Who’s Who


Ultimately, the church is under the leadership of Christ. The church meeting is charged with discerning His will and implementing it by delegating the spiritual leadership into the hands of the pastors and five other elders and practical tasks into the hands of the five ministry teams, each of which is lead by a ministry co-ordinator.

Alex Samy became a christian in 2001 and has been at Edward Road since 2005, initially called as a student pastor, then as a senior pastor since 2008. He feels passionate about encouraging the vibrant, ethnically diverse congregation to live as family, caring for one another and witnessing for God to the local, multi-cultural community. Married to Helen with four kids, he enjoys eating, cooking, baking, barbecuing, entertaining… did I mention eating?

Betty Milton served as a missionary with OMF in Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and Hong Kong. She continues to serve with OMF's Diaspora Ministries here in the UK. Born and brought up in Fulham, she came to faith in her teens after attending Girls Brigade at her local Baptist Church. Betty is a fluent Mandarin speaker but can manage to understand Eastenders in English just as easily.

Ian Levett served as a medical missionary for over a decade in North Yemen, before returning to serve God here in the UK. He was called by God to Balsall Heath to work among the many Yemenis in our community while working in the NHS. He has served as an elder since 2005. Brought up in a Christian home, Ian gave his life to Christ as a very young boy. Married to Karen and father of three grown-up girls, he's still as busy as ever.

John Johnson grew up in Idaho, USA.  He came to Christ when he was 21, while studying Engineering.  After graduation he moved to the San Francisco Bay area, met Irene at a local church, and got married.  After working as a Civil Engineer for 17 years, he, Irene and their four young children made a mid-life career change. They moved to Birmingham in 1995, where they have been involved in church community work amongst its very diverse population.  John leads a team that is involved in several deprived areas of the city, involving church planting and revitalisation, interfaith work, and a community centre that was opened in 2013.  They’ve become British citizens and enjoy being within a couple of hours drive of each of their adult children and two grandchildren.  John became an elder of Edward Rd Baptist in 2016.

Mike Peart was born and grew up four miles away from Edward Road, in delightful Harborne. Having gone out to Botswana to change the world as an agnostic, young, hippy, folk-guitar playing, engineering graduate, he realised that he couldn't resist God forever, as God gradually answered his questions and took away his lingering doubts. Returning back home to Birmingham in 2001, he soon joined Edward Road and began serving as a deacon. Mike joined the eldership team in 2016 soon after marrying Grace. He is now a proud father of little Benjamin, born just under a year later!

Peggy Gouthwaite was born in the States and brought up in California. She served with her husband Frank as a Missionary with BMS World Mission in Brazil. She continues to serve God, now as a Finance Manager at Christian Vision. Raised in a Christian home, she recalls the impact of the Gospel message on her, while as a child she sat on her father's knee at church. A mother of five grown up girls, she manages to balance a demanding job, a busy household, being an elder and serving as church secretary in her spare time!

Eric is a proud northerner. He and his wife, Sheila, came to Edward Road as medical students, married in the church and have served God faithfully among us ever since. Father of two and now a proud grandfather, he is enjoying the freedom of retirement after years as a local GP. Eric has served as the church treasurer since 1996 – first serving as treasurer and deacon for many years and more recently as treasurer and trustee since 2006. He is a classic car buff and owns a magnificent Citroen Traction Avant.