May 2024 Germany, UK

After extensive messaging and teaching, it was a pleasure to visit a group of seven asylum seekers held currently in a camp in Germany. And it is a camp, surrounded by barbed wire and with careful checking of entry and exit, with lots of "No photography" signs around it. These men had studied Farsi "Bible Basics" and it was a pleasure to hear their testimonies, teach them further and then to transport them out to a lake and baptize them. The weather was on one hand difficult- thunderstorms and heavy rain. We performed the baptisms with loud claps of thunder over our heads, which could be interpreted as God's clapping. Whether so or not, we were thoroughly soaked by the end of it, but with so much joy that these brave brethren were all now "in Christ", with the priceless Hope of the Kingdom before them. We heard many stories of persecution in their Islamic homelands... and that theme of Islamic persecution sadly continues in our news from the UK below.

We received the following prayer request from brother Amir in Iran, whom we baptized online a while ago. Indeed, let's pray for him.

Attendance keeps up at our Sunday "Church in a Pub" meetings and also Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays for lunchtime church in central Croydon. There is real spiritual growth evident amongst so many. This is really such a Divinely blessed outreach- opportunities to care, to feed, to chat with folks and of course to explain the Gospel. And to see people baptized most weeks, MARK this week, and others on the way there. Some who initially appeared more interested in the social side or the coffee and food are now to be seen paying careful attention, asking questions, and downloading the Bible Companion app on their phones. Here's Cindy in action this week, and we really can do with more helpers... do consider it if at all you can.
And now some hard news about our beloved brother Spiro. Our brother quit a Pentecostal church over 20 years ago after rejecting trinitarian baptism. You can hear his testimony in the video we made introducing our
work in Croydon at
 He rebaptized himself and for 20 years has preached alone on the streets of Croydon, before meeting up with us and becoming a mainstay of our Church in a Pub and midweek activities. He is quite a feature on Saturday mornings in the mall in central Croydon, preaching with a microphone and speaker. There are many religious people preaching their views there and we have very often handed out NEV Bibles and literature there over many years. Last Saturday, soon after the baptisms of the former Muslim brethren in Germany, brother Spiro was preaching alone as usual in the mall. He was surrounded by a group of Muslim young men who began religiously abusing him, and some Muslim people came out of a shop and joined in shouting religious abuse. One grabbed his microphone off him and said "I'm going to kill you" and grabbed his speaker from him as well as the microphone. He remembers the man going for him and then he fell to the ground and is unaware what happened next as he lost consciousness. He came round to a group of the general public around him and strong pain in his knee cap. By this time the Police had been called, the group of Muslims had run away, and some members of the general public apprehended the young man who had grabbed his speaker etc. and recovered his speaker and microphone. The Police arrested the young man. Spiro gave a Police statement as to what he recalled happening as did two members of the public who witnessed it all, more than Spiro as he lost consciousness on falling to the ground. He went to hospital and has been discharged. He has no breakages but his knee is very swollen and a deep cut in one leg, it seems the assailants tried to 'kneecap' him. Not much fun for a 77 year old. He is at home, hobbling around with great difficulty but very determined not to be discouraged, although clearly shaken up. He has to rest with his leg up, in a lot of pain, whilst reading his Bible and watching YouTube as ever. He urged the Police not to press charges against the arrested man and in any case he lost consciousness on falling to the ground so he cannot himself testify to more than mentioned above. Spiro is concerned that if it comes to a court case then he will have to give his name and address and he believes this gang would then come for him at home. He has 7 children and very many grandchildren and great grandchildren all living in south London. Spiro is 77 and estimates the young man was no more than 20-22 years old. Spiro is determined to go on witnessing to the Lord Jesus in Croydon although he says he may give it a break for some weeks. Central and West Croydon has a very high crime rate and drug abuse is evident everywhere, with the smell of marijuana strongly noticeable. That area is also pretty well the knife crime capital of the UK. There are regular stabbings and murders, usually drug related. So... do pray for our brother and for our continued work in this very deprived area... full of struggling people, some of whom are so responsive to the Gospel.

   - For those recently baptized
   - For brother Spiro [and his family]
   - For all who take risks to witness to the Lord Jesus in an increasingly hostile world
   - For our work in Latvia this week

With love from your brothers and sisters of Carelinks