stables. It was very basic; a wire stretched between the two buildings, a bell and tins to speak into! The old man would never answer it, as he said it was: ‘An invention of the devil’! Professor James Buckman married Julia Sophia Savory, whose parents lived in Sussex Place, opposite Regents Park, in Marylebone, London. Q Julia Roberts Savory’s Parents lived in the style of wealthy Victorians; their household consisted of a number of servants; butler, cook, footman, house keeper, several maids, nannies for the children, a governess, gardeners and a coachman. They rode the streets of London in the mid-19th century in a landau or coach and horses and the children played in Regents Park. Julia Savory Buckman died from scarlet fever, eleven days after the birth of my Grandfather Percy; her five children were raised by their Mother Julia Savory’s Victorian parents, John and Martha Savory in Sussex Place, Regents Park, London. The children spent their summer holidays in Dorset on the farm with their Father. When they were older, both Sydney and Percy attended Sherborne School, Dorset. It is a public school for young gentlemen; in the centre of a historic market town. It remains unchanged to this day, because the quaint market town of Sherborne has been protected by The National Trust in England, as part of their heritage.
Julia Savory’s Father, John Savory, was an apothecary and he owned Savory & Moore in Bond Street, London. He was a doctor, Apothecary to Queen Victoria, Julia Savory played duets and had music lessons with the young Queen Victoria when she was a child. My older sister Julia, who now lives in Toronto, Canada. She now owns this book of duets, with Julia Savory’s name engraved upon it in gold lettering, with gold leaf royal crowns down the spine.
Professor James Buckman used to debate in Oxford with Charles Darwin and they corresponded over a number of years. One hot and dry summer, the Professor noticed a ‘dry patch’ of grass on a hillside and then, when he ‘dug’ he discovered a Roman pavement! Consequently, he established the Cirencester, Corinnium Museum, and later, the Dorset County Museum. Both of these museums were founded with several other gentlemen from the West Country Region of England. He and his oldest son, Sydney Savory Buckman, were also noted for their collections and knowledge on the Lesser Ammonites. Sydney Savory Buckman’s collection of fossils is housed in the Natural History Museum in London. His eleven-volume set on the Lesser Ammonites is still an authority on the subject. Professor James Buckman was also a 33rd degree Mason and he was buried alongside his wife, in the St. Mary’s churchyard in Bradford Abbas, Dorset with full Masonic rites!
The Professor’s wife, Julia Sophia (Savory) Buckman was remembered by her family, when she died from scarlet fever on 10th November, 1865, exactly eighty years to the day prior to my birth! One of Julia Savory’s brothers; the gallant Captain Harry B. Savory of the Royal Household Cavalry; inscribed a marble plaque to his sister. This has been inlaid into the walls of the local church: St. Mary’s, Bradford Abbas. The family also had a stained-glass window made in her memory. The picture depicts ‘Let the little children come to me’ and Julia’s face was used in the figure of Mary, Jesus’ Mother. These widows are very beautiful and delicate.
However, Julia Savories’ brother, the gallant Captain Harry was also a gambler and he was in debt to the Jews for GBP £35,000 for gambling debts! I have used a calculator on Google, which estimates that in 2017 this sum amounts to approximately GBP £3.9 million! This was at a time in history when the average farm worker earned about one shilling a week.
Consequently, the elderly Mrs. Savory sold her home in Sussex Place in order to pay her sons debts and moved to a small country house of some twenty or so rooms, ‘Little Oat Hall’ at Burgess Hill, near Hove, West Sussex. The Burnham Beeches estate, outside London, had once belonged to the Macbeth family, who were Julia Savory’s cousins, as her sister Melita Savory had married Bertie Macbeth, my Father’s Uncle. I own a Macbeth family photo album, from my Father.
Professor James Buckman was Professor of Botany, Geology and Natural History at the Cirencester Agricultural College, in Gloucestershire, England. He had an brother Edwin Buckman, who was a portrait painter in oils.
The Professor’s youngest son, my Grandfather, Percy Buckman also became a well-known Artist of Miniatures, Oil Portraits, water colours, pen and ink drawings, watercolour sketches for chocolate box covers, etchings and many other forms of art. He exhibited at the Royal Academy, London annually. Prior to the World War, Percy was Professor of Life Drawing at Goldsmiths College of Art, South London. During the war years, he became the ‘Acting Principal’ of Goldsmith’s College.
During the late 1890’s My Grandfather, Percy Buckman travelled as the recording artist for an Expedition to the Valley of the Kings in Egypt.
My Mother’s maiden name was Dora Eileen Gladys Dodd and her ancestors were Judges and Theologians. Her family can be traced to the Doomsday Book 1066. Her father was Melville Wilberforce Dodd, as one of her ancestors was in Parliament at the time of the Abolition of Slavery. Another ancestor was Professor Emeritus of Theology at Oxford and Cambridge, in the 1940’s. Charles Henry Dodd, wrote and edited some of the New English Bible and many learned works on Theology, which are still used in Seminaries and Theological Colleges today!
