Ladies' Fellowship March 2015
We were delighted to welcome the Rev Alan Evans as our speaker. Sadly, due to a number of unfortunate circumstances, only ten ladies were able to be present to hear more of Alan's background and activities over the past 50 years.
Apart from his interest in singing, Alan has not had and does not have any hobbies. He has spent all his time running a church and church related activities nationally.
He was born in Peckham, London, an only child, but his parents moved to Yorkshire at the beginning of the Second World War. His father died young and Alan was brought up with discipline and love by grandparents, as his mother worked. By the age of 18 both his grandparents and mother had died and Alan was brought up by a lady in Ossett. In 1962 he met Audrey through church youth activities and they married in September 1963. Their eldest son was born in November 1964.
Alan was registered "disabled" and not expected to live beyond 25 years but in 1965 he was healed by a miracle and began training for the ministry. In 1969 he was ordained as a Congregational minister in Middleton, North Manchester, and he spent 9 years there. As well as his church work there Alan ran youth holidays in the Lake District with another minister and also helped to build up work amongst young people in his area.
In 1978 Alan, Audrey and family moved to Bradford to a church where he was the first minister to be paid. It was an exciting time. The church grew as he encouraged people to invite others to church, and he doubled the finances by introducing direct giving and putting an end to time-consuming bazaars which were not very profitable. There were no money raising efforts for church funds; all gifts were made through the offertory and tithing was introduced but not checked. Ten per-cent of the offertory was given away to Christian organisations. Prayer was pivotal to the life of the church and all meetings began and ended with prayer. They had "half nights" of prayer ( eg 8pm to midnight ) for guidance on such issues as finances. There were two separate finances- one for the church and one for a "centre for caring" where the aim was to bring people to Christ. To sum up, the three main emphases were prayer, direct giving and outreach.
Alan said that he and Audrey have been a team. He could not have worked without her. Their aim has been to bring people to a knowledge of Jesus Christ. Three of their sons are also involved in ministry and chaplaincy, the eldest having been appointed Evangelist for Yorkshire who will work wherever he is called by the leaders of any church.
Alan concluded by saying that he likes churches to be exciting. We know this, Alan, from the support which you have given to our church here and we appreciate all that you do for us all and not least by your willingness to stand in for speakers at our Ladies' Fellowship!
A reminder to our ladies who were unavoidably absent at this meeting. Our next meeting will take the form of a visit to the Dewsbury Women's Health Centre opposite Elim Church on FRIDAY May 15th at 2pm. Please let us know if you need transport.
We are very grateful for the help given by various members of our church for our new fundraising effort during the Ladies' Fellowship weekend. A lot of hard work was done by both ladies and gentlemen. We would not have managed without you. Also, special thanks to Jo and Hazel from Bethany House who volunteered when Jo came to speak, and also to Chris from Happy Memories who also assisted throughout the afternoon.