incumbent n. the holder of an ecclesiastical benefice (Oxford Dictionary)
Dates Incumbents Comments
1849-1856 John Nicolayson Danish; previously the priest-in-charge of St James Chapel, the first building on the compound (now Alexander Lounge).
1856-1860 Henry Crawford Left due to ill health.
1861-1870 Joseph Barclay In 1879 was appointed third Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem.
1871-1874 James Neil Author: Palestine Re-Peopled, or, Scattered Israel’s Gathering; Palestine Explored; Pictured Palestine; Everyday Life in the Holy Land.
    Rev H. Friedlander (in charge of the Boys’ School) filled in a brief vacancy after Neil left.
1875-1876 O.F. Walton The Waltons left shortly after the birth of their first-born daughter.  Mrs. O.F. Walton, was a popular Victorian author.
1876 Elias Benjamin Frankel Came from Tunis to relieve for 6 months after Walton left.
1878 Somerset Brafield Burtchaell Irish; died after serving only 6 months; his wife, Catherine, moved to Rome to work for LJS.
1879-1901 Arthur Hastings Kelk Longest serving incumbent (22 years);  Rev. John Adeney (father of future incumbent Ronald Adeney) assisted Kelk from 1897-1899.
    James Hanauer filled in before Brown arrived.   see end-note 1.
1902-1914 J. Carnegie Brown Also Honorary Canon of St. George’s Cathedral;   A. Oswald Williams and B. Friedmann also led many services from 1910-1914.
WWI   See End Note 1.
1920-1922 John Rooker Author:  A Modern Pilgrim in Jerusalem; and A Modern Pilgrim in Galilee.
1922-1937 Malcolm Maxwell Previously served LJS in 1912-1914 in Jerusalem;  1919-1921 in Cairo;  later became the Archdeacon of Cyprus.
1937-1945 H.W.L. (Bill) Martin Served the local population and also accommodated large numbers of foreign troops; upon leaving Jerusalem, continued working for CMJ as Home Secretary.
1945-1964 Hugh Jones After Jerusalem was divided in 1947 (the Old City and Christ Church being on the Jordanian side) Jones held services at the CMJ hospital compound and at St. Paul’s Church.  Following his death the incumbency lapsed until 1969. See also end-note 2.
1969-1975 Roger Allison Stationed in Romania and Poland with CMJ before WWII;  reestablished Hebrew services at Christ Church in 1969.
1975-1980 Ronald Adeney Supervised the CMJ purchase of Stella Carmel Guesthouse in 1961 near Haifa; served there before coming to Christ Church.
1980-1984 David Price Director at Stella Carmel previous to Christ Church.   see also end-note 3.
1984-1991 Alfred Sawyer American, the first non-UK incumbent since Nicolayson;  started Shoresh Study Tours and a Hebrew speaking congregation at Christ Church.
1991-1999 Ray Lockhart Director at Stella Carmel prior to incumbency;  CMJ Israel director afterwards.
1999-2003 Michael Neil Cohen Previously CMJ representative in England;  author: My Road Home.
2003-2005 Tony Higton Incumbent while director of CMJ Israel & CMJ UK.
2005-2008 Murray Dixon Previously served at Stella Carmel; supervised purchase and development Beit Bracha Retreat Centre in the Galilee.
 2008 David Pileggi Previously directed Shoresh Study Tours at Christ Church 18 years.


1. During WWI the Society was forced to call many of its workers back to the UK. The magnitude of the war halted many of the activities of LJS including much of the Jerusalem mission. Paul Nyland (Dutch national) remained to oversee the mission.

2. CMS had built St. Paul’s Church for Arab Anglicans, but it was left unoccupied when the city was divided and its location was on the western/Israeli side. CMJ obtained permission to use it for their services. As the official incumbent of Christ Church, Jones was granted a special pass to cross the border enabling him to keep contact with Christ Church. After Jones died in 1964, Stephen Levinson continued to hold services at St. Paul’s, and Arthur Johnson (Warden of Christ Church Guest House) conducted most of the services at Christ Church. The last service at St. Paul’s (before services returned to Christ Church) was held on 28.4.1968.

3. Initially the Head of Missions (later re-named Field Director, then ITAC Director) and the Christ Church incumbent were one position. When David Price retired, CMJ divided these into two separate positions. However, there were several instances when the Christ Church incumbent also fulfilled the role as the head of CMJ in Israel.

4. Many of the incumbents did theological studies at Cambridge.