SUMMARY REPORT FROM THE BRITISH ISLES
Following the ITERO, 83 saints travelled from Leipzig, Germany, to participate in one of the five blending trips across the British Isles—(1) the East of England, (2) the North, (3) the South West and Wales, (4) the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, and (5) Scotland. The visiting saints were joyfully received by the saints in the many small localities visited. One local brother stated that these blending times were truly seasons of refreshing (Acts 3:20) for himself and for his locality. A visiting sister mentioned that she has been praying for Europe for many years but actually seeing and being with the local saints changed her prayers from being abstract to real and full of burden and love.
During the blending trips, saints participated in Bible and literature distributions on university campuses and in city centers. Across the regions, the visiting saints were also taken to sites of notable church history, such as the chapel in Wales that had served as the center of the Welsh Revival, the Wicklow Mountains of Ireland where John Nelson Darby first ministered, sites associated with the Cambridge Seven, and the hometowns of faithful servants of the Lord, such as Margaret E. Barber and Hudson Taylor. Through the visitation of such sites, saints were able to see the rich heritage of recovery in the British Isles. One saint testified,
My highlight was visiting the John Wesley Chapel in Bristol, where we were able to gather around the pipe organ and with great rejoicing sing hymns by Charles Wesley. O for a thousand tongues to sing my great Redeemer’s praise! Surely we touched God’s heart in our singing. Our singing touched other visitors who were in the chapel, and local saints were able to establish contact with two local English women who are very open to more fellowship. Come, Desire of nations, come! Fix in us Thy humble home.
Although the majority of the cities visited have at least a small lampstand, on several trips, the saints were taken to major cities such as Belfast and Oxford with no lampstand. In tears, the saints prayed strong prayers that the Lord would raise up lampstands in these cities.
When considering what had happened during his blending trip, a brother said, “It was a time for blending, obtaining a view into church history, and proclaiming good news to the people of Dublin.” The cumulative experience of blending with the local churches, contacting people in distributions, and seeing the history of what the Lord has done in the British Isles really brought the visiting saints into a new appreciation of the Lord’s current recovery work in His church. The local churches were greatly strengthened by the flow of life brought by so many visiting saints. Surely the speaking at ITERO concerning the recovery of the church and of the church life was experienced by the visiting saints and the local saints alike during these blending trips.
In the blending of the churches we receive nourishment, we receive revelation, and we receive a vision of God’s eternal purpose concerning Christ and the church. Such a blending is not only for our own mutual spiritual benefit but is also for the mutual building up of the Body of Christ. (1993 Blending Conference Messages concerning the Lord’s Recovery and Our Present Need, p. 48)
The five blending trips concluded with a regional conference at Bower House on October 14-15. The conference was a re-speaking of the rich messages from ITERO. Over 1,000, including 152 children, gathered for this conference. This was the first conference for 127 adults. These new ones came to the conference from many different sources—some are being shepherded by local saints; one travelled alone by coach from Cambridge after hearing an announcement on the radio; others came with friends from as far away as Edinburgh; another heard about it on the local bus, lost the phone number but remembered how to get to the general area, and was directed up the hill to Bower House.
One new one gratefully said, “Thank you so much for everything and having understanding for the importance to get the Church back to its roots.” In follow-up phone calls, many expressed their appreciation of the depth of teaching that they are not able to find anywhere else. During the conference, several of the new ones signed up for Bible studies or further personal contact.
The atmosphere of fellowship and enjoyment was very prevalent at the conference, and many of the saints stayed for several hours after the conference concluded. It was a time full of blessing for all of the local saints, the visiting saints, and the new ones who attended the conference. The entire week of blending trips and the conference surely was another major step the Lord took to recover His church and the church life in the British Isles.
- That all the saints will respond to the Lord’s rich speaking with much and thorough prayer that the recovery of the church and the church life would be realized all over the British
- That the Lord would continue to blend His Body and that there would be a prevailing one accord among all the saints in the local churches.
- That all the local saints will be supplied and strengthened to shepherd (1) the new contacts that have been gained through distributions and (2) the new ones who attended the conference for the first
- That the golden lampstands across the British Isles will shine brightly as the testimony of Jesus in each locality and that the Lord would raise up lampstands in all of the major