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Chapter 1: The Evangelist - The Call

The old army barracks had been turned into a prison camp. The long, low, grey wooden buildings with corrugated iron roofs stood in rows down one side of the compound and on the other was the parade ground; on a rise in the middle were a dozen or so bamboo cages which housed the uncontrollably dangerous prisoners. There were about 700 terrorists in the camp surrounded by an earth bank with palisade and rolls of barbed wire. At each corner was a timber platform with mounted machine guns and guards. Nobody had much hope of results from inviting the missionaries in, but the Governor had decided that everything had to be tried in the effort to rehabilitate these men who had committed such dreadful atrocities, principally against members of other tribes.

They were a miserable looking lot and it was early evening on a grey day in East Africa. We had borrowed a lorry to stand on and Earl Martin was going to do the preaching. I had been invited along to lend support as Ed Reis, the local Navigators representative, had come straight round to recruit me an hour after I arrived off the plane from England. Earl Martin's house was a huge ranch-style bungalow with a fridge outside the back door so large they hadn't been able to get it into the kitchen. Earl was a very tough customer indeed who had been a teamster's shop steward on the New York waterfront and I was told that people tended not to shake hands with him more than once. Intrigued, I made the mistake of doing so - only to discover it took several minutes for the blood to get back into my hand! Earl's other claim to fame was that he had a Cessna 180 parked on his back lawn and one of the reasons I went along was to get a chance to see the aeroplane. Three of us were on the truck, which had drop sides, and was loaded with about a ton of John's Gospels with helpful notes. Two Askaris, each holding a Sten gun, stood with us on the truck for our protection.

We could tell the prisoners were hugely impressed by Earl's appearance: his barrel chest and huge shoulders, neck the same width as his head, and his very short haircut, made him someone they could look up to and relate to. He started to speak, quite simply, about his own life and the awful things he had done, and how accepting Christ had provided the forgiveness, direction and purpose he needed to become a different man. He preached about the power of the Holy Spirit to make new people. Initially a few rocks flew past our ears and I was terribly glad to be standing right behind Earl - but a hush came over the whole company and you could tell that most of them were really touched by what he was saying. It was as if the hand of God was reaching out, changing people's minds. One could sense a powerful peer pressure in the group emanating from many individuals for evil, but when Earl asked those who wanted to be different, start over again and get out of their old life into a new one, you could tell many wanted to respond but were afraid to do so. About 8 or 9 of them came up and took a John's Gospel to signify their response, and we had time to spend in discussion with individuals in the huts afterwards, still under armed guard.

Having been misled by ruthless political figures who compelled them to undergo obscene rites and then drove them by fear to participate in the most horrendous atrocities against men, women and children out in the villages, these guys were appalled at what had happened to them, desperately lonely, fearful of the future, and terribly keen to get home to their families and friends in their villages - now a remote and distant memory.

Standing on the truck that first evening with Earl and Ed, I was very conscious that I was witnessing something historic and profound as the Holy Spirit got to work amongst those men. Sadly in the following week those first converts were all found dead, but that did not prevent 350 responding next time. Altogether some 3,500 of the prisoners in camps turned to Christ, many of them becoming leaders of the emergent evangelical African church. In 1963 a Foreign Office Report published in London asserted that the Emergency had finally been brought to an end successfully not through the barrel of the gun but the widespread dissemination of the Gospel of John.

That was Kenya in 1958. The first thing Ed Reis had asked me was "Korky, what is your ministry?". As a member of All Souls, Langham Place, under the leadership of John Stott (I was converted in September 1951) I had absolutely no idea that a Christian was expected to have a ministry - for me Christianity made few demands other than attendance at All Souls on Sunday evenings. Keen young men invited me on conferences at Cambridge University and I attended two or three Cambridge Inter-Varsity Christian Union meetings and heard some fine speakers, but never received a challenge to do much more than be a regular attender and watch.

Earl Martin and Ed Reis, however, treated me as an equal member of their team, although it must have been obvious to them that I was a raw recruit! Ed taught me how to study the Bible and knew how to go about doing so. He prayed with me a lot, took me with him on his rounds, and got me started on the Navigators "Topical Memory System" for memorising Scripture. He also got me to "help" him - he asked me questions and I would search out the answers in the Scriptures; he showed me how to ask the right questions, and how to use my Thompson Chain Reference Bible to best effect. I am still engaged on the studies he set me. The Scriptures became to me as much of an operational manual as a devotional document. I also now knew what I wanted to do with my life - I felt I had become part of God's Team and desired more than anything else in all the world to be a preacher. These experiences contrasted quite dramatically with subsequent experiences of church, whose leaders seemed to regard it as part of their job to prevent those with a sense of calling from playing any sort of active role.

