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OBITUARY: Alec Taylor (1937–2021)

January 2022 | by Stephen Rees

Alec Taylor
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Many ET readers will feel a sense of loss as we report the home-call of Alec Taylor. Alec was widely known and loved as a pastor, preacher, writer, counsellor, and friend.

Born in Birmingham, he came to Christ at the age of thirteen through the witness of Pentecostal believers. He began to attend the local Pentecostal church, where he preached his first sermon at the age of fifteen (the text was Job 37:14).

After serving in the RAF, he began training for Christian service at the WEC college in Glasgow. There he was exposed to Reformed doctrine through such men as Eric Alexander and Matthew Francis and through such writers as Charles Hodge and A. W. Pink.

He went home to Birmingham convinced of the doctrines of grace and began to attend Selly Park Baptist Church, where he benefited greatly from Keith Mawdsley’s preaching.

In 1973, Alec and a number of friends began church-planting in the area of Chelmsley Wood. The work began with eight people meeting in a community hall, and they saw rapid growth.

In 1975, Alec was recognised as pastor, though he continued to support himself by his work as a Shop Controller for Lucas, one of Birmingham’s most prominent manufacturing companies.

Ken Matrunola preached at his recognition service; a young lady called Beverley from Mr Matrunola’s church was in the congregation on that occasion.

Alec and Beverley were married in September of the following year. Their son Alastair was born in 1978, Philip in 1980.

From 1985, Alec laboured full-time in the pastorate. In 1988, he began writing his Pilgrim Bible notes, initially to help one lady who struggled to make sense of the book of Job.

He continued writing and revising his notes right up to his last days in this world; they have been distributed in countries across the world and translated into many languages. Some have been republished in book form and widely used.

Alec stepped down from his full-time ministry in 2002, but continued part-time as pastor at Chelmsley Wood. He finally retired from the pastorate in 2005, but continued as an elder until he and Beverley moved to Trowbridge late in 2010.

His experiences in Pentecostalism left him wary of departures from historic evangelical and Reformed Christianity. He was concerned to warn believers and churches against error, but did so in the kindest and most constructive way.

In recent years he benefited from and much appreciated Robert Strivens’s ministry at Bradford on Avon Baptist Church. Our sympathies and prayers are with Beverley, Alastair, Phil, and the wider family.

Alec’s Pilgrim Bible Notes are available for free download from ggoj.org.uk.

Stephen Rees

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