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January 1944

HASTINGS (Rev Russell Grave).—At the close of another year we give thanks to our Heavenly Father for His continued guidance and blessing we have received as a Church and people. A parade of the Women's Auixiliary Red Cross unit attended our morning worship. Parcels which were packed by the ladies of the Church were sent to our boys overseas. Our Choir took part in the combined choirs' singing of "The Messiah." We had the pleasure of listening to Mr Alex. Ansell of Gisborne, at our services during his visit as guest soloist for "The Messiah." A Bible Class rally and tea to end the year's activities was well attended, and addressed by Rev. Grave. Congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. Tom Kemp on the birth of a wee son. We extend our sympathy to Mrs. and Mr. Palmer in her serious illness, and pray for her a speedy recovery to health. Our Christmas services were bright and helpful. Special Christmas music and solos were rendered by our Choir, and appropriate addresses by our minister.—P. W. L.


February 1944

HASTINGS (Rev. Russell Grave).—A warm welcome was afforded Student C. J. C. Blackman who is conducting our services during our minister's vacation. After a most successful year, our Boys' Brigade held their parents' evening and break up when badges gained were presented. Our carol party brought cheer to many homes on Christmas morning, and their efforts for our Manurewa Home were well rewarded. Our C. Endeavour is keeping the flag flying during January by holding cottage meetings in the homes of our people. We were pleased to welcome our former choirmaster, Mr J. Bewley and hear his message in song. Two very pretty weddings were solemnised by Rev. Grave when Mr Ted Church (returned from Middle East) and Miss Mavis Schofield and Corporal Alan Gamman and Miss Phyllis Fowler were united in matrimony. All have been keen workers in our church life, and we wish them well and pray that God's blessing may be upon them. We were glad to have Rev. and Mrs George Beilby worshipping with us.


March 1944

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—We were pleased to welcome home Rev. and Mrs. Grave after their holiday spent in the South Island. The services of Student P. J. C. Blackman during January were appreciated by young and old. At a Social Hour to farewell Mr. Blackman, opportunity was taken to present him with a small gift, and express our thanks and wish for him God's richest blessing and guidance in the days ahead All branches of our work are in full swing, and we look forward to a year of usefulness. A Bible Class tea and rally was held to welcome old and new members, and plan work for the ensuing year. Our Minister has commenced on Sunday mornings a series of Bible studies, the first being "The Wilderness Offerings" which are being followed with keen interest. We were pleased to welcome Miss Parks of Whangarei, and listen to her message in song Mr. and Mrs. Tom Kemp brought their wee son to God's House for dedication. We pray David John Kemp may grow up strong in the Lord. Our sympathy goes to Mr. Lockie and family on the Home Call of Mrs. Lockie.—P. W. L.


April 1944

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—Very successful harvest festival services were held, our minister preaching appropriate addresses to good congregations. The display of fruit and vegetables was tastefully arranged. Special harvest music by the choir was much appreciated. Proceeds from the sale of goods have been sent to Manurewa Home. Our minister's series of addresses on the "Wilderness Offerings—Trespass, Sin, Peace, Burnt" have been greatly appreciated and enjoyed by all. Our Sunday School held their annual picnic at Windsor Park under ideal conditions. Parents and friends attended in goodly numbers and helped to make the outing a happy one. A C.E. social of a novel nature proved a jolly occasion. It is with hearts full of thankfulness to our Heavenly Father that we assembled at our annual meeting to listen to encouraging reports from our various departments. A year of exceptional giving was recorded, and hearts were gladly warmed as our treasurer's statement showed to us a debt free church and a credit balance to commence 1944. Of our retiring deacon, Mr Ralph Barley, a minute of appreciation was recorded. To Mr Dave Armstrong, our newly elected deacon, and Messrs A. E. Morgan and George Wallace (re-elected), we offer congratulations. At a subsequent communion service, a deacon's dedication service was observed when new and old deacons renewed their vows of allegiance and service. We are pleased to welcome Mrs W. Kemp back to service after her operation. To all our sick folk we extend our loving sympathy.—P. W. L.


May 1944

HASTINGS (Rev. Russell Grave).—Our Boys Brigade paraded in good numbers at our morning worship when an impressive enrolment service was conducted by Mr Grave. We were pleased to welcome into membership Miss M. Mildenhall on transfer from Lower Hutt. Congratulations to our Baptist Cricket Club for their success in attaining the Shield. Our Senior Christian Endeavour presented the Easter Message in a very interesting and helpful way. Solos, duets and readings bearing on the Cross were rendered most effectively, and the Endeavourers are to be commended on their fine effort. Our minister's series of addresses on "The Way to the Cross," concluding with "Christ is Risen," refreshed all our hearts. A welcome home Bible Class tea was tendered Norman Taylor on his return from the Pacific. An after-camp service was held, following a most successful combined Bible Class camp. Several campers took part, speaking on different phases of camp life, and testifying to the fine spiritual uplift received. Our minister was camp Commandant. A message in song from Miss E. Smith, of Wellington, was appreciated. We pray God's hand of healing for good upon Mrs Curd, Miss Ballard and Lorna Hall, we miss them at service.—P. W. L.


