The Lords Work & Workers
The assembly at New Cumnock was recently greatly encouraged during 3 weeks of gospel meetings taken by Stewart Gillespie and Robert Revie.
During the week of prayer meetings preceding these meetings and during the 3 weeks of preaching. the assembly was marked by a spirit of prayer and a sense of real need and dependence upon the Lord. It was encouraging to see many of those on the prayer list attending these meetings. Unsaved friends were present every night with some returning on a number of occasions. The meetings were well supported by believers in the village and also from neighbouring assemblies. It was encouraging to see the hall filled to capacity on a number of evenings.
Comment was made by several unsaved folks attending that the messages preached clearly and specifically addressed the circumstances they found themselves in. Some were quite shaken by the power of Gods Word as it so clearly reflected their own problems, circumstances, and thoughts. It was good to see Christians from around the shire bringing unsaved from elsewhere to these meetings too, and as a result the seed was sown much more widely than in the village itself. The messages were recorded on to CDs and 200-300 of these were taken during the 3 weeks. One woman who attended was keen to obtain a supply to take to her son who has been reading his Bible in prison.
It was encouraging also to see the return of a number of backsliders, and to make fresh contact with people who have attended gospel meetings in the past. A number of new contacts were made with several folks in the village who would seem to be seeking the answers to the bigger questions in life. During the meetings a young woman who had been attending regularly since the last gospel campaign, and who had been showing signs of a growing awareness of her need of Christ, made a clear profession of faith in the Lord Jesus. She continues to attend and has found a growing joy in the Word of God.
The gospel messages from these meetings are available on the web at: http://www.newcumnock.org/mission2009.html
Avoch: Special gospel meeting at Avoch. In early October the small assembly in Avoch hired the local Community Hall where the gospel was very ably presented by Adrian Ferguson of Perth. The subject advertised was "The Amazing Story of a Life Saving Lung Transplant" (Adrians wife, Audrey, received this transplant earlier this year). The company were very encouraged to see the hall full, the audience including neighbours and friends from neighbouring villages. The Assemblies in the area supported this effort well. Prayer is valued.
Shields Road Gospel Hall: Gospel Meetings and Visitation. Brother Joe Baxter from Livingston was with the assembly at Shields Road, Motherwell for the month of October. The work mainly involved visitation with supporting gospel meetings in a community common room on Sunday and Wednesday afternoons. It was encouraging that a number of good contacts were made with all sections of society, and prayer is valued for results to be forthcoming.
Gardenstown: Gospel meetings with Stephen Grant. Stephen Grant was at Gardenstown for two weeks gospel meetings in October. The Word of God was faithfully and clearly presented. The local assembly was greatly encouraged by the numbers who came in to support the meetings, some from different assemblies, but mostly from the various denominations in the village. We believe that impressions were made on these dear believers. It is a difficult day, but some unbelievers attended each evening. The good seed has been sown, and we look to the Lord for the increase.
Fountain Hall, Aberdeen: Special effort with Jack Hay. In early October the Fountain Hall assembly in Woodside, Aberdeen held six nights of evangelistic meetings with brother Jack Hay. The meetings were organised over a two week period with the aim of reaching students from the nearby university as well as residents of the community adjacent to the hall. Approximately 15 unbelievers attended over the 6 nights with some coming regularly and one particular woman present every night. The assembly was very encouraged by the interest shown in the clear, powerful gospel preaching as well as the open gospel discussions held on the university campus over the period. The assembly continues to pray for those showing an interest.
Ahoghill: Gospel Meetings concluded on 29th October (after 4 weeks). D McGarvey and P McCauley worked hard in visitation and proclamation.
Ballymena (Harryville): D Gilliland had one week of excellent ministry meetings from 19th-23rd October. The meetings were well attended.
Ballymoney: Meetings in the town hall with J Fleck and W Martin concluded on 23rd October. The venue was excellent, and large numbers attended most nights with many visitors. Blessing in salvation was experienced and all involved were encouraged.
Broughshane: Gospel Meetings commenced on 25th October in the Gospel Hall with J Martin and W Martin. Pray for interest and blessing.
Bushmills: D Gilliland had ministry meetings from 9th-11th November.
Cookstown: Gospel meetings commenced on 1st November with D McGarvey.
Glengormley: Gospel Meetings commenced on 25th October in the Gospel Hall and continue with J Rogers and I Gordon. Interest appreciated.
Larne (Craigyhill): Gospel Meetings concluded on 23rd October. T Meekin (Glengormley) and J Rogers preached the Word faithfully for 5 weeks. Local people were at meetings nightly and the believers were encouraged. The area was well visited.
Lurgan Gospel Hall: R McKeown and G Woods commenced a gospel series on 25th October.
The Lurgan Annual Conference and Bible Readings were held from 10th-15th October. Large numbers attended (some meetings with upwards of 700 people). The ministry was very challenging and practical. The Bible Readings, conducted by J R Baker, D Gilliland, D Oliver, and J Grant, were instructive and helpful. One young man professed to be saved after the gospel meeting on the Sunday evening and this has been a source of great encouragement.
Portadown: N Fleck and A Colgan continue in gospel meetings into the sixth week at the end of October in Chapmans Yard, Armagh Road. The surrounding countryside has been well visited.
Limavady: J Hay was with the assembly in October and gave practical teaching based on the life of Jonah.
Tivaconavey: J Black and R ONeill have had six weeks of gospel meetings in this country district between Garvagh and Kilrea. A Polish lady who lives in the area professed faith in Christ. She had attended gospel meetings earlier in the year when the neighbouring assembly of Gortade had a gospel outreach. There were unsaved present each night but the attendance from the surrounding district was disappointing.
