Reflection in an Oasis of Calm & Stillness

The Reverend Jack Burton first preached in St Clement church in 1969. He was ordained as a Methodist Minister in 1965 but after 5 years took the unusual step of being a "worker priest." For the next 35 years he combined the dual roles of minister and bus driver.

Jack loved St Clement and had long been inspired by it's beauty and ambience and in 1977 took the rather unusual step of approaching the Norwich Historic Churches Trust to ask if he could personally rent the church. He took over the tenancy in 1978 as a base for his ministry. Since this time Jack has opened the church daily for private prayer and meditation. It is now the only church open for this purpose between Fye Bridge and Magdalen Street Gates. Over the time he has been the church custodian he is pleased to have been able to offer people the opportunity to sit and reflect within St Clement. Not that it has always been quiet.

For a number of years the highlight of the year was the Christmas Midnight Mass, which was part of the churches various seasonal festivities which included Jack conducting the carol singing whilst standing on a windowsill at The Ribs of Beef Pub! Also, whilst working, Jack held a number of christenings, funerals & weddings, many for his work colleagues.

Since retiring the only service which is now formally held in the church is the Parker service, which was commissioned by Matthew Parker, who left funds for the benefit of Corpus Christi College (Cambridge) subject to the annual service been held at St Clement. Parker, who became Archbishop of Canterbury in the reign of Elizabeth 1st, was educated by the rector of St Clements and in the South Churchyard is a box tomb inscribed to the memory of his parents. For his various "investigative activities" he was given the epithet "nosey parker" - a description still in use today!

 

 

 

Churches managed by NHCT are highlighted in in bold below. Click to visit a church.
All Saints Westlegate St. George Tombland St. Julian St. Michael at Plea
St. Andrew St. Giles St. Lawrence St. Peter Hungate
St. Augustine St. Gregory St. Margaret St. Peter Mancroft
St. Benedict St. Helen St. Martin at Oak St. Peter Parmentergate
St. Clement St. James Pockthorpe St. Martin at Palace Plain St. Saviour
St. Edmund Fishergate St. John de Sepulchre St. Mary Coslany St. Simon & St. Jude
St. Etheldreda St. John Maddermarket St. Mary the Less St. Stephen
St. George Colegate St. John Timberhill St. Michael(Miles) Coslany St. Swithin