Gospel Tent Work
Dan Gillies reports on his tent work this summer, one of the wettest ever experienced, with thanks to all who remembered the work in prayer, and praise to God for His good hand upon it enabling many to be reached with the gospel.
The season began at Tayport, where he was helped by Stuart McGahie and Craig Munro. The weather was cold and damp but a few attended, mainly from outside Tayport. Local children were slow to come, but during the second week some did turn up. A local woman with her children showed a good interest, and a man from Perth, who had been seeking for some time, trusted Christ as Saviour. An academic from China, on a 6 month visit to St Andrews University, came on three occasions and was very moved by the gospel message. He has since returned to China but continued contact with him is being attempted.
At Sanquhar, Aaron Colgan joined the work again, the third consecutive year in this village in fellowship with Kirkconnel assembly. Again a measure of interest was shown with a few unsaved attending. Above 30 children came nightly and attention was excellent.
At Fort William Phil Kennedy took time off work to share in the preaching. The tent was located near a small housing estate, but interest was poor. Hardly a child came, but a small number of unsaved folk did attend during the two weeks. One or two came as a result of door to door visitation - the help of Sam Johnston of Harley Street in this was greatly valued.
Finally the tent was located in a secure site at Newtongrange. Almost 5,000 invitations were distributed by the Mayfield assembly in and around the town, but most of the unsaved people were brought from other places. A few local children did come with one or two parents. Robert Miller helped some afternoons going round the doors, and some excellent conversations were held. Mayfield and other assemblies supported the meetings well.
Craig Munro and Jack Hay had two weeks of meetings in a tent sited in Craigs garden at Crosshill, Fife. The meetings were well supported by believers from around the area, many unsaved people heard the gospel, and God graciously visited with salvation. At the time of writing the tent is being relocated some three miles away between Ballingry and Scotlandwell. It is hoped that those who have been attending will continue at the new venue.
Andrew and David Williamson (Culloden and Belfast) had two weeks in the gospel with the Dingwall assembly at the end of July. The assembly is now reduced in numbers to one brother and five sisters, and these meetings were partly to assess the response to the gospel locally. The gospel was faithfully preached in the hall and in the open air, and childrens meetings were held during the first week. Leaflets were distributed throughout the town but only a few locals attended. Good support by believers from neighbouring assemblies was greatly appreciated, and they brought along a number of unsaved folks. It is encouraging to know that one of those, a lady from Avoch, professed salvation subsequent to the meetings. The local believers would appreciate prayer that they might definitely know the Lords will and guidance as to the future.
Agricultural shows in Ayrshire and Dumfries
Tom Jenkinson of Galston, exercised about opportunities at agricultural shows in south-west Scotland, had a trailer van fitted out and stocked with good leaflets particularly suited for farmers. He first used a walk-in trailer, but a more suitable van with a side opening was obtained about 8 years ago and this has proved ideal. Between May and August there are ten shows, all on a Saturday. Some are relatively small, as at Catrine and Dundonald, but many families are present as well as the farming community. Others are much larger, like Ayr and Dumfries where large numbers attend. This year due to the excessive rainfall some shows had to be cancelled. The van is manned mainly by Tom Jenkinson, Tom Dempsey and Robert Revie although the help of other brethren has been much appreciated. The children are given plastic bags with gospel texts on the outside and a painting book, crayons and other items of interest inside. Adults are engaged in conversation when possible and appropriate literature handed out.
This year Graeme Hewitson designed large posters for the van based on "All sheep need a shepherd" and "Farming a way of life" with an appropriate Scripture verse below. A video screen is also used to show clips of creation and then people are offered a beautiful creation DVD. In spite of the weather it was felt that this was one of the best years work, and prayer is valued that the seed sown in such a variety of ways will produce an ultimate harvest.
N. IRELAND & EIRE
Ahoghill: Childrens meetings were planned DV, commencing 10th September, for 1 week, with R Plant.
Ballintoy: The assembly was most encouraged with the large numbers of locals who attended during the five weeks of meetings. The Word was faithfully preached by M Radcliffe and M McKillen.
Ballycastle: The Annual Open Air Meetings were conducted on the sea front on 27th and 28th August. Thousands of tracts were distributed by young brethren, and the meetings were very well supported. Help was given by J Rogers, T McNeill, R Pickerng, B Glendinning, R Plant, A Barber and various local brethren. R Plants gospel trailer was used at the Gospel Hall. Edwin McKee and William McClelland also had a stand and contacted many visitors.
Ballymena (Cambridge Avenue): P McMullan had childrens meetings during the week commencing 27th August in his garage at home. Numbers were very encouraging with excellent interest. These meetings were held especially for the local children.
Ballymena (Harryville): A week of childrens meetings commenced on 27th August in Tullygarley Community Centre (kindly granted). L Craig was helped by local brethren. This childrens work has been ongoing for several years starting with 40 children and has now built up to approximately 85. There was excellent local interest. Very encouraging.
Ballywatermoy: Gospel Meetings were conducted by G Woods having commenced on 12th August. The district has been well visited and at the end of August the meetings are continuing with interest. Attendance is encouraging and a good number of young people are coming nightly.
Carnlough: P McMullan had a week of childrens meetings from 12th August in D Sanders garden. Good numbers attended and the Christians were encouraged.
Clonkeen Gospel Hall: Leslie Craig had five nights of profitable ministry from 6th-10th August.
