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Norwich preacher pays ultimate price for mission 

Tributes have been paid to a courageous Norwich Methodist preacher, who gave up everything and moved to Pakistan to follow God’s call to serve “the poorest of the poor”, and who has died suddenly. Keith Morris reports.

ColinGillettChildren664Four years ago Colin Gillett, a local preacher in the Norwich Methodist Circuit, upped sticks and moved from Norfolk to Lahore in Pakistan on a mission for life to work with orphans and street children.
 
Colin travelled to Pakistan in August 2017 where he dedicated his life to the poor, street children, orphans and the brick kiln communities of the slum areas of Lahore.
 
He married Christian Pakistani lawyer, Sunita Nayab, whose family were already supporting a local orphanage, and the couple started work on their personal mission. They opened a school for poor and orphaned children where high quality, non-religious education is provided for free.
 
Sunita said: “Colin freed many brick kiln people from modern-day slavery, started a foodbank for poor and brick kiln communities and a shelter and food programme for strays or homeless dogs under the umbrella of One World Welfare Organisation (OWWM). He did lots of good deeds and the children and people loved him.”
 
Colin suffered long-term from the debilitating Crohn’s Disease which flared up again recently and caused him to pass away from cardio-respiratory failure on September 7.
 
“Colin was a wonderful husband, friend, teacher and, above all, a wonderful human who touched the lives of those around him and many other people as well,” said Sunita. “As a husband he was more than a family could ask for and I am lost without him.”
 
Norwich Methodist minister, Rev Sharon Willimott, said: “As a long-standing friend and fellow Methodist preacher, I admired Colin’s response to the call of God in his life to devote his time and energy to the poorest of the poor. He knew it would be a costly call and in the end he paid the ultimate price for it.”
 
Norwich Methodist minister, Rev Nigel Fox, paid tribute, saying: "Colin has always been an inspiration. From our first conversation, when he told me of his call to preach and I was able to lead him in a prayer of commitment to Jesus, then through his baptism and his early work with Foodbank and in training to become a Local Preacher - all the while battling with acute pain of long-term Crohn's disease, he inspired.

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“In all his preaching, he inspired. In his determination to follow a call to serve with orphans in Lahore, and through resilience to the numerous challenges and struggles of Christian ministry there, he inspired. The sadness we share as a result of his death only seals that deep inspiration, something which will never diminish."
 
Over the past four years, Colin and Sunita have helped feed and educate scores of street children and orphans in Lahore despite local opposition and Colin’s health problems. Colin wrote a regular email to supporters in the UK in which he gave a no-holds-barred view of life in Pakistan, and which he told with a very dry sense of humour and self-deprecation.
 
Funeral arrangements have yet to be made but a thanksgiving service for Colin will take place at Wroxham Road Methodist Church in Norwich, details to be confirmed.
 
Sunita is trying to raise £2,500 to cover the cost of repatriation of Colin’s body to the UK.
 
“Many of you have reached out to us and have asked how you can help us during this time,” said Sunita. “We really want to honour Colin's wishes and plan the celebration of life that he expressed wanting before he passed away. If you are able to and comfortable doing so, we would really appreciate any donation, big or small, towards his celebration of life.”
 
To donate, visit the fund-raising page.
 
Find out more about OWWO here.

Read our previous article about Colin.
 
Pictured above are Colin and Sunita Gillett. Pictures courtesy of Sunita Gillett.
 

Feedback:
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Derek Wilcox (Guest) 23/09/2021 16:08
I have been in touch with Sunita for almost three years, and throughout our conversation I have seen the love, care and dedication that Colin had for the communities of Lahore that he helped to serve. I am deeply saddened by his loss, and send much love to Sunita and her family.
Dianna Thomas- Davis (Guest) 23/09/2021 17:55
Dear family friends and followers of Jesus Christ it's thankful Thursday here in the desert of southern Idaho USA. Today before we ask God for anything let's thank him first for everything! Amen! Colin was a man with a mission and that was to the service of God in heaven. You see no one knows when Jesus will come. Jesus the son of God doesn't even know, just that he knows when his father says it's time he will come. You see we are not on the planning committee, we're on the welcoming committee, for Jesus the same committee Colin is on. Jesus told Colin that he was a good and faithful son and it was time for Colin to join him

Colin as a man had a great job in sales, along with his loving wife and second best friend ,Sunita they sold Jesus to a large community of people with their love and compassion to bring the Lord to his children.
To teach his word, to build a school, to feed the hungry, Colin did as Jesus did and as he told him. Along with Sunita, they committed to Jesus their life
At this time we are saddened at the loss of Colin here on Earth, but also rejoice and celebrate the life and love of Colin. As Colin was here to help all he could in the presence of Jesus. and we must do the same in helping Sunita in her most difficult time to carry on Collins mission.
We must all gather together to help carry Sunita in her time of grief as a sister and brother. Be it financially or spiritually.

