Gospel Work and other Activities
Ken Rudge, St. Austell, England
ANTRIM A number of unsaved were attending gospel meetings held at Ahoghill when R. McKeown and W. Martin were there. Some have been saved through the witness in the portable hall at Doonan near Carnlough, as M. McKillen and W. Fenton preached the gospel. They then moved on to the Hall at Ballintoy, to continue in the gospel. Some local people have been showing interest in the gospel meetings held in the portable hall at Lower Ballinderry. This is a very rural area and a great deal of visitation had been carried out before commencing the preaching. At Craigyhill the response has been disappointing despite faithful service by A. Aiken and J. G. Hutchinson. At Larne (Millfield) there were encouraging signs of good interest by a number from the locality when the Community Hall was used by R. Brown and D. Colvin for two weeks of gospel work. Two weeks of timely ministry on future events was given by J. Allen at Ballymena, Cambridge Avenue, and it was much appreciated.
ARMAGH There have been several well-attended and profitable conferences and series of ministry meetings in the county over the past few months. H. S. Paisley was at Chapman’s Store, Portadown on prophetic subjects, J. Burnett followed the Ahorey conference with a week of ministry, and the saints at Drumnacanver enjoyed what the Lord brought to them through E. McGrath. The well attended conference at Ardmore was followed by a week of teaching by M. Radcliffe. The annual conference at Lurgan was well attended, a spirit of harmony prevailing, brethren J. Allen, B. Currie, A. McShane and F. Tornaquindici being responsible for the ministry. There have also been gospel efforts with T. Wright and M. Turkington in a portable hall at Derryhale, B. Glendenning and J. Black in a local Primary School at Glenanne, and J. Wishart and R. Pickering in a portable hall at Markethill.
DOWN Praise God for the salvation of souls as some professed faith during four weeks of gospel meetings held in Waringstown by J. G. Hutchinson and A. Aitken. Also for the encouragment that has been experienced as D. Gilliland and J. Currie started gospel work at Ebenezer, Bangor. A nine year old lad has also been saved as he listened to challenging and Christ exalting ministry from the book of the Revelation in meetings conducted by Prof. D. Gooding at Carryduff. Gospel meetings have commenced at Ebenezer, Newtownards, with D. Kane and D. Williamson. The assembly at Dromore enjoyed good support for the week of ministry meetings conducted by H. S. Paisley.
FERMANAGH Extens-ive visitation and gospel work have been continued in the new hall at Drumlone, much of the surrounding area having now been covered. The assemblies at Ballinamallard and Enniskillen were encouraged and uplifted by their recent conference meetings.
BELFAST AREA The assembly at Glengormley has seen a number of souls saved in the first series of gospel meetings held in the new hall, when A. Hull and N. McCandless (Canada) were the speakers. Some of those saved had been the subjects of prayer for many years. The summer tent meetings at Derriaghy/ Dunmurry saw a number of souls saved. Gospel meetings have been held at Donegall Road and Shankill with no results evident, but the saints were encouraged. H. S. Paisley preached the gospel in Newtownbreada to full meetings.
> > > > PRAYER POINTS < < < <
- Pray for the many evangelists who will be seeking the Lord’s will for them in the placing of tents, portable halls, and rented accommodation, as well as permission to preach the gospel in the summer months, (DV).
- Thank God for the present establishment of the means to keep the peace in the Province and pray that this may hold in the coming days.
- Pray for the many young people linked to assembly testimony that they may be strengthened and established in the things of God.
RENFREWSHIRE John Grant preached the gospel in a clear and concise manner for four weeks at the assembly in Gourock. The meetings were held in the hall and local community centre, interest gradually increasing over the period. One evening when people with previous links with the assembly were invited to an evening meal, twenty-five responded, enjoy-ing an evening sharing ‘old memories’ and confronted with the challenge of the gospel. As a result one backslider was restored into fellowship and the assembly enjoys a sense of oneness, engendered by the sharing of earnest prayer in the early mornings.
AYRSHIRE Stephen Grant and Ian Robertson have worked in the gospel for three weeks at Dreghorn. A number of young lads attended the meetings regularly and the parents of one particular family in whose circumstances the Lord seems to be working. Also two men previously contacted in the Auchinleck area have renewed their interest during the meetings.