Kells had a week of open air meetings when 1,000 homes were visited. J Rogers was helped by local brethren and had a most encouraging time. God granted very suitable weather and the assembly support was excellent.
Annual Tent Meetings at Moorfields for children have been arranged, DV, commencing 10th September with R McNair and local brethren.
Ministry Meetings have been arranged from 24th-27th September with M Radcliffe.
Larne: The Conference was held from 24th-28th August. It was a very well attended conference, and the presence of the Lord was known in the various meetings. Excellent ministry and practical applications were given from Bible Readings on the Life of Daniel. D West, D Gilliland and Albert Hull shared in the opening of the Bible Readings and M Radcliffe and S McBride also contributed in ministry. W Fenton and A Hull preached the gospel with evident help, and a large number of unsaved were present.
Portrush Gospel Hall: The believers were encouraged by ministry given by S Grant from 15th-22nd August. Very good interest was shown.
Dungannon: Gospel meetings were convened by the assembly at Dungannon in an Enterprise Centre belonging to the Oona Valley Community Association in the village of Eglish, outside Dungannon. David McGarvey helped by local brother Kenneth Irwin preached the gospel nightly for two weeks. The meetings proved very encouraging with quite a number from the district, from different backgrounds, coming in to hear the gospel clearly presented. The presence of the Lord was evident in the meetings each evening. All were encouraged to hear of blessing in salvation.
Fintona Gospel Hall: Many believers gathered for the Annual Conference on 8th August to hear deeply practical ministry by W J Nesbitt, J Fleck, B Currie, M Radcliffe, and S Nelson.
Lislafferty (Newtownstewart): Five weeks of gospel meetings were held in a tent on land belonging to a local believer. The speakers were S Gilfillan and J Fleck. The believers were greatly encouraged by the many local people who attended, as no meetings had ever been held in this area previously, and many heard the gospel for the first time. Assemblies from the surrounding area gave their support.
Currien: Brethren T Wright and S Nelson continue in the gospel in this needy rural area. They are encouraged by a little local interest, and good support from neighbouring assemblies.
Ballywalter: The assembly, supported by helpers from other local assemblies, held their annual week of Childrens Meetings with S Wells. Excellent interest was shown by the children with almost 100 being present each day.
Bangor (Ebenezer): Following their move to the new hall in July, the assembly held a meeting for the contractors associated with the construction of the hall and the professional team, at which T Armstrong spoke. A further meeting was held for the people of the locality in which the hall is situated. P McCauley was the speaker and the meeting was attended by the Mayor and several local Councillors. Two further meetings were held for the assemblies, with very helpful ministry being given by J Fleck, D Gilliland, R McKeown and J Allen. The assembly anticipates gospel meetings with J Rogers and J Fleck from 2nd September. Prayer requested.
Gransha: D Radcliffe had three nights of profitable ministry with the assembly.
Hillsborough: R Plant had a week of very well attended Childrens Meetings in a local school with a most encouraging response from the children.
Kilkeel: A Nesbitt and A Beresford have commenced gospel meetings with the assembly.
Co. LONDONDERRY & Co. DONEGAL
Bellaghy: S Maze and A Colgan had five weeks of gospel meetings in a marquee at Hillhead, Castledawson which concluded on 26th August. The gospel was faithfully preached, the attendance was encouraging, the support of local assemblies much appreciated and there was blessing in salvation. God be thanked!
Coleraine: T Wright and S Gilfillan are expected to commence gospel meetings on 9th September in Wattstown Industrial Estate, Mr W McNeills premises being kindly granted. Prayer would be appreciated.
Killykergan: The assembly expect DV to hold gospel meetings in Garvagh Development Trust Centre (kindly granted) for two weeks from 3rd September. Mr Henry Gilmore (Killykergan) and Mr J Davidson (Larne) are to be responsible. The report at the end of the first week was encouraging.
Magheracorran: G Stewart, S Patterson and D McAllister commenced gospel meetings on 26th August in a mobile hall in the neighbouring district of Calhame. Prayer appreciated.
Gospel Meetings continue at Wastelands school three miles outside Armagh and are now in their 6th week. Some locals from surrounding areas have come which has given great encouragement. The speakers are H Wilson (Brazil) and S McBride.
ENGLAND & WALES
The assembly at Bethany Hall Cheltenham had their Missionary Conference in January with reports from Geoff Payne about Egypt, Peter Gill about Kalene in Zambia, and Colin Breeze of Brass Tacks giving his final report before handing over to Alan Parks as General Secretary. The Saturday evening rallies in February and March concluded the series with really good attendances and instructive ministry from Richard Collings and John Coltman.
The Cheltenham & Gloucester Good Friday Conference had informative reports from Mike Curtis of Gloucester City Mission and Paul Young of "Echoes" describing his visit to Moldova last year, and concluded with uplifting ministry from Roy Hill of Bristol.
The childrens work continues to grow, and many of the children come to the Gospel Service in the afternoon. On one occasion six of them came in and sat through a Breaking of Bread meeting on the Lords Day morning. In July, Steve and Gill Davies visited and Steve gave a comprehensive report on the work of the Lord in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania. The Holiday Bible Club is about to begin with Philip Dean leading, and most of the assembly supporting in prayer and in practical ways. The assembly is very encouraged to have seen a little growth in the last year, giving cause for praise and thanks to God.