Archive for February, 2017

AIPM at Littleover Baptist Church, Derby 2005 and 2006

Saturday, February 18th, 2017

AIPM had 3 couples serve at Littleover Baptist Church (LBC) in Derby. They were Ernest and Ann Weedon from Deer Park, TX; O.D. and Jean Oliver from Gilmer, TX and Claude and Delma Jacks from Beeville, TX.

Littleover Baptist Church

Littleover Manse and Auto

The Weedon’s were first to serve there. Ernest is a retired pastor who served First Baptist Church, Deer Park for a number of years. After retirement, he and Ann began an interesting ministry in their very own subdivision which is quite large. They get in touch with newcomers and invite them to attend either a church of their own denomination or FBC. If they choose their own denomination, the Weedon’s attend with them and help them get acquainted. If they have no preferred denomination, the Weedon’s try to take them to FBC and help them get acquainted there. Ernest and Ann simply turned this ministry over to other helpers for the 6-months they served in England. We believe God must be well pleased when His servants keep on serving in their retirement years. Indeed, retirees are the backbone of AIPM.

The Weedon’s followed the standard practice of American interim pastor couples and made many friends in their neighborhood. Ann decided to give a birthday party for Ernest. She invited the Littleover congregation and most of them came. But, that was only about half of the crowd of over 70 people. The other half were neighbors including some Muslim friends. Such is the way our volunteers are made to feel welcome in the communities where we serve.

Ernest and Ann Weedon

In January 2006, O.D. and Jean Oliver began serving at LBC following the Weedon’s. O.D. became very ill on the flight to the UK. He and Jean were told that the airline rules were such that if a passenger is too ill to proceed to the next stop, the airline will return to the USA’s nearest airport capable of handling that size plane. O.D. and Jean felt that he would be able to continue on to Manchester, UK and did indeed get there safely. O.D. visited the local doctors several times over the 2 weeks that they were at Littleover. Finally, the doctors advised them to return to Texas where their doctors had detailed records and would be better able to manage his case. The folk at LBC were so gracious to O.D. and Jean and were sorry to see them leave. But, they understood that it was best for O.D.’s health. Sadly, O.D. passed away a few months after leaving Littleover!

When O.D. and Jean realized that they would not be able to finish out their 6-month assignment, they mentioned another retired pastor and wife who might be able and willing to serve. They introduced AIPM to Claude and Delma Jacks from Beeville, TX. Claude had been a pastor of Baptist churches for many years and Delma had served as a member of the Board of Trustees of The University of Mary Harden Baylor for a long time. Since AIPM had had no contact with the Jacks, we had on profiles or videos. Cecil Williams, then Treasurer of AIPM and an accomplished media person, solved the video problem. Cecil offered to tape a sermon by Claude and and interview with Claude and Delma that we could sent to Littleover. The folk at LBC considered Claude and Delma excellent candidates and called them immediately. It took only 4 weeks from the time we heard about the Jack’s until they arrived in the UK. In those days, we did not bet visas for volunteer religious workers as we do today. We simply took advantage of the visitor’s visa waiver agreement between GB and the USA that was in effect. We could enter GB and volunteer but had to exit the country within 6 months. In fact, that is the origin of what has become AIPM’s standard assignment of 6-months. That and our retiree’s need to visit doctors and visit grand children.

Claude and Delma Jacks

AIPM at St. Andrew’s Community Church, Tilbury, London – 2002 to 2003

Tuesday, February 14th, 2017

St. Andrew’s Community Church in Tilbury on the east side of London in the docks area was a local ecumenical partnership Baptist/Methodist church. St. Andrews’ was a church plant that was done by some Missouri Baptists and the Eastern Baptist Association in the UK. The church had done very well the previous 6-years under the leadership of a Baptist pastor, Bob Edwards (wife: Sue). Sadly, when Bob was called to a church much farther north, many of the key leaders left St. Andrews. In October 2003, St. Andrew’s invited Shannon Duncan from Charlotte, NC to serve as interim pastor. As mentioned in the report on Milnsbridge, Shannon’s wife, Tillie, is on staff at a Baptist church in NC and cannot accompany Shannon on out-of-town assignments.

St. Andrew's Community Church

Shannon had a good ministry at St. Andrews, but soon recognized that with the leaving of so many of the leadership, continuing ministry would be very difficult. In early 2004, the Methodists who owned the property announced that the building would require GBP 50,000 for upgrades to meet insurance requirements. The Methodists could not afford that expenditure nor could the local congregation so the church closed. It is significant that the Regional Minister of the Easter Baptist Association, Paul Hills, made it a point to tell me (Chuck McComb) that the closure of St. Andrew’s was in no way a reflection on Shannon Duncan or his ministry over the 6-month assignment.

