Since our last newsletter we don’t seem to have seen much let up in the number of ministry engagements we receive. So you can understand how grateful we were in:
September to spend a week on holiday on the lovely island of Madeira!
During the other three weeks we were able to conduct our series of Marriage Seminars ‘Time for Each Other’ with Kingshurst Evangelical Church. This was good preparation for our visit to Poland in:
October but I’ll let Maureen say a little bit about that:
Dear Friends, Psalm 46, was given me on October 7th. A friend said that just as road bridges are strengthened to take heavy traffic and houses to withstand gales, The Lord strengthens us for the difficult times that He knows are ahead.
The last couple of months have not been easy but they have been blessed. We flew to Poland on October 9th to do marriage seminars at two Churches. We were in a very beautiful area in Poland and were given hospitality by some lovely Christians. The marriage seminars went well, and we were able to pray with several people. The other meetings Pete did were well received too.
Unfortunately, my mum had not been well, she told the family not to tell me how poorly she was because she felt that I would be reluctant to go. When I was there she became very ill, collapsed and was taken to hospital. By the grace of God my brother, sister and sister-in-law were with her when it happened. We all thought she was dying and it was hard to be so far away. Pete tried to find flights home for me, but I had a feeling deep inside that I should stay and do the work. That evening I gave my testimony at the church in Bielsko-Biała and asked the congregation to pray that I would see Mum again.
Picture shows Maureen sharing her Testimony
The Pastor, Piotr Żądło gave me the following quote by Andrew Murray:
First, He brought me here; it is by His will I am in this strait place: in that fact I will rest. Next, He will keep me here in His love, and give me grace to behave as His child. Then, He will make the trial a blessing, teaching me the lessons He intends me to learn, and working in me the grace He means to bestow. Last, In His good time He can bring me out again—how and when He knows. Let me say I am here, (1) By God’s appointment, (2) In His keeping, (3) Under His training, (4) For His time.
This was confirmation that I should stay. Mum had a low Potassium and Sodium count this was treated in hospital and she came home. Thirty six hours after landing in Birmingham I came here and spent a couple of weeks helping my sister to look after Mum. She is still very weak but improving.
I went home last weekend to celebrate my 70th birthday with our children and grandchildren; we had a lovely meal together and enjoyed a delicious Gluten Free birthday carrot cake made by our granddaughter Katrina. I have come back to Mum’s because she is not yet able to care fully for herself and my sister still has a job.
Family news: Katrina graduated with a first class honours degree, and has started a midwifery job in Peterborough. Peter James is still looking for work in an airport, while working part time at B&Q. He broke his toe playing football on Monday so that doesn’t help! Jack’s apprenticeship is in its second year. Joe is still working as Intern for his Church. In December he is being baptised at his Church, by his Granddad, Peter. Paul is still waiting to find out what his next posting will be. Anita, Rob and Lynzi are still in the same jobs.
That first verse of Psalm 46 tells us that God is not only our strength, He is our refuge too. I love a refuge. When out in the bitter cold winds of winter there is nothing nicer than coming home, shutting the door and enjoying the peace, warmth and comfort. That is just what Jesus will do for us if we let Him. May The Lord be your strength and refuge at this time. With many thanks for your prayers and support, Maureen.
Peter Continues: While preaching in Zywiec, and two churches in Bielsko-Biała we were contacted by a Pas
tor in the Czech Republic and asked if we could go over there and preach. So, Pastor Mirek Kulec came across the border to pick us up and take us to one of the most amazing churches I’ve ever seen in Hradek. I don’t have one single picture that can do this facility justice! A search on the internet for pictures of: ‘kosciol braterski w grodku’ should turn a few up if you’re interested.
Peter & Maureen enjoy the wonderful view from the roof of the church in Hradec.
In all we preached 14 times during our visit in addition to spending some wonderful free time in an area containing some of the most wonderful scenery in Europe.
Two days after arriving home I started the annual Football / Sports mission at the beginning of:
November This was an excellent opportunity to reach a large group of mainly Asian & West Indian Lads. Now I have two or three fairly quiet weeks [apart from a couple of days each week with my Police Chaplaincy work]. It means that I have time available to study and work on some new materials.
This last week I had a wonderful surprise when I received a phone call from the Head of Education of Sandwell Borough Council ordering 97 complete sets of the Alfred Programme, one for every school in the Borough! This is the by far biggest order we’ve ever received! I pray that this will encourage other Councils to use the Programme too.
Finally, I have been invited to return to Poland the week before Christmas for a repeat of last year’s Operation Christmas Child event; when we had the opportunity to reach over 600 children and their families with the Gospel message. Please pray for this and our other engagements.
God Bless you all,