Once a year the Gideons in Zone 2 get together for a Bible Blitz. Having prepared and planned for a whole year, last Friday and Saturday we descended on Blackpool for a concerted drive to place Scriptures in the hotels and guest houses that crowd the busy streets of this holiday town. Despite the summer being over the town was still bustling with visitors, many coming to see the lights in the evening.
Around a dozen members of the Southport Branch took part this year with a total of 95 Gideons from Zone 2 present for the work. We were placed in groups of 3 or 4 and sent out with maps and a list of venues to visit. The plan was simply to call on each hotel or guest house and offer to replenish their stock or place Scriptures if none were present. In total over 3200 Scriptures were placed, around 2800 hotel Bibles and 400 personal testaments given one to one.
We expected a certain unwillingness to accept Bibles given the current attitudes to Christianity in the UK and there certainly were those who point blank refused our offer, but there were also many encouragements.
We were asked in to one guest house where the proprietor said that she had Bibles in the airing cupboard and would give them to anyone who asked. When asked why she didn’t leave them in the rooms she seemed a little reluctant to upset visitors, despite being a church going Roman Catholic herself. I explained how David Suchet, famous for playing the Belgian detective, Poirot on television had found himself in a hotel and at a loss for something to do. Suchet opened a drawer and found a Gideons Bible and started to read – he is now a Bible believing Christian! This story changed the proprietor’s mind, and she there and then asked for new Bibles and allowed us to remove the old ones from her airing cupboard – they were dated 1957 and long past being fit to give to anyone. The owner promised to place the Bibles in the room as soon as we left!
Of course there will be many more similar stories from the teams that went out. Please join with us in thanking God for these opportunities and please pray that each and every Bible placed will be used by God for the saving of souls and for the building of His Church.