June 1944

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—Our Week of Prayer and Self-denial was a time of rich spiritual blessing and happy fellowship. Prayer meetings were held at the church and in various homes, and those who attended were well repaid. Our thank offering amounted to £140, for which we give thanks. We were glad to welcome home Rex Helm on furlough from the Pacific. At a recent quarterly business meeting Mr J. Howard Paynter was elected to fill a vacancy on our diaconate. At a subsequent Communion service our minister committed the charge to Mr Paynter and welcomed him as a deacon. Mother's Day was observed, our minister taking as his topic "The Modern Family. " A baptismal service was held, when three believers followed their Lord through the waters of baptism. To further extend the bond of fellowship existing between our Napier church and ourselves a tea and social evening was held, when a large number of young folk attended. We rejoice with Mr and Mrs Ray Baker on the birth of a wee daughter. Our sincere sympathy is extended to Mesdames Thorp, Kean, and Schofield on the home-call of dear ones. We pray for Mrs Hodson God's hand of healing.—P. W. L.


July 1944

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—A warm welcome was extended to Private Ernie Morgan on his return on furlough from the Middle East. As a prisoner of war, Ernie escaped from an Italian prison camp, and to add to his adventures was torpedoed on his journey home. A combined social was held to welcome Pte. Morgan and to wish Mr Ernest Burns and Miss Peggy Turner well on the eve of their wedding. Several social functions were held and gifts presented to the happy couple, who have been ardent workers in the Church. The marriage ceremony was performed by Rev. Russell Grave, the wedding being a choral one, as a mark of esteem for the bride, who has been a faithful choir member for many years. Congratulations to Max Irwin on gaining his commission. Max is in the R.N.Z.A.F. in England. Our sympathy goes to Mrs Christensen on the sad loss of her son, Flt. Lieut. Christensen. Our Church received a shock when the home call came to Mr D. A. Neilson. Our friend had been a church member for 18 years and had occupied a seat on the Deacons' Court and held other important positions. A man of sterling Christian character, who loved God's House, and delighted in doing His will. Mr Neilson was a staunch member of the Orange Lodge, holding high office, and was greatly respected by all. We extend our deepest sympathy to Mrs Neilson and pray that the presence of the Master may be her constant companion.—P. W. L.


August 1944

HASTINGS (Rev. Russell Grave).—A visit from Mr and Mrs Alan Tucker, of the Egyptian General Mission, did much to stir our missionary zeal. Mr Tucker occupied our pulpit with much acceptance and his lantern lecture on the work on the field was most instructive and encouraging. Rev. E. Batts brought us the good news of our progressive work at the Hutt Valley illustrated with lantern slides. Our badminton club is in full swing for another season. We wish them well. A concert arranged by our senior men's Bible Class to augment their missionary effort was much enjoyed. We were pleased to welcome Private Colin Murray on his return from the Pacific. Congratulations to Private Murray on his recent marriage to Miss Audrey Ball, of Matakohe. Our Youth Director, Rev. P. L. A. Crampton, occupied our pulpit and addressed a youth rally for Bible Class and youth workers. Boys' Brigade Week has been one of great enthusiasm. The Brigade's invitation to the church to attend a concert and social was gladly accepted. A ceremonial parade of the company at our evening service was addressed by Rev. Mr Grave, followed by a sing-song and supper in our school hall. Much encouragement attended the efforts of our minister to launch a men's fellowship. A trial meeting was arranged and attended by an eager group of men, who expressed themselves in hearty accord with the object. Officers were elected and plans discussed for future action. Thanks were accorded Private E. Morgan and Mr W. Bentley, guest artists of the evening. A number of earnest workers headed by Rev. Mr Grave have been from house to house distributing literature and extending an invitation to attend our church services. May God bless their efforts. Mr and Mrs Hodson brought their wee daughter to God's House to be dedicated to the Lord. We pray for Mrs D. Nielson a speedy recovery to health.—P. W. L.


