I am giving you all the first bite of the cherry to get booked in before I send this out more widely. If you are planning to come then please send the registration form off immediately and above all start praying for God’s grace to be over this time together. Feel free to invite friends also and to pass on this information.
The details for the mini-conference for men called ‘A Defence of Calvinism’ are given below. The initiative for this came from a number of young men who wanted the opportunity to explore the ‘nitty gritty’ of the doctrines of grace and Reformed theology. It was seen as a good opportunity to invite friends also who are theologically hungry for spiritual answers. The pattern of the conference will give ample space for discussion, questions, fellowship and prayer.
The conference theme comes from Spurgeon’s autobiography and the sessions will involve preaching, prayer and discussion. I will aim to take the main sessions and chair the whole thing; in addition some of the young men will prepare a short sermon and there will be the chance to give open loving feedback; this should be seen as preaching training for all of us. The fellowship should be precious and the conference facility is excellent and reasonably priced. Here are the details:
Conference Venue: Bawtry Hall, Doncaster (it is 35 minutes from Sheffield and our house. It is accessed by three airports; Leeds-Bradford, East Midlands and Robin Hood-Sheffield/Doncaster).
The website is www.bawtryhall.co.uk
Dates: Friday 5th-7th December 2008
Friday 5th December
3-5.30 pm Session 1:
Introduction: What is Calvinism? (Kevin Bidwell)
7-9. 30pm Session 2:
· A Reformed Understanding of Justification- Marius Wahrlich (followed by preaching feedback)
· Calvinism and Preaching (Kevin Bidwell)
Saturday 6th December
9.30-12.00, Session 3:
· A Reformed Understanding of the Family- Andrew Graham (followed by preaching feedback)
· Calvinism and the Church (Kevin Bidwell)
The Saturday afternoon we will have time to relax and a game of football may be organised.
5.00-6.00pm Session 4:
· A Reformed Understanding of the Office of Pastor- Ed Collier (followed by preaching feedback)
7.30-9.30pm Session 5: Vibrant Calvinism for Today (Kevin Bidwell)
Sunday 6th December
Breakfast and finish. Some may have to leave early, some may join me in our church service at 3pm in Sheffield where one of you will preach, or there may be opportunities for some to preach in other churches.
Brief Details of the Conference Participants
Kevin Bidwell: Currently doing a PhD on the ‘Church in the Image of the Trinity’ at WEST.
Andrew Graham: He was born in South Africa and trained via the Bible Institute in Cape Town. He is now a pastor in Wrexham.
Marius Wahrlich: Studying to be a teacher in Berlin. He came to a clear understanding of the doctrines of free grace while serving overseas on board the mission ship Doulos.
Ed Collier: He studied at LTS in London and he now serves as an assistant pastor in Sheffield.
Cost: £82 including accommodation, meeting room, all meals, tea, coffee etc (towels and bedding are provided). There will be a bursary fund set up for those who have genuine financial needs and need some support in travel or conference costs (The cost will be £55 if you are not staying for the Saturday evening). However let us exercise faith, in that as we move forward in faith, let us look to our Heavenly Father for provision.
This programme is provisional and will have some changes but it gives everyone a clear flavour of what to expect. A book table of excellent books with much reduced prices will also be available.
A registration form is attached for return as soon as possible and feel free to pass on these details to men who may be interested. The formal deadline for registration is the 14th November but it is expected that the conference will be booked well before that, on a ‘first come, first served basis’.
Yours for the gospel of free grace,
Please cut and paste this registration form and email it to the conference administrator.
‘A Defence of Calvinism’: Registration Form
Please complete this form and return to the email or land based mail below with the appropriate payment. There has been a good response so far and a minimum of 25 places have been booked. Please respond as soon as possible because it will be on a first come, first served basis.
Are there any special dietary needs (or any other special needs)?
Are you staying for both nights? Yes or No
Are there any other questions or comments you would like a response to?