Hello from our new Deacon, Duncan Aitkins

I wish to thank Fr Steve for allowing me to join the Parish Team. I have known some of the team well over the years and my own association with St Edmund’s parish goes back over many years – to Fr Jack, of course, and even to Fr Peter Strand who was my spiritual director when I was in formation for the diaconate. He was based at Holy Rosary at the time of his retirement – I learnt much more just being with him and listening to him than from any text-book. What can I say about myself which would be of interest?

Some basic facts: I am married to Marian who comes from Kilmarnock, and we have three daughters and four grand-children and aspire to be Fireman Sam if my 4-year old grandson (soon to be 5) ever allows me to graduate to that position – at present I am Officer Steele only and I take the phone calls – that’s it!! I will be celebrating 22 years of my diaconate on the feast of St Francis of Assisi which seems unreal as it only seems like yesterday that I was ordained. My parish originally was St Joseph’s, Bromley but I have also assisted at St Anthony of Padua, Anerley for 5 years and St Theresa’s, Biggin Hill for the past 8 years.

I continue to work having started in the public sector, through many central government departments, Bromley Council, Bromley College FE, Bexley Management College, charity sector, management consultancy and currently, in the social housing sector, where I am a Housing Director of a small housing co-op in the London Borough of Brent. I have also worked in the voluntary sector for more years than I can imagine and you may have heard of LATCH, Bromley Refugee Network JusB (youth club) and currently Kairos Community Trust. If I say I am a Tranmere Rovers supporter you will know where my roots are and I am proud to have attended St Anselm’s College, Birkenhead. I am currently on the Catholic Social Teaching MA programme at St Mary’s University with Fr Ashley who is leading the course – this is incidentally, my 8th university! I look forward to renewing old friendships and making new ones. God bless you all.

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