Edmonton: In November, Peter Simms had two weeks of ministry meetings with the Connor’s Hill assembly on his chart, “The Gospel of the Glory of the Blessed God.”
Fort McMurray: The Wood Buffalo assembly enjoyed having Pete Smith for ministry October 30-31. He then had children’s meetings for the next five nights. Attendance was encouraging with new children out each night as well as some new parents. Our annual Christmas program was held December 4 and nearly one hundred attended, which is very encouraging. Gordon Williams gave a simple gospel message following the program.
Vancouver: Four weeks of gospel meetings in Carleton, shared by Peter Ramsay and Kyle Wilson, ended December 4. The attendance was good and the Lord was pleased to save a few souls. Ashley Milne spoke on the Lord’s work in Venezuela at the December monthly missionary meeting in South Burnaby.
Portage la Prairie: The assembly enjoyed two weeks of ministry on the Tabernacle by Gordon Williams in October. The meetings were held in the Glesby Centre, and were helpful, especially for those who have not been in the assembly very long. We also enjoyed a brief visit from Craig Saword in November when he gave a report of the work in El Salvador.
Winnipeg: Robert Thomson from Scotland had nine ministry meetings here in late October and early November, taking up nine principles of the local assembly including: the assembly and its context, character, protection, appreciation, salvation, sanctification, spiritual gifts, weakness, and reproach. The avenue taken was unique and refreshing. CDs or MP3s of the series are available at nominal charge, and would be of value to both new and older believers.
Moncton: The four weeks of French gospel meetings in Bouctouche and one week in Moncton, with Richard Desrosier and Alan Boulianne from the Moncton assembly, concluded in December. The Lord in His love and mercy answered prayer with six professions of salvation, including a man who heard the gospel for over 22 years and thought that he had too many sins. God showed him that the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses from ALL sins; also on December 4, four believers obeyed the Lord in baptism, which was a great encouragement for the assembly.
Newfoundland and Labrador
Carbonear: Bryan Funston was with the assembly for a Lord’s Day and two nights of ministry in late November.
St. Johns: David Oliver visited and gave appreciated ministry on Saturday evening and Sunday morning, November 19-20.
Fogo: Bryan Funston had two weeks of very profitable meetings on Egypt to Canaan. A good number from the community came out, which was a great encouragement to the saints.
Gander: Three weeks of meetings ended November 27, with David Oliver and Marvin Derksen. Some expressed interest throughout the series, but none professed. The week of children’s meetings prior to the gospel meetings with brother Derksen went very well, with 24 new contacts throughout the week. The saints were blessed by the excellent gospel and ministry over the three weeks.
Seal Cove: Bryan Funston had three nights of ministry here in November and also did some visitation in nearby Harbour Breton.
Amherst: Dan Shutt had a day of ministry on November 26. His subject was the Bible, its history, interpretation, and translation. The ministry was well-received; about 300 believers attended. The assembly appreciated this ministry and the help of the Sussex assembly.
River Hebert: Noel Burden made an appreciated visit to the assembly, speaking to the children on Friday night, with ministry and gospel on the Lord’s Day.
London: Seven brethren ministered to profit at our conference on the first weekend of November. The saints were also encouraged to hear of a man, long prayed for, being saved during the closing nights of the October gospel series.
St. Thomas: The Lord gave help at this year’s conference. G. Patterson, A. Dryburgh, Wm. Skates, M. McLeod, J. Gould, L. Steers, G. Sharp, F. Sona, Wm. Metcalf, A. Kelly, A. Ward, and B. Owen gave valued ministry and gospel. Larry Steers visited for a Thursday night ministry meeting. Frank Sona spoke at the first winter Saturday night ministry meeting in December and stayed with the assembly for several nights taking up the book of Ruth. Two young sisters were baptized at this time, bringing much joy to the assembly.
Toronto: The work among the Chinese in Agincourt has been continuing with good interest throughout the Fall months. There was cause for great rejoicing as a number gathered to witness three of the believers obeying the Lord in baptism on November 20.
Victoria Road: The assembly appreciated a visit from Bernie Foreshew, when two young men obeyed the Lord in baptism. Ed Miller led a week of encouraging youth meetings in October. The saints have been blessed by recent ministry from Lorne Langfeld, Larry Buote, and Jim Beattie.
Prince Edward Island
Summerside: At the conference on November 19-20, sponsored by the assemblies on PEI, Sandy Higgins and Matthew Cain shared the ministry. The subjects included such themes as, Molded by the Masses (peer pressure), Money Management, Time Management, Marriage, Music, Media, Moral Purity, and Motivation to Service. It was very encouraging to see the number of young people that came from a distance to attend. Many younger ones, and some not so young, expressed that they had been helped by this very profitable weekend.
