by Chris Tobin
John Shoaf will have a rock ‘n roll farewell this week.
The Anglican vicar at St Mary’s in Timaru will have his final gig with Timaru band C-Bay at the Old Bank Cafe & Bar tomorrow night, before heading back to the United States with his wife Melissa.
“It’s a hobby,” he said.
“I’ve always played guitar and been singing since high school.”
Rev Shoaf played in a band while studying at Stanford University in California.
“I’m a big Beatles fan, as well as Creedence Clearwater, and we do a lot of Cliff Richard in the band.”
He and his wife came to New Zealand 12 years ago.
After working in banking and as a financial manager for a computer company, he took a different direction.
“When my wife and I came in 2006 we started attending Christchurch cathedral and I felt a call to ministry then.
“I did the training and was ordained in 2011. It was a big change, a new country and a new career.”
He has served at St Mary’s for four and a-half years and has played in the C-Bay band for two and a-half years.
“There’s been quite a lot of earthquake strengthening work at Mary’s during my time; it’s nearly finished and the scaffolding will be coming down.
“It’s an active parish with concerts and different events.”
The main memories he and his wife will take back to the US are of the people they met in the St Mary’s parish and the band.
“The band and music has been my main interest outside of work.”
A desire to be closer to family has prompted his return to the US.
“Hopefully, I’ll be able to find a church to lead, as well.”
C-Bay plays mainly rock ‘n roll from the 1960s and some country.
When asked if he would be doing an imitation Chuck Berry duck walk as part of his farewell appearance at the Old Bank, a smiling Rev Shoaf said he would not.
“That’s not my style.”