SHETLAND Sometimes we get it wrong, so we wish to correct the report in our last issue. Our brother Frank Reid spent three weeks, not three months, at Brae, and the building work was a combined effort by all the saints. Also, instead of ‘many’, it should have been ‘a few’ souls have been saved.
FIFE Cowdenbeath. The Ayrshire Bible Exhibition was used by the assembly in Union Hall for one week in November. The main response, which came from visiting local Primary Schools, was followed up by two weeks of visits into fifteen schools by Alistair Young. He was encouraged by the welcome and appreciative response to the gospel message. School visitation has been a regular part of the assembly’s outreach for some years now.
TAYPORT Annually, the assembly has conducted a four week gospel outreach during October/November. This year they were encouraged by some response to extensive visitation and the faithful preaching of the message through our brother Malcolm Radcliffe.
SPEYSIDE Aberlour. An effort to reach this country town with the gospel was made by Dan Gillies and Sam Matthews as they visited and preached there for three weeks in October. Many believers travelled far and faithfully to support the effort and although attendance at the meetings by locals was thin, there were many indepth conversations and contacts made on the doorsteps.
WEST LOTHIAN Fauldhouse. There was once an assembly in this town but now no evangelical witness of any kind is maintained. During November the new portable hall used by Stephen Grant was erected for three weeks of children’s work and four of adult meetings. Blair Martin from Whitburn joined to help in the work and was delighted to see up to fifteen locals come in on an evening and the children respond with enthusiasm. Much encouragement was taken from the genuine interest shown.
> > > > PRAYER POINTS < < < <
Thank God for gospel efforts that have touched some unreached areas of the country as servants have the vision and faith to reach out. Pray for those who heard the word and for follow-up work.
Pray for the effective continuance of the work of the Ayrshire Bible Exhibition and the many venues already planned for 2000, (DV).
CARDIFF AND THE VALLEYS As a result of very deep exercise and a common burden over the general lethargy in spiritual life together with a lack of fruitfulness in the gospel amongst assemblies in the area, it was decided to commence a United Prayer Breakfast on a quarterly basis. This has resulted in a good number of believers meeting in confession and earnest pleading with God for a reviving of His work in the assemblies. At the most recent of these meetings a commitment to the Lord was made to arrange gospel outreach throughout the whole area using assembly and other public venues during the year 2000. Another benefit from these seasons of prayer has been the desire to revive the Cardiff City Missionary Report Meetings which have been in decline for some years. The new Conference, over four days in September, not only covered a very varied programme of reports of the Lord’s work but was supported by several display stands witnessing to the activities of many agencies that now exist to promote it. Live links with the Lord’s servants on the field enhanced the sense of the Lord’s presence and challenge to the large numbers of believers that attended. Roger Brind set out the challenge of Mary’s word to the servants, ‘Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it’. The assembly at Nantgarw was encouraged by the ministry given at the conference and the week following by C. Huchison and N. Mellish, at the end of November. The saints at Treorchy were also en-couraged as two made professions of faith during gospel meetings conducted by George Miekle in October. In an endeavour to revive God’s work through assemblies, the Cardiff and District Conferences Committee have arranged a retreat for elders over the last weekend in January 2000 (DV). This is for a time of challenge and self examination.
SWANSEA AND THE WEST The Swansea United Conference started with prayer and then ministry on the Friday. The meetings, which were well-attended and a great source of encouragement, continued on the Saturday, the ministering brethren being Roy Hill and Alan Gamble. The Lord’s work in the country of Rwanda was reported on by Peter Andrews and Elie Ugirimbabazi at Fforestfach. The saints were made movingly aware of the traumas of a country in the aftermath of genocide and the plight of believers caught up in civil war. The assembly here has also commenced a series of outreach meetings straddling the new year, centred on the topics of ‘Reason for, Reactions to and Reflections on the Millennium’. Roy Hill and Ian Rees had the responsibility for the contents and much prayer has already been answered in the presence of at least twenty unsaved from the area. The small assembly at Tycroes has been encouraged by the baptism of a young sister. The hall was packed for the occasion and she was able to declare her faith before many witnesses. Two weeks of gospel work were carried out by the assembly at Trimsaran during October. They were en-couraged to feel the power of God moving as John Phillips of Swansea preached the word. The whole village was visited by our brother who reported on the many and varied situations to be found in the homes. It was here, on the doorstep, that a great deal of the work was done. It was a thrill to see villagers, numbering from four to fourteen, come to the meetings. Surprisingly, no one made a profession of faith but many are believed to be near the kingdom.
