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January 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—December is always a busy month in all departments of the church's activities, and this year is no exception. All of the "uniformed" Youth organisations have planed "break-up" evenings, when their members will demonstrate what they have learned and achieved during the year. In addition to rendering a special Christmas carol service in the church, the choir plan to unite with others in a "Carols-by-Candlelight" service in lovely park surroundings. At a church parade the Cadet section of the Girls' Life Brigade were presented with their new flag. The under mentioned homes have been blessed with precious infants whose progress we follow with our interest and prayers:—Mr. and Mrs. K. Shuker, a daughter; Mr. and Mrs. Colin Turner, a daughter; Mr. and Mrs. Bob Martin, a son. We wish all of our readers a Happy New Year spent in His service.—R. N.


February 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—We pray that God will richly bless the message of our visiting minister, Rev. Gould, of Napier; and bring our beloved pastor back to us, after a well-earned vacation, renewed in health and strength. Taking the children's address in our Sunday morning service of worship was a young Indian woman, clothed in her native dress. She was Miss Christian, who is taking a post-graduate course in the local hospital, and is witnessing for her Lord at every opportunity. Before the old year closed Mr. and Mrs. Nelson McLean presented before the Lord in dedication their daughter. Susan, and Mr. and Mrs. Norman Taylor their son, James. Our interest and prayers follow the progress of each of these little ones. New members joyfully welcomed into our membership have been Mrs Sands, on transfer, and Misses Colleen and Robin Caves, through baptism. It is with pleasure we record the engagement of Miss Joy Barley to Mr. Ernest Peden.—R. N.


March 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—A large and appreciative congregation gathered to worship, and be led in their devotions by our minister on his return from holidays. We are all looking forward to another year of happy fellowship and spiritual progress together. Our gratitude is expressed to Rev. H. A. Gould, of Napier, who ministered to us during our pastor's absence. We were gladdened by the presence of visitors from other churches during the vacation period, and trust that they enjoyed their fellowship with us as we worshipped together in God's house. A splendid new set of collection plates were presented to the church by a generous anonymous giver, for which we are very grateful. A very successful and well-attended church picnic was held during the holiday season at Brookfield's Bridge, Meeanee. Our sincere sympathy is extended to those who have suffered bereavement, while so many of us have been away on vacation.— R. N.


April 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—The Annual Church Business Meeting this year was preceded by a church tea. This was a splendid innovation, attracting a large attendance, and creating such a wonderful realisation of fellowship that the business session was approached in a spirit of oneness and a lovely feeling of goodwill was evident throughout the meeting. We extend to Mr. Ray Hensman, our new deacon, a very warm welcome. The short visit of Rev. B. N. Eade to this church was enjoyed by all and we look forward to his return. Very impressive dedication services of church officers, Sunday School teachers, Bible Class leaders and Youth organisers have been held and attracted large congregations. Christine Turner, Jocelyn Shuker, Kevin Martin and Barry, Doreen and Diane Searle were presented before the Lord by their parents in grateful dedication. Sincere sympathy is extended to those of our fellowship who have lost loved ones.—R. N.


May 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—We were privileged to receive a visit from Mr. W. Carey, president-elect of the Baptist Union. His message at our harvest festival service, and his Church Development lantern slide lecture, were interesting and challenging. Another very clear and colourful lantern slide lecture was delivered by Miss M. A. Bradfield, missionary on furlough, and brought vividly before us the fine work being done on our mission field. At the close of B.W.M.U. Witness Week, the ladies of our B.W.M.U. and Missionary Shareholders took part in a. church parade, at which Miss Bradfield spoke. It was an inspiring sight when parents and their children united in worship on the occasion of our family pew service. Our congratulations are extended to Mr. and Mrs. Ray Hensman (nee Doreen Harrison) on the birth of a son. We warmly welcome back Miss Phyllis Steele on her return from an extended holiday in England and Scotland.— R. N.


June 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—During our Prayer and Self-denial Week the attendances at all church and cottage meetings were the best in living memory, and the offering taken at the Sunday morning service was a record. A very praiseworthy effort, worthy of mention, was the giving of £29 by the Sunday School pupils. The 8.30 a.m. Communion service on Good Friday was well attended, and was a very fitting commencement for such a significant day. The Napier and Hastings groups of the B.W.M.U. held a combined Day of Prayer at Hastings. A speaker at this meeting was Miss Alice Lloyd (N.Z. Child Evangelism Fellowship). Mrs Hepplestone was recently welcomed into our membership, on transfer from Colombo Street Church, Christchurch. Phillip John Morgan and John Mark Hensman were presented before the Lord in grateful dedication by their parents. Sincere Christian sympathy is extended to Mrs. Adrian, in the loss of her mother, Mrs. Powell.—R. N.