I have since realised how absolutely essential it is to witness a role model at work for it to be possible for someone to receive a call from God to the same sort of ministry.

Elijah as role model inspired Elisha. Jesus as role model inspired the disciples. Paul as role model inspired Timothy. We need role models today. Billy Graham has been a role model for many, but unfortunately his ministry is not transferable - he is unique. Reading his autobiography and learning of the large number of divine appointments which brought his wonderful ministry into being, one realises he is a historic event - the most successful evangelist in history, his like may never be seen again.

As a young broadcaster on the BBC, principally on children's programmes in the early evenings, I had got to know a lot of the famous media people of the day and was quite well known to large numbers of children who listened to the radio in those days. As a consequence of this I was from time to time invited to speak at children's church services. While I enjoyed this very much, I felt quite keenly the need to learn how to preach. The principles of this were not made available to me for a further 22 years, after Bible college, as a trainee street evangelist with Open Air Campaigners.

Studying under the founder of O.A.C. in Britain, David Fanstone, I learned that "Jesus spoke about issues that interested ordinary people in order to teach them all they needed to know to become members of God's family".

This is the method God uses to communicate his message to ordinary people. St. Paul is perfectly clear about this - he says "How shall they hear, except a preacher be sent?" This is one of the fundamental reasons why Christian entertainments - drama, the use of music, etc. can play no more than a peripheral role in evangelism.

My father, who was a very highly qualified scientist, and my mother, who had been a newspaper sub-editor, were heavily imbued with the cynicism and the liberalism of the 1920's and 1930's and regarded Christians and church as hypocritical and totally irrelevant. Our local vicar was a delightful chap who would often visit and be entertained to tea by my mother, more as a family friend than as a minister, and this was just as well as he didn't sue us when Sally, our Alsatian dog, destroyed his black trousers and long johns when he came upon her unexpectedly one day!

My father was absolutely furious when I announced that I had committed my life to Christ on 21st September 1951. Broadcasting was all "live" in those days, and between sessions I used to go and have a snooze on a back pew in All Souls - which was next door to Broadcasting House - very embarrassed to wake up one day and find I was in the middle of a service! For the first time I heard a clear presentation of the Gospel, and after attending more services (awake this time) I decided to commit my life to the Lord. My father would occasionally attend All Souls with me, but this was not an experience I looked forward to, as during John Stott's brilliant sermons my father would mutter under his breath (but nevertheless very audibly) one of his favourite words as applied to Christianity - "Poppycock!" or "Balderdash!". People sitting in the nearby pews would dart us quick glances and several would go purple with embarrassment, fearing the clergy would think it was they who had said these dreadful words. George Cansdale, the first T.V. zoo presenter, who was the Senior Sidesman at All Souls in those days, always treated my father's antics with great good humour and was not in the least put out - which impressed my father very much. George's favourite question was always "When are you going to nail your colours to the mast, Mr. Davey?"

The turning point in my parents' spiritual pilgrimage came when I insisted they hear the dynamic young American evangelist at Harringay in 1953. My father only consented to come because he really liked the things Billy Graham had said to the Press on arrival at Southampton on the Queen Mary: the Billy Graham publicity machine had made the error of criticising "anti-Christian socialism" in their hand-outs without appreciating that in America "socialism" referred to communism, and in England to the new labour government, which wasn't at all anti-Christian - so it was a hostile Press that stood in front of him as he stood before the microphones at the bottom of the gang plank. One question of many was; "The Lord you say you follow came in humility and poverty, riding on a donkey, and here you are, travelling like a film star with a large entourage and at high expense on the largest liner in the world. How do you answer that, Dr Graham?" To which he replied; "Well guys, if you can find a donkey that can cross the Atlantic, I'll sure travel on it!" And then he was gone.

Vatra Dornei
The Press reports on his meetings came on radio every night, and my parents consented to come with me and hear him. They loved the whole Billy Graham team, having never heard anything like it before, and for the very first time heard a Gospel presentation that really touched them and spoke to them. However, it was not until one Sunday morning in 1967, when Billy preached to the Oxford University chaplaincy service, broadcast live on National radio, that they both made their personal decision - though they would not admit it to anyone, nor would they attend church. This is a typical response of English people of their generation.