We are a Colonial Family from the days of the end of the British Empire. Another ancestor, Sir Reginald Savory was the Adjunct to Lord Louis Mountbatten, and would have become the next Viceroy of India; after Lord Louis Mountbatten, but India received her Independence before this happened.
Sir Reginald Savory is known for his book: ‘Plain Tales from the Raj’ which speaks of fascinating stories from this period of Indian History. My Father used to correspond with Sir Reginald Savory for a number of years, and my son still has some of these letters, which are stored in ‘the black box’ which is a large old black sea trunk, and serves as our family History archives.
Our family history also includes a family of Buckman’s who migrated to the American Colonies in the 1700’s, with William Penn on the Good Ship ‘Welcome’. They settled in Pennsylvania as farmers. Some descendants are still living there in the original home which they built in the 1700’s. In particular, there are many descendants of the Buckman’s in Topeka, Kansas and surrounding areas! Amazing, as I travelled extensively in this area of America! I only discovered this fact on the internet a week prior to returning home to England in October 2006.
As my ancestors were intrepid explorers and pioneers, the Lord showed me, that we have corporately lived on every major continent in the world! The Lord has been setting this all into place for three hundred years! I was merely the instrument, divinely aligned and positioned in His Divine Timing!
Overview of my Autobiography.
At the age of thirteen, I attended a Billy Graham rally in the Adelaide show grounds in South Australia. I can still remember that night in sharp detail! John 3:16 was preached and the songs sung: ‘Just as I am’ and ‘Oh Lord! How Great Thou Art’! I remember wondering what this was all about and what had changed in my life?
My traditional Church of England did not follow up and consequently there was no real growth in spiritual maturity or Baptism in the Holy Spirit. I only occasionally read my bible, sometimes with my Mother, who at that time worked for the Bishop of Adelaide and was studying a Theological Associate Diploma.
Mother had her vision of The Buckman Academy of Dramatic Arts. My older sister was eventually a music teacher in Primary Schools in South Australia and a regional director of music in the South Australian Education Department. She learned piano at the Adelaide Conservatorium.
My younger sister became a dancer and choreographer and she danced in several countries with The Australian Dance Theatre, which was a Modern Dance company. She attended the Australian Ballet School, however the Director, Dame Peggy van Praagh told her that her legs were too short for her to take her into the Australian Ballet Company. She was also in Ballet Victoria for two years and her first Company was two and half years with the New Zealand Ballet. She travelled to Japan for the Expo in 197? and performed with The Dortmund Opera in Germany. In addition, the Australian Dance Theatre performed at the Edinburgh Festival, in the Summer of 197? Later on she became a Choreographer, where she .?. at Glynebourne Festival in England. My sister was also in Paris at the ? for several years. She has now become a healer through re-connective therapies: Her Ministry is: Re-connective Therapies? Now retired, she lives on the Sunshine coast in Queensland, and teaches Tango, several times a week. This coastal life is wonderful, with golden sandy beaches and massive surfing waves!
I sang in the school choir and Gilbert & Sullivan productions also small parts in Shakespearean plays. My Father sang bass baritone in the Adelaide Philharmonic Choir. He continually criticised my singing and they all told me that I sang flat. For some reason, I was not allowed to flourish in this highly critical, high achieving family. I received no affirmation or encouragement. I had no sense of self-worth either; continually criticised, stifled and crushed! I was a disappointment to them all, due to the continual criticism, from both parents and my siblings.
I had attended many classes: piano lessons, ballet and tap dancing, drama, Irish and Scottish Highland dancing and modelling. From the age of fifteen to eighteen, I did a few years as a part-time catwalk model and some photographic modelling. I left this because I did not enjoy the catty attitudes of the girls involved. At one stage, around nineteen, I had the opportunity to go on Television but chose not to continue with the screen tests, for the same reason as I stopped the modelling; the lifestyle was very shallow and immoral. I see this as The Lord’s hand of protection over my life. I leaned towards the dramatic but my husband ensured that he suppressed and crushed that out of me.
After attending thirteen schools in three countries, I left school without Matriculation, considering that I was a failure! Some years later, I studied for an Associate Diploma of Social Science, Library and Information Science, spending ten years in University libraries and twenty-two years in school libraries. The Lord is Faithful, and I worked fifteen years in private Christian schools, where there was a hymn, prayer and a teaching each morning. Also, one position was in the Ormond College, Theological Library, at the Melbourne University.
Subsequently, in America: also, five months as the Librarian of the Forerunner School of Ministry in Kansas City, prior to returning in October 2006 to live in England.
Our son was born in June 1972 in the Dandenong Ranges, at I was admitted to the William Angliss Hospital, Ferntree Gully, Victoria. I resigned my job at the La Trobe University Library as Secretary to the Technical Services Librarian. Our son is now married with three children. My two Grandsons were born in Highgate, London. Their family returned to live in Melbourne in February 2006.
