Burton on Trent – England
The saints gathered to the name of the Lord Jesus Christ at Winshill, Burton on Trent, give thanks to God this year for 100 years of testimony.
The work commenced in a farmhouse just a short distance from where the Gospel Hall is currently situated in the village. This farmhouse was used to commence gospel meetings in 1904.
The first record we have of the saints meeting together as an assembly is a small accounts book, where we find recorded,
‘Contributions of those gathered to the Lord’s name’, July 3rd 1904, amount 12s – 4d.
During that summer a tent was erected in one of the fields of the farm, and gospel meetings were held. During the winter of that year, one of the farm buildings was used for the believers to meet in. By 1921 the room at the farm was too small, so a disused Methodist Chapel was acquired, only a few hundred yards away from the farm.
‘They continued stedfastly in the apostles doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers’, Acts 2. 42.
So the testimony continued, the gospel was preached and souls were added to the assembly.
In 1977 the assembly was relocated by the local authorities. This is where the Hall still stands today on the main road of the village, just two hundred yards from the original site of the farmhouse. The Hall is situated at the heart of the village, in the middle of a council estate, which is ideal for making contact with those in the village and also the children for the Sunday School. The only down side to this is that we have had problems from youths wanting to cause disruption around the Hall when the meetings are on.
Since the move in 1977, an annual conference has been held and continues to be so. The assembly has benefited greatly from the ministry received at these conference meetings as also by ministry from Saturday night ministry meetings that are held from October through to February, which have taken place for many years now.
Over the last three years, as well as having a number of Bible readings, we have sought to have ministry meetings with speakers invited to come and give outlines of books of the Bible. Over this period of time many of the books of the Bible have been touched upon. ‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable’.
When the new hall was built in 1977 a baptistry wasn’t put in, but in the last few years one has been installed. Within a short time five young people were baptized. Some of these come from non- Christian homes and had come up through the Sunday School. These young people are now in fellowship and are actively serving God in the assembly.
The Repton Bible study weekend will be in its 17th year this year, God willing. This weekend takes place on the second weekend of July, and has always been well supported from people all over the country. This is not just a young peoples’ weekend but we also have families come along to enjoy the teaching of God’s word. We hire a private school building in the village of Repton. Food and accommodation is provided. It gives an opportunity for a good time of fellowship and for all to learn from and discuss the scriptures together.
In September 2003 we held a meeting entitled ‘Drugs – Are Christians prepared for the reality?’ Our concern and exercise was for the young believers of the day. In the world in which we live, our young people may well be offered drugs. The question is do they know what they are getting involved with, and what the dangers are, and how do we as parents deal with these situations? These were some of the questions we sought to give help on. About 130 people came that night and were helped with regard to these things.
In this our centenary year we have a number of events planned in the will of the Lord.
As we look back as an assembly, we thank God for 100 years of testimony and look forward to further opportunities to serve Him, until He comes. We thank Him for all that is past, and trust Him for all that’s to come.