August 2022

Greetings from around the world

Whether you have been a guest, a student at Bible school or have supported a center in the past, we wanted to reach out in hopes of reconnecting with you, encouraging you in your walk with the Lord Jesus and to let you know some of what is happening in Torchbearers around the world.

Our Heart’s Desire

"Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart."

- Psalm 37:4

The miracle of new birth unites His Spirit with our spirit in order that the two might become one. “The one who joins himself to the Lord is one spirit with Him” (1Cor. 6:17). The Lord longs to work His will in ours, causing us to desire the same things He does, “…for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure” (Phil. 2:12). He doesn’t just show us His will, He gives us His will by working His desires into our hearts. What to us can seem like common sense, is in reality the supernatural work of His Spirit. 

While this provides peace of mind, it also provides us with a challenge. How do we know if a desire is His or ours? I would suggest the following are some ways in which we can discern whether or not a desire is being inspired by the Holy Spirit.

Guidance is not discovered in relation to the problem, but guidance is discovered in relation to Jesus Christ” (Alan Redpath). We are all tempted to want guidance more than the Guide Himself. God is not Google. We can ask ourselves: is our delight to be in the fellowship of His presence, or do we desire the guidance He gives?

If the Lord makes it clear to us that we are following our desires, but not His, are we willing to accept His correction? “…keep back Your servant from presumptuous sins…” (Ps. 19:13). A tender heart toward the Lord’s gentle rebuke is critical here, and a clean conscience before the Lord is the prerequisite to discerning His conviction in any matter.

The will of God never contradicts the Word of God. When the Spirit works His desire into our conscience, it will not contradict the Word He has inspired. It is always wise to wait on Him to confirm or convict a desire by exposing our hearts to His Word.

For the Word of God is living and active… piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit…” (Heb. 4:12). When we spend time with Him reading and mediating on Scripture, He can make us aware of what comes from our soul and what comes from His Spirit. 

The desires of God are coupled with the peace of God, which passes all understanding. “And let the peace (soul harmony, which comes) from Christ rule (act as umpire continually) in your hearts (deciding and settling with finality all questions that arise in your minds, in that peaceful state)…” (Col. 3:15 Amplified). While our emotions change like the weather, His peace remains like solid bedrock. In the absence of peace, it is best to wait. Waiting time is never wasted time when we want to do His will.

Lastly, the desire of the Lord will be coupled with an open door for its fulfillment. God will make the way clear for the fulfillment of His desire, not us. It is not a sign of maturity to hammer down all obstacles ourselves. There is a time to exercise the discipline of silence, not sharing our desires with others. In this way, the Lord’s fulfillment of the desire will be made clear; for only the two of us knew about it. 

The only one who has reason to fear His good, acceptable and perfect will is the one who does not want to do it. Otherwise, we may rest in the knowledge that the Lord will choose the best for those who are willing to leave the decision with Him.

For His sake,

Peter Reid
General Director

Peter attended Bodenseehof, the Torchbearers Bible school in Germany. This was the turning point in his life when he first learned that Jesus Christ who died for him also lived in him. In April 2014, Peter took over as Director of Bodenseehof and was elected to serve on the Executive Council of Torchbearers International. He also serves on the leadership team of the local Evangelical Alliance in Friedrichshafen. Peter travels over 100 days a year engaging in itinerant preaching/teaching ministry. In 2017, he took over as the General Director of Torchbearers International.

Torchbearers around the world

In June this year, we held our International Staff Conference (ISC) at Capernwray Hall, in which staff from Torchbearers centers around the world attend for a week of teaching, meetings and fellowship. It was wonderful to come together as a family and reconnect, share what the Lord has been doing and receive teaching in God’s Word led by Charles Price and Peter Reid, who reminded us of the marvelous truths of the Gospel. Yes, you can work at a Torchbearers center or be involved in full-time ministry and still need to be led back to the basic truths of Jesus and the reality of His indwelling and transforming life.

In an ever-changing world that is constantly competing for our love and attention, may we be a thirsty people who continue to come to Jesus and receive from Him. The greatest treasure we have is Jesus. “But whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” - John 4:14

An evening session at ISC was dedicated to remembering and honoring the life and ministry of Joan (Mrs. T) Thomas. Mrs. T was someone who truly loved Jesus and always desired to tell others about Him - even into her late 90s! Watch this short video of Mrs. T taken from different iinterviews over the latter years of her life.

