Who We Are
Where Have We Come From

January 1946

HASTINGS (Rev. Russell Grave).—We were pleased to welcome back from Assembly our minister, and to listen to his very encouraging report. Miss Dorothy Bennett addressed our Young Worshippers' League, with much acceptance. We are indebted to the Hastings Male Choir for entertaining our Men's Club on ladies' night, ending a most successful season. We congratulate Mr Harry Thompson on his recent marriage to Miss Yvonne Culy, and pray for them much joy and happiness. A visit turn Rev. P. F. Lanyon, who conducted our morning worship, was appreciated. Many of our folk are sick, and we pray for them a speedy recovery to health. We have been glad to welcome home more of our "boys," Messrs Alan Gammon, Fred. Hall, and Colin Adamson. Mr C. Higgs and Mrs Paul have been united in holy matrimony. Congratulations. Much-needed extension to our Kindergarten room has been made possible through our veteran church-worker, Mr A. H. Sims, and his many helpers who gave ungrudgingly of their time and substance. May the added equipment be used for winning many boys and girls for Jesus Christ.—P. W. L.


February 1946

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—An after-church social to do honour to Mr and Mrs Harry Thompson, who recently have been joined in holy matrimony, and to welcome home from overseas service several of our boys was largely attended. Friends of the happy couple made a suitable presentation. Special anthems and carols by the choir and messages of hope and cheer by our minister made our Christmas services most appropriate. Mr and Mrs Horace Growden and Mr and Mrs Selwyn Baker brought their babies to God's home for dedication. God bless them. Congratulations to Mr and Mrs Harry Beckett on the arrival of a wee son. We have been pleased to have other Baptists worshipping with us during the holiday period. A very pretty wedding was solemnised in our church, when Mr Grave joined in matrimony Mr Lloyd Davidson and Miss Norma Gosling. The bride has been a consistent church worker for many years, and the bridegroom recently returned from overseas service. A social and presentations from various departments were made to the bride. It is with sincere regret that we have had to say farewell to Mr and Mrs H. G. Beilby, who have left us, Mr Beilby being transferred to Seddon. No words could express our deep appreciation of the work so nobly and humbly rendered by our friends. We will miss them, but will follow them with our prayers and pray God's richest blessing upon them. Over a cup of tea we expressed our thanks, and wished Mr and Mrs Beilby Godspeed. Cottage meetings are being held by our Senior C.E. during January, and are proving very helpful. —P. W. L.


March 1946

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—We were pleased to welcome home our minister after his annual holiday. The Rev. A. Hopper, Messrs Ron Findlay, Hugh Nees, J. H. Thorp, and our Young Preachers' Band occupied our pulpit during January, and to them we offer our sincere thanks. A "gift" evening was tendered to Miss Isobel Taylor and Mr Will Kean on the eve of their marriage. A very pretty wedding was solemnised in the church by the Rev. Roland Hart when Mr Will Kean and Miss Isobel Taylor were united in holy matrimony. The bridegroom, prior to entering the navy, was our church treasurer, deacon, and organist. We tender the happy couple our best congratulations. We have been pleased to welcome home from overseas Messrs Eric Downs, Cliff Bewley, and Houston Smith. A Boys' Brigade camp of N.C.O.'s was arranged by our local company. Boys from various companies from both islands attended and received much instruction and enjoyment. We were sorry to bid farewell to Mr and Mrs Jim Trotter, who have left us to reside in Waipawa. During January our S.C.E. have held several cottage meetings, which have proved helpful to those attending.—P. W. L.


April 1946

Congratulations to Mr Ralph Barley, for 21 years a deacon at Hastings and a lay preacher generally, on his appointment as J.P.

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—Our annual church meeting revealed a healthy financial position. An interesting report on the year's work was presented by our secretary. Mr J. H. Thorp. Our minister is planning an Evangelistic Winter Campaign, and we pray that our folk and many others may be stirred to their responsibility. Our S.S. picnic was a happy event, when young and old enjoyed an afternoon's outing under ideal conditions. Mr and Mrs Harry Beckett and Mr and Mrs Tom Hodson brought their little ones to God's House for dedication. The Rev. P. L. and Mrs Crampton paid a visit and addressed leaders and workers in our Youth departments. A Bible Class tea addressed by Major Miller, of the Salvation Army, was much appreciated. World Women's Day of Prayer was held in our church and addressed by Mrs J. H. Thorp. Their missionary funds were augmented when our B.W.M.U., assisted by the Missionary Shareholders, presented a missionary programme of music and song to the enjoyment of many. We extend our sympathy to Mr and Mrs Ray Baker in the sad loss of their little one. We pray for a speedy recovery to health of Mr J. Gording and Mesdames Eric Palmer and Capper.—P. W. L.


