JOHN Moore, who has died aged 92, was instrumental in the formation of Christ Church, Abingdon.

Rev Moore and wife Mary were popular members of both the congregation and the wider community in the town.

His role as a curate took him all over the UK, but he always had a soft spot for Abingdon.

John Moore was born on February 14, 1926, in north Wales.

He was one of 12 children born to parents Henry and Euphemia and spent his childhood on a farm.

John did not stray far from home during his early years, with his family rarely venturing further than its annual day out over the border to Chester.

His father died when he was a young man and after the Second World War Rev Moore was selected for national service.

This saw him travel further afield, spending the majority of the period in Italy.

Before entering the Army he began training as a radio technician in Colwyn Bay, north Wales.

But during his time in the army he came to faith thanks to a visiting preacher, changing the course of his life.

Rev Moore returned from national service with a new calling and studied at Lampeter College, also in Wales, to gain the qualifications to study at theological college.

This drew him away from Wales once again and he completed a three-year course at Oak Hill College, North London.

Rev Moore’s first job took him to Illogan Church, Cornwall, where he spent a year as a curate.

But his life was suddenly put on hold when he contracted tuberculosis, leaving him bed-bound in hospital for a full year.

In the mid-1950s, he moved to Margate, Kent, for his second role as a curate, which was significant for more positive reasons.

There, he met Mary Bartlett and the pair married in 1958.

Yet they were forced to move as the parish was financially unable to sustain a married curate and they arrived in Abingdon that same year.

The couple moved to north Abingdon and Rev Moore became a curate at St Helen’s Church, on St Helen’s Wharf, but his work was felt greatest at a church he helped create.

Along with a group of Christians working at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Harwell Campus, Rev Moore set about planting a new church in the area.

The team would meet weekly in a local health centre and even helped build the church themselves, converting a tithe barn on Northcourt Road into a place of worship.

As a keen carpenter, Rev Moore was key to the physical and spiritual growth of the building and Christ Church was born in 1960.

Rev Moore served as founding minister and he and Mary were both heavily involved in the church’s formative years.

The couple’s first child, David, was born in 1960 and Peter followed in 1963.

The couple were popular and valued members of the town, making friendships with residents from several groups and backgrounds.

In 1967, the family left Abingdon, with Christ Church already embedded in the local community.

Rev Moore worked in Nottinghamshire and Hertfordshire, before returning to the town after retiring in the early 1990s.

He and Mary lived on Radley Road and immediately returned to the Christ Church congregation, with Rev Moore occasionally leading services.

Throughout his life, he remained a skilled carpenter and was always working on new projects.

Five years before his death Rev Moore and his wife moved to Bristol, and Mary passed away in August 2017.

Rev Moore was vulnerable to chest infections and this eventually took his life.

He died on Monday, November 12, at Horfield Lodge nursing home in Bristol, and is survived by one sister, Effie, and sons David and Peter.

A thanksgiving service will take place at Christ Church Abingdon from 3pm on Friday, November 30.