This is an extract from the Summer 2014 newsletter of Being Alongside:
It is a great honour to be appointed Chairman of any organisation , let alone one so inspiring as Being Alongside / APCMH. For those of you who have never heard of me I was born in 1954 , brought up in the Cotswolds , educated at Eton and Christ Church , Oxford. Such a gilded youth was squandered by a predeliction for marijuana which led to several psychotic episodes involving stays at The Priory and Springfield – whilst my peers were prospering I was running an organic bakery , then a drop-in centre for Hammersmith & Fulham MIND and latterly mini-cabbing.
An avid reader at an early age
I first came across the wonderful work of APCMH in Autumn 1995 , meeting Jeremy Boutwood , Pam Freeman and John Vallatt at a Guild of Health seminar. Jeremy lent me his copy of Jean Vanier’s The Broken Body . May I quote from my thank-you letter to him at that time …
‘ It beats me how so very few people within the Church really want to know … APCMH should be a vast concern with a cast of thousands ! There is so much emotional / spiritual distress in our world that committed Christians could address … If the Church fails you – God help you ; which fortunately He does ! ‘
Although never successful as a businessman I have managed to walk hundreds of miles across the United Kingdom , have journeyed overland from the top to the bottom of the Americas , from London to Nepal and back through Iran and Afghanistan . As a result I now speak four languages passably plus a smattering of many others.
At Glastonbury, having walked from Winchester via Salisbury
Whatever you do in life do it to the best of your ability . I shall endeavour to live up to that maxim as your new Chairman.
Jamie Summers Incoming Chair
All my sisters and cousins after my christening at Bourton-on-the-Hill, Gloucestershire