June 1946

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—It is with very much pleasure that we have been able to congratulate two of our members, Mr and Mrs A. H. Sims, on celebrating their golden wedding. Of sterling Christian character, our friends have been a tower of strength to our church in all its activities and we pray God they may be spared for many years for His service. Wedding bells have been ringing for some of our young folk. Mr Herbert Baker was joined in matrimony to Miss Kathie Smith by Rev. J. Russell Grave. Congratulations. A very pretty wedding was solemnised at Woodville by Rev Mr Penn when Mr Charles Rawlings was married to Miss Linda Richards. The bridegroom, prior to going overseas, was an active worker in our church. A warm welcome awaits Mr and Mrs Rawlings on their return from their honeymoon. We are sorry to have had to say farewell to Sister McCulloch and Mrs Wyness, who have left us for Auckland and Hamilton respectively. A social hour after evening service was held to welcome home several of our returned men. Miss Eunice Ogilvie's visit was greatly appreciated. Her story of our Indian work was most encouraging and ably presented. Our harvest festival services, conducted by Rev. Ridland Jamieson and our minister, gave cause for much rejoicing. The display of fruit and produce reminded all of the goodness of God. Special singing by the choir added to the brightness of the day. We are indebted to the Salvation Army Band for entertaining us at a social evening held to dispose of our harvest gifts. The proceeds of the sale, £22, have been forwarded to our Manurewa Children's Home. A long-felt need has been met by the commencement of a Young People's Fellowship under the capable leadership of Mr and Mrs Charles Rawlings. Our Week of Prayer and Self-Denial was a time of heart searching and blessing for all. Our offering amounted to £130, for which we thank God. We were pleased to welcome a contingent of Youth workers headed by Mr Keith Edridge, who did much to enthuse our Youth departments. A visit from Mr Arthur Davidson, of the W.E.C, was much appreciated. We pray for several of our sick folk a speedy recovery to health.—P. W. L.


July 1946

HASTINGS (Rev. Russell Grave).—Our returned servicemen were the guests at a social evening tendered them by Rev. R. and Mrs Grave on behalf of the church. We were pleased to welcome in membership Mr and Mrs Selwyn Baker. During our minister's absence at Auxiliary meetings our pulpit was ably filled by members of our Young Preachers' Band. It is with deep regret we have to report the passing of Mr Alf. Graham. A man of sterling Christian character, he will be missed greatly from our services. We extend to Mrs Graham and Betty our sincere sympathy. The home-call of Mrs Mason has meant a transfer to higher service. She indeed received the "Well done, good and faithful servant." Our Young People's Fellowship is a live institution and is growing in interest and numbers. The church received a severe blow when we received the resignation of Mr Will Kean owing to his transfer to Wellington. Mr Kean, prior to entering the navy, was our church treasurer, organist, and served in various other departments. We will miss him greatly, but what is our loss is Lyall Bay's gain. We pray for a speedy recovery to health for Mrs Robinson. Mrs H. Kemp, and Mr Gjording.— P. W. L.


August 1946

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—We were privileged to unite with other sister churches in a mission conducted by the Rev. Lionel Fletcher. The mission was highly successful, many making the great decision, and others received a spiritual uplift. Our Men's Club opening night for the coming season was well attended. A most interesting talk on the History of Stamps and their collection was given by Mr. Snaddon. Vocal solos by Mr. Les. McDonald were much appreciated. The Rev. J. E. Tetreault, missionary to the West Indies, occupied our pulpit and gave an impressive lantern lecture on his work. Our Young People's Fellowship held a social to augment the missionary funds of the Bible Classes. Boys' Brigade Week was once more an outstanding event. A largely attended church parade of the B.B., Life Boys and G.L.B, was good to see. Our minister, as chaplain, gave an illustrated talk to the brigades which was keenly listened to. A social hour was held to bid farewell to Mr. Ray Hensman and Miss Vena Lascelles, two faithful workers in various departments, and to express to them our appreciation and Christian love as they leave us for Palmerston North and Auckland respectively. We pray for any of our sick folk a speedy recovery to health.—P. W. L.


