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Obituary: Peter Anderson (1931–2021)

April 2021 | by John Blanchard

On 21 January, the British evangelist Peter Anderson died in a care home in Leicester.

He was born in Glasgow, and after his parents had moved their family six times in ten years, he joined the British Army aged 18. After intensive training, he was posted to Singapore where he came to faith in Christ through the preaching of a Chinese doctor.

Upon return to the UK, Peter enrolled in Matlock Bible College (later called Moorlands) and began five years of itinerant evangelism before joining the National Young Life Campaign in 1959.

Some years later he joined the staff of the Movement for World Evangelization, where, with John Blanchard, Derek Cleave, and other evangelists, he had an extensive ministry.

In 1980 he joined John and Derek in founding Christian Ministries, and for the next 23 years worked throughout the UK as well as Europe, South America, Africa, Asia, Australia, and the United States.

Peter’s heart for mission in Eastern Europe led him to make some 40 visits there, especially to Bulgaria, where Baptist churches in Varna and elsewhere came to treasure his fellowship and ministry.

He also joined the Council of United For Mission Worldwide, where he served for some 20 years. Former chairman Bryn Jones said Peter was ‘driven by his desire to see people come to faith in Jesus Christ’.

This led him to present a series of missionary films in conjunction with the Christian Television Association. He travelled with CTA’s Crawford Telfer to Ireland, Hungary, France, Spain, Bulgaria, Portugal, Brazil, Cote D’Ivoire, the Czech Republic, Papua New Guinea, and Zaire.

The films have had a profound effect on the ministry and recruitment of UFM, of which Peter also became magazine editor.

Peter also developed interest in gospel work in India: from 1985 onwards, he and Derek Cleave visited the country about ten times, supporting the work of the India Fellowship of Bible Churches.

As well as ministry in broadcasting, Peter wrote several books. After extensive counselling to help people whose lives were ruined by the occult, he wrote Talk of the Devil. He also authored Go for Growth, and in 2009 while confined to his home for months following life-threatening surgery, he wrote Have Bible Will Travel.

Peter shared his Christ-centred message countless times in the UK and overseas; the gospel cause is the poorer for his passing.