As I was serving as a voluntary Intercessory Missionary at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City, Missouri, America at the time, I was unable to see or hold my youngest Grandson for three years, and this was a ‘deep sadness’ within my heart. ‘Don’t count the cost when you put your hand to the plough … don’t look back! Take up your cross and follow Me!’ says The Lord!
All these deep wounds required deep inner healing and deliverance. While I was a student at Ellel Ministries NETS International School at Pierrepont, Frensham, Surrey, in England in 2003. I attended NETS 12; a six-month residential school in Healing, Deliverance, Evangelism and Christian Counselling. In addition to all my wounds, there was a deep ‘Root of Rejection’, as my Father had rejected all three daughters at birth. As a traditional Englishman, he only desired to have a son and heir. My parents had had a baby son, who died at birth. This was another outworking of the ancestral curse of Masonry; the death of the Firstborn!
There have been progressive healings of my Father wound since 1990. This has included reading and crying throughout the book ‘Come to Papa’ by Gary Weins. I subsequently received further Revelation of The Father’s Heart and another layer of these deep spiritual wounds was healed, at a Jack Frost ‘Encountering the Father’s Heart’ conference in Lees Summit, Missouri, USA in May 2005. My Father, was passive and undemonstrative and very critical. This negativity always undermined my self-confidence, acceptance and self-worth. It gave me no sense of being or well-being. Dad was age ninety-two when he first told me he loved me and gave me a hug! He died in March 2001, in a hospital in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, at the ripe old age of ninety-three and a half. He was having an ultrasound on his heart and it simply stopped. I have forgiven Dad for this lack of Fathering and lack of protection from Mother’s violence. Bless him, Lord!
My Mother was very loving but also volatile, angry and violent! She was continually exploding, hitting each of her daughters with a hairbrush and scratching our arms deeply until we bled. She used to say: ‘I hit first and ask questions later’! Hence my deep sense of justice! This was continually painful and deeply traumatic! Afterwards, when it all calmed down, we made up with tears of forgiveness. Hugs and love from our deeply affectionate and contrite Mother. Nonetheless, this caused me to go further and more deeply into ’emotional hiding’ and to become a very ‘good girl’. I became extremely helpful: like a servant in the house, along with my older sister. From the age of ten, we were making most of the meals, washing, ironing, cleaning, so as to stay out of trouble and not to cause another outburst!
As mother had always had servants, she was unable to cope with normal family life or cooking and housework. Therefore, her three daughters became her servants. Mother was a very strong, domineering personality and controlled everyone in the family through her anger.
At Ellel Ministries I learned about domination, manipulation and control and how to break these cycles in my life! Praise God! Jesus has released me from my Mother wounds! She too, has been Forgiven and I bless and honour her memory. I give her recognition as the one who first led me to The Lord Jesus Christ at the age of three, I knew that Jesus Healed and that He loved me!
When I married, at age twenty-one in June 1967, I fell in love with an Englishman from East London, who had arrived by ship from England in March 1966 to join his Mother, who had migrated to South Australia in 1965 to stay with her twin sister in Elizabeth. This was a newly built town which lies about twenty miles North of Adelaide. It was built especially to settle all the new British Migrants in the 1960’s.
At twenty-one, I was so ‘In Love’ and starry eyed that I did not see nor understand that my husband-to-be had all the flaws of both my parents. He was a controlling, angry, critical, heavy drinker. As my husband, he was fearfully possessive of me. Two days prior to marrying him, he said to me: ‘I’ll marry you in your church but you are to have nothing more to do with it!’ We were sitting in the car outside the church, having just visited the vicar, prior to our marriage on Friday evening 9th June, 1967, an the end of the six-day war in Israel. I was stunned by his comment but I loved him so much that it was unthinkable to call off the wedding! During my life, in various Churches of England as I grew up, I had never heard any preaching on not marrying an unbeliever and being ‘unequally yoked’. The only sermons I remember were a continual barrage of ‘where is everyone?’ However, the hymns we sang have stayed with me all my life! We were there in church every week! The ministers were ‘preaching to the converted’ and lambasting us for being the ‘only ones’ in church! Not helpful!
We moved thirty-three times during twenty-eight years and spent three years in Auckland, New Zealand, where my husband was transferred to because they required a Lighting Engineer in Auckland. We purchased thirteen acres at Dairy Flat near Albany, on Rural Delivery 2: the highway which runs north from Auckland through the North Island. We bought a house from the North Shore in Auckland and had it cut in half and transported to the property. It was quite a normal thing to do in New Zealand. At the end of 1975, just prior to Christmas, we bought tickets to sail back to Sydney on the Taras Shevchenko; a Russian ship. As our son was only three, my husband reversed roles and stayed at home with him for a year while I worked in Auckland University Library. During that time, father and son cut thistles, planted hundreds of trees, baled hay, had the neighbour’s cows graze on our land and renovated the house. A time of ‘bonding’ for them both!