Glen Ewen: Jack Gould gave appreciated ministry November 6-11 on “Remnant Return from Babylon.” He plainly and simply taught basic truths for present day living and assembly life.
Taylorside: The saints enjoyed a three-night visit from Jim Webb, and the ministry given was appreciated. Two young sisters obeyed the Lord in baptism, bringing joy to the saints.
Phoenix: J. Slabaugh, P. Harding, E. McCullough, and B. Lavery were at this year’s conference. The Bible readings were Christ-exalting, the ministry very profitable. Brethren Harding, McCullough, and Lavery stayed for a week of ministry meetings following.
Newington: God gave help in the ministry and gospel preaching at the conference, which was well-attended. Two young women were baptized after the gospel meeting on Saturday evening, and that same evening a woman professed salvation. Robert Surgenor remained in the area for ministry following the conference.
Terryville: The believers enjoyed three weeks of solemn gospel meetings shared by David Petterson and William Seale. The Lord blessed in salvation during these meetings and saints were encouraged by the numbers attending. The practical ministry given each Lord’s Day was greatly appreciated, as well as the Sunday school class each week.
Stout: Gospel meetings with Stan Wells and Roy Weber concluded with a good number of unsaved in to listen, and the brethren felt it was a time of blessing. The subject to be taken up by Sandy Higgins on January 21-22 will be “The Life of David – All the Days of my Life. ”
West Union: The assembly concluded five weeks of gospel meetings with William Skates and Alan Christopherson on December 2.
Springfield: The assembly hosted its second “Community Day” on November 5, with free clothing, Bibles, and other literature distributed. The event was well attended by over 60 adults and children. Please pray for a continued response to this gospel outreach. Also, the assembly enjoyed recent visits by David Petterson and Robert Surgenor, both giving enjoyable ministry.
Worcester: Robert Surgenor was with the assembly on November 10.
Deckerville: James Beattie and William Metcalf are having a weekly gospel meeting here each Wednesday evening, and are including some prophetic subjects.
Fridley: A young lady professed in the last week of meetings with Eric McCullough and William Skates this summer. Separate visits this fall from Allan Davidson, Andrew Bergsma, Jesse Fitch, Stanley Wells, and Stuart Thompson were encouraging and helpful.
Omaha: The believers recently appreciated the visits and teaching both of Jim Webb on the Epistle to the Galatians and also of Stanley Wells from his chart on the Dispensations of Scripture. We have also had the joy of a young man obeying the Lord in baptism.
Midland Park: The saints had the joy of seeing a young brother baptized and added to the fellowship of the assembly in November.
East Aurora: The saints where encouraged this summer by the baptism of two young believers, and by visits from Larry Steers, Gary Sharp, and James Smith.
Akron: Bill Seale was here for the Sunday School treat when a good number of parents were present with their children. The day closed with one being baptized. Gene Higgins had two nights of ministry which stirred the hearts of the saints. Robert Surgenor visited for a Lord’s Day when a number of visitors attended the gospel meeting.
Cleveland: Gene Higgins paid a visit recently, which was an encouragement to the believers.
Mansfield: We appreciated a visit from Gene Higgins during November.
Steubenville: The assembly was cheered in receiving a young couple into fellowship in November. They have been coming to the assembly meetings for some time and have seen the truth of separation, thus desiring to be associated with the saints gathered together unto the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Seattle: Bryan Funston and Tom Hoy shared the missionary meeting here on November 30.
Hans Bouwman reports that the main purpose of his visit in Europe was to be in the German assembly at Lottstetten for a series of Bible Readings, where he shared with Jim McCandless of Hickory, NC in presenting the truth concerning the local assembly. Believers from surrounding German and Swiss assemblies attended these meetings as well. The Lord gave much help and there was a keen interest shown where teaching of this kind is not known.
Ministry meetings were then held in Belgium in both Flemish and French speaking assemblies. Brother Bouwman then enjoyed sweet fellowship at a conference in Amsterdam followed by further meetings in Amsterdam, Schoonoord, and Dedemsvaart, where the response of the saints made clear that the Lord used the ministry for their spiritual blessing. A visit with Mr. and Mrs. Lou Swaan was apparently a great encouragement for them, although Lou is not doing well in health.
In the publishing work, another printer has been found to print the magazine. The brother who has done an excellent work for the past 20 years had to sell his business because of serious illness. The supply of printed copies of Bible Commentaries will soon be exhausted. The plan for 2006 is to publish these books as E-BOOKS, available on Internet. The last ten copies of the German book, Oldene Leuchter (Golden Candlesticks), concerning the truth of the local assembly, were used during the Bible Readings. In the meantime, manuscripts are being prepared for further publications. There is not much available in sound teaching concerning the testimony of the local assembly in the Dutch and German languages. Prayer is requested for wisdom in providing the right literature!
