On Saturday 11 January, more than 200 people gathered at Flint Evangelical Church for the induction service of Rev. Montaz Ali as the church’s new pastor.
The service was led by Chris Thomas, the church’s elder and secretary, who gave an outline of the history of the church’s decision to call Mr Ali. A commendation was brought by Rev. Juge Ram Chopra, pastor of Emmanuel Church, Handsworth, who also read the Scripture passage.
Mike Roper, an elder of Trinity Baptist Church, Tenterden, where Mr Ali previously pastored, also took part, by leading in prayer.
Mr Ali gave a moving testimony of his call to the ministry, tracing God’s hand on his life from an early age. Having been born in Bangladesh into a Muslim background, he came to Britain with other family members as a young boy and grew up in the West Midlands.
He was converted during his teenage years and sensed soon after that God was calling him to be a preacher.
Ten years of secular work was followed by theological training at Wales Evangelical School of Theology (WEST) and, through the training and advice he received, Mr Ali was convinced that he should enter the pastoral ministry.
He subsequently accepted a call to Tenterden, Kent, where he ministered for five years from 2007-2012, with much blessing.
He was then out of the ministry for a while, before being introduced to the church in Flint in spring 2013. It became apparent over a number of visits and through the church’s eventual call that this was where the Lord wanted him to minister.
Rev. Peter Milsom, chairman of the Associating Evangelical Churches of Wales and director of Affinity, conducted the act of induction.
This was followed by the induction prayer, given by Rev. John Davies, Flint’s former pastor, who retired at the end of November 2013 after nearly 50 years in the ministry.
The preacher at the service was Canon David Gibb of St Andrews, Leyland, who spoke with great clarity from 1 Corinthians 5 on the theme, ‘Why become a pastor?’
The service was attended by folk from local churches in North Wales, as well as family members and many friends of Mr Ali, his wife Naomi and one-year-old daughter Tiffany. The church was greatly encouraged to see so many present and is looking to the future with great expectation of God’s blessing on Mr Ali’s future ministry.