Very Rev Mgr Gordon Read MA, BD, JCL
Father Gordon was born in Westcliff-on-Sea on 8th October 1948 and brought up in Leigh-on-Sea. He attended Westleigh School and then Westcliff High School. He was baptised, received his First Communion and Confirmation in Our Lady of Lourdes Church. He studied 'Greats' at Exeter College, Oxford, 1967-1971, leading to the degrees of B.A and then M.A. While at Oxford he felt called to the priesthood, and was accepted as a student for the Diocese of Brentwood, beginning his studies at St Edmund's College, Ware, in September 1971. The majority of his academic studies took place at Heythrop College, University of London 1972-1976, where he received a Bachelor of Divinity degree. He was ordained to the diaconate at St Edmund's on 29th June 1975, and then appointed by Bishop Casey to serve his diaconal year at St Teresa's, Newbury Park, while he continued his pastoral studies at Heythrop. He was ordained to the priesthood at Our Lady of Lourdes, Leigh-on-Sea on 31st July 1976.
His first appointment as assistant priest was to Our Lady of Lourdes, Wanstead 1976-1977 & 1979-1983. In between he was sent to Rome for further studies, and obtained a Licence in Canon law from the Pontifical Gregorian University. From 1976 he worked part time in the Diocesan Tribunal Office, and was appointed Chancellor of the Diocese in 1983 and Judicial Vicar in 1985. After Wanstead he served at St Augustine’s, Barkingside 1983-1988, and then as parish priest of St John & St Erconwald, Ingatestone 1988-2000. In 1998 he was appointed honorary Papal Chaplain by Pope John Paul II in recognition of his work for the diocese. Fr Gordon came to Kelvedon in October 2000. In 2005 Pope Benedict XVI appointed him Prelate of Honour.
Currently, in addition to his responsibilities as parish priest, he is rural dean of Colchester, Chancellor and Judicial Vicar of the diocese, member of the Bishop’s College of Consultors, a governor of St Teresa’s Catholic Primary School, Lexden, Vice-chair of Governors, St Benedict’s College, Colchester and Trustee of the Canon Law Society of Great Britain and Ireland. A frequent contributor of articles to canon law journals his advice on canonical matters is often sought from outside the diocese.