The first Open-air Evangelistic Outreach in Whitmore Square, Adelaide was held in 2009
After The Elijah Challenge was taught in Adelaide in 2009, evangelistic outreaches have been held there each month in Whitmore Square. Below is the March 2019 Report from Elijah Challenge co-worker Richard Hawke.
“Greetings, Friday was a unique day for our state. Hot conditions with strong northerly winds, a tragedy for our farmers who had millions of tons of topsoil blown off their land. The sky filled with dust as well as smoke from a nearby bushfire. At around 3 pm we arrived at Whitmore Square to set up for our monthly outreach. It was like a ghost town. Chairs and sound equipment kept blowing over. Who would come to a BBQ on a day like that? It felt a bit pointless setting up.
But we decided to have a prayer time together a bit earlier than normal. Some of the team decided to rebuke the wind in Jesus’ Name and commanded it to be calm. This is something that Brother William (from The Elijah Challenge) had taught us many years ago. Amazingly, within a very short space of time the winds died down. Although we had one or two short bursts of wind after that, the rest of the afternoon was relatively calm.
Small numbers of people from the homeless community began to join us, in particular from the aboriginal community. By the time Nick and Mayowa led us in worship we had a good number gather.
Geoffrey Cook (one of our team) shared his story. Those who were there were really engaged, primarily because he is so raw and real. “I’m not a polished speaker” he said “but I love youse all”. He went on to share about a life of drugs and alcohol and many attempts at suicide. Then he shared how Jesus broke in and has since transformed his life from one of hopelessness to one of purpose. He invited people to respond and then he prayed for all those present . As he did, an enormous wind came out of nowhere. Everything went flying. And then as quickly as it came it died down again, moments later.
There were lots of opportunities to engage people. Some of whom are living in squats, some from Vinnies emergency shelter, others from the Salvos “Toward Independence” program and others living in the community. We had opportunity to pray with some, and share and listen to others. The BBQ was served and everyone had a good serving.
Looking back we were astounded at how well the outreach turned out. Many seeds were sown for the gospel as team members mingled with the crowd. One man, a believer, recently out of prison and who is struggling in his faith, will be followed up this week. Other young men from Finland and Liberia. Another man from a local community group, shared how impressed he was with the outreach and asked if he could take a discreet photo from a distance.
Once again it taught us, not to give in to adverse conditions. In fact, it seems the adverse conditions often lead to God doing a special work that Satan is wanting to prevent. It has some biblical precedents!
Again thank you for praying. We really value you standing with us and believe that it is prayer that makes the difference and changes destinies for eternity. No doubt that happened last Friday.
Garth and Richard