Mission to Wales

#PrayforMissiontoWales

We are excited to announce the launch of the Mission to Wales: a joint initiative between New Wine Cymru and The Turning team from Reading, UK.

From Thurs 6  – Sat 15 July 2017 there is going to be Mission throughout the length and breadth of Wales!

On each day of the Mission there will be people out on the streets for about an hour in towns and cities cross Wales.

With training happening in each of the New Wine Cymru regions and then rolled out in surrounding towns and cities, we are planning to see Missions going on, all at the same time, in multiple locations across the whole of Wales.

This is the beginning of a plan over the coming years to roll out Mission across every town, city, village and community in Wales.

For further information please go to:-

http://newwinecymru.co.uk/mission-to-wales/

God Bless

Geoffrey

Thomas Coke (1747-1814)

 

From Brecon to the World

Thomas Coke was one of the founders of Methodism and a major contributor to the globalisation of the movement. Born in Brecon, is travelled widely and initiated the sending of missions to many countries.

Brecon in the 18th Century

When Coke was born, Brecon was one of the most important towns in Wales. It was on the route to Ireland and the final stop for the first regular coach service into Wales from London.

It held one of the four Welsh Courts of Great Sessions of a prominent market town and administrative centre. It was also an important social centre for the local gentry and landowners who built many fine houses in the town.

Early Life

Born close to St Mary’s Church in Brecon, where he  was baptised, Coke was the son of a well-to-do apothecary (early pharmacist), Bartholomew Coke, and his wife, Anne. He was educated at Christ College in Brecon and at Jesus College, Oxford and he graduated from University in 1768.

In 1775 he became a doctor of Civil Law. In Brecon he was deeply involved in town life, serving first as a councillor and then as the Bailiff in 1770.

Early Methodism

The Methodist movement began in the 18th century with the teachings of John Wesley, who believed in bringing faith back into people’s everyday lives and that salvation was available to all. He was a charismatic speaker and often preached in the open air. Methodism became popular amongst the working class, although members of all social classes at the time became involved.

Early Ministry

In 1771 Coke was ordained as a priest and became curated in the parish of South Petherton, in Somerset. He first met John Wesley in 1776 and later became an important assistant to him, beginning his lifelong commitment to the newly developing Methodist Church. On Easter Sunday in 1777, to the sound of church bells, Coke was driven from his parish because the local Rector disapproved of his Methodist ways.

Profile and Personality

At only 5’1”, Coke was a short man but he had a youthful appearance that stayed with him throughout his life. He was described as volatile and impulsive but also quick to admit when he was at fault, warm-hearted and honest. John Wesley said of Coke in 1788: ’I creep like Laos and the ground I get I keep; but the doctor (Coke) leaps like a flea and is sometimes obliged to leap back again.’

In America

In 1784, Coke was ordained Superintendent and sailed for the newly formed United States with orders to organise an independent American Methodist Church. In Baltimore, Coke met with Methodist preachers and ordained their chosen leader, Francis Asbury, as a fellow Superintendent; though they were both later styled ‘Bishop’ by the Americans, much to John Wesley’s displeasure.

Coke made nine journeys across the Atlantic Ocean, meeting with the President, George Washington, speaking out against slavery and addressing the US Congress.

Father of the Methodist Missions

In 1786, Coke landed on Antigua in the Caribbean. Impressed by the devotion and quiet endurance of the slaves he found there, he was inspired to organise and encourage Methodist missions throughout the West Indies and elsewhere.

The costs were high and Coke often financed them from his own pocket. His marriages, late in life, to Penelope Goulding Smith, from Bradford-on-Avon, in 1805, and Anne Loxdale, of Liverpool, in 1811, she died less than a year later, helped fund his work: both women were strong supporters of their husband’s ideals, before their untimely deaths.

Death and Commemoration

Coke made his final voyage in 1814, at the age of 67, leading a team of missionaries to the Indian sub-continent. On Tuesday May 3rd, he was found dead in his cabin and was buried at sea.

His loss was greatly felt by the Methodist Church and many memorials were created to commemorate his life’s achievements. In Brecon, a memorial chapel was built in 1835, to which a school was later added. Churches bearing his name can be found in the United States, Jamaica, Sri Lanka and even South Petherton, his first parish.

Methodism in the World Today

Since Coke’s day, Methodism has continued to spread across the globe and today claims over 70 million members.

Modern day Methodists, such as the late Nelson Mandela, continue Coke’s legacy of ’a life of faith in God lived in service to others.’

In December 2013, the Methodist Church of South Africa said: ’Mandela’s life demonstrated the finest characteristics of the Methodist faith: integrity tempered with graciousness; a strong ethic of industriousness; and honesty with reconciliation.’

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With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

PS For more information about Thomas Coke I would greatly recommend that you obtain a copy of the book by Cyril Davey entitled ‘Mad About Mission’

On The Tenth Day of Christmas

On the tenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me – Ten Lords a Leaping

It is suggested that “The Twelve Days of Christmas” was used by catholics, who were not permitted to practice their faith openly, to sing about their religion, with each element of the carol having a hidden religious meaning. According to this theory, the Ten Lords a Leaping, represents The Ten Commandments.

The Ten Commandments, along with the Creed and the Lord’s Prayer appear in the first book to be published in the Welsh language “Yn Y Lhyvr Hwnn” – literally ‘In This Book’ – which was the first sentence. It was published in 1546 and was the work of John Price of Brecon. Then in 1551 the Denbighshire scholar William Salesbury published a Welsh translation of the main texts of the Prayer Book, followed by a publication of the first Welsh translation of the complete Bible in 1558 by William Morgan

Between 1546 and 1660, 108 books were published in the Welsh language. Though a tiny number compared with those published in English or French, it was considerable compared with publications in other Celtic languages. In that period, only four books were published in Scottish Gaelic and only eleven in Irish.

The full list of suggested hidden meanings in the carol, “The Twelve Days of Christmas”;

* The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.

* Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments

* Three French hens stood for faith, hope and love.

* The four calling birds were the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.

* The five golden rings recalled the Torah or Law, the first five books of the Old Testament.

* The six geese a-laying stood for the six days of creation.

* Seven swans a-swimming represented the sevenfold gifts of the Holy Spirit – Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership, and Mercy.

* The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes.

* Nine ladies dancing were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit-Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control.

* The ten lords a-leaping were the ten commandments.

* The eleven pipers piping stood for the eleven faithful disciples.

* The twelve drummers drumming symbolized the twelve points of belief in the Apostles’ Creed.

So now you know ~smiles~

With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

15th October 1739 – John Wesley’s first visit to Wales

Monday, 15 October 1739

Upon a pressing invitation, some time since received, I set out from Bristol for Wales.

About four in the afternoon, I preached on a little green at the foot of Devauden (a high hill, two or three miles beyond Chepstow) to three or four hundred plain people on Christ our wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption.

After sermon, one who, I trust, is an old disciple of Christ, willingly received us into his house, whither many following, I showed them their need of a Saviour from those words, Blessed are the poor in spirit.

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Yesterday (Sunday, December 1st 2013) I visited Devauden with my wife, Marlene. Devauden today is such a very small village. I wonder from where all the people came to listen to Wesley preaching!!