Meet the team
Howard is a professional educator. In 2007 he travelled solo across the Sahara desert by motorbike on off-road routes. He was seeking distance from his church-based research work and rediscovery of God. In May 2018 he ventures from his desk at a leading British theological college, where he is vice-Principal, and embarks on the Navigators of Faith voyage –an adventure of travel and enquiry exploring how we might discern and engage with our intuitions about faith.
Andy is a businessman and has been sailing for most of his life. In 2012, having had limited religious involvement for much of his adult life, he underwent a series of encounters with Christ, the first being a vision of the crucified Jesus in
Malmesbury Abbey. Initially sceptical, he experienced a transformation that led to him taking a part-time four year course in theology where he met Howard. Their shared interests and discussions has led to Navigators of Faith. Andy is the skipper for the voyage and also brings understanding of non-faith culture and the Christian experience to the mission, and seeks insights into what faith may mean today in modern Britain.
MEET THE CREW
Ed used to be a Solicitor, but all of that has been forgiven now! Latterly he has completed a degree in Theology at Trinity College, Bristol. He is the owner of the Liverpool class lifeboat, the William Cantrell Ashley, which was stationed at Clovelly for twenty years. He identifies his ministry as rescuing people from all manner of shipwreck, be it physical, spiritual, financial, mental or emotional, rejoicing in the truth that as he does so, he too gets wonderfully delivered.
I am taking part in this voyage because I believe there is a fruitful dialogue to be had between Christianity and the problems of our time. However, we have to find new ways to listen to the stories of the places and people we meet before we can learn new ways to tell the Gospel story. Sailing requires constantly responding to the wind and the waves and in the same way the Church needs to listen and respond to the Spirit already at work in these isles.
For me the idea of sailing and the love of the sea has always been a strong bond with me, crewing on yachts and sailing dinghies, scuba-diving et cetera. I started going to St. Andrews in Congresbury and getting more involved with the Community which strengthened my Christian beliefs, this is how I met Matthew Thompson and Howard Worsley. When Howard mentioned Navigators Of Faith and the idea of sailing around Great Britain well I thought yes I would love to take part in this. The Celts and their sailing, meeting all kinds of people on their voyage of adventure. This puts a whole new dimension for me to sail on a vessel to preach our faith, in a calm smooth way, on a totally different tangent.
Mark ‘Rock Star’ Pilgrim
Why am I on this Navigators of Faith trip? There’s a short answer and a long answer. The short one is ‘Because Andrew Carnegie mistook me for someone else’. The long one is ‘Because I love both sailing and unveiling the riches of the Kingdom of God – and the Navigators of Faith pilgrimage gives everyone involved the opportunity to do both of these at the same time: and, since my surname is Pilgrim, it’s quite natural for me to go on a pilgrimage – particularly sailing in the wake of the Celtic Saints.
After living abroad, I moved to Bristol in 2011. I enjoy chatting with friends over coffee; sharing and discovering new perspectives on faith. I am a totally inexperienced sailor, though love travelling on boats.
I was delighted to be given the opportunity to join the Navigators of faith for part of their journey, as it combined two of my great loves, talking about Jesus and sailing. I was excited to explore the Celtic spirituality and see how we could learn from those who travelled by sea to share the good news of the gospel on these shores many years ago.
My many navigations in the last 60 years have sometimes been guided by serendipity, but latterly more by the adventurous call of God. Now living in my 34th home (a place dedicated to St Oswald, whose example inspired me to leave the world of business, farming and lay renewal in Cambridge, for life as a rural vicar) – so delighted to be invited aboard beautiful Rival Star and the listening, laughing, reflecting outreach that is Navigators of Faith. Ultreya!
Susan Iskander, Rector of All Saints Springfield in the Diocese of Chelmsford, since 2015, has been sailing since the age of four. Up to 2015 she had 29 years in health service management – mainly change management, leadership development and coaching.
Philip Mounstephen is Executive Leader of Church Mission Society, a community of people committed to putting the mission call of God into practice, following in what one of his predecessors called, ‘the spirit of Iona’.
Jenny is a Methodist minister serving in the Leicester Trinity. She’s part of this adventure because a colleague and friend who knows Howard and knows her love of sailing sent her an email ‘you may be interested in this’ commending Howard. As someone who has discovered a love of sailing and used it as a means of reflecting more deeply on God, life and ministry, the lure of a voyage which promised a visit to the Isles of Scilly in the company of others who were reflecting on what our faith and heritage might say to our modern culture, was just too great a temptation to resist.
MEET THE 'BEHIND THE SCENES' CREW
Sheila is the Navigators of Faith project administrator. Sheila has previously worked with Howard as an Assistant Director for Schools and administrative lead. They make a great team and Sheila has come out of a busy early-retirement to ensure that the Navigators of Faith administration is ship-shape during the adventure.
Charly is the Navigators of Faith behind the scenes saviour! She runs the website but obviously didn’t write this bio. Charly has helped in every way possible from antifouling and cleaning Rival Star to baking and helping to provision the boat. Charly also organised the making of 60 St Brigid’s crosses to be given out at each port and has made the ship’s Visitor Log.
Adele is both behind the scenes and part of the crew, and is also wife to Andrew. She knows her way around sailing Rival Star and has been supporting Andrew in getting the boat ready pre-voyage but is new to updating websites!