David Watson

David-Watson-sqDavid Watson was born in Yorkshire in 1933. He was educated at Wellington College in Berkshire and spent two years in the Army doing his National Service followed by five years at Cambridge University where he read philosophy, psychology and related subjects at St John’s College, then theology at Ridley Hall. In 1959 he was ordained and served his first curacy at St Mark’s, Gillingham, Kent. He married his wife Anne in 1964 having returned to Cambridge and his burden for student work began to grow. In 1965 David moved to St Cuthbert’s, York, a redundant church on the brink of closure, and aimed to establish a city congregation in which students from the new university could feel at home. David began to take university missions in 1966 in the UK and abroad, leading over 60 in all. From 1974 he led Festivals in towns and cities worldwide, involving a wide range of denominations and traditions, with the triple aim of evangelism, renewal and unity. In 1978 the then Archbishop of York set him aside as Rector of St Michael’s enabling him to travel for six to seven months a year and appointed a Vicar to maintain the work in York. David was also made a Canon of York Minster. He wrote thirteen books, including his autobiography “You are my God”. David underwent major surgery for cancer in 1983, but was able to return to work and spoke on television and radio of his hope not only of healing but that “the best is yet to be”. He gave his last two sermons “He is my Refuge” and “Secure in Christ” in January 1984 and died on 18th February.

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