Howland’s Baptist Church

“Loving God Loving People”


Fellowship News                       July 2021


Our Dear Brothers, Sisters, and Friends,

Greetings and welcome to the July edition of the Howland’s Baptist Church Fellowship News. Thank you for the feedback on the Online & Recorded Sunday Church Service of the 4th July from our brother David Burden from Christchurch Baptist Church from whom he brought greetings to us all.

The feedback for the entire service has been good, for that we thank you.

During the month of August we are looking to set up working parties to complete jobs inside and outside of the church.  These are preparations for the full opening of the church building, allowing us (subject to government advice) to hold Sunday Services and more.  We will need your support in this. Whatever you feel able to do from the list of jobs we will be producing, it would be appreciated so please do volunteer. It will be fun working together to the glory of God!  We may even put some lunch on to feed the willing workers.  Please pray for the road ahead for us all in these uncertain times.  


Remember if you wish to take communion and or have a prayer over the telephone please contact Stuart, he will make the necessary arrangements.

God bless and keep praying

Stuart and Elaine x

HBC Deacons


To access the fortnightly Sunday Services the information is needed:


  • follow the link to Sunday Service.

  • After service Zoom Home Café (I/D 845-025-6358 PW 873022).

  • The Howland’s Baptist Church Facebook page can be easily accessed. 


  • Pray for Aamani, who is self isolating as her housemate has tested positive for Covid 19. Pray for her housemate too.

  • Please pray for Colin Pye , Central Baptist Association, who has been ill for some time and has recently been taken into hospital with pneumonia. He is slowly improving and responding to treatment. Please hold Colin and his wife Netty in your prayers

  • Pray for our church leadership and the way ahead and to always seek the Lord’s guidance, to have courage to follow His path, whatever that may be.

  • Continue to pray for Lesley Ragg and her brother as they care for their parents.

  • Continue to pray for Gillian and Peter Myer and Gillian's Mum Joyce.

  • Pray for Adrianne Evers and her kidney stone issue and for Brian.

  • We give thanks for the successful medical interventions for Alex Gray, and Stuart Bailey.

If you feel the need for us to pray as a fellowship for something in your life, a family member or neighbour's life, please send a message requesting  The Prayer Chain by email or a phone call to Stuart on 07572871447 or On the Online Sunday Service if needed press the “I need a prayer button!” and we will get back to you.


Junior church will be meeting on Zoom fortnightly. The future dates are Sunday  25th July and fortnightly after that at 11:00 A.M.  For any further information contact Fang.


Our prayer meetings are held on Wednesday at 8.oo P.M on Zoom. Please do try to attend these, to spend time lifting each other up in prayer, for the big and little situations.


To join these Zoom Meetings: This is the passcode and ID for all prayer meetings: Meeting ID: 882 9469 6066 Passcode: 524536



If you are part of our fellowship family, but have not become an “official member” you may not understand the difference.  Being an official member gives you voting rights on the decisions made in the fellowship and if you wish to discuss this further please speak to the Deacons.


Nina Rowley, has been supporting this group since its inception. She is now seeking support as her voluntary role has developed.  This involves being at the church building on Friday at 14:00 to book people in, take their money. Once this is done the person can go home or stay. It is up to them. If you feel you can help, to be of service please let Stuart know.



Fang’s House Group:

This is a group meeting fortnightly on Zoom. Meeting fortnightly on Thursday evenings at 8:00 P.M, the next scheduled Zoom meets are on  22nd July, and 5th August. Any enquiries contact Fang.

Saturday Zoom Prayer & Communion Group:

This group meets weekly on Saturday at 10:45 A.M. For information contact Stuart.



We take communion regularly at the online services, but what about you?  We could do communion or pray with you over the phone if you like, just let Stuart know in order that we can arrange a time.



Stuart will be making contact during the latter part of July and start of August to ascertain your views and feelings about the opening process. The questions he will ask will be:

  1. If we open for face to face services on 5th Sept., will you feel safe and confident to attend?

  2. Would you like to see people wear face masks inside the building?

  3. Would you like us to continue setting the seating in a socially distance manner?

  4. If you answered no to question 1.,  what can we do to make you feel safe and confident to attend?



Lesley Ragg has asked that we remind everyone who hasn’t set up a Direct Debit or Standing Order for an offering to our church finances to consider doing so.