So that's evangelism - a clear proclamation of the Gospel presented in a manner that speaks into people's lives, followed by the ministry of the Holy Spirit to the individual.

Edwin Jaques died recently. In the 1930s, he was a clarinet player in an American band and his friend played the trumpet. In 1937, they both sensed a clear call to go and preach the Gospel in Albania. They spent a year doing shows on market days in towns and villages all over that country, gathering crowds with their music, and then preaching the Gospel through local interpreters. This was the very first attempt to bring the Gospel to Albania and broke all the rules of the modern missions movement. For a start, they were only in each place for a day or two, had very little personal contact due to the language and cultural barriers, and there was no follow-up.

To the modern missionary, that is all quite unacceptable, and would be classed as highly irresponsible, but it was the foundation on which God built the modern evangelical Albanian church. In 1938, the Nazis overran the country, which was subsequently taken over by the Communists. In the early '90s, we found Christians in several parts of the country with a lively faith, who had found Christ through the Jaques mission and who had been faithfully meeting in secret for worship despite the appalling persecution handed out by the Communist authorities. One of these believers had spent 28 years in solitary confinement. He survived the ordeal still praising God, but many others perished.

I have stood and preached in many of the places mentioned in the New Testament, in the book of Acts, always through interpreters, often with the same results that the Apostles saw. People coming under the conviction of the Holy Spirit, through the preaching of the gospel, can react in all kinds of ways: once in Omonia Square, in central Athens, I preached for 20 minutes to about 50 or 60 people who at the end started to argue with me. Realising that it would be almost impossible to get counselling going in the hubbub, I took the team away, and as it was a lovely sunny evening we went round the corner to a quiet street where we could have our meal sitting in the sun. We had a great time of fellowship. Being on a team together and preaching the Gospel enriches fellowship enormously, and the 15 or 20 young Greek Bible College students who were with me would, I know, spend the rest of their lives in effective public ministry. We were longer at the restaurant than we intended, and it was getting dark when we walked back round into Omonia Square to catch the underground back to college. We were astonished to find that there were now about 300 people arguing about the message we had preached earlier.

Over the last 22 years in Greece, we have faced all kinds of situations, some of them violent, and I was glad when God sent me a "minder", a young peach farmer called "big Takis", 6 ft. 6" tall and about 4 ft. wide. His hands are like bunches of bananas. Once, the mayor, a religious fanatic who happened to run a town in northern Greece, sent 8 soldiers to chuck us out of the town. It was satisfying to see that once they had shaken hands with Takis they were happy to listen to the message quietly. As it happened, they were as interested as everyone else, and stayed to chat for an hour or two.

A Biblical Pattern for Evangelism

There are myriads of different Christian ministries, probably the best known being those providing succour and help for the under-privileged. It is a delightful characteristic of the Lord's people that this overwhelming desire to love and serve has been such a glorious part of Church history. On missions in some of our industrial cities in England, one is struck by the presence in the industrial slums of what were called "medical missions" providing free medical help for the poor. Usually non-conformist, the mission would be attached to a small chapel where local people could benefit from the ministry of excellent Bible teaching and worship. My wife Anni is involved with The Crisis Centre in Bristol which provides much-needed help for street people with life-controlling problems, and there are sometimes marvellous results from this ministry. One young woman used to try to come into the drop-in cafe with a rat on her shoulder. Livestock are definitely not allowed, so she would be asked to leave. Outside the cafe she would stuff the rat down her shirt and button it up, coming back for her cuppa with a heaving bosom... She was eventually wonderfully converted, and is now a practising barrister!

Laurence Singlehurst, in his book on the beginnings of Youth With A Mission in the late '70's in England, describes their experiences on taking teams to Spain: all the weeks of spiritual preparation at their base in England did not provide them with the practical skills necessary to attract crowds of people to hear the Gospel at their attempted open air meetings in Spain. Neither was their use of drama in Mediterranean countries and in some of the big cities like Paris successful in attracting crowds or communicating the Gospel effectively, so they developed the concept of "prayer evangelism", walking round towns and villages and praying for them. This led more and more to YWAM involvement in the care ministries which now appear to be the core pursuit for their ministry and the vehicle by which it grows so successfully around the world.

