Travel with John Blanchard Brian H. Edwards
Daniel Rudge, Bracknell, England
Published by Day One Publications, Ryelands Road, Leominster, HR6 8NZ, UK.
Travel with John Blanchard is a book which combines a biography of Blanchard’s life and a travel guide to sites of special interest throughout his life. These include Guernsey (his birthplace) and various places where he has lived and served over the years, including Weston-super-Mare (the place of his first full-time appointment), Croydon and Banstead (Surrey).
The biography of Blanchard’s life certainly makes compelling reading. He initially attended Holy Trinity Church in St. Peter Port (Guernsey) and was saved at the age of 22 during a gospel campaign led by Canadian evangelist Paul Cantelon in 1954. In subsequent years Blanchard served as the South-West Union Evangelist of the National Young Life Campaign (1962), joined the staff of the Movement for Worldwide Evangelism (1965) and founded Christian Ministries (1980). The author, Brian Edwards, clearly communicates Blanchard’s passion for evangelism and defending the Christian faith, a passion which has led him to ‘every corner’ of the United Kingdom and many places worldwide. Another major theme of the book is Blanchard’s written ministry. He is perhaps best known as a Christian apologetics author, with over twenty-five books in print. Some of these, such as Right with God and Ultimate Questions, have an evangelistic theme and have been instrumental in bringing many to faith in Christ. Others (for example, Does God Believe in Atheists?) are more apologetics based, aimed at strengthening the faith of many.
Christian biographies are often fascinating to read and this is no exception. Any who has read some of Blanchard’s writings will find this book interesting, although there is much historical detail in the early chapters, and it is a shame that more examples of Blanchard’s well-known ‘sharp mind’, ‘wit’ and ‘immaculate ability with words’ were not included. Despite this, it is a pleasure to read of the way in which God has used, and continues to use, Blanchard in His service, even though the travel guide notes will not be of much use to many.
[Our thanks to Dan Rudge, Bracknell, UK, for this review]