Shannon Duncan

Shannon served at Tilbury from October until December 2003 and went home for a few days over Christmas. He returned in early January and served until March 2004. We praise the Lord that Shannon was able to purchase his own tickets to and from Tilbury as well as those for his Christmas trip home. When St. Andrew’s Community Church closed, we believe that the Baptists went to other Baptist churches and the Methodists went to other Methodist churches in the area.

There are many examples of the support and fellowship between churches in the UK. One involves St. Andrew’s and a sister church. Since St. Andrew’s did not have Sunday or Wednesday night services, Shannon made it a practice to walk a few miles to a nearby Baptist church for Sunday evening worship and Wednesday Bible studies and prayer meetings. That church is Sockett’s Heath and the pastor at that time was John Ireland. Interestingly, Sockett’s Heath supported the St. Andrew’s ministry by providing the manse and utilities at Tilbury! We are grateful to John Ireland and Socket’s Heath for their financial support and for making Shannon feel welcome and sharing fellowship with him the entire time he was at Tilbury.

AIPM at Thornaby Baptist Church 2001 to 2005

Saturday, February 11th, 2017

Thornaby Baptist Church (TBC) was the second UK church served by AIPM. Chuck McComb and David Hunt met with the leadership team at TBC and their moderator, Rev. David Lilly, in August 2000. This was at the time the McComb’s were wrapping up the first AIPM assignment at Cambridge Road BC in Middlesbrough. We met with the TBC deacons, Barbara Mazzetti, Dorothy Wilson, Maxine Wright and Paul Wright. Happily, they agreed to give AIPM a try and allowed us to continue our ministry in the UK!

Thornaby Baptist Church

Thornaby Manse-Leased from Salvation Army

Bill and Bartie Standley from Sagemont Church in Houston, TX were the first Americans to serve at TBC. in the early years of Bill’s adult live, he served as a pastor in Baptist churches in the Houston, TX area. As his family grew, he needed to leave full-time ministry to support his family. During the work-week, he pursued a career as a machinist with Shell Oil Company in Houston. But, in his off hours, he kept on serving the Lord in a layman’s role. When Bill retired from Shell, he began mission work in Alaska. And, when Thornaby Baptist church called him, he gladly accepted. Very early in Bill and Bartie’s assignment at Thornaby, Bill sensed a need to focus his preaching and Bible studies on relationships. That went over very well and set the stage for significant Kingdom advancement at TBC by the Americans that followed the Standley’s. Bill and Bartie served from June to December 2001.

Bill and Bartie Standley

Chuck and Pat McComb followed the Stanley’s at TBC. Chuck had finished a 35-year career as a Mechanical Engineer with Monsanto Chemical Company in 1997 and had begun volunteer pastoral ministry. Chuck and Pat served Thornbay from January to July 2002. During that assignment TBC conducted the 12 week Alpha Course. Jenny Crooks co-taught the course with Chuck. One of the special features of the Alpha Course is a fellowship meal for the group. Several of the members of the church volunteered to prepare the meals and do the washing up so that the course leaders could give their undivided attention to the group members. The course concludes with a long session “away.” The away session was held in a pub private room in the North Yorkshire Moors. The away session includes 3 course modules that deal with the Holy Spirit. The final session is a time for inquiries about spiritual commitments. No commitments were made at the session, but some that attended the course were baptized later that year.

In the spring of 2002, TBC considered candidates for the back half of 2002. TBC was the first and only UK church to select in one setting 2 candidates to serve in back-to-back assignments. They selected Ken and Liz Bugh from Sagemont Church in Houston and Luther and Betty Scarborough from Sagamore Hills BC in Ft. Worth, TX. Ken had had a career in sales in the office products industry, but was available to serve 6-months at Thornaby. After the Thornaby assignment, Ken managed a LifeWay Book Store at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago and later became a capital fund raiser for Moody. The Bugh’s served Thornaby from early July 2002 until late December. Ken baptized 3 adults at Thronaby. Ken is Vice President of AIPM and a long-time supporter!

Luther and Betty Scarborough’s served Thornaby the first half of 2003. Interestingly, Luther ran an insurance agency in Arlington, TX. He simply turned over the business to his partners and took 6-months off to serve Jesus Christ in the UK. A total of 9 adults were baptized at TBC. Luther baptized 6 of the 9.

