Reach Out Meetings in St. Stephen's Church

ABOUT a year and a half ago a new church was organized in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Because the people composing this group did not have their own place of worship, arrangements were made for them to meet in rented quarters of St. Stephen's United church. Relations with this church were very friendly and congenial. . .

-Lay Activities Secretory, Alberta Conference

ABOUT a year and a half ago a new church was organized in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Because the people composing this group did not have their own place of worship, arrangements were made for them to meet in rented quarters of St. Stephen's United church. Relations with this church were very friendly and congenial.

When church leaders were approached in the fall for permission to erect a sign advertising the Seventh-day Adventist services, the pastor and board gave hearty approval. Furthermore, when arrangements were being made for MISSION '72 Reach Out for Life meetings it was agreed that the meetings could be conducted in their church.

The meetings were held by Pastor George Knowles, Ministerial secretary of the Canadian Union, and Monty Jones, Ministerial secretary of the local conference. The Reach Out for Life handbill announcing the meetings indicated that they were being held in St. Stephen's United church.

During the course of the meetings, which ran from April 6 through April 28, fifty-six people were added to the church through baptism. The baptisms began on the second Friday night of the series, with additional baptisms on each of the succeeding Friday nights.

One problem presented itself in relation to the baptisms: St. Stephen's did not have a baptistery. However, Monty Jones, with the help of others, built a very nice portable one that was placed directly in front of the podium. This baptistery was left in position in the church throughout the meetings.

The United church minister reported a bit of embarrassment during his Sunday morning service from having the large baptismal tank directly in front of him while he preached. While he was conducting a catechism class in the church one Sunday afternoon some of the young people asked what it was all about. He explained that Seventh-day Adventists were using the church for special meetings and needed the tank for baptisms. Reporting on this discussion later to Pastor Jones, he said, "Really, this is the only sound and logical method of baptism."

The impressive Friday night baptisms formed an important part of the meetings. At each of them Pastor Knowles would extend the invitation to others.

Of those baptized at the writing of this account, 35 have united with the South Edmonton church and 20 with the North Edmonton English church.

The Lord blessed richly in these meetings, as He did in many other meetings held in the Alberta Conference. We believe that this year we probably will double our baptisms for the conference.


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-Lay Activities Secretory, Alberta Conference

September 1972

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