Now I would like to close in a small prayer. Dearest heavenly Father, Abba ,Please bring help to bring Colin home, bring calm and comfort and support to your child, Sunita. And guide her through her next mission you set for her. In your Sons name, Jesus Christ, Amen!!


(Guest) 23/09/2021 21:43
I am in awe of the work that Colin and Sunita did. These are truly beautiful people. God bless Colin on the journey of his beautiful soul and God bless Sunita as she continues this most amazing work.
Jane Trindade (Guest) 24/09/2021 04:53
I have never met Colin, I have known him through Sunita for a few years. Colin seemed such a lovely man and everybody loved him. Colin and Sunita have done amazing work for people in need. In the last year Sunita and I have developed a deep friendship, I have seen the love between Sunita and Colin. I am deeply saddened by Colin's death, and will always be there to support Sunita xxx

Dixie Shirah Lowery (Guest) 24/09/2021 15:38
I have been following Sunita and Colin for several months, having "met" her through the pictures on my daughter's page. I have been so impressed with their love and care for these children and their families, and concern for the condition in which they live. Truly Colin was a wonderful man! Pictures portray him praying for these children and their families, and delivering food, and recognizing the birthdays of the children, letting them know through those actions that each and every one of them is precious in the site of God. Though I have never met Colin, I know I will someday in Heaven. Surely, on his arrival in Heaven, the Lord greeted him with the words, "Well done, my good and faithful servant."
Sunita Nayab Gillett (Guest) 24/09/2021 17:17
Colin is a caring, honest, lovable husband, friend and person. He left his prints in the heart many people especially the young ones. He devoted his life to his mission and remains alive in the heart of many people and children especially in form of our charity OWWM. I am blessed and honored to be his wife, friend and colleague. The way he loved; nobody can do. RIP
Katie (Guest) 24/09/2021 20:58
I only knew Colin a short time, but through the interaction I had with him I knew he was a genuine caring person and that he and Sunita were doing such a wonderful thing out there in Pakistan. He was always happy to comment and educate on the situation out there, and he was ever so grateful of any help received for the families. He will be a great loss to the community but I know Sunita will make sure Colin’s dream is followed as she continues to support the brick kiln families.
Alix (Guest) 25/09/2021 07:10
I too have never met Colin in the physical sense but The Soul of Humanity is one in Christ therefore separation is not an option when the heart is open and spirit willing. Colin had work to do here and he did it admirably, humility and sacrifice. Through the marvels of modern media we have had a snapshot of life in a far away place where people have the same issues just experienced differently and under different societal and economic conditions. It’s the same sky. I pray for the world daily but I’m a wimp. Colin was out there doing it. I’m reminded of the words of Charles Wesley: Make the Sacrifice complete. Thoughts and prayers to Sunita for her work already done and works she has yet to complete.
Jeff (Guest) 25/09/2021 20:41
I didn't know Colin personally but I knew his wife I have been friends with his wife for a long time Colin sacrificed a lot but he had a mission from God and between him and his wife they have done great Deeds which makes me honored to both of them I know Sunita will continue his work and I know that God will be on her side she will carry out his mission and God will watch over her lead her and guide her and bless her to continue the work that they both started and I would like to encourage everyone to help support Sunita and help her continue her great Deeds and her love for people and especially children I will do everything that I possibly can to honor her support her and love her Sunita is a beautiful loving caring warm-hearted person she loves God with all her heart and I know that she loved calling and I'm sure that she misses him we will all miss him he's in a much better place and I'm sure that he will be looking down watching over her and helping her please give Sunita all the love and support that you can may God bless her
Steve (Guest) 17/10/2021 02:32
I only knew Colin virtually on Twitter, where he supported me through some dark times. I’d like to think we became friends. I’ve only just learned of his passing, as I decided to check why I hadn’t heard from him in a little while. I’m so sad - I miss him already. Thankyou for everything, Colin. I’ll have to make do with re-reading your last message to me; “stay strong”. I will try. Rest in peace, my friend.
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Published: 20/09/2021


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