Features » People and Places
If You See Someone Without A Smile Give Them One Of Yours.
Sally Bengtsson / 2008-09-21 16:50:43
The Leader office was lucky enough to receive a visit from Roy and Wendy Davies last Wednesday. Roy will be officially inaugurated as the new pastor for the Torrevieja Christian Fellowship, affectionately known as TCF, on Wednesday 1 October at 6 pm in the Asturias Restaurant, Punta Prima.
TCF meets every Sunday at the church, in Calle San Luis, at 9.30am and 11.30am. Two services have to be held due to the small size of the building. A new building is desperately needed, to house the ever growing congregation of 180 plus members. Ideally they like to provide services for the community as a whole. For this reason the Asturias Restaurant is used as a meeting place on the first Sunday every month at 10.30am, despite the fact that it is based in Orihuela Costa and not Torrevieja.
Pastor Roy comes from Glynneath in South Wales where he became a Christian at the age of 19. He began work as an engineering apprentice in the automotive industry, and progressed in the company to the executive position of Product Engineering Manager, then Design Manager. Roy was recognised by the multi-national company as a â€˜champion of changeâ€™ in the fields of product design, management and customer relations, and was involved in extensive international travel for many years â€“ visiting customers, suppliers, and other design and assembly facilities within the company.
Roy has pastored two Assemblies of God Churches over the past 25 years, the first in Stourport-on-Severn in the West Midlands, and the second in his home town of Glynneath in South Wales. During this time he also served as administrator for the South Wales region of Assemblies of God, as well as being a member of the regional management and superintendence teams. In addition to this, Roy has also ministered in Kenya â€“ in the PEFA (Pentecostal Evangelical Fellowship of Africa) Bible College, as well as churches in Nairobi for short period of time. He plans to continue these links in his new role of pastor at TCF.
When asked about their experiences in Africa, both Roy and Wendy had stories to tell. The orphans they met in Kenya really stick in their mind. Most were AIDS victims, who are ostracised in parts of Africa. â€œAll they wanted were cuddles and affection,â€? remembers Roy, obviously moved by the memories. Their church in South Wales raised 16,000 euros for the Rehema (Mercy) Orphanage, and they hope to do carry on the fund raising here. In Nairobi Roy taught leadership skills to 80 pastors in the Bible College there. The couple hope to go out to Africa again at some time in the future. They would also like to see more of Spain too, but finding time to do so is going to be the challenge.
Roy admits he is passionate about radical and genuine Christianity. He comments that â€œThe love of God is an intensely practical thing. He continues, â€œPeople have to be the real deal. If we all lived by the saying â€˜Do to others as you would have them do unto youâ€™ the world would be a much better place.â€? He brings a wealth of experience, enthusiasm, humour and vision into his new role, and I am sure the TCF is looking to the future with great anticipation.
Roy hopes to meet the needs of young people in the area, with the idea of a youth club and drop in centre. One of the biggest differences between the congregation here and the one in South Wales is the average age of the church goers. Although the majority of the expats here are retirees, there is still a need amongst young people, which should be met. One thing he gets youngsters to think about when they are faced with a difficult decision is â€œWhat would Jesus do?â€?
Roy and his wife, Wendy, have been married for 35 years and have 2 children, Joanna and Joel, and 5 grandchildren. They have been visitors to Torrevieja for several years, but when they arrived to live here permanently in July it was the first time they had been so far from their children, something which will take a bit of getting used to. A web cam on their home computer enables them to see an d speak to the family in Wales every day though.
Their first experiences in the area have been very interesting. â€œEveryone has been so welcoming and kind.â€? Despite arriving in the height of summer, they have had no problem finding accommodation, and have managed to get their NIEs and buy a car within a matter of two weeks, so it looks like someone is definitely on their side.
Another of Royâ€™s quotes is â€œLife changes, this doesnâ€™t mean the old is bad or the new is better, it just means that the next is essential.â€? Humour is very important to this pastor, who believes Jesus was a genuinely happy person, who children loved.
TCF was officially registered as a church in 1991 when the first meetings were held at the Hotel Fontana in Torrevieja. As the church grew they moved into their own premises in Calle Zoa, but this soon became too small as the congregation steadily increased. Their next move was to the even larger Christian centre in Calle San Luis, which is the churchâ€™s present meeting place. However, due to the churchâ€™s continued growth, with members of all ages, from all walks of life and from the four corners of the globe, this present building has now become too small, and the church is actively seeking a new home within the Torrevieja area, so that it can go on to its next level of development. If anyone has any suggestions please contact Roy, who will be only to happy to discuss your ideas. Any community centre or building within Torrevieja will be considered. As Roy says, â€œChurch is the people, not the building.â€?
The church also have home groups, Bible study, which is on Wednesdays at 7pm, music practise on Fridays at 11am, and there is a Sunday School facility for children during the 11.30 service. It is hoped these activities will gradually expand.
Another thing TCF need are Christian musicians, particularly a keyboard player. â€œWe hold very contemporary services, and at present are using lively backing tracks. However, with real musicians the occasion could be even livelier.â€? Any volunteers would be welcomed with open arms.
A special thanks goes out to Carlos of the Asturias Restaurant, who gives them free use of the Asturias meeting room and carpark.
An invitation goes out to other Christian leaders who would like to meet up for a chat or some mutual moral support.
The inauguration celebration promises to be a joyful occasion, so if you are wondering what Christianity, and indeed life, is all about, or if you are seeking a spiritual home in the Torrevieja/Orihuela Costa area, why not come along and meet some of the folks that make up this vibrant, multi cultural and growing church.
Pastor Roy Davies can be contacted on 650336113.