July 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—It has been our pleasure and privilege to have the Central Auxiliary meetings conducted in our church during the month of June. A more detailed account of these meetings appears elsewhere in this issue. Five representatives of the Wellington Bible Class Executive paid a welcome visit to the Napier and Hastings Churches during a recent week-end. This team conducted a combined social for Youth in Napier on the Saturday evening, and spoke and sang inspiringly at our Sunday services. Miss Phyllis Steele delivered an excellent lantern slide address on her travels overseas to a very appreciative audience. Opportunity was taken at a recent after-church social hour to bid farewell to Miss Beulah Lord and Miss Rolston. Miss Lord is leaving the church, which she has served so faithfully and well, for Palmerston North; and Miss Rolston, another faithful worker, is taking up teaching duties in India. Messrs. Leicester Kemp and Warrick Stoupe were bidden "God-speed" as they leave with the Boys' Brigade Contingent for England.— R. N.


August 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—By the time this report appears in print we will, be concluding our Film Mission, which commences on July 25 and concludes on August 3. In previous years the film screenings have taken the place of our Sunday evening service but, this year it has been decided to screen the films on week nights. At present we are praying and preparing for this mission, and trust that many of the unsaved in our community, will be won into our Lord's kingdom by this method of presenting the Gospel. We have been inspired and blessed by pulpit message and lantern lecture delivered by Rev. D. R. Edwards, B.A., missionary from China and India. Mr. Edwards also spoke at a youth rally tea and to the Men's Missionary Fellowship. The parents of little Marilyn Whittington presented her before the Lord in thanksgiving and dedication at a recent Sunday morning service.— R. N.


September 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—A teaching mission conducted by Rev. John Deane, B.A., B.D., principal of the N.Z. Bible Training Institute, is in progress. Our prayer is that those who have been helped and blessed through the film mission will be built up and strengthened in their faith. We appreciated having the Rev. B. N. Eade in our pulpit; and were blessed by his ministry and illustrated story of his work at the Bible Training School in Agartala. A Church parade of the St. John Ambulance Brigade filled our Church to over-flowing, and was an impressive service. The annual enrolment service of the 1st Pukahu Company of the Boys' Brigade took place in our church recently. A very successful Bible Class Week has just concluded, and proved helpful to all. In obedience to our Lord's command. Miss Betty Evans and Miss Marion Nixon witnessed in the waters of baptism and made the good confession.—R. N.


October 1954

HASTINGS (Rev N. R. Wood).—The Teaching Mission conducted in our church by the Rev. John Deane, B.A., B.D., was exceptionally well attended, and the feast of spiritual food served up so attractively by Mr. Deane, should have made spiritual giants of us all. To assist our Presbyterian brethren, whose minister had met with an accident. Mr. Wood took a Sunday evening service in their church. We wish to thank Mr. J. R. H. Thorp for so ably taking our service during Mr. Wood's absence. Mrs. Ken Holstead courageously witnessed in the waters of baptism, in obedience to her Lord's command. Seven new members were welcomed into fellowship recently and met with us at our Lord's table. Miss Eileen Taylor takes with her our prayers and good wishes as she leaves for Wellington to take up dental nurse training. Our sincere Christian sympathy is extended to the relatives of our late brother, Mr. Tom Horton.—R. N.


November 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—It was with real pleasure we welcomed the Rev. C. B. Boggis, when he paid a presidential visit to this church. His presence and message cheered the hearts of all. A very happy occasion was an after-church social hour held in honour of our minister, and his wife, who have completed their fifth year of service in our midst. Mr. W. Freeman, W.E.C. missionary-on-furlough, spoke interestingly on the Gold Coast, African field. Mr. and Mrs. P. Stanton, and their daughter, Constance, witnessed courageously in the waters of baptism. Our Christian sympathy is expressed to Mr. Horace Paynter, in the loss of a brother, and to Mr. Howard Paynter, in the passing of his father. Congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Burns on the birth of a son; and to Mr. and Mrs Allan Gamman on the birth of a daughter. We gladly welcome back Miss Kath Tate from her mission work in Syria.—R. N.


December 1954

HASTINGS (Rev. N. R. Wood).—While our minister and his wife were in Auckland attending the Union Assembly the church services were taken by Mr. George Wallace, assisted by two ardent Maori Mission workers: representatives from the Labour Week-end Camp: Rev. Basil Tyson and Dr. David Hodge. We are grateful to all these speakers for their excellent messages and spiritual help. Sunday School Anniversary services this year were of a very high standard and were a blessing and enjoyment to large congregations— extra seating being needed. The Youth Director, Rev. J. J. Burt, conducted all three services, and his object illustrated messages were of real interest and blessing to young and old. A very successful Labour Week-end camp was held at Waimarama under the spiritual leadership of the Rev. Hugh Nees, of Levin. Our sincere Christian sympathy is extended to Mr. A. Jolly on the loss of his sister, Mrs. Attwood. We are glad to have Mrs. Schofield back with us again.—R. N.

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.