> > > > PRAYER POINTS < < < <
- Pray that the obvious concern and response of the assemblies in the Cardiff area to their own spiritual needs may be richly blessed and encouraged of God. Pray for the protection of those brethren who seek to lead and have responsibility in this movement.
- Thank God for all gospel effort and for the encouragement of assemblies engaged in it.
- Thank Him for those who are doing the visitation and preaching.
- Pray for a revival of God’s work amongst the valley assemblies.
CUMBRIA We are reminded that the need is to continue in prayer for the Lord to bless the summer outreach of the last year as many have been touched by the witness of the Cumbria Gospel Outreach Unit. Also now is the time when requests are being made for permission to gain prominent pitches in the markets and shows of the area. Pray for wisdom in planning the itinerary of the unit that contacts made may be in the mind of God.
NORTHAMPTONSHIRE Corby. During the month of June for three weeks the assembly had Dan Gillies in the preaching of the gospel. Several locals came to the meetings, some of whom had been before and they all heard a faithful testimony to Christ and His ability to save. There were no professions but the saints are anxious that some will find the Saviour soon as they continue to come to the gospel meetings.
WEST MIDLANDS An assembly situated in a largely Muslim area has been greatly encouraged as they have been enabled to attract Asian children to a Saturday Children’s’ Club at which they present the gospel to them. The numbers have been good and this represents a real breakthrough. They were also encouraged by the salvation of a couple who were coming to the gospel meeting. This is a mixed marriage and both the man and the woman seem clear in their confession and keen to know more of their new found Saviour.
BIRMINGHAM Charlton Road. In an attempt to break through the contact barrier with adults, the assembly had a weekend outreach using the Saturday for a Men’s Breakfast in the morning and a Quiz Evening later in the day. This reached around twenty new people and they listened well to the gospel. They also enjoyed a good children’s club in September with John Baker helping. Around fifty youngsters came and some have continued. Redditch. The assembly continues to receive encouragement with respect to those attending the gospel meeting with its changed format to meet the needs of unsaved people today. Two women now attend regularly as well as the small group of younger people. The assembly has responded to increased requests for help from local schools by taking assemblies – twenty visits in eight weeks before Christmas. This allows access to sometimes three hundred pupils and their teachers. During December a very successful workshop entitled ‘Counselling Children, Maintaining Discipline and Using Visual Aids’ was set up and conducted by John Skingley. The monthly Friday Focus area ministry series taken by Colin Lacey in the Broadwas and Wollaston Assemblies has continued over the autumn with great benefit to those present.
WORCESTER Four local churches combined to conduct an area gospel outreach using a variety of venues and activities to attract children, youth and adults. Over the week many took literature and about fifteen were regarded as having made serious enquiries as to the way of salvation. The blessing has greatly helped the believers to enjoy collective service and to use a variety of means to reach the lost with the gospel.
LONDON Grove Hall, Ealing. Our brother Sid Mountstevens conducted a vigorous and useful half-term Holiday Club at Grove Hall, seeing good numbers of children attend as well as a packed prize-giving night on the Friday. Although no conversions were professed the Scriptures were learned and, as a result, the children’s work has seen an increase in numbers each week since.
