Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Ern Baxter - a Personal Touch!!

I do try not to flood this blog with too many personal anecdotes and have certainly never published my full testimony. But I came across a clip on a sermon video of Ern Baxter's that I thought would be amusing to publish. Ern was always present in my life when I was growing up in my home church - New Covenant Church in Dunstable. His visits were always anticipated whenever he came to a church Bible Week or to visit our church itself. I am told that I humiliated my parents when they were honoured to have Ern and Ruth Baxter come for dinner once. Apparantly I was in bed ill and was told by my older sister to come down and say hello to Dr and Mrs Baxter. I sent the message back with her saying; "Let them come up to see me".

Fortunately Ern Baxter found this highly amusing and called me; "Lord Bangham the Aristocrat" - a nickname that stuck on his subsequent visits. Unfortunately during his final sermon of his visit in 1991, I was 10 years old and finding his sermon (which had already stretched over an hour) a little too long! So I was looking out the window of the church into the car park watching some youths playing. Alas - it did not go unnoticed from the pulpit!

Here's the clip of what happened:

It was only later after I was baptised in the Holy Spirit that I began to fully appreciate Ern Baxter's awesome gift of teaching and have never looked back since!


jul said...

Dan, that's so great you've got that on video! What an amazing memory, and it's so cute!!!

Dan Bowen said...

I know, it's pretty cool isn't it!? I am sure that as a kid it registered that this famous American speaker had time for kids - and let's face it, not many preachers and teachers do! I love the smile on his face after he said it tho. I thought he was telling me off - or at least my dad did judging from the jab in the ribs from his elbow I remember getting! But this video clip suggests to me he thought it was funny! :D

chris said...

I had no idea you were so young Dan.I actually thought your pic of Ern, which kind of looks different from my recollections of the podium Ern, way off in the distance at conferences in the 70s...I thought that was your pic.
How dumb is that. There were so many things that didn't quite add up though, in the months I've read your blog.

Dan Bowen said...

No the fault is mine Chris. When I set the blog up, I wasn't comfortable with making my identity public due to some personal difficulties with a church I had left - so I was initally known as "Baxter's boy" and it was only later that I decided I didn't care who knew that I ran this blog. However the pix of Ern kinda stuck as this is a website in his memory.

I was at the conferences in the 1970's - just as a baby! However my great fondness for Ern led me to speak to lots of people and find out exactly what the 1970s were like.

07000intune said...

Dan,This is Chris.My 2 connections with Dunstable are phoning Stanley Jebb while Ern was with you in 84, to ask him permission to create a musical presentation based on large sections of Thy Kingdom Come from 1975. And the second was 2 years ago when someone in Morris Cerullo's office in Hemel when I visited said they were in Dunstable Church involved in sound engineering.
This week I was contacted by someone who knew me during the school revival in Amersham in 1972.She was in the girl's school at the same time. I had said to her I had felt to lay music down in the 80's,because I wanted to press into my real identity.She was puzzled about this and wrote"Isn't music part of our identity? It certainly is part of what makes me me"...so feeling I had to clarify I filled her in on about 36 years worth of stuff since she last knew me.It would probably would fill an A4 so if you are interested I could email it to you. It relates to some of the SGM problems and the control areas covered by your other blogs...but only tangentially.
You should know that in the 70s and 80s I was used to bring in lots of songs into the Body locally, and Terry Virgo got hold of one in 1975 and another is in Songs of Fellowship book 4. So music was and is a big thing.

Dan Bowen said...

Hi Chris, that's very interesting to know! I would most certainly be interested in anything you could email to me. I most certainly have a thirst for striving to understand Church and what makes it work and not work. The 70's and 80's were fascinating decades in the United Kingdom and while many worried about excess and error, I felt it was a unique period of time that many missed through fear.

I think a musical presentation of "Thy Kingdom Come" would have been an absolutely incredible project had it come to fruition. I am guessing you didn't get that permission from Stanley Jebb - how tragic. While I maintain a great affection for my home church as it was then (it's very different now and virtually unrecognisable) - I do think that fear of excess characterised much of what went on - hence we never advanced in faith into projects that could have had great effect.

Music is indeed a big thing. I'm not a musician but I have great love and respect for all musicians in the body of Christ who have a vision.

Thanks again - it was great to read that.

Anonymous said...

Dan, that was hysterical!! LOL! You must've been quite the little character! (The more things change, the more they stay the same, eh?)