Michael Wright, former elder of Hall Green Baptist Church in Haworth, West Yorkshire has died aged 91.
Raised in Haworth, Michael studied civil engineering at Sheffield University prior to employment with British Steel McColls.
Although attending Hall Green Baptist Church during childhood, Michael was not saved until 29 years old. He heard several sermons on the text ‘Lazarus come forth’ (John 11:43) and recognised God was offering him new life.
Michael married Pat in 1958 and they were blessed with three children: Stephanie, Ruth and Jonathan.
In his work with British Steel, Michael specialised in reinforced concrete. He was involved in a range of engineering projects, including work on the Humber Bridge, York Minster, the Hong Kong Shanghai Bank and Sydney Opera House.
Michael did not let his distinguished career define him. His family were paramount, and he endured trying times when his eldest daughter, Stephanie was killed in a car crash. He said to the policeman who informed him of the tragic news, ‘The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away, blessed be the name of the Lord’.
Michael’s faith in Christ defined him. Although conscious of his sin, he persevered in holiness and service. He worked as an elder at Hall Green Baptist Church, preaching in times of leanness as well as blessing. He was also a great encourager of the many small churches in the north of England.
His greatest contribution was prayer. Meeting with a small group in the 1950s to pray for the Lord’s blessing on the few gospel churches in the north of England, Michael laboured in prayer throughout his Christian life.
On the day he died, Michael thanked God for both the ‘bad times’ as well as the ‘good times’. He said we can only know the Lord’s love and mercy if we experience some bad times. His life is a testimony to God’s saving grace.