September 1946

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—Bible Class Week was a time of consecration and special effort for the Master by our young people. A service of witness on the Sunday evening was addressed by Miss C. G. Way and Mr. M. Fowler, whose stirring messages were much appreciated. Our Men's Club was privileged to listen to Dr. E. Y. Comrie tell them of his war-time experience as a medical officer in the Pacific and Middle East. Vocal solos by Mr. Schofield were much enjoyed. Boys' Brigade Week ended with the record collection of £150. Bravo, Boys! A visit from Miss A. Gilman of the W.E.C. was very welcome. We are indebted to the Townswomen's Guild for an excellent concert given in aid of our Primary Extension Fund. Our minister is devoting the evening service to evangelistic addresses, which are proving most heart-searching. Our Sunday School is increasing in numbers and interest under the leadership of Mr. F. H. Thetford, assisted by a faithful band of teachers. We have to report the home-call of Mr. Frank Barley, a former secretary of our church. Mr. Barley had been in indifferent health for a number of years. A man of Stirling Christian character he was ever willing to lend a hand for the cause of Jesus Christ. We extend our deepest sympathy to his dear ones. Many of our people are sick, and we pray for them a speedy recovery to health.—P. W. L.


October 1946

The very sudden death of the Rev. E. Nicholls caused widespread grief. He had been acting as locum tenens for the Methodist Church at. Bluff, and was found dead in the church, itself. He was a very sympathetic man, and his service during the Hastings earthquake is still gratefully remembered. To his brave wife and his family our sympathies go out.

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—Our Men's Club is a live institution and growing in interest. Mr. P. Van Ashe's talk on aerial mapping, illustrated by slides and vocal items by the Hastings Male Choir's quartet party, were warmly received. A visit from Miss Jean Thomson added to our missionary interest. Her pictures on our Tripura work and pulpit addresses were greatly appreciated. We were privileged to have Miss Francesca French, of the British and Foreign Bible Society, occupy our pulpit and tell of her experience on various mission fields. We had the joy of witnessing three of our young men pass through the waters of Baptism. Congratulations to Mr. W. Anderson and Miss Joan Westerman on their recent wedding. We extend our deepest sympathy to Mrs. E. Nicholls and family on the home call of the Rev. E. Nicholls. Mr. Nicholls served our church faithfully and well over a period of years, and his splendid work during our earthquake will long be remembered. For those of our number who are sick we pray a speedy recovery to health.—P. W. L.


November 1946

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—An enjoyable ladies' night brought to a close a successful Men's Club season. Musical items, competitions, games, and a high supper completed a happy evening. Mr. and Mrs. John McAlpine and Mr. and Mrs. Tom Kemp brought their wee daughters to God's house for dedication. We were privileged to have Rev. Mr. Gilbert, retired Presbyterian minister, occupy our pulpit. Travelling in the interests of the New Zealand Alliance, we wish him every success. We are pleased to have Mr. J. Thorpe with us again after his recent operation. A banquet to wind-up a happy season's play of badminton was enjoyed by members. We have to report the "home call" of Mr. Frank Horton at a ripe old age. A Christian gentleman and stalwart Baptist, our brother loved His Church and was most regular in his attendance. We extend our deepest sympathy to Mrs. Horton and family and pray for them the Father's presence. Our best wishes and congratulations go to Miss June Williams and Mr. Bill Cummins, who were married in Blenheim recently. Our pulpit was occupied at an evening service by Rev. P. L. A. Crampton, and following the service an after-church rally of Youth workers.—P. W. L.


December 1946

HASTINGS (Rev. J. Russell Grave).—The highlight of the month has been the Sunday School anniversary. Large congregations listened with pleasure to the singing of the scholars and choir under the capable baton of Miss M. Sowersby, assisted by Misses B. McKutchon and G. Gill on two pianos. The church was tastefully decorated by Miss Sims and her helpers. Rev. Mr. Harris, of the local Methodist Church, conducted the morning gathering, and our own minister the evening, their appropriate messages being enjoyed by young and old. A tea and concert terminated a successful anniversary. Our Bible Classes at a combined tea were addressed by Rev. Ian Cameron. Mr. and Mrs. Ernie Morgan brought their wee daughter to God's House for dedication. We are indebted to Messrs. J. Marshall and A. E. Morgan for pulpit supply during our minister's absence at Assembly. We had the joy of receiving into membership three members on transfer and three through baptism. Delegates who attended our recent Assembly gave a report of the gatherings at our mid-week meeting. Many of our people are sick, and we pray for them a speedy recovery to health.—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.