Tribute: Arnold Adams (1)

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Over 65 Years

Arnold Adams was born in Toronto to Frank and May Adams on November 30th, 1913, the eldest in a family of five. He often said that he was born in Grace Hospital (on a Lord’s Day) and spent the rest of his life in the Grace hospital.

May 20, 1930, was a red-letter day in his life. After a Gospel meeting in the Pape Avenue Gospel Hall, with Mr. James Marshall’s Bible open at Romans 10:9, and while some of the elder brethren knelt in prayer at the back of the hall, he trusted Christ as his Savior.

On May 14, 1938, he and Kay Simmons were married, and through all the ups and downs of missionary life in a strange culture, plus many years of lengthy separations due to an itinerant ministry, they remained very committed to each other.

They were commended from the assembly that met in the Pape Avenue Gospel Hall in March of 1941. At his passing, he still had in his possession the original letter of commendation from that assembly

Exactly 11 years from the day he was saved, he arrived by ship with his wife and 13-month old child in Havana, Cuba, and launched into language studies so he could preach in Spanish.

In late 1944, he moved his little family to the western Cuban provincial capital of Pinar del Rio, where he began an entirely new Gospel work, distributing tracts, preaching in the parks, and holding house meetings for children and adults.

David and Agnes Adams arrived in Pinar del Rio in March of 1946 to join in the work, and the two brothers labored together until 1954. During those eight years a beautiful Gospel Hall was built, an assembly begun, and cottage meetings were held in various towns and country areas. The brothers also took part in an island-wide distribution of the Gospel of John, and started a printing ministry which eventually sent thousands of tracts throughout the Hispanic world.

In July of 1954, he moved with his wife and two boys, now 14 and 9, into a remote area of the eastern Sierra Maestra mountains. God had been at work in that region and an assembly of believers had begun. He saw the need for teaching and further outreach. From there he traveled on his trusty mule to some 60 different locations where he conducted cottage meetings. In one place in the foothills, a number of men and women were saved, baptized, taught, and gathered together in assembly fellowship.

In the summer of 1956, the house in the mountains was taken down and the materials were transported by mule train to the outskirts of the nearest town, and rebuilt into another house from which he could reach other areas where God was working. While on furlough in Canada in 1958, he learned that a battle fought between Castro’s and Batista’s forces had completely destroyed that house.

Due to the increasing hostilities of the Castro regime, he took his family to Toronto in 1960 for a “temporary” evacuation; however, he never went back! Meanwhile, he began a ministry of preaching and teaching across North America.

In 1962, he relocated in Orillia where he lived until he and his wife moved to Elim Homes in 1997. There he found a new sphere of labor, actively assisting in the Home and ministering especially in the Midland and Waubaushene assemblies.

In 1981, he was present for the first breaking of bread in Kapuskasing, so he especially enjoyed being at the assembly’s 25th anniversary in Easter of 2006.

In November of 2006, now in the shadow of his 93rd birthday, he spoke for the last time at Waubaushene Gospel Hall; he told Andrew, just before he spoke, that he had enjoyed some fresh thoughts from John 3:16 on the three individuals there and was going to share them with the saints the next Lord’s Day!

Until January of 2007, he had spent only one night of his life in a hospital, but now he was weakening, losing weight, and quite uncomfortable. He was sent to St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto for a series of procedures. He came back by ambulance to Elim Homes on February 1. On February 6, 2007, he left his weary body behind and stepped onto the shores of the heavenly country. Safe home at last!