September 1944

HASTINGS (Rev. Russell Grave).—As reported elsewhere the week-end mission conducted by Rev. L. A. North, was a time of rich spiritual blessings. It was with much joy that we welcomed home from the Pacific 2nd Lieutenant Carswell Burt, Sapper Harry Beckett, Pte. Leicester Kemp, and L/Cpl. George Wallace, and sincerely trust they will not have to return to the war zone. Satisfactory reports were received at our church quarterly meeting, and finances are in a most healthy condition. Our men's fellowship is growing in interest and numbers and promises well. A most interesting travel talk was given by Mr W. A. Whitlock, a member of the recent press delegation overseas, and vocal solos by Mr Barney Welsh were much appreciated. A very pretty wedding was solemnised by Rev. Russell Grave, the contracting parties being Mr John McAlpine and Miss Pearl Beckett. The bride has been a very active worker in C.E. and S.S. departments. As a mark of esteem the C.E. gave Miss Beckett a kitchen tea. The church was prettily decorated by friends of the bride for the wedding. Our C.E. members listened to a most interesting talk by Sapper Harry Beckett on his experiences in the Pacific. We pray for Mrs Hodson a speedy recovery to health.—P. W. L.


October 1944

Baptist Assembly - Notice of Motion (By-Law 2)

That a special committee of the Baptist Assembly be set up to study the book "Man and His World," by Mainwaring, and to bring down a report on the same, and in the meantime the Press be informed that the article in the September Baptist does not represent the views of the Baptist Church. HASTINGS BAPTIST CHURCH.


HASTINGS (Rev. Russell Grave).—We regret that owing to ill-health our church secretary, Mr J. H. R. Thorp, has requested and been granted six months leave of absence. We pray God's Hand of Healing may rest upon our brother, and that he may long be spared to carry on the work so dear to his heart. Mr George Wallace has been appointed secretary pro tern. Mr and Mrs Ray Baker brought their wee daughter to God's House for dedication. After some years of faithful service rendered in various departments of our Church, Miss Kath Tate has left us on transfer to Eltham. At a social organised by the B.C. and C.E. to bid farewell to Miss Tate our B.W.M.U. presented the Play "Called to Be Saints," and opportunity was taken to express our thanks and make a presentation. A visit from our President, Rev. H. G. Goring, was much appreciated. As requested by His Majesty the King we gladly observed the Day of Prayer. Good congregations gathered for prayer and praise, Mr Grave preaching appropriate addresses. At an after-church social hour we warmly welcomed home from the Pacific Y.M.C.A. secretaries Messrs Charlie Rawlings and Ian Milner. Our Men's Fellowship listened with deep interest to Mr A. D. M. Laing, when he gave us a talk on "India To-day." Vocal solos by Mr L. McDonald were much enjoyed. We have to report the sudden home call of Mr Len Rattray in his early teens. Before leaving for Wellington Len was a member of our Bible Class and Boys' Brigade, and showed much promise in his Christian experience. We extend our sincere sympathy to his parents in their time of deep sorrow. We are sorry to learn that Mrs Stephens is a patient in the Dannevirke Hospital, and pray for her a speedy recovery to health.—P. W. L.


November 1944

HASTINGS (Rev. Russell Grave).—Our National Youth Week created much interest among our young folk. The Sunday's activities commenced with an early-morning meeting, followed by breakfast in our Sunday School Hall. Miss E. M. Berg addressed our Bible Classes on the work of the British and Foreign Bible Society. At a largely-attended tea Mr George Wallace spoke of his experiences in the Pacific. A camp fire outing with our Napier friends was much enjoyed. Our Bible Classes combined with our prayer meeting and listened to an address by Mr D. Boyle. Rev. Jamieson conducted our last broadcast service with much acceptance. Our Badminton Club has completed a very successful season. We have been pleased to welcome home from the Pacific Privates Houston Smith, Dudley Lean, and Harry Growden. Our Men's Fellowship listened with rapt attention to Detective Sergeant Revel tell us some of his police experiences. Vocal solos by Mr McNaught were much enjoyed. We have said farewell to Mr Doug Bewley, Y.M.C.A. secretary, who has left for an Air Force camp overseas, and pray for him a safe return home. A visit from Mr E. S. Carey was appreciated, who with Rev. A. Hopper occupied our pulpit during our minister's absence at Brooklyn jubilee. A visit by the secretary of the Boys' Brigade National Council, Mr R. Hill, aroused keen interest amongst our Hawke's Bay Brigades. Napier and Wairoa were our guests for the week-end and in all about 100 members took part. Two church parades were held, that in the morning at our Napier Church, and the evening in our own church, the service being conducted by officers of the brigade, and a stirring address by Mr R. Hill. Following the evening service a social hour was held. We are happy to report Mr G. Stevens and Mr Duke Maddox are making good progress after their recent operations.—P. W. L.

N.Z. Baptist Magazine

Since the first days of the church, Hastings Baptist submitted regular summaries of church life and events to the New Zealand Baptist Magazine.  As part of the centenary archive those updates have been collected and reproduced here.  It is a catalogue of people and moments that have shaped the church’s story.