On Wednesday 13th April the celebration of EMMS International’s 175th anniversary began in prayer. 35 staff, volunteers and close friends of EMMS gathered in the historic Magdalen Chapel on the Cowgate in Edinburgh to come together and uphold EMMS International in prayer.
A welcome and brief history was given by James Wells, CEO. He reminded us about who we are as a charity, what we do and why we do it.
Adam Broughton, Pastor of Newcraigs Church, Fife, read Luke 4:17-21 and gave a short talk focussing on Jesus’ ministry and how we strive to reflect His works in our own. By helping some of the poorest communities in the world, we are reaching forwards to the kingdom of heaven and bringing it now, just as Jesus did.
The life of EMMS International today was described by three talks from current members of staff. Cat Rawlinson-Watkins, Director of Fundraising, spoke on ‘life-giving friendship’; how the lasting bonds of EMMS reaches from the founding members, to all those involved today, and on to those who will be involved in the future.
Tony Gaston, Relationship Manager, talked to us on the topic of ‘because every life matters’. He told us the incredible story of Brenda; a woman crippled by the pain of terminal cancer, who couldn’t believe someone would come so far to visit her. We were reminded of the privilege that we have of visiting women and men like this, because every life matters.
Our Financial Controller, Douglas Clarke, spoke on ‘God the multiplier’. God has transformed EMMS from a 5 shilling membership society to the charitable organisation it is today. We were reminded of the faithfulness of our God, who takes what little we have to offer and multiplies it to impact the lives of many.
After the talks was a time of prayer. Our newest staff member, James Petticrew, Church Relationship Manager, led us in praying for EMMS and its work. We then had a time of private prayer, reflecting on materials covering the subjects of EMMS’ work, including gender, poverty, justice, compassion and hope.
A commissioning and closing prayer from Adam Broughton ended the gathering.
We pray for the ongoing work of EMMS. We ask that You would bless the work that goes on in the poor and marginalised communities in which EMMS works. Inspire us to work towards eradicating poverty and injustice, so that all may have life in its fullness.