Recently it was a very great joy to be present at the opening of the Huddersfield Christian Fellowship’s new ‘Cathedral House’, a massive and splendid building with a seating capacity of 2,100 costing millions to build. http://www.huddersfieldchristianfellowship.com/GrandOpeningPhotoGallery/indexCR.html
It was special to be present at the same time as Dick Iverson from Portland, Oregon, USA, who heads up an international movement known as Ministers Fraternal International. I had been invited by Colin Cooper, the local pastor who oversees the European section of MFI, to speak at that church opening weekend and also to the gathered European pastors which actually also included some from India, Africa and the USA. It was a memorable time.
I was particularly thrilled to sit at the feet of Dick Iverson, a very impressive servant of God. It was very moving to hear him speak of the recent death of his wife after 58 years of marriage! He and his four daughters were present around the bedside when she slipped away into the presence of God. Many tears were being shed in the room as he told his magnificent and moving story, which brought great honour to Jesus who has conquered death.
I very much enjoyed speaking to the assembled pastors. I took four sessions, each one on the grace of God, which resulted in some very enthusiastic comeback. Some confessed to having realised that they had been legalists without realising it and felt that they had been powerfully set free by the word. I really enjoyed fellowship with guys from Helsinki (Finland), Thessalonica (Greece), from the USA, Africa, India, Holland and elsewhere.
Celebration Mid-West, USA
Immediately following that time Wendy and I had the joy of going to speak at our Mid-West Celebration in Missouri, USA, which gathered from many churches across the Mid-West.
My visit provided opportunity for renewed fellowship with friends of some years now. It was great to hear news of the fresh churches being planted in Chicago and Charlotte, and I was especially blessed to meet Rob Wilkerson, whose testimony of having received the Holy Spirit after hearing my recorded talk that recently appeared on Adrian Warnock’s blog (11th May 2009). I loved his expression, ‘Wow! Holy cow! I am speaking in tongues for the first time ever!’ We enjoyed some great fellowship together.
I was especially thrilled to see so many people healed following my second session at the Celebration. The presence of God was truly wonderful and several were healed as I laid hands on them and simply said, ‘Thank you, Lord.’ The session went on for a long time since many were waiting to be prayed for and I guess one could have said we will carry on later but I was very reluctant to stop because God’s presence was so wonderfully real and I am still trying to learn how to sense and honour the Lord’s presence when praying for the sick. I love American enthusiasm. Many Brits, having been healed, say their quiet ‘Thank you, I feel better now,’ whereas my American friends express themselves with a great deal more enthusiasm when the pain goes! Praise the Lord!
It was good to preach on Elijah and I felt especially helped in doing my second session, which can be picked up on http://www.newfrontiersusa.org/
Probably next year will be my last visit to Celebration Mid-West but I look forward to it enormously. It was also great to know that our American Newfrontiers friends gave just under $120,000 towards our £500,000 contribution to the Zimbabwe Appeal. It’s so wonderful being part of an international family who express their love in such practical terms for the needs of brothers in other countries.