When I married, I promised The Lord in my Heart, that when it was time to take children to church, that I would return. The Lord honoured that inner vow and I was subsequently ‘touched’ by the Holy Spirit in a small Church of England in Belgrave, Victoria in January 1976, and our son, who by then was aged four, attended a Sunday School for a few weeks, whilst we were staying with friends who were ‘Born again, Spirit filled Christians’. We returned to live in Melbourne from December 1975.
On one occasion in 1976, I attempted to attend an eight o’clock service for several weeks, near our new home in Camberwell, Victoria, but when I returned my husband was not at home! I was upset, worried and anxious about this behaviour and so, when I heard an audible voice say: ‘God’s not in the business of breaking marriages’, I thought it was God but now know that it was not His voice. I submitted to the emotional blackmail and stopped going to church. Years later, I discovered that my husband had left our five-year-old son alone in the house for about ten minutes prior to my return! My husband did not return from the mountains until midnight! He called the mountains his ‘spiritual home’!
After the loss of the business, as Sign Manufacturers in July 1990 and subsequent sale of our home in December 1991. In January 1992, we returned to England, with nothing except my long service leave payment. After resigning from Presbyterian Ladies’ College in April 1992, I spent all my superannuation on re-locating us to England, paid off debts, so that we did not go into Bankruptcy and shipped our household goods to England. Some of the funds, I left in Australia for our son, who was studying at Melbourne University. The balance was soon used up in general living and working in London. Thus, completing forty years in Australia! As I say in my Testimony: ‘Wandering in the Wilderness’!
After the shock of the loss of our home in December 1991, we were in deep shock; I was ‘drowning’ emotionally but hung onto My Rock, Jesus! Our son, was also facing his final exams before going on to University. The trauma of this crisis was very deeply painful for us all!
I was Baptised in the Holy Spirit, at St. Hilary’s Kew, on the 4th August, 1991. For more than twenty-four years, I was not allowed to attend church or to worship or sing! My light was ‘hidden under a bushel’! The tiny seeds of my traditional religious high church, Church of England upbringing lay dormant in my heart. Yes, I still believed that I was ‘saved’ and that I would go to heaven! At the age of thirteen, at the Adelaide Show-grounds, I had given my life to the Lord at a Billy Graham Crusade. I still remember the preaching and all the songs we sang; especially ‘How Great Thou Art’, and ‘Just as I am’!
My husband too, was a deeply wounded child; because he was born on the day Singapore fell, 15th February, 1942. His father was taken into a Japanese Prisoner of War camp in Borneo for three years. Then, still alive at the end of the war, he was loaded onto a lorry with other soldiers for de-mobilisation to England. His Father never returned home! ‘Missing presumed dead’ was the telegram his Mother received! She went into shock and so her new-born baby Son was nurtured by his eleven-year-old Aunt in the East End of a bombed and war shattered London. Therefore, he too, was a spiritually abandoned orphan! No matter how much love I poured into him, he was unable to truly receive my love, nor understand my emotional need for nurture and security. I have forgiven my husband for all the wounding and damage that he caused me during our marriage. In my spirit, I was a wounded child of five in ‘hiding’ from all the conflict in my life. I loved my husband above all else and laid aside my Jesus, by putting my husband on the ‘pedestal’ because I idolised him. Especially, for his wonderfully active mind, creativity, knowledge and wisdom.
He worked very hard for all of us throughout our almost thirty years together. We owned and renovated seven houses, my husband re-built them slowly, with the consequence of causing us to live in half-built houses for most of our marriage! My mother used to say that: ‘I had a roof over my head by no walls’! My husband and I rarely disagreed about anything, due to the fact that I had been so wounded as a child, that I could not face conflict and stand up to his bullying, control and harassment. It wasn’t until years later that I realised that I was an emotionally ‘battered wife’! His favourite name for me was ’stupid’! Yes, I must have been so!
After ten years, there was an incident of adultery with a barmaid from one of the pubs where he drank regularly. He also threatened to take our son if I left him, which was more emotional blackmail! It worked: I forgave him and stayed in the marriage, as I was determined not to become a divorce statistic!
When our yacht eventually sold in 1993, my husband decided that he would have another yacht and live on it! So, I borrowed a personal loan of five thousand pounds to help him purchase the yacht. When he finally left me in Colchester, Essex on 31st May, 1994, I was threatened under duress of further violence, if I didn’t sign my part over to him! Even though I should have had half the proceeds of the yacht sale and I still owed that amount to my bank for the personal loan. The parable of the unmerciful servant helped me to process my pain and to forgive him!