One is particularly inspired by their work establishing orphanages for street children in South America and the wonderful way they are able to involve young Christians from the United States and Europe. In the future marvellous enterprises like this will undoubtedly have a strong evangelistic effect on those they help, and will form the basis for the establishment of indigenous churches in the years ahead. However, Scripture outlines a specific pattern for evangelism which does not appear to be followed today.

The Old Testament

Moses outlined very specific instructions for the children of Israel as they entered the promised land: in Deuteronomy 30 he stresses the importance of being faithful to Jehovah God and none other. In Chapter 31 one of the main duties of the Lord's people is to gather together and teach God's laws so that the people may

  • listen

  • learn

  • fear God

  • follow Him

Those who were to be assembled were the Lord's people and all others living in the land including aliens and those who worshipped other gods - they must learn God's laws and obey them.

One of the first things we see happening when Nehemiah re-establishes the city of Jerusalem is the gathering of the people and the Law being taught all day by Ezra, the scribe. In the following days, people were horrified at how far they had strayed from obeying the Law, and often had to take traumatic steps to put their lives straight. The hardships involved must have been horrendous as illegal wives were put aside, for example. Refer to Deuteronomy 31:12ff.

The prophets were sent by God to the people often over the heads of national leaders. It was a job from which the prophets shrank but nevertheless felt compelled to do - a difficult and dangerous ministry, they were the means by which God sought to bring back an erring people to Himself. They were God's communicators, often using extraordinary means to impress his message and also to make it clear. The astonishingly creative methods used by Ezekiel to communicate God's message to his people in Babylon must have been an incredibly difficult ministry to perform but the clarity of the vision given to him sustained him. Archaeologists found over 140 pagan temples in Babylon and the city itself is said to have been about 120 miles in circumference - that huge population must have been highly amused by this ridiculous little Jew and his street performances, but God gave him this wonderful promise - Ezekiel 33:30-33 "Son of Man, your people think you are nothing more than an entertainer ... but all that you prophesy will come true and then they will know that a prophet has been among them."

The New Testament

Leafing through the Gospels it is instructive to identify the passages where Jesus is speaking to outsiders and those where he is speaking specifically to his followers, often after the day's work. For every 9 occasions where he preaches, the ratio is 7:2 , seven times to outsiders, usually in the open air, and twice exclusively to his disciples. That is to say 78% of these occasions are devoted to preaching to people who are not his followers. It is worth pointing out at this point that whenever in Church history revival has occurred it has always been preceded by the public proclamation of the Gospel.

Kenneth Scott Latourette states conclusively in his multi-volume "History of the Christian Church" that the greatest influence on the Protestant churches has been the revivalist preachers of the last three or four centuries, and he states further that the Roman Catholic church has never experienced anything like this, to their loss. The pattern of ministry established by the Lord, walking from town to town and village to village, with the wonderful demonstrations of love and power in the miracles, the release of sinners from their awful burden, the rehabilitation of that dreadful little character Zacchaeus and others like him, and the clarity and relevance of his message, demonstrated the kind of ministry he wants his Church to have - but it is costly in many ways and very few will pay the price. The huge crowds which followed him as a result of the amazing things he did and said periodically melted away when repentance was demanded. The same is true today.

You can imagine the scene in Palestine 2000 years ago - the teacher with an authority that transcends even the pharisees, the remarkable pronouncements, the amazing stories of miracles, huge excitement everywhere he went and often very large crowds - the frantic widow wanting help, wondering if she will ever get anywhere near him, the Roman Centurion "a sincere man" come to see for himself whether it is all true - wonderful statements like the poetry of the Sermon on the Mount, the call to follow, to obey God's laws, the presentation of God as one who loves sinners, the call to repentance; but it is not a political message. He is not going to lead a rebellion against the Romans, which is what people hoped the coming of the Kingdom would entail. Having seen him and heard his message, in the end people drift away.

Aluche Park
It's like that in the parks in Spain. I have vivid memories of the September campaigns where after the summer holidays Spaniards will be out in the parks in huge numbers every evening; Plaza Flores in Malaga full of University students and other young people - hundreds and hundreds of them, very happy to listen as Pepe Jurdao and Farid Lozada spelt out the Gospel to them painting their messages up cartoon-style on the usual O.A.C. sketch board generating terrific interest from all the students; Aluche Park, Madrid surrounded by apartment blocks housing 150,000 people - faced with the impossibility of contacting them all in a great European city like that; setting up 200 chairs (borrowed from local churches) in the centre of the park, and arranging loudspeakers all around. (In Spain if anything significant is going to happen, there will be loudspeakers - so we put them up even though we have no electricity supply.)

