My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defence; I shall not be moved.
– Psalms 62:5-6
“Whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.” Matt. 7: 24-27.
The great work of parents and teachers is character building; it is to seek to restore the image of Christ in those who are placed under their care. A knowledge of the sciences sinks into insignificance beside this great aim; but all true education may be made to help in the development of a righteous character. The formation of character is the work of a lifetime, and it is for eternity. If all could realize this, if they would awaken to the thought that we are individually deciding our own destiny and the destinies of our children for eternal life or eternal ruin, what a change would take place! How differently would this probationary time be occupied, and what different characters would fill our world!
The question that comes home to each of us is, Upon what foundation am I building? We have the privilege of striving for immortal life; and it is of the greatest importance that we dig deep, removing all the rubbish, and build on the immovable, solid Rock, Christ Jesus. He is the sure foundation. “For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” In him alone is our salvation. “There is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”
The foundation firmly laid, we need wisdom that we may know how to build. When Moses was about to erect the sanctuary in the wilderness, he was cautioned, “See that thou make all things according to the pattern showed to thee in the mount.” In his law God has given us a pattern. Our character building is to be “after the pattern showed to thee in the mount.” The law is the great standard of righteousness. It represents the character of God, and is the test of our loyalty to his government. And it is revealed to us, in all its beauty and excellence, in the life of Christ. The law is the detector of sin.
We have inspired testimony on this point: “For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came [home to the conscience], sin revived, and I died. And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death. For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.” Rom. 7:9-11. This is the work that it will do for every soul that is living in sin. The law points out sin, and condemns it, and sends the sinner to Christ for pardon and cleansing. “The law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.”
-: Granitebay SDA Church
Holloway Women Ministries kicked off their annual week long seminar on the 23rd September, with Cecile Mwaniki empowering women to be starters not followers. We were reminded that “we can do anything we want with God’s help.”
The seminar covered many topics such as ‘Breast Awareness’, ‘Parenting’, ‘Clothes and Fashion’,’ Falling in Love with Jesus’, ‘From Miracles to Mediocrity’ and ‘Sexual Health’. The topics were presented by various speakers namely: Grace Adesina, Malika Bediako, Valerie Bernard-Allen and Patsy Reid.
The Women Ministries not only targeted women but also the youth of the church. Women were taught how to check their breasts for any abnormalities. Malika spoke about ‘Last Chance Parents’ and how to handle children and how to be supportive of children. However, the burning question that kept recurring was, “Where are the men when it comes to being a role model?” ‘Are you what you wear?’ looked at clothes and fashion and how particular we should be when dressing for different purposes. It is not just a matter of following fashion but it is knowing what suits the individual.
Friday night was a teen-focused topic where they were taught that when they fall in love with Jesus nothing can stand in their way. The teens came out with statements that helped us to reflect on the behaviour of older members towards them and how discouraging it can be at times.
Valerie Bernard blessed us during the divine hour with a thought provoking sermon where we were urged to keep going after the miracle has taken place in our lives rather than to settle into mediocrity.
AYS was taken by Patsy Reid, where members acted out different scenarios to make us become more aware of the dangers of sexually transmitted diseases. The programme was very educational and gave us food for thought.
On Sabbath, a pink bow was presented to all members to raise awareness of Breast Cancer and a special offering was raised which will go towards Breast Cancer Research.
Many people commented on the success of the programme and how they learnt a lot from it and would like some of the topics to be repeated in AYS to target even more young people. Praise be to God!
Holloway Women Ministries Dept.
On 8th September, Holloway celebrated the graduation of 61 students following the completion of the Daniel Seminar. The graduates wore red for the day – symbolic of the blood of Jesus. They had each displayed determination and dedication in completing the seminar that started in May, and were now well versed in the prophecies revealed in the book of Daniel. Pastor Matthew Herel reminded those in attendance that although this ceremony represented their graduation day from the seminar, graduates should seek to make it their enrolment day for the kingdom of Heaven.
Written by Pastor Matthew Herel
On 8th September, Sabbath School at Holloway Church was upgraded to Super Sabbath School. SEC Personal Ministries Director, Pastor Kirk Thomas, was the speaker for the day. He transformed lesson study from its usual class format into a rousing and inspiring study involving the whole church. Members and visitors alike were all encouraged to participate. Every person who made a contribution to the discussion was rewarded with a special welcome: a greeting from the entire congregation! The welcoming theme continued during Divine Service, where Pastor Thomas preached a stirring sermon on the overwhelming love of Jesus.
