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How shall they hear?

By John Mollitt
November 2017 | Review by John Crosby
  • Publisher: Onwards & Upwards Publishers
  • ISBN: 978-1-911086-43-7
  • Pages: 86
  • Price: 8.99
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Book Review

This is a moving account of the life and ministry of a faithful preacher living in a rural context. John Mollitt speaks of his early days when he first preached to his twin brother. He outlines his conversion and call to preach, initially in the context of a Methodist circuit. His conversion resulted in his abandoning the temporary sympathy he had for liberal theology. During this time his career was in banking and the civil service.

A suggestion was made to him by two well-known evangelical preachers that he should commit himself to full-time ministry. This was followed by an approach from the elders of the fledgling Ingleton Evangelical Church, resulting in a call to be their pastor. His faithful ministry at Ingleton continued for 30 years, during which time the membership rose from 16 to 50. Since then he has continued with an itinerant ministry, mainly in the Yorkshire Dales.

Besides his regular Sunday/Wednesday preaching, John was involved in open-air evangelism and initiating a thriving young people’s work in the church. Throughout, he has had a faithful and sympathetic helpmeet in his wife Pat. Having two lovely children of their own did not deter them from fostering and later adopting a severely handicapped child, Aaron, who died only recently.

The love they showed to the child was a great witness to the faith and gave many opportunities of speaking for Christ, which they might never have had otherwise. John became a member of the governing body of the residential school in Silverdale which Aaron attended.

The theological stance of the book is conservative evangelical, its style warm and engaging. The book is full of amusing anecdotes. However, these are not trivialised but often used to make points concerning the gospel.

John’s full-time ministry was at a time when access to schools, colleges and societies was more open. He laments the increased secularisation of society, which makes such ministry more difficult. This book, compact yet comprehensive, is thoroughly recommended.

John A. Crosby

Carlisle

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