My husband was man with a thirst for knowledge; he could talk on any subject around a dinner table. His love of sailing, took us to various inland lakes, oceans, rivers and places of beauty and tranquillity! Times where we all have very happy memories! My husband was artistic, although denied fulfilment of this gifting, due to his family being too poor to support him to study at the Slade Art School in London, during the late 1950’s. He had been awarded a part scholarship, but his Mother and Step-father declined to send him, because they could not afford to support him. His Step-Father died of throat cancer and unable to speak for three years. After his death, his Mother migrated to Adelaide, South Australia in 1965 to live with her twin sister and her family for a year, prior to her son, seeking adventure, followed her to Australia in March 1966.
Sadly, my husband’s Mother Margaret Wem also died of cancer some years later, in Sydney, 1977. I walked the long lonely road in my marriage for twenty-eight years because I had promised The Lord: ‘For richer, for poorer, till death do us part!’ My Covenant to The Lord meant more to me than anything I suffered. In fact, I didn’t leave!
The Lord had to move him out of my two-bedroomed flat near the station in Colchester, Essex! The Lord whispered softly into my heart: ‘I do not want it to be the death of you!’
For four years 1990-1994, there had been crisis after crisis of trauma and physical violence, as I grew in the Holy Spirit’s Anointing! The night I first attended a discipleship course, my husband tore up both my Grandparents Bibles, Old King James version, which were lying around in the house! He threw knives and forks and raged violently. I stood and prayed: ‘frozen with fear’! At the discipleship class, I had just heard about the ‘covering of the Blood of Jesus’ and prayed for His Protection! The violence continued and there were constant threats to burn the house down, kill all the cats; divorce or murder me, drive his car over a cliff or suicide! Meanwhile, my husband continued to drink heavily and on one night drinking himself into a coma.
Our son left home after a nasty incident, because he was unable to do his university studies in that environment! Several months earlier, I had arranged to rent a flat near the University, but I didn’t move because my husband begged ‘his sunshine’ not to leave him! Despite all these difficulties, I eventually agreed to go to England with him, to try a new start and praying for reconciliation and restoration of our marriage.
With several friends from church, I was praying throughout the house sale and auction. In a collapsing market, the house sold and the auction reached a sum which would clear the first and second mortgages. After the house was sold, every cent went to the bank! I took my long-service leave entitlement, as I had been working for eleven years the at Presbyterian Ladies College Library in Burrswood, Melbourne, Victoria and was due a term’s long-service leave on full pay.
Thus, on 17th January 1992, we travelled to Sydney, then flew to Hawaii for two days lay over, Chicago and Buffalo, USA. and on to stay with my older sister and her husband in Toronto, Canada.
My older sister had re-married a Canadian. She and her husband, drove down to Buffalo, New York to pick us up and drive to their home via Niagara Falls to Toronto; it was minus thirty-five degrees! We spent two weeks in Toronto in January 1992, then flew down to New York to complete our American Airlines one-way winter special fare of ninety-nine Australian dollars and continued our booked flight to Paris, which departed from John F. Kennedy airport New York at 7.00 pm in the evening of the same day.
However, our Mother had died in Adelaide two days prior to our departure from Toronto and so my sister and I had been able to hold a small memorial service for Mother at my sisters’ Episcopalian Church in Mississauga, Ontario. We were able to do this trip due to finding a Winter Special of one-way tickets to Europe for A$99 each, so amazing to find this American Airlines deal!
We flew down from Toronto airport to La Guardia and flew out from John F. Kennedy airport. As I was grieving deeply, we spent one-day 10 am-7pm being driven by a private taxi to see the sights of New York and negotiated the fare over lunch.
The President was coming to the United Nations, so the city was closing down in ‘gridlock’ which was a very interesting experience, to see the streets of New York, being lined with Police, standing shoulder to shoulder along the Avenue which passed the United Nations building!
During our overnight flight across the Atlantic, it was Mothers’ funeral in Adelaide. All I wanted to do was cry! My husband kept telling me to stop crying, as I was not allowed to cry in public on the aeroplane! We landed in Charles de Galle airport and bought tickets straight to England because I was grieving and could not enjoy the planned three days in Paris. We continued our journey to Orly airport by bus, then a short flight to Heathrow; a bus to Gatwick Airport where we found a Bed’n’Breakfast for a couple of days in Horley. I was exhausted from the journey through seven airports in thirty-six hours, new shoes and blistered feet! Travelling in this way, I certainly do not recommend!
My husband’s relatives, who we were due to stay with in Crawley nearby, had visitors for the weekend and we could not stay with them immediately. So, once we found a Bed’n’Breakfast in Horley, East Sussex and I was behind closed doors, I cried for hours! My husband went down to have his first English pint, in an English pub in twenty-five years!
By now we were almost out of funds and so we were eventually invited to stay the weekend with my cousin at the Millhouse near Tonbridge, Kent. They had re-named the Millhouse to its original Doomsday book name.
A week later, we moved in with my husband’s Aunt in the East End of London. She told me many stories of their struggles in war-devastated London after the war! I then had more revelation of my husband’s early formative years, his inability to sleep properly due to being thrown under a bed when hearing a ‘doodlebug’ bomb overhead, at the age of three!