Written by Pastor Matthew Herel
Pastor Holder and the Elders of Holloway Church invited David Adams and Pastor Herel to be ordained as elders on Sabbath 29th October 2011.
1 Timothy 3:1-7 was read by the visiting pastor from Ilford Church to remind us of the characteristics of a man of God. Pastor reminded us that being an elder, is not just an office in church but a lifestyle where outside of church we should be showing God in us.
Pastor Holder then gave some encouraging words. He said that elders should be able to pray for members in any given situation. They should be ready if they are to be called upon and to be ready to give sound advice. They should be ready to visit members and spend time with them.
Pastor Holder continued and said these wise words “Its a demonstration of wisdom, not a flash of intelligence; its not where you stand but what you stand for.”
The ordination service was brought to a close with the laying of hands on both Pastor Herel and Bro David Adams. What a joy it is to see men dedicate their lives to God and for them to be willing to allow God to use them.
This was the theme of the evangelistic campaign held at Holloway church, from 6 – 20 August, with speaker: Pastor Kirk Thomas and evangelistic singer: Anthony Whigham (from the USA).
Pastor Thomas captured the audience night after night with his infectious enthusiasm. He explored some very interesting topics such as: ‘The Day Mrs Grace Murdered Mr Law’ and ‘Who Changed It? History and the Bible Tells the Truth’. We were all impressed at how he delivered the Word of God in such a dynamic way, that even a little child could understand.
Anthony Whigham truly blessed our hearts throughout the campaign as he ministered in song. He also shared a testimony of how the Lord allowed him to be put in prison so that He could use him to witness and lead others to Christ.
On the afternoon of the 20 August the campaign climaxed with a baptismal service, which saw thirteen individuals commit their lives to Christ. The baptismal individuals represented every spectrum of the church and local community, in terms of age, gender and participation in church activities and events. The youngest of the group for example are active members of the Pathfinder Club; others had children who attended the Adventurer Club; who knows what integral part the influence of their children and Counselors had on their decision that day.
Holloway Church was full to capacity and each of the candidates were surrounded by friends and family who had seen them through the good and the bad times to reach this point where they had decided to follow Jesus. Rarely do we have the opportunity to baptize couples, however on this occasion, Holloway was blessed to baptize a couple who have been worshipping with us for many years and whose daughter through the initiative of her parents, is a committed member of the Adventurer club. The Pastoral team made it very clear on the night that this was only the first of two installed baptisms; a further session is to be held very soon.
It is hoped that they too will be greeted with much excitement as they join the numbers who are currently being nurtured by our church members as they begin their walk with God. There was great rejoicing in Heaven and at Holloway as they were welcomed to the church family. The newly baptised were presented with a pack of books to nurture their spiritual development.
On Saturday 27th August at 3pm, the Holloway Youth Department hosted an outdoor community concert in the church courtyard with the sole purpose of providing an opportunity for the young people to witness to their local community.
The concert kicked off with a rousing rendition from the Holloway drum corps quickly drawing members of the public. After 15 minutes, the clouds gathered and rain began to pour! The audio visual team quickly brought in the technical equipment before the rain could do any serious damage! Everyone seated in the courtyard, grabbed their seats and dashed into the foyer for shelter, including members of the public that had joined us. The question on everybody’s minds was, “What are we going to do now?”
Wendy Baptiste, the MC for the concert, did the opening prayer in the foyer and after some deliberation; the decision was reached that the concert should go on despite the rain! The drum corps returned to the stage and continued their set, completely unphased by the drizzling rain. The crowd returned to the courtyard with their chairs, equipped with umbrellas and people started huddling together in small groups. Although the weather was not as we had hoped, spirits remained high. The praise team, consisting of Irene Onek, Tracy Castor, Ranette Prime, Godwin Ogbeide and Michael Edwards, followed the drum corps with a lively song service, accompanied by Seth Dantzie on the saxophone.
Meanwhile, the witnessing team were hard at work, distributing black cards advertising the live streaming service, church leaflets explaining who we are and ‘Final events’ DVDs by Doug Batchelor (Amazing facts). The team were sporting ‘Speak to me’ badges and were dressed in casual clothing. Jane Merchant tirelessly gave out drinks to members of the public. 100 DVDs were given out in total and the witnessing team kept asking for more! Items were rendered by David Ogbeide, Michelle, Sheena from Newcastle and Praise choir, all under umbrellas! James Castor, Wuni-banna Sesay and Joseph Uhuka did a powerful mime to the song ‘Praise you in the storm’ which was particularly apt considering the weather. Streamers and confetti made this mime a visual treat and really drew the crowds. The trio persevered although they were getting wet from the puddles on stage and appeared to be exerting a lot of physical strength as the streamers became heavier the more wet they became!
