Russell joined the team at Emmanuel as minister at the beginning of August 2016. He was previously at Horley Baptist Church in Surrey, and prior to becoming a minister worked in primary education for 22 years as a teacher and then head teacher. During that time Russell and Wendy were members of Bessels Green Baptist Church, who recognised Russell’s call to ministry and sponsored him through college. Russell and Wendy have been married for 34 years and have five children and six grandchildren. Family is important to them both, so they spend quite a bit of time travelling on motorways or having family sleep-overs! They are also fans of Agatha Christie, Morse and Lewis.
Wanda was born and bred in Africa, and has made England her home since 2001. She has been the Children’s and Youth Worker at Emmanuel since September 2004. She has worked as a teacher in primary, secondary and tertiary schools in South Africa, Zimbabwe and England. She is married to Chris and has two children: Dewald, who lives in South Africa, and Cara, who is a student..Wanda loves her job and the young people she works with. She enjoys travelling, and tries to visit many weird and wonderful spectacles of nature, such as the Severn Bore and the Northern Lights.
Wanda is taking a period of sabbatical leave from 1st May – 31st July. If, while she’s away, you need to speak to someone concerning children’s or youth work, please contact our Church Office in the first instance.
Penny sensed a call to full time Christian ministry, while working as a radiographer. After four years with Youth with a Mission, she returned to London to work for a Baptist church as evangelist and church planter. Following study at the London School of Theology (then LBC), and ordination in 1998, Penny pioneered a church plant in London’s Docklands. In March 2008, she moved to Gravesend to lead the Kent Thameside Church Project on behalf of SEBA, and in partnership with Emmanuel Baptist Church. In 2013 Penny was elected also to serve as an Elder at Emmanuel.
Dawn was brought up in Sevenoaks, but not the posh end. She was born into a working class family living on a council estate. After leaving school with only a few GCSEs she had a succession of jobs, including running a successful gardening business. This all stopped when she felt called into ministry and, having trained at Spurgeon’s College, London, and been ordained in 2015, she now serves as Community Minister in Northfleet. In any spare time she enjoys extreme sports, riding a large motorbike, scuba diving, baking, the academic study of apologetics and is a confessed trekkie and whovian.
Rosemary was born in London, and worked in a bank before marrying Maurice in 1960, when they moved to Gravesend. Rosemary has four grown-up children, eight grand-children and two great grand-children, and has served in the Church Office at Emmanuel since the early 1980s. Her hobbies include spending time with her family, gardening, music and doing jig-saw puzzles.