In March 1992, I returned to Australia for six weeks. I resigned my job at Presbyterian Ladies’ College; cleared up the mess left in Australia, saw our son, sold the car, visited my Father in Adelaide and helped him clear out my Mother’s things. My sister and her husband were also in Adelaide from Canada, on a divinely timed visit of seven days with Dad. We were all together in their home. My sister’s husband had booked their journey from Canada and I booked from England. Amazingly, we all three sat together on the same Qantas internal flight to Melbourne! Amazing, Lord! During the six weeks that I was in Australia, I was able to see all my friends and round off our friendships in a wonderful way. This was an incredibly blessed visit: The Lord released me from Australia and I was never homesick, even though I had now spent ‘forty years’ down-under in the Wilderness in Australia, including three parenthetical years in New Zealand.
The only person I grieved for was our son, who we left in Melbourne University, studying Electronics and Computer Engineering. It was three years before we saw him again! I even missed his twenty-first birthday, which was deeply painful for me!
When I returned to London, I found a contract job for six months, cataloguing a Preparatory School Library in Loughton, Essex. In January 1993, I commenced work as the Librarian at Central Foundation Boys’ School in Central London, near Old Street tube station, EC2A. Part of the school buildings was an old church, which had been incorporated into the school as classrooms and a gymnasium. This was a church built on the site of George Whitfield’s Chapel. I have stood in a small study in this church where George Whitfield’s Anointing is still powerful and strong! Glory to God! This is where my heart was ignited with the Fire of Revival! This chapel stands facing Tabernacle Street and two blocks down on the same street, stands the Wesley Chapel, where I occasionally spent my lunchtimes in prayer. The brothers John and Charles Wesley were also Revivalists in the 1750’s at the same time as George Whitfield. Although rivals, they were corporately used by God to bring Revival and Transformation throughout England and America!
There was a small park nearby to the school where I worked, which was built out of on an old bombed site. At lunchtimes, I would go there to read my Bible and pray. It was a place that I loved to sit quietly in the weak winter sunshine and to meditate, on my fasting days. Central Foundation Boys’ School had seven hundred and fifty boys at the school. Half the school were Muslims, some students were other faiths, Sikh, Hindu, Jewish and a small number of Christians.
With the religious education teacher, I used to co-ordinate ‘Our Faith Assemblies’. I also spoke to the students about my Faith on several occasions. During the four and a half years that I worked at this school, I played a continual Sacrifice of Praise from my Library office. I had a Graham Kendrick worship tape without words, which changed the atmosphere. The boys all enjoyed the music, even the Muslim students used to come into my office and turn the tapes over!
During lunchtimes, there were debates between the Christian and Muslim students in the Library. Also, during Ramadan, the Library was full of the fasting Muslim students. One student asked whether I fasted and he laughed: ‘Oh I expect you don’t eat chocolate during Lent!’ He was so surprised when I told him that I fasted one day a week: no food for twenty-four hours and only drank water. This news reached all the Muslim students within a day and my problems with behaviour and conflict between the Faiths improved over night, as they showed respect to me as a Woman of Faith.
This was a challenging position, as the surrounding area was high-rise flats and these students belonged to gangs from each building. In their spare time, these guys belonged to their gangs and beat each other’s brains out with baseball bats and bike chains! Some older youths from the surrounding area attacked one of our students, by beating him over his head with a hammer, in broad daylight! He was outside the school at lunchtime to buy some lunch. These youths are street wise and very tough. Their way of showing affection was to strangle one another in ‘play’, which I realised later was the only ‘touch’ they received! I installed a local area network, bought new book-stock, catalogued and put in a security system. This was a challenge to the students to see how they could steal the books! There were occasionally violent outbreaks in the Library, which I had to settle.
One day, I took a Swiss Army knife off an Afro-Caribbean student, who was holding it at the throat of another student from Africa! I stretched out my hand and commanded: ‘Junior, hand it over!’ he responded immediately, but complained loudly that it was a Birthday gift from his Aunt! Needless to say, that it was never returned to him by the Deputy Headmaster!
All the while, in my personal life, the violence continued, whilst living in our rented home on the River Thames waterfront in the Docklands. I was thrown out into a taxi with all my personal goods, which had been thrown down on-top of me through the house. I had been kicked down the stairs and in the head. My husband came to my cousin’s home in Earls Court to pick me up after three days. He was deeply apologetic and contrite. When I returned, I lay on the sofa with concussion, drifting in and out of consciousness for a week! This outburst was caused by my husband over-hearing me talking on the phone to my Christian counsellor.
One Sunday evening, after returning from church, I was a few minutes late home, due to receiving prayer. My husband flew into a rage and opened the front window wide and threw his wedding ring into the River Thames, which was across our small front lawn and over the low wall and footpath, into the Thames! Although I had suffered, I was still determined to show him the unconditional love of a Christian wife! So, I continued to pray through all the situations and hold on to Jesus! Covering myself in the blood of Jesus daily and putting on the Whole Armour of God! I would pray Ephesians chapter six. The Lord protected me! We moved out of that house on the river after a year.