It is important that we reduce as much as possible our physical money collections, to reduce Covid 19 risks for those counting.   Some churches talk about and ask for money frequently, it is after all an essential part of keeping a church running.  But we are also mindful that these are difficult times for some. It is for that reason we ask you to pray on this, and give what you feel able to on a regular basis by DD or SO. Everything we own and everything we possess comes from God, and what small part we give back in this way will be blessed.  What you give is a decision between you and God. DD and SO are very safe and easy to set up. If you have a problem with those methods, consider writing a cheque or you can make a cash payment when we return to the church building. If you email: and I will direct your inquiry.



Please save up any postage stamps. These are sent to the BMS (Baptist Missionary Society) for Christian charity work worldwide. The BMS Stamps Bureau raised £8,000 last year. If you have any saved up, please give them to Claire Plank, to send off. If you can't get them to Claire, phone 885999 or email and  she will collect them. Thanks.



We are pleased to share with you the latest news from Christine who is moving on from BMS to a new challenge:

Dear all,  this is my last newsletter for BMS, obviously we can still keep in touch, here is my personal email
These last two months have been very busy with organising the handover of the church and also learning a little bit more about what I will be doing. After different meetings, involving the French Baptist Federation, we have found a good way forward for the church. Philip and Rosemary Halliday are now the new pastoral couple. They will work with the new church council recently elected and also with a student pastor Lula Deroeux.  I am delighted by this decision and I am looking forward to the next steps for Gif.

Otherwise I had a three day meeting with my future colleagues from the Foundation des Diaconesses in leGard. The purpose of this meeting was to know each one other a little bit more, but also to learn and to reflect about our role. We had a very interesting teaching about listening to the bible like we listen to a person. We also visited some establishments of the Foundation and it was the perfect opportunity for me to meet some of the new directors I will work with and to have a better sense of their needs and expectations. Another urgent topic was to find a new place. It is a two bedroom flat,  on the first floor of an old house. I also have a garage and a garden.


After five years in Paris area, I am delighted of the idea to live in the quiet and peace of France countryside. I had then to organise the move, with all the packing, changing address and other stuff at the same time while working. I am writing this last newsletter from my new place where I moved two days ago (there are still a couple of boxes waiting to be emptied).

My last three days at Gif were filled in with different farewell events. The first one was at the care home. It was very moving to say good-bye to the elderly as I won't see them again. It was also a sad time for them and please pray for a new chaplain at the care home.We then had a service for the other churches and friends from Gif. It was a lovely service led by Philip with the presence of other colleagues and the local priest.And lastly I had my last service with the church followed by a meal together at the house of a member of the church. We were able to organise all these events with the ease of Covid 19 rules at the beginning of July.

Philip had put together a video about my five years in Paris area, a lot to reflect on and to be thankful for. Thank you very much for your support and prayers during these five years. A lot of things happened and I did a short video, I hope you will get it from the BMS communication team.

Please keep in your prayers the church at Gif. I will start my new role mid-July, I will have to learn new places, meet new neighbours, build new relationships, learn the culture from this area and find a new church, to list a couple of prayer points. Thank you very much for your prayers and support and please keep in touch. May God bless you and keep you well.


If any other members have read something of interest or a specific part of the Bible that they feel is worth a deeper dive into or comment, please let us know. It’s great to get feedback on what people are reading to supplement their learning of the Christian message during this lock-down.

Stuart here: I was given a book written by Derek Prince.  It is a small book called “God’s Medicine Bottle”. The rear of the cover synopsis states: “The Great Physician(God) has provided all believers with the ultimate prescription for excellent health.  In God’s Medicine Bottle, you  will discover how to…

  • Find God’s prescription for you.

  • Listen for His directions.

  • Read the instructions carefully.

  • Follow His guidelines exactly.

As you take the medicine as directed, you will find that God is true to His Word - He will restore your physical, mental , emotional, and spiritual health.”

I have found this book a fascinating and easy read, and it is something I intend to follow prayerfully. It is available in paperback and as a download too.


( Go online and take a look.


Go online and take a look.




Alex Gray is producing this Newsletter to keep all our church community informed and  engaged. Please let us know if you have anything you would like to add to the newsletter for the next monthly edition (August). You can send material for inclusion by email to or call him on tel: 07305 837272 . 

God bless and love in Jesus’ name.

Alex Gray

Fellowship Newsletter Coordinator.

Stuart Soper Howland’s Baptist Church Coordinator   0757287144

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