Pastor Andrew Davis presented a short, thought provoking talk asking the public to consider the question ‘What if God really does exist?’ Andrew was later joined by a drunk man on stage but the potentially tricky situation was diffused when Andrew put his arm around him and told him that he was liked both “down here and up there”!
It was heart-warming to see both members of the public and church members standing for long periods of time in the rain. One attendee later said that when Brother Bonner prayed for the community, those affected by the recent riots and our political leaders, people across the road by the bus stop bowed their heads as they joined the church in prayer. It just made me think that the harvest truly is plentiful.
Comments received after the concert were:
“I really enjoyed the concert, the rain made it more fun!”
“I was really blessed by the praise and worship!”
“We definitely have to do this again!”
Thoughts from some members of the witnessing team:
It was my first time doing street witnessing so I was slightly nervous however, the atmosphere of the concert definitely helped. People were willing to stop and talk with me, to take the DVDs and to stand and watch the concert. Most people I spoke to asked me what Seventh Day Adventists were and what made us different from other Christians. One particular young girl stayed for the whole concert despite the rain and I took her details and she said she would definitely come again. Another man was a Christian himself and was with a group of teenagers who were all ex drug addicts who found Christ. That in itself was motivation for me to throw more energy into witnessing. His story really touched me. Street witnessing was an amazing experience and something I would definitely do again.
Hayley McKenzie-Sealy, Holloway church
Although it was my first time witnessing I was prepared thanks to Costa Vaggas and his workshop. The people that did stop enjoyed the music and said they will visit next time so I am looking forward to see them soon. Need to do another outreach programme as soon as! Anesha West, Holloway church
My witnessing experience was one that I really enjoyed. Even though quite often I was faced with rejection, I felt very privileged to share my faith with those that did stop. I look forward to the next opportunity!
Alec Gage, Holloway church
I found it exciting to be a part of the witnessing effort and whilst being shy, people were generally receptive to find out a little about the church. I was really encouraged by the conversation I had with a young man who told me how he came from a life of drugs to being a Christian after experiencing a similar event. It emphasised to me that God uses our efforts and the more we give, the more opportunity God has to act through us.
Michael Edwards, Stoke Newington Church
The experience really brought meaning to the verse “Preach the word in season and out of season”! The Youth department will be doing this again so watch this space!
Tracy Castor, Youth Leader
The Holloway Education Department held a table top sale in the courtyard on Sunday 14th
August. Various departments came together to help raise money for the church building fund by selling various valuable items.
Some of the departments who offered their advice were the health department who provided health screenings and sold freshly juiced fruit and vegetable drinks which were great sellers! The personal ministries department sold various literatures with bibles being the most popular.
After five hours of selling gifts and food, and many people digesting wholesome information and spiritual knowledge, the day came to an end.
The departments who took part in the sale would like to thank those who attend the event and for the support given by all. May God continue to bless us as we strive to deliver his message throughout area 6a and beyond.
Click here to view the pictures from the day
The church came to a hushed still as the command was given and the Holloway Pathfinder Drum Corps began to play the slow march and enter the sanctuary. Followed by the flag bearers, platform party and the rest of the club members, the church was soon full. It was the 16th July 2011, our annual Pathfinder day but this one was special because we were celebrating ten years of the Holloway Drum Corps. Councillors Alex Silcott and Anita Daley told the church how ten years ago they had arrived in England from Monsteratt and had soon joined the club but were surprised to find that there was not a drum corps. It was not easy but soon the club had bought drums and Holloway Drum Corps was formed. Joined by the previous and the current Area 6A Co-ordinator Trevor Harewood and Kennedy Kundan, awards were presented to the past, present and up and coming drum corps members; some who had especially travelled back to Holloway to receive their awards. An award was also presented to Councilor Alex and Councilor Daley for their extremely hard work and contribution in setting up the drum corps. Since the drum corps formed, many other SEC Pathfinder clubs have followed suit and formed their own corps with help from Councillor Alex. Drum corps are an excellent way of witnessing and make a huge difference to street marches as they easily attract attention. The public are always impressed by the marching and discipline of the corps and so are interested in learning about our cause. The Pathfinder Day service also included special items, a presentation on Seventh –Day Adventist pioneers and three sermonettes by our very own Pathfinders, Joshua Roberts, aged 18, Gamaliel Uhuka, aged 12, and Leandra Lee Daley, aged 10. We pray that by God’s grace our drum corps continues to strive and to assist in winning souls for Christ.
By Hayley Mckenzie-Sealy