This page reports my voluntary ministry activities for the information of those who take a special interest in my work.
Dear Brethren... This report covers the second quarter of 2013.
During April, May, and June 2013, I presented 17 Sunday lessons in Bundaberg. These included nine sermons, and eight Bible class studies in Acts (chapters 13-15).
At the beginning of May, we attended a camp near Kurrajong in the mountains out of Sydney. I was the guest speaker and presented five lessons on the theme “Anchors in the Storm”. This theme, and the five titles, were allotted to me by the camp organisers. I had prepared the lessons in April, along with slides, and presented them at Bundaberg. None of the folk at Bundaberg attended the retreat, so they were pleased to be “guinea pigs”, and able to hear the lessons prior to the camp.
We enjoyed the retreat, and the fellowship of around fifty people. It was good to meet some folk whom I hadn't seen for decades. It took two days to travel down by car, and another two to come home. Susanne had to drive only as far as Hervey Bay. There we got a ride with friends from Maryborough church who were attending the retreat. Even with that help, the journey was tiring, so we didn't try to visit with other brethren along the way; we just travelled, ate, and rested.
On the Sunday the entire retreat met with the Kurrajong church. The little old chapel was packed. I preached one of the five lessons there. For me, this meeting was a highlight of 2013.
The series of lessons at the retreat was well received and appeared to be of great encouragement to all the campers. Susanne and I appreciated the amenities at the retreat, and the help given with setting up the computer and projector for the slides I used in the presentation.
Toward the end of May we flew from Hervey Bay to Melbourne. We spent several days in Bairnsdale where we were able to visit several members of the church. On the Sunday we attended church there. I was invited to preach. We also stayed a few days in Melbourne so the next Sunday we attended church at Heidelberg West.
New Lessons. In the quarter, I added 7 new lessons to the simplybible.com website. Five of these were for the “Anchors in the Storm” series. The other two were new sermons.
Facebook and Twitter The Facebook page facebook.com/simplybible received 60 new "likes". The number of "likes" at the end of June passed 300. I also now "tweet" each day or two on twitter as @simplybible and currently have 50 followers.
Visitors to site. During the quarter the number of pageviews per day averaged 3990 in April, 2250 in May, 2000 in June (source: Awstats). According to the same source, the actual daily visitors (rather than pages viewed) numbered 1120 April, 660 May, 560 Jun. Note that these statistics do not include robots crawling the site. The average daily page views for the quarter, 2750, was a little short of the 3000 I hoped for. Google started adding some entries to its search results not based on its normal ranking. This tended to push my site on to the second page of search results.
Behind the Scenes I continued improvements to optimise the website’s performance, especially setting up the use of explanatory file names. This will help selected pages to remain on the first page of Google search results.
Improved Topic Spread Continues. Visitors continue to come to a much wider variety of pages and topics. In other words there are many more “landing pages” than there used to be. This gives me more opportunities to gain places for the website on Google's critical first page of search results.
I received an email to simplybible.com from a man in Uganda asking for Luganda Bibles needed so badly in that country. My usual policy is to refuse such requests because I don't have funds or the time to be an agent in such matters. However I felt the Bundaberg church might be interested in this one, so I pursued it. I attempted, unsuccessfully, to independently verify both the man and the bookshop where the money was to be sent. This made me suspicious.
I found (through facebook) a preacher in the area and asked him to look into it. He knew whom to ask. The reply came back that this was a scam or “con”. I was able to verify, with a very good reference, the man who helped me. So it is possible, with his help, to safely send money for Bibles to be purchased and distributed, and the church at Bundaberg has decided to do so.
Again may I say how much I appreciate those who keep on helping me in the Lord’s work. “Without you, I could not do it.”
Love and best wishes in Jesus.