GRACE BAPTIST CHURCH HALIFAX
In 2002, the church that used to meet in Hebden Bridge were able to buy the plot of land in Halifax where they believed the Lord would have them build their new chapel. However, the project seemed to stall at that point and as time passed we grew concerned that progress was not being made in the way that we would have expected based on our experience of other similar projects.
Peter Stead, the pastor of Grace Baptist Church, Halifax, takes up the story:
"Part of our testimony regarding the building of the chapel is the way in which the Lord has used Eric Cousins and GBTC on two particular occasions. In September 2004 when funds coming in for the building were not keeping up with the continuing escalating cost I prayed for the Lord to step in and show us the way ahead: asking what were we to be doing, pleading for the Lord to help. As I was in prayer the Lord was already moving, for the next day I received a letter from Eric Cousins to enquire what the situation was with our building project. He was wondering if he could be of any help! Well, he was - for within a few weeks he and Trevor Condy had visited us and advised how we could build for a much lower figure a smaller version of the project. From then on things began to move with purpose.
"By October 2005 with monies raised and the promised of loans in hand, the building was getting near. However we were contemplating leaving out the upstairs portion in order to save £40,000, as we would need to borrow additional funds. Martin Howell and I met with Eric whilst in London and we updated him with matters. He was aghast at the thought of us not doing that part of the building and the Lord used him to challenge us. I still hear his words as though the Lord was addressing me, `If you don't build that upstairs now, you probably never will! The outcome was that the church borrowed a bit extra and we have our upstairs. The Lord has blessed that decision and enabled us to pay back some of the extra loan already."
2008 update: The Corporation were pleased to hold their 2008 AGM at the chapel, where the facilities and the church's hospitality were thoroughly appreciated and enjoyed.
2010 update: The church writes:
"The church has grown steadily since we moved into our new building in 2006. Congregations on a Sunday morning usually number between 45 and 55. We continue to be actively involved in the local community and hold a monthly luncheon for senior citizens, which seems to be greatly appreciated by all who attend. Another encouragement in the last two years has been the commencement of the ‘Baby and Toddlers Group’ which has provided us with many opportunities to share the gospel with young parents who may otherwise have not entered the church building. Last year saw the church expanding its witness to the local Asian community and we have been greatly assisted in this endeavour by Nathan Javed, a Pakistani Christian. Another new venture has been the ‘International Outreach Evening’ where friends from different nationalities meet for a meal and hear a short gospel message. We are most grateful to our Lord for his continued love and faithfulness to us and recently we had reason to give thanks to Him when Luke Jenner joined us as co-pastor."