Pastors' Academy


Revd Dr Garry Williams
Director, Pastors’ Academy

Garry oversees the work of the Academy, teaching Study Hours, Days, Projects, and on the ThM course. He is Adjunct Professor of Historical Theology at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary (Michigan). Alongside his work at the Pastors’ Academy he serves as the Minister of Ebenezer Chapel, Luton, a congregation in the International Presbyterian Church. 

Garry’s long-term project is to publish a biblical, historical, and systematic study of the doctrine of penal substitutionary atonement. He has published chapters and articles that will form part of this longer work. He has also written several books, including His Love Endures For Ever: Reflections on the Love of God (IVP, Crossway) and Silent Witnesses: Lessons on Theology, Life, and the Church from Christians of the Past (Banner of Truth).

Dr Matthew Mason
Assistant Director, Pastors' Academy

Matthew helps to oversee the work of the Academy and teaches on ethics study days and the master’s course. He supervises pastors working on study projects, and leads the online ethics reading group. He is  also an Associate Fellow of the Kirby Laing Centre for Public Theology. 

Previously, Matthew served as a pastor of churches in England and the USA. He has published journal articles and book chapters on sexuality, gender, transgender, catechesis, and the Lord’s Supper, and is currently working on a theological commentary on Ruth. His longer-term writing project involves work in the area of theological anthropology. More generally, he is interested in the intersection of doctrine and ethics as aspects of the ministry of the Word of God.

Revd John Benton
Director of Pastoral Support

John’s work has several strands. Within the Academy, John complements our theological work with pastors by providing them with pastoral support. He meets one-to-one with pastors and speaks to many groups of pastors.

John also preaches around the UK, speaking (with his wife Ann) on areas including marriage, parenting and family life, and helping to build up smaller churches and encourage their members.

John was a pastor for 35 years, and has deep experience of local church life. In addition, he is the longstanding editor of Evangelicals Now, a monthly newspaper, and has written books including The Lion’s Honey: Grace for Flawed Christian Leaders (Darlington: EP books, 2016) and Christians in a PC World: Facing the Challenge of Political Correctness (Darlington: EP books, 2013); At the Cross: Big Deals Outside the City (Darlington: EP books, 2011); Why Join a Small Church? (Fearn: Christian Focus, 2008) and Resilient: How 2 Timothy Teaches us to Bounce Back in Christian Leadership (Fearn: Christian Focus, 2018).

Steven Bowers
Pastoral Support Worker

Steven works alongside John Benton and Malcolm MacGregor providing pastoral support in the North of England.  He is based in West Yorkshire.

Steven retired as Director of European Missionary Fellowship at the end of 2020.  Prior to that he served for 36 years as Pastor of Cornerstone Church Brighouse, West Yorkshire.  He has been involved local fraternals, and part of a team providing training for Pastors mainly in Yorkshire.

Revd Malcolm MacGregor
Pastoral Support Worker

Malcolm works alongside John Benton in providing pastoral support to pastors, primarily in the east of England where he is based.

Malcolm was a pastor for 37 years, first at a church in industrial Lancashire and then for eighteen years at Cauldwell Hall Road Baptist church, Ipswich. Since retiring, Malcolm has continued to serve the Lord in the church and through the local pastors’ network and fraternals. He is also a member of the team running the Suffolk School of Christian Studies.

Phil Raine
Pastoral Support Worker

Phil Raine is serving alongside John, Malcolm and Steven providing Pastoral Support for those in the Midlands.

He is married to Beth and they have 6 grown up children. Phil has served as a Pastor in Leicester and Bristol for over 30 years, and they are now settled in Leicester. Before the Lord called him into pastoral ministry, Phil was a GP in the Bristol area. Phil loves encouraging and supporting others and excels in the ministry of serving tea and coffee! Beth has also been involved in supporting Pastor’s wives through the Midlands Pastor’s wives’ group.

Mike Plant
Pastoral Support Worker


Mike is working alongside John, Malcolm, Steven and Phil providing Pastoral Support for those in the North of England.

He is married to Margaret and they have two adult sons. Mike has served as a Pastor in the North-East and in Devon and also worked full-time in pastoral support with the Evangelical Fellowship of Congregational Churches. Mike served for 40 years in these ministries and is now living on Teesside. Mike has been involved with local fraternals and with local initiatives in training and has written one book: ‘Before the Throne of God above’ (Day One Publications). His experience in pastoral ministry, and in supporting others in their ministries means he has a deep concern to support and help pastors function well and cope in today’s challenging environment.