Returning about 8pm we find well over 1,000 people waiting for the programme to begin - our young Spanish girls with their guitars made a super music group, singing some lovely Spanish spiritual songs; Bernardo the clown came and did some backward somersaults, people throwing coins - it's a warm evening and the programme can run for an hour or so. We have testimonies, a short drama, more music, Bernardo gives his testimony, then the local missionary Jim Reed (a second generation Missionary Kid from Guatemala) speaking native Spanish spends 15 minutes spelling out how a person can know Christ and receive him as Lord. Very simple. Very good teaching. Very well explained. Most people drift slowly away chatting amongst themselves, but 65 form a sort of unofficial queue because they most definitely want to talk to someone about it - we can't even begin to clear up until midnight. The Pastor of the local church finds himself talking to people he has been trying to reach for years, some really good relationships are established, and the little local church begins to grow. After one such meeting, an alcoholic who had lost his job, his wife, his home, everything he had, listened intently all through the programme. He insisted on quiet from some youngsters who were trying to interrupt. He had been a local Doctor and his life was in ruins. He made contact with Scott Hill of Worldteam in Madrid and over a period of about a week was wonderfully converted. His life changed so dramatically that his wife accepted him back into the family home after quite a short time and was herself converted, as were his two teenage children - who joined the evangelism team in southern Spain the following year. Dr. Paco is now Senior Elder of the little church which meets in the suburb of Santa Eugenia.

Experience in Spain and Portugal shows that it takes about 15-20 years to establish a fellowship of about 25 people when personal evangelism is the only method employed. Bill Wooten, a missionary in Portugal, told me that his reliance on personal evangelism had meant that building a relationship with a Portuguese family to the point where he could share the Gospel with them took about a year. Most of those he got to know ultimately proved not to be interested in the Gospel. The Operation Mobilisation strategy for Italy was for each of their families to evangelise one Italian family each year. On that basis it would take thousands of years to reach the population - yet for some extraordinary reason many of those involved in missions regard friendship evangelism as the only responsible and effective way to do the job. Many of them seem to be hung up on the idea that one needs to earn the right to speak. Fortunately the Apostles did not suffer from these sort of hang-ups and regarded the preaching of the Gospel as their prime function in every town.

According to Dr. Norman Geisler, President of Southern Evangelical Seminary, Charlotte, North Carolina, a prolific author and commentator on issues facing the Christian Church in America today, we are moving beyond the post-Christian era into the anti-Christian era. To advocate the Christian ethical system as superior to any other, or to speak out against perversion, for example, can lead to losing one's job in the Company. One simply is becoming a lot less free in the United States to speak out for what is right and Godly on pain of prosecution by the authorities. The Apostles faced much greater challenges. Bill Baldwin, founder of the Greek Bible Institute, says we tend to forget that those who preached the Gospel in New Testament times risked their lives. The extraordinary courage of Jesus to stand up and speak as he did in his culture is even more remarkable when we realise that the authorities running Judaism at that time had the power of life and death over him, an option they of course ultimately took. Bill Baldwin also says we tend to forget that when St. Paul stood up on Mars Hill to present his new religion, several previous individuals who had dared to do so had been put to death.

Today in many parts of the world travel is relatively easy and straightforward, not very costly, and we have pretty well total freedom to go and preach the Gospel anywhere - but our Training Colleges do not offer either suitable programmes to equip for the task or even to teach how to communicate the Gospel with sinners. Billy Graham's extraordinary ability to speak into the lives of my parents, and of course many thousands of others, helping them understand how real and relevant and significant Jesus could be for them, was something none of us had ever seen before. It is those kinds of skills and the framework to enable the evangelist to function effectively in unstructured situations that should be at the top of the list in all our Bible colleges and training institutions today.

