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Tributes to vicar of 'great vision'

PUBLISHED: 09:38 30 May 2009 | UPDATED: 14:02 03 July 2010

TRIBUTES were paid this week to the Rev Chris Warner who was described by friends and colleagues as a man of “great vision”.

The Norwich area United Reformed Church (URC) minister died last Thursday from asbestos related disease mesothelioma.

TRIBUTES were paid this week to the Rev Chris Warner who was described by friends and colleagues as a man of “great vision”.

The Norwich area United Reformed Church (URC) minister died last Thursday from asbestos related disease mesothelioma. He was 61.

Mr Warner was a team leader of Good Work (Norfolk and Waveney Industrial Mission) and was previously chaplain in Yarmouth and director of Community Connections, an organisation set up by the Yarmouth Industrial Mission. He had served in ministries in Sa-lford and south-east Manchester. Before being ordained in 1980 he worked as a carpenter.

Port chaplain Peter Paine said: “Chris was very much a God-blessed person whose vision for Yarmouth has left us with a lasting impression. Chris was a man of great vision and fought to gain funding on the idea of starting Community Liaison and Information Point offices, a point where the public could go to find out about things happening in their area.”

Mr Paine added: “Chris was not only my boss, he was a special friend who saw me through my ministerial studies and helped me to understand so much more about industrial mission. He was certainly a man of God and all I can say is that there is a bright new star in the heavens looking down on us all.”

Barry Capon, chairman of the Good Work board, said: “Chris was a man of great faith and of enormous energy and enthusiasm who delivered great improvements for many people by using his drive and encouragement to help, and even push, others to do what is needed.”

Paul Whittle, from the Eastern Synod, described Mr Warner as a great innovator. He said: “In these last months of illness Chris had discovered a renewal of his devotional life which meant a great deal to him and many of us valued the opportunity to share with him in prayer.”

Kevin Flanagan, from the Greater Manchester Industrial Mission, paid tribute to Mr Warner through Christian community website, Network Yarmouth.

He said: “Chris was highly valued in Manchester for his service and commitment to the people of Salford and Manchester. A great servant to mission and people, prayers are with his family.”

Mr Warner leaves his wife Kathy and two sons, Peter and Nick.

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