SOMERSET Coleford. The assembly used Jim McMaster in children’s work during October and were encouraged by the response, particularly to the prizegiving when sixty turned up. A recent senior-citizen’s tea also had a good response of forty. Two of these now come to the midweek prayer and bible study meeting of the assembly. About 1000 Seed Sowers texts and 2000 calendars have also been delivered around the area. The Cheddar Camps Work. This work was started twenty-three years ago through the exercise and labour of David and Elsie Willcox, who saw many come through for the Lord over the years. The camp site has always been provided through the kindness of a brother in the assembly at Cheddar, but now the camp is to move into the Kings of Wessex School at Cheddar. A recent reunion of campers drew over one hundred youngsters together. Pensford. The assembly is enjoying a series of prophetic studies during the winter when the ministry has been shared by Michael Browne, Malcolm Horlock, Roy Hill and Ian Rees. Frome. The assembly has out of the under twenty in fellowship, four members around thirty years old; the rest are that much older, some in their eighties or nineties. What a joy it is to read therefore of a Friday night youth work catering for about a dozen teenagers, a small Sunday Club, a weekly visit to an elderly people’s home and a monthly tea meeting on the Lord’s Day afternoon that gets a reasonable response from locals. Recently a woman from the congregation, when challenged about repentance, retorted that although she had been baptized she didn’t recall having repented!
BERKSHIRE Windsor. The little assembly continues to face the challenge of being on the Army housing estate that surrounds the Hall. It has been encouraging to see transfers from the Mums and Toddlers work into the Sunday School. Recent visits by Keith Bullock for open air/street testimony and Miss Ruth Hadley, Angola, have been of great encouragement. Christmas carol singing and witness outside the local ‘Tesco’, with some of the children and parents of the Sunday School, was effective in advertizing the work of the assembly.
ESSEX Southend on Sea. Of interest to many in this area and further afield, will be the recently published book that has brought together records of the Lord’s work and workers from over the past one hundred years surrounding the assembly at Colman Street. The book is carefully researched and deals with many aspects of assembly witness over the period in South East Essex. Copies may be obtained from Mr J. Barber on 01706 616302. There is a great deal of work conducted from mainland UK by brethren visiting other countries on a regular basis. Sometimes this is to distribute basic humanitarian necessities and or financial support for building projects, and often to distribute much needed copies of the Scriptures, unobtainable otherwise. Our brother Alex McClean makes annual trips to Russia to distribute Bibles and gifts to desperately needy people. Last May he visited a prison in Moscow supporting men who had been saved and were awaiting sentence for crimes committed. One ton of Bibles were taken into Archangel and distributed in markets. Orphanages visited welcomed the gospel message as well as the material aid supplied. At Murmansk, ten seamen’s homes were visited reaching those first contacted when their ships docked in Scotland. One man was led to trust Christ amidst many tears.
> > > > PRAYER POINTS < < < <
- Pray for the small and diminishing assemblies that continue to reach out with the gospel to young and old alike despite limitations in terms of those able to help.
- Thank God for fresh vision and the new experience of combined efforts to serve unitedly in gospel work.
- Pray now for the thousands who heard the gospel through carol services and special efforts over Christmas. They may never hear it again.
THE PHILADELPHIA TRUST
The Philadelphia Trust has been seeking to serve believers in Eastern Europe for over thirty years. This has been largely through personal visits of brethren and their wives, or teams in the summer, and also sending convoys of relief aid in trucks. The involvement in the development of individual assemblies has been at all levels of practical and spiritual support as they required it. The Trust has been instrumental in seeing many assemblies advance from a struggling few to a vigorous force in the area in which they witness. Plans for 2000 include ministering visits to southern Poland and the Ukraine, camps for young people in Germany and Hungary, and a retreat for elders in Romania. The Trust also aids the general ministry of assemblies by supporting the publishing of Christian study books and supervising the provision of accommodation for elderly believers.
Further information can be obtained from: Philadelphia Trust, 6 Lynch Blosse Close, Llandaff, CARDIFF, CF5 2QU.
OPERATION BROTHERLY LOVE
Specializing in aid to assemblies in Eastern and Southern Europe and co-ordinated by Richard and Ruth McClenaghan, this ministry depends again on the need to personally visit and support believers as well as providing aid. Our brother and sister, often accompanied by other brethren, visit several of these areas four times a year. Their latest news bulletin gives clear testimony to the power of God at work in salvation and to His creation of a hunger for the word, neither of which do we see presently in our own land. There is much to challenge and encourage here and that constantly proves the faithfulness of our God.
Further information is available from: ‘Rehoboth’, 2 Brunswick Drive, Brookwood, SURREY GU24 0NR.