I lived with his Aunt and my husband lived on his yacht at the Walton-Frinton Yacht club, on the Essex coast. He had a part-time job at the chandlers on three days a week. I travelled up to the yacht each weekend and back to East London on Sunday afternoons in time for evening church. One afternoon my husband tried to set fire to the yacht because I had taken his bottle of whiskey away from him and hidden it. So, he turned on the gas and was about to set fire to the boat! I simply threw his small bottle of whiskey back to him!
Even so, in order to bring restoration, once again, I agreed to try to live together again, so purchased an apartment in Colchester on one month’s deposit and one month’s rent in advance. This apartment was in my name, as I was the one with the full-time job and taxation records, etc. in order to qualify for a mortgage from the Royal Bank of Scotland. We only lived there together for six weeks, including more abuse and violence, again my disc collapsed and I crawled to my car to go to church to get prayer. I had prayer three times that week over my spine and then the pain was healed! Glory to God! There were more threats of violence over the yacht, so I signed it over to him under duress.
I had lived with my husband for twenty-eight years, for ‘Peace at any Price’! The Price was too high! He almost killed me! One weekend, when I returned to Colchester, I found that he had mutilated the photograph albums. He had cut himself out of photos and mutilated photos of himself or torn photos into two! I cried hysterically for hours! A few days later he continued to threaten to leave and after packing his boxes in the passageway for another month, he left to live aboard the yacht.
One evening he returned, asking to move back in? I lay in the bath, weak and exhausted and prayed and cried out to The Lord: ‘Jesus, help me! Please give me the strength to say no!’ Thankfully, The Lord did give me the strength that I prayed for! So, on 31st May, 1994, my husband moved out! When I eventually got the spare set of keys back, they were sawn into two.
I was exhausted and broken and very lonely. I continued running and working in London; going to church in Colchester at an alive-in-the-spirit Charismatic Community Church. I also stayed in London for the Revival Prayer meetings at Holy Trinity Brompton on Thursday evenings, prior to catching the fast train home to Colchester, Essex, which was approximately eighty miles from London. Then at Easter 1995, I looked after my husband’s Aunt’s pets while she went on holiday to Cornwall.
I had decided to go to the Easter Services at Holy Trinity Brompton all weekend. This is where I met a young single mother and her seven-year-old daughter. She offered for me to stay with them during the week and travel home for the weekends. A week later, I moved in to live with them during the week, travelling home to Colchester for the Weekends.
At that time, I was attending a part-time Bible School on Tuesday evenings and all day Saturday, once a month. When commuting from Colchester, eighty miles out of London, the fast train took an hour into Liverpool Street Station. This is an extremely expensive way to travel, costing two and a half thousand pounds a year for a Season ticket at that time! I changed churches and became a member of Holy Trinity Brompton from April 1995- January 1999.
During 1995, I attended all four services on Sunday’s, a home group, the Alpha course, four early morning 7-8 am prayer meetings, prior to catching the underground across London to my work in Old Street. On Thursday evenings, I also attended a Revival Prayer meeting. This was at the time of the ‘Toronto Blessing Outpouring’, which became a: ‘Times of Refreshing of the church worldwide’, during the outpouring of the Holy Spirit to churches around the World. After the second service on Sunday evenings, there was often ‘Ministry without chairs’ with the floor carpeted with shaking and rolling noisy bodies! Hilarious but also wonderfully refreshing! I kept ‘running ahead of the Lord’, for the whole year, as well as trying to deal with my divorce! Another emotionally difficult, stressful and exhausting year!
We were divorced in February, 1996 in London. Thus, this concluded our lives together: from meeting on the 9th December 1966 to divorce on the 22nd February 1996. Almost thirty years together! In actual fact, it was not only the death of our marriage, it was also almost the death of me! After all the struggles, trauma and crisis’ I was exhausted! The final collapse came on the 24th April, 1996. ‘I suffered a massive breakdown’ and could not walk for the next five and a half years. I was suffering from Chronic Fatigue, a collapsed disc, sciatic pain down both legs, coccyx’s pain which I sat on for two and a half years in the wheelchair, until delivered of the spirit of infirmity at an Ellel Ministries Healing retreat in 1998.
The neuralgia attacks lasted weeks and at their most severe, my right eye optic nerve closed to the point where my vision became black and white! I also suffered with pain in both kidneys, my liver and spleen were both distended and painful. All my internal organs were barely functioning and I had adrenal depletion. The doctor said that I was breathing but oxygen was not circulating to my cells, I was barely alive! I could hardly speak and could not remember anything without writing it down! I had a totally toxic body, which was very near to death. The only explanation the doctors had was Chronic Fatigue due to stress!’
