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Evangelists use megaphone to spread message of hope

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Evangelists of the New Testament Church of God say they’re hitting back at gang violence by launching a mission of hope to troubled areas of the Island.

“The Lord told me to evangelise at the parks and fields,” explained church member Crystal Anderson, of her calling to open-air preaching.

Mrs Anderson, who said she was inspired to act during a retreat in the US, visited White Hill Field and Warren Simmons Community Field, in Sandys, to preach the gospel with fellow evangelists Kirk Trott and John Fleming.

Mr Trott said their group had been well-received, despite selecting locations known for “people hanging out”.

“We haven’t had any trouble,” he said.

“One of our concerns is what’s been going on in this Island with our young men not being able to travel places because of where they’re from and who they’re affiliated with.”

He added: “They want to get out, but they’re kept back because of all their circumstances. We offer help to change their mindset. They can make the church their new family.”

Mrs Anderson’s technique is simple: she brings along artwork on a clipboard, a chair and a megaphone, and reads out her messages.

“When we look around Bermuda today, we see trouble,” she announced at White Hill, where a group of young men gradually congregated at the gate to the field. “But God is the answer. He said, I am the way, the truth and the light.”

Other church members stopped to chat with people who came over to listen.

After talking with a man, near a wall tagged with gang graffiti, Ms Anderson came away saying: “I was just speaking to a gang member. I know him because I used to go to church with his mother.”

Mrs Anderson, who said she came to a sudden understanding of her mission, said: “I was coming off a sabbatical and God laid it on my heart to canvass the Island for evangelical outreach. What we’re doing is really simple and it’s not about us. We’re sharing the Gospel.”

The group said they started their prayer meetings last week at Mullet Bay Park in St George’s, and will continue in different areas of the Island.

Said Tirsite Furbert: “It starts out small like this, and then people get the word that it’s going on, and it grows.”

Asked where she planned to visit next, Mrs Anderson said she would bring the message to locations in Warwick.

“I haven’t planned exactly when,” she said. “God is the one who gives me my direction.”

Spreading the message: New Testament Church of God members evangelist Crystal Anderson, Kirk Trott and John Fleming spoke out loudly on White Hill Field to the surrounding neighbourhood offering hope and against violence crime in hopes of improving conditions in improving Sandys.
A passing cyclist stops to listen to New Testament Church of God members evangelist Crystal Anderson, Kirk Trott and John Fleming at White Hill Field in Somerset.

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Published February 13, 2012 at 7:00 am (Updated February 13, 2012 at 6:40 am)

Evangelists use megaphone to spread message of hope

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