Annalong: J Wishart and R Pickering are conducting gospel meetings in this fishing village. The meetings commenced on 25th October. Please pray for blessing.
Ballymagarrick: The assembly here is having an outreach at the Temple on the Belfast to Ballynahinch Road conducted in a portable hall. The meetings commenced on 25th October. The preachers are L Craig and P McCauley.
Dundonald Gospel Hall: The assembly here had a week of profitable ministry at the beginning of October on Church Truth with J G Hutchinson. The saints were encouraged.
Ballygawley: A Wilson and S Nelson concluded a gospel series in mid October. The area was well visited but the local people showed little interest.
Donemana: The Annual Conference was held on 15th October. A good number of believers gathered to hear the Word. The ministering brethren were D Ussher, D Rodgers, B Glendinning, R Wilson, D McGarvey, J Wishart, and R Pickering.
Kingsmills Gospel Hall: S Gilfillan and G Woods concluded six weeks of gospel meetings on 9th October. The gospel was faithfully preached and the area well visited. The saints were encouraged by quite a number from the district coming once or twice, some of whom had never been in the hall before.
Lungs Gospel Hall: The Annual Conference on 2nd October was well attended. The ministry, given by D Gilliland, D Oliver, J Fleck, and S Wells, was excellent.
ENGLAND & WALES
Childrens work at Bromborough. An intensive week of gospel activity amongst children and young people was held from 11th October with David Raggett (Manchester). The work commenced with a Family Gospel Tea on Sunday 11th. 11 unsaved adults and 11 children were present. Childrens Meetings were held each evening (Monday-Thursday). Eight school assemblies were conducted when free Bibles (approx 200 in total) were given out to all year 5 pupils. This week complemented other outreach activities which included regular school visits and Bible distribution (carried on by the assembly for over 15 years) and weekly activities for girls (Girls Only) and boys (All Boys) on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and the Sunday Special. About 12 children came on a consistent basis to the childrens meetings. Some now attend the other weekly activities. Prayer for these continuing works will be appreciated.
Bethany Chapel, Lyme Regis: For the past 4 Sundays, at the time of writing, the number of "outsiders" attending our gospel meeting has exceeded our own numbers. How has God brought this about?
Outsiders rarely entered the hall until we started "Carols by Candlelight" in 1994, when several friends and neighbours came, but only once a year. In 2004 we commenced a monthly tea meeting, with an evangelist or similar as the speaker, to report on the Lords work as well as preach the gospel. This meant other local believers who dont meet with us came along, and, as we are only now 11 in fellowship, the extra numbers encouraged other outsiders to start coming.
Each monthly tea meeting has been advertised by producing colourful leaflets and delivering them to 400-800 homes in the town. Only 3 of us are able to do this, but for many months we knock doors and invite about 150 people face to face. It took over 3 years before we had the first response to that "cold calling" but now an elderly couple attend every Sunday, and read their Bible daily at home, with Bible notes. Others are coming too, with "outsiders" now inviting "outsiders", till we now have up to 10 of them present each week.
For the past 3 Decembers, we have visited almost all 1,500 homes in the town to give away pictorial Scripture calendars to the first 500 who answer, and everybody gets an invitation to the Carol Service. One door knocked in 2007 was a small residential care home, and as a result we were invited to hold a monthly service there, which was a new experience for us. A year later, this was repeated at a second home!
At our 2008 Carols by Candlelight all 76 chairs were occupied, and to accommodate the overflow both sets of doors were left wide open. We heard later that the singing was enjoyed by the smokers outside the pub on the other side of the road. The hall has probably never been so full for an evangelistic service.
The first care home mentioned has made another request which we have taken up. When a resident dies, the owner has requested a very brief memorial service, so the other residents could have a formal farewell and remembrance opportunity. We have done several of these, and include some words of comfort from the Scriptures. Most weeks, we fetch 1 to 4 of the residents to the Sunday afternoon service, as well as having a monthly service in their home. The wife of a married couple there died recently, and her J.W. daughter asked us to conduct the funeral at the crematorium, rather than using the duty vicar who wouldnt know her.
We have produced a Welcome leaflet detailing our beliefs, services, etc. and at Easter we visited the hotels and such like in the town, offering them the leaflets to give to guests - most businesses accepted. Several people have visited us as a result.
Early in the summer we started a monthly coffee morning on the Friday before our tea meeting. Quite a few local people who have lived here for decades, but never entered the premises, have now done so, and we expect them to progress to coming on Sundays. One who has done that is a married mother in her 30s, with her 2 year old daughter, for whom she is seeking a sound moral education!
For the past 4 Sundays at the time of writing, the number of "outsiders" attending our gospel meeting has exceeded our own numbers. Several have to be fetched and taken home, up to 3 miles away, and we are increasingly struggling to cope with the requests for people who wish to come.
Your prayers would be valued, especially for conversions followed by confessions of faith.
The 14th Yorkshire Bible Study Week was held at Sneaton Castle Centre, Whitby with John Grant being the speaker this year. A group of over 80 believers from many parts of the country appreciated the challenging ministry from Judges, and the helpful Bible Readings on 1 Corinthians. The warmth of fellowship was also much valued.
The assembly at Skelmanthorpe has a developing work amongst asylum seekers with up to 30 of them attending the gospel meeting each week. Some of them are persecuted Christians who have fled their homelands and others are unbelievers. Practical help is given in the form of hospitality, food, and clothing as well as sharing the Word of God with them. Some have professed to be saved and one Iranian lady has recently been baptised.