The fifth couple to serve TBC was Charles and Dorcille Vanderslice from First Baptist Church, Mineola, TX. Charles was the founding pastor of The Heights Baptist Church in Richardson, TX. He also served on the faculty of Dallas Theological Seminary. e finished his ministry career serving with the Southern Baptist Annuity Board’s pension system. Charles and Dorcille continued the work that was started by earlier American interim pastors at Thornaby. Charles recognized the difficulty that some of the elderly members were having getting out on cold winter nights for Wednesday evening Bible study and prayer meetings. He began having the same studies and prayer meetings in the manse on Wednesday mornings! Very shortly all the seating room in the manse was filled. And, the attendance at Wednesday evening services did not decline! All the interim pastors that followed the Vanderslice’s followed his pattern!

Charles and Dorcille Vanderslice

Chuck and Pat McComb returned to Thornaby for a second 6-month assignment in January 2004. A highlight of that period was a mission trip to the UK from FBC Mineola, TX. Charles and Dorcille Vanderslice felt the Holy Spirit’s leadership to come back to Thornaby with a construction team to do some much needed revisions. The team converted 2 toilets for use by disabled persons. That work was required by UK law and had to be competed by October 2004. Imagine the church’s delight when the team finished it in April. And, the team saved TBC several thousand dollars in the process!

Brenda Tucker and Pat Vickery, Mineola, TX

Expanded existing doorway

One of two finished projects

Because of Pat’s dad’s serious illness in St. Louis, the McComb’s had to leave TBC 2.5 weeks early. Pat’s dad survived the episode and we praise the Lord for that. But, we were not able to host Jim and Brenda Martin from Lake Jackson, TX for a few days as is customary for orientation. Jim and Brenda settled in very well and had a wonderful 6-month ministry at TBC. Jim and Brenda learned about AIPM from an interview on KHCB Christian Radio in Houston. They heard Bruce Munsterman at KHCB interviewing Chuck and Barbara Mazzetti from Thornaby within one or two days of Jim’s retirement from Dow Chemical Company where Jim had had a 30 plus year career as a Chemical Engineer.

Jim and Brenda Martin

The Martin’s were followed by James and Jo Still from Sulphur, LA. James had served many years as pastor of Baptist churches in Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana. The Still’s served from January to June 2005 completing 4 years of AIPM at TBC. Happily, TBC was able to have a British pastor and called David Whitehall from Liverpool. Attendance at TBC approximately doubled over the 4 year period of AIPM and we are grateful to our Father in Heaven for the opportunity to serve alongside those wonderful Christian people. All 7 American couples were so well received and we made life-long friendships at Thornaby!

James and Jo Still

AIPM volunteers were tremendously blessed to baptize 9 people over the 4 years service at Thornaby Baptist Church!

AIPM at Milnsbridge Baptist Church, Huddersfield 2003 to 2005

Saturday, February 11th, 2017

Milnsbridge Baptist Church (MBC) in Huddersfield was in the process of building a new building when they asked AIPM to provide volunteer interim pastors. Their old building had developed structural problems and had to be knocked down. Ian Burley, pastor at Oakes Baptist Church and former pastor of both Oakes and Milnsbridge combined, was serving as moderator at MBC. He continued in that role for the duration of AIPM’s ministry at MBC to ensure construction of the new building went according to plan.

Ian Burley

Milnsbridge Baptist Church-New Building

Milnsbridge Manse and Auto

Paul and Myrna McClung from FBC, Kerrville, TX were the first Americans to serve at MBC. They served from June to December 2003. Paul is a retired pastor and served several Baptist churches in west Texas before retiring in Kerrville. Another example of God’s hand working for the benefit of his children and His ministries–Paul had been considered for a church a year earlier, but someone else was called to that church. When the McClung’s visited in the McComb’s home for orientation before going to Milnsbridge, Myrna mentioned that she had had 2 major surgeries in the past 12 months and she observed, “There is no way that I should have been in England anytime in the last year.” God is always taking care of us!

Paul and Myrna McClung

In the fall of 2003 while the McClung’s were serving MBC, the church called Darrell and Faith Grice to be their second American interim pastor couple. Darrell and Faith are from The Heights Baptist Church in Richardson, TX where Darrell did education and missions ministry for years. This was the Grice’s first of 5 assignments with AIPM over an 11 year period. Darrell and Faith served MBC from January to June 2004.

Darrell and Faith Grice

Bill and Doris Hooper from Bolivar, MO served at MBC the last half of 2004. Interestingly, Bill had served as pastor of another Baptist church in the UK many years earlier. Bill is a retired Professor of Music at Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, MO.

