Renowned Norfolk evangelist and author 

Renowned Norfolk evangelist, author and businessman John Wright died peacefully on Sunday night. Colleague and friend Barrie Lawrence pays tribute.

John slipped away quietly and peacefully late on Sunday November 29. However, one would assume that his arrival in heaven was anything but peaceful, and that he received a truly thunderous welcome there.

‘A spiritual giant’. ‘An apostle of faith’. ‘A prolific author’. These are just a few of the ways in which John has been described over the years.
The following is adapted from John’s profile on the Branch Press website -
John Wright came from a family who, since the eighteenth century, had produced missionaries and businessmen in every generation. His great grandfather, Prebendary Henry Wright, was General Secretary of the Church Missionary Society.

As a bachelor of 32 and a regular churchgoer, John had a dramatic conversion experience. This was the prelude, as it was for Joseph in the Book of Genesis, to a period of tribulation balanced by many great blessings. Businesses collapsed, he went through a desert experience of two years unemployment, he had cancer and finally the undeserved humiliation of Prison. The hands of the Potter have been manifestly at work building a man of faith and endurance. Throughout these trials and afflictions John’s sense of humour never left him. The joy of the Lord was his strength.
John and wife Sue lived near Norwich. They have four sons and a daughter, all of whom are on fire for God. John was a businessman who trained at the Harvard Business School. He had been a Director of Reckitt & Colman Food Division and had founded a Merchant Bank in Norwich in obedience to the Holy Spirit, despite having neither money nor any knowledge of banking! He started the St Matthews Housing Association which provides accommodation for the homeless in over 80 houses throughout East Anglia. He also started the Stop a Copper Society whose members stop police and traffic wardens to express their appreciation.
John was the founder and force behind Branch Press. He was a prolific author of dozens of inspiring books. He had been a Lay Reader for 40 years and was a member of the College of Evangelists instituted by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York. He was also an International Director of the Full Gospel Business Men of whom the Archbishop of York has said, ‘We need more men like them.’
John and Sue had travelled to 36 countries since 1978, preaching the Full Gospel in word and in deed in the power of the Spirit with signs and wonders. Romans 15:18-20. John’s ministry as an evangelist, teacher and encourager of daily witnessing has been appreciated in all main line denominations. His particular passion was for church members to be born of the Holy Spirit, filled with the Holy Spirit and learning to walk as Jesus walked, doing the things that Jesus did, seeking and using the Gifts of the Holy Spirit.
John’s testimony continues to move people from tears to laughter and is a great encouragement for anyone going through a time of affliction. He also had a healing ministry arising from gifts of knowledge to confirm the preaching of the Full Gospel.

His influence on the lives of Christians and others locally, nationally and internationally is immeasurable. He and his ministry were unique, and are irreplaceable. He will be greatly missed by multitudes.
John was 86, and lived for over 50 years just south-east of Norwich. He had suffered from cancer for ten years, and whilst in Priscilla Bacon Lodge hospice for the final three weeks of his life, was still telling those around him of the wonderful change that Jesus makes in people’s lives.
Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Sue, and children Francis, Jemimah, David, James and John.
John Betts, director of Celebrate Norfolk, paid tribute saying: “John Wright was a good friend, a man of God who loved Jesus and had a passion for the lost and an amazing evangelist.  There will be very many people who testify to his faithfulness to God and love for them which led to their salvation. It has been a great privilege to know John and share fellowship with him. He will be greatly missed. My love and prayers are with Sue and the family.” 
Read some of our previous articles about John Wright.
Please add your own memories or tributes to John below or email them to web@networknorwich.co.uk

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Vic Ready (Guest) 01/12/2020 09:40
One of the most incredible evangelists I have ever known. Hundreds owe their salvation to John without exaggeration. Working with John at the beginning of the Norfolk FFB was an incredible experience. He was the inspiration and the motivation behind a movement in Norfolk that transformed countless lives.
You will be sorely missed.
Mo (Guest) 01/12/2020 10:04
John’s effervescent joy in the Lord emanated from him, his childlike trust in Father God was clear to see and is something to be emulated, his laughter, faith, joy and agape love for fellow beings was infectious. His testimonies of healings, of encounters and conversions were inspiring. A wonderful powerpacked on fire man of God - home full time in his Father’s presence now.
(Guest) 01/12/2020 10:07
John will be remembered for his incredible boldness in sharing the Gospel what an amazing character. No matter where I went in England if you said you were from Norwich family folk so often said “do you know John Wright” what an amazing person. Love and prayers to Sue and family
(Guest) 01/12/2020 10:38
So saddened to hear the news, and our prayers for Sue and family. John remained the ever-ready and indefatigable evangelist, with 'worms' in his pocket for every occasion. His zeal remains an inspiration. His Master looks on him with a smile.
Matthew (Guest) 01/12/2020 10:56
My natural reaction on hearing this news is one of great sadness and great loss; what a colourful, vibrant and unique man of faith for us to lose and then I remind myself of where he is now and it makes my heart smile, knowing he is 'home'. God bless you John for inspiring character and work and for all you have done here on earth.
(Guest) 01/12/2020 11:16

John, who I first met in 1976 was Chairman of a central London company in which I was invited as a partner. His lif,e has been an inspiration to me since. We both, with my fellow business partner, became FGBMFI men at that time. John has been a constant encourager,
challenger, true friend, loving brother and father in the Lord to me and countless people.
Thank you John for everything.
(Guest) 01/12/2020 12:10
I knew John and remember him well from occasional chance meetings. On one occasion he and I were amongst a group of 6 or 7 men standing in a circle at a reception event in the Norwich Forum. We were a group of strangers making polite conversation. John casually stepped across the group and straightened the tie of the man opposite him. He said nothing and neither did the man whose tie had been straightened (it did very much need straightening).
That was John - an initiative taker, helpful, uninhibited, bold.
I loved him.
John Rockliff
(Guest) 01/12/2020 14:20
I knew John years ago when I was a young evangelist in Norwich years ago! He was always so kind and encouraging to us all - and inspiring to talk to...
(Guest) 01/12/2020 14:51
I met John a few times and I was very aware of his ministry. Whilst some people take their foot off the accelerator when they hit retirement John did the opposite. He was a man who never shied away from what he felt was the truth of the gospel and its transformative power. My prayer is that his example will inspire us all to never give up. Thanks John, looking forward to being with you again in glory.
(Guest) 01/12/2020 19:12
John was a hugely encouraging and kind man. Years ago when we setting out in our early attempts to be relevant to our contemporaries with our youth work John gave us property and was always supportive.
He spoke boldly for Christ and his enthusiasm stirred many others to do so. He has no doubt been loudly welcomed in heaven.
Our thought are with Sue and the family.
Geoff & Annie Lawton
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Published: 30/11/2020