News Release

Former Missionary Raises Funds for Lake District Church

In 2016 Brent Brown travelled from the USA to the UK on vacation with his wife. They visited sites he’d visited whilst serving in England as a full-time missionary nearly 40 years earlier, specifically St Michael Anglican Church in the majestic Lake District in Cumbria. 


Now four decades later, Brent Brown found that St Michael and All Angels was raising funds to repair its ancient bell tower, but was far from its goal. Upon returning home, he called on other missionaries who had served in the England around the same time as him to help.

They responded generously. A sum of £15,000 was collected, and arrangements were made for the gift to be presented to the old church and its members. This presentation was made on a bright Thursday morning in June. 

Reverend John Dixon of St Michael and All Angels opened the meeting. He explained that he’d initially wondered if Brent's email might be an Internet scam, and told the audience that, although he has delivered many sermons about charity, even he didn’t immediately recognise it from a stranger. He offered his deep gratitude for the donation which has brought the fundraising near to achieving its full goal.

After that, an account was given of how missionaries first came to Cumbria in July 1837, exactly 180 years ago. From there, the LDS Church spread from village to village, until there were more Latter-day Saints in Britain than in America.

President Ulrich told the congregation that the tale of these families will be celebrated in this summer’s LDS ‘British Pageant’, which is being held in the first two weeks of August at the Preston Temple in Chorley. One parishioner was heard to say, “We’ll hire a bus so we can all see it!”

Several performers in ‘The British Pageant’ joined local Church members to sing ‘How Great Thou Art’. The donation cheque was then presented, and, instead of ending the meeting as planned, members of the congregation asked if they could open their hymnals and join in a song of praise. Both faiths united their voices in a tender rendition of ‘Nearer My God to Thee’.

Reverend Dixon has invited President Ulrich to deliver a sermon to his congregations later this month, repeating the example of Christian fellowship shown by their predecessors.


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