Bill and Doris Hooper

When the Hooper’s finished their assignment at MBC, Shannon Duncan was called as their 4th American interim pastor. Shannon’s wife, Tillie, is on staff at a Baptist Church in Charoltte, NC and could not accompany Shannon. Shannon is retired from United Parcel Services and over his 30 year career with them in several locations served as interim pastor of over 2-dozen Baptist churches. Shannon wrapped up his assignment in July 2005.

Shannon Duncan

The goal of helping the UK church until they can both afford and locate a suitable British pastor was accomplished at MBC. At mid-2005 they called a young newly accredited Baptist Union pastor, Mike Roberts to serve alongside them.

Mike and Sarah Roberts

AIPM at West View Baptist Church, Hartlepool 2002-2003

Saturday, February 11th, 2017

Early in AIPM’s ministry at Thornaby, an opportunity to serve at West View Baptist Church in Hartlepool opened up. The Lord was clearly in this assignment because the candidate, Dwayne Burks, heard about AIPM in a most round-about way. Dwayne served in children’s Bible study one Sunday at his church in Charlotte, NC and missed the worship service. A friend of Dwayne’s heard visiting preacher Neil McClendon’s message and reported on some of Neil’s comments to Dwayne.

Dwayne’s friend said that Neil had mentioned an unusual ministry in England. Neil knew about AIPM from his friend, John Wills, then Minister of Education at Sagemont and a staunch supporter of AIPM from the outset. When Dwayne got the details, he contacted John Wills. John Wills contacted John Rhodes (recall that name from AIPM’s starting at Cambridge Road!). Dwayne said that he could visit England and preach with a view to volunteering in a church for 6-months as he had just left the banking business . Rhodes arranged for Dwayne to preach at West View Baptist Church! Rhodes had commitments on the Saturday and asked Chuck and Pat McComb who were then serving at Thornaby to host Dwayne for the day. That went very well and Dwayne’s message at West View went even better–they invited him to serve as volunteer interim pastor from July 2002 to January 2003.

Dwayne and Charlotte Burks and Family

Dwayne baptized 7 at West View including his own daughter. When the Burks’ pastor in NC learned of their plans to serve in England, another “Hand of God” event occurred. The pastor told Dwayne that if the NC church could use their house for missionary housing while they were in England, they would pay the mortgage and utilities payments! And, the local church helped with the extra cost of airline tickets for their 4 children!

West View Baptist Church

A great example of the way GOD KEEPS ON BLESSING—The Burks’ relationship with West View in Hartlepool, England has continued the 15 years since they served there. And while serving as a layman at West View, God impressed on Dwayne that He wanted him in Gospel ministry. Dwayne answered that call was ordained to the Gospel ministry and served 13 years as bi-vocational pastor of Bethany Baptist Church in Gastonia, North Carolina!

The Burks’ have hosted 13 visits from Hartlepool folk over the years and the Burks visited West View 2 times. Two West View young people served in Bethany Baptist Church in youth worker internships. And it continues—the oldest Burks’ daughter will visit Hartlepool in April 2017!

West View has continued as a strong evangelical church and 2 of its members recently left to plant another evangelical church in Hartlepool. And, a member of West View that was baptized on the Burks’ last day at that church is now serving in Nevada with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. It blesses our hearts to see churches where AIPM has served doing so well for the cause of Jesus Christ!

AIPM at Cambridge Road Baptist Church, Middlesbrough – 2000 and 2011

Monday, February 6th, 2017

When we established this web site with the help of Mrs. Heater Sanders (Daughter of AIPM’s VP, Ken Bugh), we had every intention of listing the ministries that we have completed and providing a bit of information about each one. Alas, we have been negligent about this and our consciences are bothering us!

Middlesbrough Baptist Church in Cambridge Road


AIPM at Henley-in-Arden Baptist Church 2005 to 2011

Thursday, February 2nd, 2017

AIPM began at Henley-in-Arden Baptist Church (HBC) in October 2005. HBC folk had considered AIPM for a year, but were concerned about the frequent turnover of interim pastors. They had 7 couples serve with the last one finishing in March 2011. One couple served almost 2-years. The others served in 6-month assignments. HBC made good progress during the 5 plus years and 3 adults were baptized. Circumstances in the church altered near the end of AIPM’s service such that they had sufficient funds available to call a British pastor. AIPM’s goal is to help UK churches until they can afford a UK pastor and then we go and help others try to achieve that goal.