One night in May 1996, as I lay on my bed ‘shaking in the Holy Spirit’; I asked The Lord to: ‘Take me home’! I whispered to Him, ‘I either live or die; I am in your hands!’ He chose to blow His breath of Resurrection Life into me! Quite Incredible!
Due to the stagnation, my glandular system also ceased working, causing a huge fluid build-up due to lack of movement! I became much heavier and was still fairly immobile during rehabilitation. Many years later, I have now lost a large amount of weight and have almost returned to my original weight at the time of the breakdown.
At the end of 1995, my ex-husband returned to live in Australia. It has now been many years since he left me in Colchester, Essex, England. I was totally crushed, broken, rejected, abandoned, orphaned and defiled in body, mind and spirit!
I have come to the place of total Forgiveness towards my husband, because I have been enabled by The Lord to ‘Let Go’ and to give my wounds to Jesus on the cross: For His Precious Blood to cover our sin and He has healed my wounds and diseases! It took me several years to forgive myself and to also accept that I had suffered the breakdown of our Covenant Relationship and broken my Covenant promises to The Lord! In June 2007 in England, The Lord celebrated Our Covenant Relationship, on the 9th June, 2007 our Forty Years’ Anniversary!
International House of Prayer, Kansas City, Missouri, USA. 2003-2006, I was serving on full-time Ministry Staff 55 hours a week. In addition to all this, I was released to travel throughout Kansas one weekend a month, as a Licensed Itinerant Minister. As I travelled in Kansas, speaking, teaching, preaching and giving my healing testimony; ministering at Houses of Prayer in Kansas. I also attended Several Sacred Assemblies in both the Four State Assembly and twice at the Haskell Native American University in Lawrence, KS. In addition, there were prophetic intercessory journeys to open the Western Gate in Dodge City and prophetic intercession over the Prairie Fires: Making Prophetic Declarations for Revival and Transformation in Kansas and America and the Nations!
In October 2006, I returned to England, after three exciting years in America, serving as a voluntary Intercessory Missionary at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City. There, I learned to ‘Live by Faith & Walk in the Spirit!’ My Wonderful Lord being my source of Supply: I learned Obedience and Trust in Him! He supplied: ‘All my needs according to His riches in Glory in Christ Jesus my Lord!’ Philippians 4:19. He is So Faithful!
The church where I was Licensed as a Minister of the Gospel at Keelville, South East Kansas, was the First Pentecostal church in America and it was built by Charles Parham and his team of students. I was commissioned and Licensed under my Apostolic Oversight the Rev’s. Vernon and Peggy Holloway. Brother Vernon carried the Charles Parham mantle, passed to him from Charles Parham’s grand-daughter on her deathbed. Charles Parham was used by The Lord in the Topeka Kansas Revival of 1900.
Revival broke out during a New Years’ Eve prayer meeting! The place where their Bible School was situated burned down, due to Parham and his students being evicted! The Lord struck Stone’s Folly with lightening and it burnt down, never to be rebuilt! Charles Parham and his followers moved on, travelling South to plant sixteen small chapels in South East Kansas and along the Northern Borders of Oklahoma, before starting a Bible School in Houston, Texas.
Brother William Seymour, who was African American, also travelled and studied with them, but as it was still the era of segregation, he sat on the other side of the door, listening through a crack in the door, during the teaching. Later, in April 1906 William Seymour left the college and travelled to Los Angeles. On 9th April 1906, The Azusa Street Revival broke out in Los Angeles and then spread to the whole world. This Revival became the foundation of what we now know as the Pentecostal Church, throughout the World!
On the 17th January 2007, I joined Christ Church in Tunbridge Wells, Kent. As by then, I had retired, I served The Lord in a voluntary capacity, as an Intercessor and as the temporary Secretary to the Vicar on four days a week at Christ Church.
I entered a season where I re-commenced writing my Autobiography: ‘Through the Storm: A Journey of Healing and Transformation!’ The aim of my book is to Glorify the Lord for all He has done in my life and also to focus on the question: ‘How did you heal?’ My prayer is, that the book will help others to heal from life-long wounds, In the Mighty Names of Jesus, my Lord and Saviour!
As a child of five, I loved England and my heart was at home! I had never reconciled to living abroad from my homeland, and eventually at the age of sixty-one, I re-settled in Tunbridge Wells, Kent. I now live near two first cousins but one subsequently passed in September 2007! The Lord has been so good to me, for He knew my heart was to live in the countryside in England! He has brought me ‘home’ and I am now settled and deeply peaceful in my heart!
I Glorify you, Lord Jesus for what you have done for me! You have Healed and Restored my life! Glory to God! Revelation 12:11 ‘…and they Overcame by the Blood of the Lamb and by the word of their Testimony, and they did not love their lives unto death.’
Job 42:10 ‘And the Lord restored Job’s losses when he prayed for his friends. Indeed, The Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before! Shalom ~ Peace!