Nezahualcyotl: Joel Portman was a blessing to the assembly with very timely ministry.
Pachuca: In gospel meetings at La Raza (over 8,000 ft. above sea level), Harrys Rodrguez and Gilberto Torrens are encouraged with good attendance.
Volcanes: Dan Harvey and brethren from the Coapinole and Ixtapa assemblies are in the third week of well-attended gospel meetings.
Zamora: Joel Portman had excellent Bible readings on Romans 5-8 with the saints in the Galvantepec assembly.
Zapopan: Joel Portman had a week of appreciated ministry meetings here on the subject of the Holy Spirit.
Jack Nesbitt writes, “We enjoyed our time in St Lucia during the month of November. It was my privilege to have visited assemblies at Castries, La Gare, and Forestiere. I also helped in a short gospel series at Ciceron. Bob MacLeod from Hickory also gave appreciated help. This has been a very busy year for storm activity in the Atlantic. Most islands survived direct hits from hurricane activity, but flooding was common due to very heavy rain.”
David Richards reports that progress in the work in St. Petersburg is very slow, and the assembly work was very discouraging in the summer with so many dependent upon their “dachas” (country gardens). Things are back to “normal” now, although some of the saints are working and cannot get out during the week; others have domestic difficulties. However, there is an exercise toward the gospel. There is now a gospel meeting on Sunday afternoon, as well as a Sunday School. These are good developments.
Sabrina Booth is a great addition to the assembly. She helps in the work among the street kids, as well as visiting the children’s cancer ward. She is also very much involved in visiting one or two orphanages and with English classes.
Ina, the seventeen-year-old girl with cancer for whom prayer was requested, died about two weeks ago. It seems that she may have trusted Christ. Sabrina and a number of the Dutch Christians traveled to Yaroslavl (about 13 hours each way by train) to attend her funeral. Sabrina intends to maintain contact with her mother and sister who both have shown some interest in the gospel.
It is not unusual to see soldiers begging on the Metro. These are men who have lost legs, perhaps in Afghanistan or Chechnya, and have virtually no support from the government. There is a desire to provide a home for such people, as well as needy Christian families, where skills could be taught, and meaningful employment provided. Prayer is requested that the Lord would make this a reality.
For the last few years I have sought to stay in Russia right through the year. But I am finding it too stressful, so in the future I will go home for the summer and return to Russia in September.
Tampa, FL – December 31 – January 1
Pennsauken, NJ – January 7-8
Seattle, WA – January 14-15
Deland, FL – February 4-5
San Diego, CA – February 18-19 (Bible Reading John 15)
Kenneth Halverson of West Union, IA, on September 8, age 74. He was born and lived in this area all of his life. He was born again on June 26, 1998 at the age of 68 and faithfully attended meetings until suffering a stroke in May. A number of acquaintances from the area paid respects to Kenneth at the funeral and heard the gospel preached. Victor Collins and Steve Walvatne shared in the service. Prayer is valued for his widow Ellen, a daughter and her husband, and a grandson and his wife.
Delbert Hird of Baldwin City, KS, on October 6, age 95. Our dear brother was saved at the age of 14 while attending gospel meetings at Coal Creek, KS. He was a faithful brother and shepherd in the Coal Creek assembly. He is survived by his wife, Ruth, who is now a resident in the Care Center. The funeral service was shared by David Olmstead, his nephew, and Roy Weber.
Irvin W. Toenjes of Marion, IA, on October 12, age 87. He was saved during tent meetings held by the late Oliver Smith and Paul Elliott in the little village of Viola in 1950. He and his wife Ruby were received into the Manchester assembly prior to transferring to Marion when the assembly was formed in 1962. It was here his influence was known in leadership. Irvin’s faithfulness to the assembly was witnessed by all who observed his quiet godly life. The last several months he was given daily loving care from Ruby and daughter-in-law, Jan Toenjes. Irvin is survived by his wife Ruby, daughter Sandy (Mrs. David Brandt), and a son Douglas and wife Jan, three grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and three sisters. The funeral was shared by Al Christopherson and Dr. David Brandt.
Mrs. Lena Stevens of River Hebert, NS, on November 2, age 89. She was saved in 1944 at the age of 28 years. A number of others were also saved at the same time. Her mother, who was in fellowship at River Hebert, was instrumental in her salvation. Lena was in fellowship at River Hebert and, in her later years, in Amherst, NS. When she was unable to attend meetings due to her health, she went to a nursing home until the Lord called her home to heaven. Her desire for the gospel to be preached at her funeral was fulfilled by two local brethren. Ken Taylor gave a stirring word at the graveside.
