Andy was brought up in a caring religious home, regularly attending church, but not having any real grasp of the essence of the Christian Faith – conviction of sin, repentance and personal forgiveness, through the Cross of Christ.
Jan. 12th 1969 (coming up to 17 years of age) was a crucial point for Andy when the leader of a local Christian Youth Group explained that a Christian was someone who has Admitted his sin, Believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, and Committed his life to Christ. That night in Andy’s words, “it was though a veil had been removed from my eyes, and I quietly prayed, asking Christ to forgive me for my personal guilt, and expressing my belief in Him as my only Saviour. This was in the last months before leaving school for University, and not long before crucial decisions of the next 3 years concerning career and marriage.”
At Bangor University in North Wales, he was involved in the Christian Union, and local church work with youth of the city. He met his wife-to-be, Juliet, there – she also was converted, just before coming up to University, having been an ardent atheist before. They both read Mathematics, and for them the question of how Science and Christianity inter-relate began to become an issue. He states “At that point we only had Whitcomb and Morris’ book, ‘The Genesis Flood’, and a few others. But to us both the issue was clear – what is in the Bible must determine all our beliefs. The straightforward interpretation is 99% of the time, the way to interpret Scripture.”
Following his first degree at Bangor, he went to Bedford, where much grounding in the Christian faith was received from Bedford Young Life (part of the National Young Life group founded by Frederick and Arthur Wood many years ago), and he became very much involved with United Beach Missions, seeking to witness for Christ in the summer holidays. He was also greatly influenced by the careful teaching of Biblical principles of exposition by Roy Pibworth at a small evangelical church in Wilstead, just outside Bedford. The principles of the Puritan Bunyan have left a great legacy still in that area.
Since his move to Leeds in 1986, He has been involved in local church ministry, based first at Tinshill in North Leeds, and also being involved in serving the Lord in another small outreach ministry in an inner city area in Leeds. This he did for 10 years and is now based in a church in Milnrow near Rochdale.