We also say farewell to three faithful servants of the Lord, Stuart Briscoe, Sue Gilmore and Christian Bastke, who served many years at Capernwray Hall and Ravencrest Chalet, and whose influence within and beyond the ministry of Torchbearers spurred countless others on toward Jesus. Mark Thomas writes of Stuart:

For us as a fellowship, there is a deep sadness in having to accept Stuart’s going, yet a deeper joy in knowing he is at home. How grateful we are for what Stuart meant to us all through his godly character, Christ-centered life, and his clear preaching and teaching based on thorough study of the Scriptures. His gift in communicating the Gospel and ability to share Christ with clarity throughout these decades has had an impact on countless thousands around the world. For many of us who knew him personally, Stuart’s warmth and sense of humor have left a lasting impression along with the honest and practical counsel he so often wisely brought to us.

Stuart was born and brought up in the northwest of England and lived in Kendal just 14 miles from Capernwray. Having served in the Royal Marines, Stuart took up a profession in banking, though early on had a love for preaching. It was at Capernwray that he met Jill and what a great team they proved to be. Having met Major Thomas through his visits to Capernwray, Stuart was invited to join the staff and took on the responsibility for business and finances, and subsequently became Assistant General Director for the work of Torchbearers.

It was Stuart who initiated the Spring Bible School at Capernwray, and it was during his ten years on staff from 1960 -1970 that his preaching and teaching gifts took him around the UK and then further afield. He was truly accepted in so many places for his ability to communicate Christ and the implication of His life in the believer. Jill and Stuart left a lasting legacy in the area around Capernwray through the local youth work centered in what became the Warehouse in Carnforth. Stuart’s move to take up a pastoral role in America broadened his experience, and we are very much aware of the growth and development of Elmbrook Church in Wisconsin from where he had such influence in the USA. After handing over leadership of the church, Stuart traveled the world to share Christ in so many needy places. He and Jill established a ministry called “Telling the Truth,” which served the proclamation of Christ and His Word to be spread through radio and other media. The Torchbearers centers benefited wonderfully from their visits to Bible schools over recent years. Stuart will be very much missed, but we praise the Lord for the privilege of his friendship for so long and his investment through the Lord into our lives.

New and upcoming programs

Swiss Photography Workshop 

/ January 8 - 27, 2023

Hosted by Chasa Perspectiva, our newest center in Lavin, Switzerland, this conference will be an opportunity to learn new photography skills and enjoy taking pictures with others in the amazing fall colors of the valley of Engadin.

Find out more here »

Bali Discipleship Conference

/ January 8 - 27, 2023

A three-week Bible teaching conference will be held early next year at the Kana Kuta Hotel in Bali, Indonesia. Speakers include Peter Thomas, Satish John, Katrina Goode, Johan Schep and Neil Bernard. 

Find out more here »

Kenya Spring Bible School 

/ May 20 - June 17, 2023

Sponsored by Crossroads, the Torchbearers center in Albania, this four-week Bible school will be held at the Shumen Retreat Center in Embu, Kenya. There will be a selection of both African and Western teachers. Your registration fees will also help subsidize African students to join.

Find out more here »

Bible school testimonies

Students who attended Bible School at Ravencrest in 2022 share what they have learned and how God has changed their lives.

Explore conference and Bible school opportunities and learn how you can get involved and support the ministry worldwide.

Find a center to attend a conference, Bible school or learn how you can get involved and support the ministry worldwide.


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More Bible teaching resources

His Hill Podcast

His Hill has their own podcast! With its host, Kelly Doherty, His Hill Podcast delivers Bible teaching, interviews with different speakers and staff and stories from alumni.

Listen here »

Charles Price Ministries

Charles Price, pastor, Bible teacher and author, was for many years the Principal of Capernwray Hall before pastoring The Peoples Church in Toronto, Canada. An extensive library of sermons and teaching series is free and accessible online or via the app.

Find out more here »

Our mission is to proclaim the transforming presence of Jesus Christ through biblical teaching and practical training, equipping men and women for service in His church worldwide.

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