Extracts from recent prayer letters and newsletters of people and projects supported by the trust.
"When September comes around, I will start to teach Sunday School (a new challenge!) and I will be helping out as an administrator for the women's group that meets monthly. I will help to lead a Bible study on the letter to the Romans, while continuing my training by studying Isaiah and a Bible read-through. However, before taking up these activities, I am pleased to announce that I am in transit, heading to the bilingual InterAction camp and then heading on to spend a bit of time with my family in Canada. I am delighted by the prospect of seeing some of you in Edmonton!"
"Our busy period has been a house move and the exciting news of another baby... due in late September! I have had morning sickness so Matt has had to carry a lot of the house work and 'William looking-after'. Family and friends have been very helpful too so thank you. Please praise God for this wonderful gift of expecting another baby and his provision of a house for us. The house is only a ten minute walk from the college so is easily accessible for Matt. It has a converted garage and conservatory for William to play in so we feel very blessed!"
"We welcomed our other apprentices for their 2nd Ministry Training Course from 10th – 16th December. My highlight was spending time with the apprentices in 1 Thessalonians and considering Paul’s discipleship ministry. Within 3 Sabbaths, Paul had covered 3 important things with the Thessalonians: what to believe (faith), how it affects our view of the future (hope) and what life looks like for the believer (love).
Thank God for this time spent with apprentices in the Word. Pray that there will be great fruit from this."
Leah Githri - iServe Kenya
"Tim’s two years of training at St Helen’s finished in July. We thank you for your prayers during this time. The biggest lesson learnt through this training is that “God is working out his plan of salvation through His Word”.
We have come to see that the Bible isn’t just the foundation of our doctrine, but must be the core of everything the church is. Therefore it is essential to be eager in studying the Bible. At the same time we have come to see how deep the Bible is, and that understanding the Bible rightly requires hard work.
We desire to continue to study the Bible eagerly and to grow through this study. We rejoice in the opportunity we have had to be trained."
Tim & Ai Williams - now at Oak Hill College
Back to Bulgaria...
....after theological studies in the UK
"Sam is currently trying to find a job, he has had more than 12 interviews last week and hopes to start working soon. Pam will start her fulltime language course on the 9th of October. We will take time to settle and see how God will use us the coming months and years to come. During this time, we can be involved in church, (re)connect with people, build their trust, see how the church(leadership) works etcetera.
In a year or two we hope to do more, we both dream of starting projects, but for now our involvement with the church will be mainly on three areas: Sam will preach twice a month, Pam will help out in the kindergarten a few times per week and together we will start reengaging and working with the youth/young families in the church. Next to that we will attend the leadership meetings. We are looking forward to put into practise what we have studied the past years!"
Freed to teach the Bible
"I am writing to thank you for your generous financial support over the last year while I have been serving as a ministry apprentice at The Tron church in Glasgow. Over the last year we have been well supported, and as a result I have been able to give myself fully to the work of teaching the Bible to students and equipping them to teach others. So we are greatly thankful for your kind provision"
Sexualisation and transgender
"Another answer to prayer has been the chance to teach the parents in church about issues to do with the sexualisation of young people. After a lecture on the issue of sexualisation we decided to run a four-part course over about a year. So I did a talk critiquing transgenderism where I sought to help parents understand the issue theologically, answer questions they might face, and make a positive case for the Christian alternative. We then had another talk on bringing up boys as boys and girls as girls. We plan to address homosexuality, sexual immorality and immodesty over the coming months.
Please do pray that I would speak the truth clearly and faithfully and that parents would go away feeling genuinely helped. We are ministering to people for whom many of these issues are acute."
- Robert Brewis, minister for Youth and Children, Christ Church Chadderton
Realistic about pastoral ministry
"[recently] I mentioned two British-born Muslims who professed faith at Easter. One of them has not been to church once since then; the other has not been around very much. The Iranians I’ve baptised have also been noticeably sporadic in their attendance since their baptisms. I don’t report that to be discouraging, but to be realistic about pastoral ministry."
New year, new faces, new opportunties!
"The year officially starts on 1st January but in Manchester it feels like a new year every September with an influx of new people. It is not just the 95,000 students who arrive to live and study in Manchester but also the thousands of young adults who arrive every September for work. This means that each September we re-set and launch new initiatives for reaching those who live, work or study in Manchester.
Crucial to this was our Big Training Day that took place last Saturday. Over 60 regulars attended to receive Bible teaching, encouragement and practical training for the ministry roles they have in the life of the church. Each of our ministry teams ran their own training and we joined together for food and fellowship."
"Though it was sad to say goodbye to my... bible study group and particularly to the good friends that I’d made during the year. I am extremely thankful to St Helen’s, especially my trainers, for the invaluable input I have received and for their patience and dedication in training me. I hope to take many of the convictions, principles, practices, and discernment away with me into ministry and I look forward to developing these more during this next year."
Meeting Jesus at the beach
"It was after the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ that some of the disciples had an incredible encounter with Jesus on the shore of lake Galilee: "Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” None of the disciples dared ask him, “Who are you?” They knew it was the Lord" (John 21:12).
It has been our prayer that many others will have encountered the Lord Jesus Christ on the shore of Scarborough's North Bay as the name of Jesus has been proclaimed at our recent Beach Mission. It was the first time in 8 years that Scarborough has hosted a (UBM) beach mission but it was a great delight to see a committed team of gospel servants, including members of Trinity Church Scarborough, take part.
Praise God for the great week we had and please pray that, according to God's great mercy, we would see much fruit as a result. Please pray that those who heard about Jesus would respond in faith and repentance and that the many people invited to church would come along and hear more and that God would give growth to both seeds planted and seeds watered."
Learning from the wise
"It has been a good final term of studies, especially spending time in the Gospels and dwelling on the person of Jesus Christ. It was quite an intense finish with essays, then revision and exams. However, the privilege of having time to read scripture in detail and to think hard about doctrinal issues has not bypassed me. Revision was actually a joy at times! Mary has really enjoyed studying apologetics this last term.
The rest of June and the beginning of July has been placements, one week on an estate in Battersea with a London City Mission worker and two weeks in International Presbyterian Church, Ealing. It was great to see different ministries and to learn from those much wiser than me. "
-student at Oak Hill College, North London
Japanese reaching Japanese in London
"We organized an outreach event at our home in July and ten mothers and their children from the mothers and toddlers group came.
We had games for the children and lunch, then Ai spoke from Matthew 7:24-27. Speaking from the parable of the two builders, Ai shared how a life built on God’s word will continue to stand even in the storm, like the house built on the rock.
The ladies took an interest and we had a helpful discussion after that. We continue to pray for their salvation, and pray that they will come to the bible studies that will resume from September."