Pastor’s hike to commemorate E Anglian Revival
Ian Savory, senior leader at Lighthouse Community Church in Sheringham, is planning a four-day prayer walk from Lowestoft to Sheringham in June to commemorate the centenary of the Lowestoft Revival. Tony Rothe reports.
Ian will start his walk on Sunday June 6 at London Road Baptist Church in Lowestoft, which was the seat of a major revival back in the Spring of 1921 when thousands heard the preaching of Douglas Brown, a Baptist minister from London, and many became Christians.
Ian said “The urge to do this has really been on my mind for some time now. It would have been good to have done this on the actual anniversary of the start of the Revival in March, but this would not have been easy because of pandemic restrictions.”
Ian will be accompanied by Daniel Ward, Lighthouse Community Pastor, and hopefully other church leaders from around Norfolk. They hope to walk via Ormesby and Stalham, then on to the coast and finishing at Lighthouse Community Church in Sheringham on Wednesday June 9. They will be praying at regular intervals along the route, asking God to pour His spirit on the communities they pass through.
Lowestoft, Britain’s most easterly town, was the setting for the start of a revival of interest in God’s word following the carnage of the First World War. Scotsman Hugh Ferguson was pastor of London Road Baptist Church. He ran a flourishing weekly Bible class and active prayer meetings at the church, with considerable interest being shown by young people, with prayer reaching a crescendo in the early weeks of 1921.
Meanwhile, in Balham in South London, Baptist minister Douglas Brown was seeing conversions every Sunday at the large, successful Baptist Church he had been leading for 26 years, but became acutely aware that something was missing from his life, and realised that God was calling him to mission.
Hugh Ferguson had invited Douglas to preach at a mission at his Baptist Church in Lowestoft for a week from Monday March 7 1921. The Missioner duly arrived by train. Although ill, he spoke on the Monday night and at meetings on Tuesday morning, afternoon and night, and the power of the Holy Spirit moved among the people from the beginning. On Wednesday night 'inquirers' packed the adjacent schoolroom for counselling and prayer and sixty to seventy young people were converted that night, along with older people. Each night more packed the 'inquiry room' after the service, so the mission was extended indefinitely.
By the end of March the meetings had moved to the larger St John's Anglican Church nearby. People flocked to the meetings from surrounding areas and over subsequent weeks there occurred scores of conversions. Lowestoft was set on fire for God. Within eighteen months Douglas addressed over 1700 meetings, and saw revival in his evangelistic ministry.
Interest was spreading. Revival meetings multiplied in the fishing centre of Yarmouth as well in Ipswich, Norwich, Cambridge and elsewhere. Scottish fishermen working out of Yarmouth in the winter were strongly impacted, and took revival fire to Scottish fishing towns and villages in the summer.
Douglas Brown is quoted as saying, at the time:
“The army of organised religion is a great host. The possibilities are immense. But the great machine is hung up and powerless for want of water. Continued drought will soon spell disaster. Rain Committees do not make rain. Christians need to get back to apostolic simplicity of faith in the supernatural.
“We need to count upon God more and more, and to rest upon His Word unfalteringly. God's answer will be a revival downpour which will fill all the ditches that faith has dug. Unless we get a spiritual revolution in our churches that will bring back reality of faith in professing Christians and turn the multitudes of professors into possessors there is little hope of a spiritually revived nation.”
If anyone would like to know more about Ian’s prayer walk, please e-mail email@example.com . The team would appreciate prayer for this venture and also any financial gifts to help cover the costs.
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