Once again we were favoured with splendid weather for the annual meeting on Saturday 10 May. The preacher was a former student from 20 years ago, Colin Tamplin of Monyhull Evangelical Church, Birmingham. He preached powerfully from 2 Kings 3, drawing contemporary lessons from this account of: an unholy alliance between godly Jehoshaphat and unbelieving Joram; a miraculous victory; and a humiliating defeat.
Jonathan Stephen interviewed leaving students. Every one of them testified to a deepening relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ, even as they grappled with Greek, theology and essays. Steven Jones had been called to pastor a church near Bury St Edmunds. Mark Fisher will be involved in a range of evangelistic work at Heath Evangelical Church, Cardiff.
Applications from prospective students were encouraging, including for the new binary course. Recruitment trips to the USA had paid off, with over 25 American students now on the books.
The principal made special mention of Shwekey Hoipang from Burma who only that morning had heard that his fiancée in Rangoon was alive. An offering was taken up after the service towards the relief effort in Burma.
Jonathan Stephen reflected on God’s faithfulness through another year in which the college’s financial position had improved. Prayer and patience were needed as we looked to God for much needed new facilities.
In June, one hundred American volunteers descend on Bryntirion to carry out a multitude of maintenance tasks. Jonathan Stephen thanked our supporters for their prayers and financial support, without which WEST could not function. Neville Rees, a trustee since the college’s inception in 1985, had retired. John Stevens and John Temple had joined the WEST council.
Many of the 200-plus visitors stayed for a sumptuous meal laid on by local churches. It was well into the evening when the last guests made their way home from what was an excellent occasion.