John Baker (bishop)

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John Baker
Bishop of Salisbury
ChurchChurch of England
DioceseDiocese of Salisbury
In office1982–1993
PredecessorGeorge Reindorp
SuccessorDavid Stancliffe
Other postsHonorary assistant bishop in Winchester (1994–2014)[1]
Ordinationc. 1954 (deacon); 1955 (priest)
Personal details
Born(1928-01-11)11 January 1928[1]
Died4 June 2014(2014-06-04) (aged 86)[1]
ParentsGeorge and Grace Austin Baker[1]
SpouseGillian Leach (m. 1974)[1]
ProfessionAuthor (theology & church)
Alma materOriel College, Oxford[1]

John Austin Baker (11 January 1928 – 4 June 2014) was a Church of England bishop, Bishop of Salisbury from 1982 until his retirement in 1993.[2]

Early life[edit]

He was the only child born to George Austin Baker and his wife Grace Baker.[3] Though his father was a company secretary, three uncles and an aunt had taken holy orders.[1] He was educated at Marlborough College and Oriel College, Oxford.[4] He was awarded the degrees Oxford Master of Arts (MA Oxon) and Master of Letters (MLitt).

Religious life[edit]

Made a deacon at Michaelmas 1954 (19 September), by Robert Hay, Bishop of Buckingham, at High Wycombe parish church,[5] and ordained priest in 1955, he began his ministry with curacies at All Saint's Cuddesdon and St Anselm's Hatch End, after which he was a fellow and lecturer at Corpus Christi College, Oxford until 1973. From then until his ordination to the episcopate he was a residential canon at Westminster Abbey and also for some years chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons.[4] He was consecrated a bishop on 2 February 1982, by Robert Runcie, Archbishop of Canterbury, at Westminster Abbey.[6]

A keen musician,[7] Baker was a prominent author.[8] In retirement he continued to serve as an assistant bishop in the Diocese of Winchester.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "The Rt Rev John Baker - obituary". The Daily Telegraph. 5 June 2014. Retrieved 5 September 2014.
  2. ^ Crockford's Clerical Directory 2008/2009 Lambeth, Church House Publishing ISBN 978-0-7151-1030-0
  3. ^ "The Right Rev John Austin Baker". The Times. 27 August 2014. Retrieved 5 September 2014.
  4. ^ a b Who's Who 2008, London, A & C Black, ISBN 978-0-7136-8555-8
  5. ^ "Michaelmas ordinations". Church Times (#4781). 24 September 1954. p. 723. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 13 June 2019 – via UK Press Online archives.
  6. ^ "picture caption". Church Times (#6208). 5 February 1982. p. 1. ISSN 0009-658X. Retrieved 13 June 2019 – via UK Press Online archives.
  7. ^ Debrett's People of Today London,2008 Debrett's, ISBN 978-1-870520-95-9
  8. ^ Amongst others he wrote The Foolishness of God (1970); Prophecy in the Church (1976); and The Whole Family of God (1981), British Library Catalogue accessed 27 August 2008 17:54
Church of England titles
Preceded by
George Reindorp
Bishop of Salisbury
Succeeded by
David Stancliffe