Iven Cuvelier of Stout, IA, on November 8, age 89. Our dear brother was saved in October, 1947 while he and his wife were attending tent meetings in New Hartford, held by Paul Elliott and Oliver Smith. He was in happy fellowship with the believers at Stout until his passing. He was preceded in death by his wife, Jean, in September, 2004. He is survived by his son and daughter and their spouses, also four grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren, and nine brothers and sisters. The funeral service was shared by Richard Van Mill and Roy Weber at the Stout Gospel Hall.
Mrs. Grace King of Victoria, BC, on November 8,2005, age 99 years. At age 14, Grace (Ronald) was saved at Esk, SK, and her cheerful Christian testimony, along with her interest in the gospel and missionary work, was an encouragement to many. Following a memorial service at Victoria, Grace was buried alongside her first husband, Charlie Muir, at Portage la Prairie, MB. Several of her nephews spoke words of tribute at her funeral.
Cecile Leslie Spencer of Goodwood, ON, on November 8, in his 84th year. He was born in Nova Scotia in 1921, and was born again in Toronto in 1956 through the preaching of Robert Booth and Don Moffet. Les served his country in World War II and served his Lord and Savior as an elder in the Goodwood assembly from the late 1970’s until the day of his passing. He will always be remembered as a friend, faithful brother, and a gentle shepherd. He leaves with us his wife, Winona, who would value your prayers for the family, his daughter Susan Spencer, his son Nelson, with daughter-in-law June, and three grandchildren. The funeral service was taken by L. Langfeld.
Jan (nee Brandt) Sluiter of Marion, IA, went to be with Christ on November 16 after a long illness borne with Christ-like grace and remarkable joy. She was born on April 9, 1943, and was saved in Garnavillo on January 17, 1954 through the truth of Isaiah 53:6. Diagnosed with ALS in the late 1980s, she endured much pain and discomfort for many years. Her husband, Jim, lovingly cared for her throughout her lengthy illness. Close to 400 attended her funeral service which was taken by Eric McCullough, her brothers David and Tom, her son Shad, Tom Stickfort, and Al Christopherson. Russ Nesbitt spoke at the graveside. Beside her husband Jim, she is survived by her daughter Heidi (Mrs. Steve) McCandless of St. Thomas, her son Shad and his wife Cynthia, and four grandchildren.
Helen Manke of Kamloops, BC, on November 21, age 87. She was born in Russia, and immigrated to Canada at age 8. Helen married at age 21 in Drake, SK, where she and her husband were reached, saved, and baptized at Hiawatha Gospel Hall. After some years in Saskatoon, Helen came to Kamloops in 1969 where she was in the assembly since its beginning until her homecall. Helen had the joy of seeing all three of her sons saved. A number of unsaved family and friends heard the gospel faithfully preached at the funeral by local brethren. Please pray for those who mourn and unsaved family members and friends.
Miss Fanny May Goff of Puerto Cabello, Venezuela, on December 1, age 96. Fanny was born in Forest Grove, OR in 1908 into a home well known for its spiritual quality, saved in 1930, and arrived in Venezuela in 1938. Her formative years were influenced by Mr. Ben Arnold and reflected in her ladies’ classes and literary efforts. She carried on until her “half-moon posture,” as she called it, required that she spend her final years with her Bible and hymnal in the home for aged Christians in the city where she had been in the warp and woof of the development of the extensive testimony that there is today. She was best known for her part in giving the assembly-sponsored school in Puerto Cabello the prestige that it enjoys in that city, but in fact served the Lord in personal evangelism and colportage in other places as well. Not surprisingly, ill health required her to be in Oregon during WW 2, and her return was impeded by government authorities who told her that Venezuela was open to all except “thieves, drunks, and missionaries.” In the funeral services, attended by at least two generations of former students – not a few of whom who had been won for Christ in the school – Bruce Cumming and others spoke of her intense devotion to the Scriptures and her tireless efforts in preparing and distributing Gospel texts, and orienting both youth and assembly elders. Eliphaz described Fanny’s story exactly: “Her seed was great and her offspring as the grass of the earth; she came to the grave in a full age as a shock of corn that the Lord of the harvest took in its season.”
George Styles of Marysville, WA, on December 1, age 76. He was born into God’s family through personal faith in Jesus Christ as a boy of 11. He had a heart for God and for gospel outreach. In his work as a reflexologist and massage therapist, he would audibly pray asking the Lord to make the treatment helpful to the patient. This opened the way for a spiritual conversation to believers and unbelievers alike. George always found ways to help needy people. For many years he provided transportation for men and women from the mission and half-way houses to the Sunday evening gospel meetings. Eternity will declare the results of these efforts. One of his favorite verses and motto in life was Ps 34:1, “I will bless the Lord at all times: His praise shall continually be in my mouth.”