Holywell church to perform first baptism in a generation

Reporter:

David Humphreys

A church is to perform its first baptism for almost a generation.

On Sunday, Bethel Baptist Chapel in Holywell will pass a significant milestone when it holds its first baptism in 16 years.

The baptism, of Tim Davies, represents another landmark for the chapel after the completion of more than three-and-a-half years of work to restore the Pen-y-Ball Street place of worship.

Reverend David Campbell said Sunday would be quite the occasion for the baptist chapel.

He said: “This is significant in a Baptist church because our historic practice (and one of the Baptist distinctives) is to baptise adults after their conversion rather than at their birth.

“As the chapel was nearly closed three years ago, we have been blessed to complete renovating the chapel but more importantly to see the congregation growing from one or two on a Sunday to dozens in recent months.

“We now also have a weekly coffee morning, called Sgwrs a Cuppa, and a mid-week Bible study.”

The man who will be baptised, Tim Davies, is a long-time Holywell resident and has been attending Bethel for a year before making the decision to be baptised.

The last person to be baptised at Bethel, Paula Williams, will also be in attendance and is a regular church-goer, having returned from Winchester to be baptised at her family’s church.

Her baptism in 2001 was also preceded by something of a drought, with no similar service held at Bethel for 20 years previous to Paula’s own, who was originally from Flint.

Such was the significance of that service, the late Rev James Thompson came out of retirement to perform the baptism.

Rev Campbell added: “Reverend Thompson, the officiant of that baptism and recently deceased, was a significant encouragement to me coming to pastor Bethel Baptist Chapel.

“It was his fervent desire to see Bethel continue as a chapel as evidenced in the text of the article.

“He would have been greatly encouraged to see this service.”

Email:

david.humphreys@nwn.co.uk

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