Stephen James Shelton Beebee was born in London on 26 December 1917. Having been aware since childhood of a vocation to the priesthood, he read Theology at University College, Oxford before going to Cuddesdon (now Ripon College, Cuddesdon). During his first curacy at All Saints, South Acton, he met and married Marjorie Wiles (died 4 May 1998), and during their time at St Mary’s South Ruislip, they had two children: Chris (died 30 October 2003) and Jessica.
Father Stephen served all his life within the Diocese of London, first as vicar of St Michael and All Angels, Bedford Park, and then as Rector of Cranford, where he and Marjorie are buried. After his retirement as parish priest he was chaplain to St Joseph’s Convent and nursing home, Chiswick. He was also a Prebendary of St Paul’s Cathedral.
On 18 April 1985, during Eastertide, Father Stephen died suddenly in his sleep. The previous evening he had written a sermon on the Road to Emmaus, which ends with the question ‘Shall not our hearts also burn within us when we meet Christ?’