This is the vision many young men and women want to be part of today

Usually when I preach in a church somewhere and share some of the remarkable things I have seen God do in different evangelistic situations, and whenever I can putting slides up on a large screen so that people can actually see the events described, the impact is very considerable. One or two will recognise at once that this is the ministry to which God is calling them, too. Sometimes they will be individuals who have been searching for years for their ministry. Some, particularly in Anglican churches, may sense a call to evangelism but not have the slightest idea how to go about it as the ordination system does not provide for evangelists. Simon - a member of Christ Church, Nailsea, near Bristol, was one such. He was to become a brilliant street preacher. He got married and because his church were not prepared to support him as an evangelist, he went through theological college and was ordained as a vicar in the Anglican church. Serving two curacies in the Bradford area, he was rather depressed until last year when he was appointed Diocesan Evangelist to one of our great University towns, where at last he is able to exercise the ministry to which God has called him. It is quite usual even for a really excellent evangelical church like Christ Church not to have any idea what to do with someone like Simon. Many others I know have had similar experiences.

Booked to speak at a Baptist Church Conference on evangelism in Bristol. I had prepared for the main message of the evening: after 2 hours of discussion about whether or not they ought to open a cafe for young people in the High Street, I realised they had forgotten all about me. In the event I got ten minutes at the end - but in that ten minutes Mark Detzler (son of the previous pastor Wayne Detzler, and a graduate of Trinity Theological College) received his call to be an evangelist. He became O.A.C.'s Director for Italy.

St. Paul says that these people have "the gift of the evangelist". I am not at all sure myself that "gift" is the right word. My experience is that people who make the grade in evangelism are not necessarily gifted, they are individuals with a very clear call. Most of them struggle to preach effectively. All of them find living by faith a very difficult life and many have to support themselves by part time secular employment but within a few years many of them become some of the finest preachers I have ever heard. When I knew that I ought to be an evangelist, there was nobody to turn to for training but Open Air Campaigners. They provided the direction, a superb training programme, and the leadership and orientation that enabled Anni and me to succeed. We endeavour to provide the same for our trainees, but with the benefit of hindsight and of our trials and errors of the early days.

Mike Getley is one of our favourites: he had been a pig farmer and relief milker in North Devon, and was one of the most inarticulate people who had ever asked to join us. He was a very difficult guy to understand as he was so softly spoken - the Baptist churches of North Devon used him to drive their bus and to help put up the Scout tents for the youth group summer camps. A hugely strong chap, Mike could drive pegs in really easily! I told him he would never make an open air preacher: Mike's response, going home in his car, was "I'll show that Korky fellow a thing or two!". Refusing to give up on the idea, he asked for training in voice production, which we (and his wife Jean) helped him with and he came on the summer campaign in Bath greatly improved. He preached one afternoon to a good crowd of people and then led three men to Christ. That evening he came up to me at dinner and said "NOW can I be an evangelist?" ...indeed he did. Next summer it was Mike who was running the Baptist youth camps, not just putting up their tents, and their pastors said to me "What have you done with this guy? He's brilliant!" - so if you have the vision and the calling, do not give up - persevere, and make sure you get some good training, and don't let anyone put you off. Most importantly, talk to specialists who really do know something about the ministry of the evangelist.

At the World Missionary Conference in Edinburgh in 1910, the chairman of the proceedings, John Mott, set forth as the theme of the conference "The Evangelisation of the World in this Generation". It was thought that this could be practical with a striking force of 45,000 missionaries - which at that time would have meant the quadrupling of the entire number of missionaries in the world. Today it appears from attendance at conferences such as Urbana in Illinois - attended by young people from churches worldwide, but most from the U.S.A. - that there are probably about 30,000 of them ready to volunteer for missionary service. Their vision is based on the unexeptionable principle that each generation of Christians bears responsibility for their contemporary generation of non-Christians in the world, and that it is the business of each generation of Christians to see to it, as far as lies within its power, that the Gospel is clearly preached to every single non-Christian in the same generation. This is a universal and permanent obligation; it applies to Christian witness both within what is commonly called Christendom and beyond it. If the principle is to be rejected, the New Testament must first be re-written. (Quoting Bishop Stephen Neill, "History of Christian Missions" 1986, p.332)

In discussing this book with evangelists over the last several years, in many different evangelistic and missionary organisations, it is striking how each one alludes repeatedly to the fact that their local church managers simply do not understand their evangelistic ministry. Paul Wakefield, for example, with a substantial Christian education programme in schools in Nottinghamshire, combining this ministry with a training programme for street evangelists and schools workers in Romania, states that the ministry of local clergy to him and his family has amounted to little more than repeated attempts to persuade him to do something else. Anything, even full time secular employment, would in their view be preferable to his being a missionary evangelist.

Some of the reasons for this surprisingly myopic attitude so prevalent in some areas are discussed in the next chapter.