Henley-in-Arden Baptist Church

The first American couple to serve was Ed and Linda Sullivan from Granbury, TX. Ed is retired from the US Air Force. Ed and Linda served many years as active laypersons at Acton Baptist Church, Acton, TX.

Ed and Linda Sullivan

Charles and Pat Boyd from Springfield, MO followed the Sullivan’s at HBC. Charles was a retired professor of business courses at Missouri State University. Charles and Pat served faithfully in lay roles at Second Baptist Church, Springfield before and after serving at Henley. Charles went to his reward in heaven several years after serving at Henley.

Charles and Pat Boyd

Dick and Nadine Harmon from Stafford, VA followed the Boyd’s at HBC. Dick served many years as pastor of Baptist churches in California and more recently on staff at a large Baptist church in Stafford, VA. Dick and Nadine’s ministry at HBC was interrupted by illness of Nadine’s father. The HBC folk were gracious and supportive of Dick and Nadine as they returned to the USA to minister to family and then return to Henley. The Harmon’t time at Henley from start to finish was almost 2-years.

Dick and Nadine Harmon

Jerry and Judy Lloyd from Pittsburg, Kansas served next at HBC. Jerry served many years as a bi-vocational pastor while earning a living as an electrician.

Jerry and Judy Lloyd

John and Jan Ward from Lake Jackson, TX had their second AIPM assignment at HBC. They had served a 6-month assignment at St. Paul’s Baptist Church in Skegness the year before. John had recently retired from a 30 plus year career as an engineer at Dow Chemical Company. John and Jan have been very active laypersons at First Baptist Church, Lake Jackson for many years. Jan served a number of years on the FBC staff as Children’s Minister. John and Jan and the HBC Church Secretary, Wendy Gregory, traveled to Blaengraw, Wales to talk to the leadership of that church about AIPM. They perceived great interest in AIPM, but in the final analysis the Blaengraw folk did not believe that they could meet the financial requirements

John and Jan Ward

Jim and Carroll Fox from Las Cruses, NM followed the Ward’s at HBC. Jim served with the US Government’s Bureau of Land Management and as a US Army Reserve Officer before retirement. Jim and Carroll were active workers in a number of churches over the years. Upon arriving in Las Cruses, NM in 2004 they became and remain faithful members of Calvary Baptist Church.

Jim and Carroll Fox

The 7th and final American couple to serve at HBC was Gerald and Liz Craft from Pensacola, FL. Gerald had a distinguished career as a Chaplain in the US Army before his retirement. He and Liz are active members of First Baptist Church, Pensacola. The Craft’s happened to be in Henley-in-Arden on Armistice Day, November 11, 2010. Gerald was invited to bring the message as the community honored their veterans.

Gerald and Liz Craft

The experience and background of the 7 couples that served at Henley-in-Arden reflects the diversity of AIPM candidates. They had serve them: a US Air Force pilot, a university professor, a retired pastor, an electrician, a retired engineer, a Bureau of Land Management manager and a retired US Army Chaplain. God is able to use all kinds to advance His Kingdom and we praise His Name for the opportunity.

I have asked couples that served in the UK churches to comment on these “Completed Ministries” articles on AIPM’s web site. John and Jan Ward provided the following regarding Henley-in-Arden:

Henley-in-Arden is located in the Cotswolds area, one of England’s most classic historic areas.

The residents and members of the church are rightfully proud of their heritage and the beautiful countryside, castles, and manor-houses. Most American interim pastors grocery-shopped weekly in Stratford-upon-Avon which is about 8 miles south of Henley. Henley is about 10 miles from the ancient Warwick Castle, now operated by the National Trust like unto a theme park. From Henley, it is an easy same-day round-trip into Wales.

Henely, like the other towns and villages of the Cotswolds get beautifully decorated up for classic English celebrations.

The people feel their history and heritage keenly. The High Street (Main Street) is closed for the British Legion drum and bugle detail to parade and conduct Remembrance Day observance. These include laying the flags on the mud of the street pavement for the playing of “Last Post.”

John (and I believe the other American interim pastors) was privileged to deliver Sunday messages at Dell Court retirement center every two weeks. They also led monthly services at Hockley Heath Baptist Center and occasional services at Stock Green church. John and at least one other American interim pastor (Gerald Craft) were invited to bring the Remembrance Day message at Henley’s St. John the Divine Anglican church. John also made visits with the chaplain to Birmingham’s prison.

As a side project, John went to Birmingham’s King’s Heath church to prepare a scope of work for an American mission project team to build an entryway for Muslim women to privately come into the Baptist church premises for counseling and assistance from this Christian church. Entry via the front entrance could have caused these women serious problems.