A Wondering Jew

I’ve always thought of John Fieldsend as the nearest thing to a national treasure that the British Messianic community possesses. Like fellow Jew Stephen Fry who was born a Hungarian Jew, John appears to be the quintessential English gentleman but is by birth a Czechoslovakian Jew.

A Wondering Jew is an intensely personal memoir of a full life, from his early days of childhood spent in a liberal German Jewish home in Dresden to his later years as an international representative of the Messianic movement. When he was ten, John and his brother Harold were transported to England through the efforts of Sir Nicholas Winterton and escaped the fate suffered by his parents in Auschwitz. Amongst other things, the book recalls John’s conversion, his early career in engineering, his time as an Anglican minister, the realisation of his Jewishness, and his involvement with the Church’s Ministry to the Jewish people (CMJ), the British Messianic Jewish Alliance and Beit Shalom Messianic Fellowship in London. John also relates his quest to lay old ghosts to rest by revisiting the Germany and Czechoslovakia of his childhood and through his involvement with the Beth Shalom Holocaust Centre.

A Wondering Jew isn’t the life of a super saint; it’s the refreshingly honest recollections of a man who is aware of his weaknesses, failures and mistakes as well as his successes, which he attributes to the grace of God.

This article first appeared in the Autumn Issue of the Herald 2014

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