Natasha at Jacari
Alumni Q&A with Christopher Hall
1. When were you involved with Jacari?
I was a member of the first meetings convened by Bill Brogden in Trinity Term 1956, attended by reps of the religious and political groups at Oxford. Bill was inspired by hearing Father Trevor Huddleston speaking in the University Church. Oxford Student Christian Movement arranged his visit; as Men's President that year I had the privilege of sitting next to Father Trevor at supper in the Oxford Union beforehand.
2. What kind of activities were you involved in as a Jacari member?
I volunteered to run off fliers to launch the appeal to raise funds to bring a black student from South Africa to Oxford.
3. Can you tell us the most vivid memory of your time with Jacari?
My vivid memory was my first experience of using a duplicator, and getting covered in ink, in St Mary's Vicarage in Holywell Street.
4. What are you doing now?
I am an active retired priest in Deddington near Banbury. I launched, and for 24 years ran, the Li Tim-Oi Foundation which has helped to equip over 500 women as agents of change in church and community mostly in Sub-Saharan Africa.
5. How has your involvement with Jacari influenced you later in life?
For much of my ministry I have been engaged in race relations. In 1967, three years after the race riots, I accepted the invitation to become a vicar in Smethwick; I was there for seven years. Racism was endemic, in the local council and even in the church. Black-led congregations held their services in our church school and youth centre. A Black Pentecostalist minister read a lesson when ITV broadcast an ecumenical service live from our church.