Many Britons resistant to imported crusading approach.
When a boxer stops punching, that’s news. It is also noteworthy when a Jehovah’s Witness quits the Kingdom Hall after 14 years. If the boxing Jehovah’s Witness becomes pastor of an American-style Baptist church in England, that’s an ecclesiastical bombshell.
The preaching prizefighter is Bob Boulton-Lear, and he heads two small separatist congregations near Stoke-on-Trent in England’s industrial midlands. Boulton-Lear has two dozen American colleagues who pastor other fundamentalist fellowships, from Andover in Hampshire to Stirling in Scotland.
One of the Americans is Tom Wallace, a missionary with the Bible Baptists. Wallace gathered about 30 in a home meeting near Nuneaton, in the Birmingham area Mainly he drew children, who are always more ready to rally around foreigners. After four years, however, there were enough adults to erect a small chapel. A loan of $35,000 helped the project along.
A close colleague of Wallace is Don Rice, who leads a congregation of about 60 at the Lighthouse Baptist Church in Castle Bromwich, another Birmingham suburb. Rice represents another independent Baptist mission, Baptist International Missions Inc. (BIMI).
North of the Scottish border, the best established Baptist fundamentalist is James Whitted at Edinburgh. Representing the Bob Jones—related mission, Gospel Projects, Whitted came to Edinburgh in 1977. Across Scotland in Glasgow, Malcolm Edwards (BIMI) has settled in the working-class section of Pollock. There Edwards has a nucleus of 25 adults. His aim is to hand over the church to a Scottish pastor and move on to a new challenge.
In all, six separatist missions are at work in the United Kingdom. Most have arrived since 1972, and ...1
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