Downs Baptist Church Woodingdean

Latest News

Greengrocers Shop

Just look how busy the shop has been?

Sue and her amazing team have been working flat out to keep the people of Woodingdean stocked and supplied with fresh fruit and vegetables.

Sue and Dawn have been re-ordering, re-stocking the shelves and making up orders ready for Roger to deliver.

All of the volunteers have seen loads of people coming into the shop and there is a queue most days while customers wait patiently respecting the social distancing regulations and 2 at a time in the shop restriction to keep people safe.

Thank you to our wonderful team and for the amazing effort of Shop Manager Sue.

Latest Kenya pictures

Here are a couple of photos from the recent food distribution that took place last week at Nakuru Christian Centre.

These essential supplies, maize, lentils, sugar and cooking oil were for local pastors who found themselves without food due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Other needy people are having food delivered to their houses to avoid the problems of crowd surging etc.

It’s wonderful to be able to support Daniel Guitau and the people of Nakuru at this difficult time.

Kenya Update – April 2020

The worst locust invasion for 70 years took place in January and February this year.  Swarms of desert locusts invaded farms in Nakuru County and destroyed the county’s main cash crop which threatened food security and caused a rise in prices.

In March the coronavirus pandemic reached Kenya but in fact Kenya is one of the last places to be hit by Covid19.  So far there are no cases in rural Kenya, but community infections could happen any time with people travelling from cities to rural areas often by public transport.  A week ago the number of coronavirus cases totalled 16.  The government set up a curfew to curb the spread of the virus and there have been complaints of police brutality as they used whips, batons and tear gas to implement it. There is also discrimination against foreigners in East Africa, including Kenya, who have been verbally and physically abused because Kenyans believe they may be infected with coronavirus.  As Kenya prepares for Covid-19 the government is worried that Kenya doesn’t have the resources to cope.  Daniel Gitau’s reminder is that God is firmly ‘in control’, and we should keep praying both for the UK and Kenya and for each other.

At the moment churches in Kenya as in Britain are not allowed to meet together.  One of the largest churches in the Nakuru area (more than 1000 people) has started broadcasting its services online and some viewers complained to the authorities that the church was operating as usual. On the first occasion,  the police turned up and just found the pastor, (a friend of Daniel Gitau)  his wife and those operating the video camera!  They left them to carry on!

Daniel Gitau’s planned visit to UK from May to July has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, or at least postponed possibly until next year. David Hurst’s trip to Kenya in March did not go ahead either as planned.  Meanwhile, Julia, a volunteer accountant, who spent 3 weeks in Kenya this year helping Daniel and Joseph to get the finances and accounting in Kenya to a better standard, returned safely and have produced an extensive report about the finances there.

School results were very good again in 2019, and sponsorship money is being provided for 2 excellent students.     Daniel’s work with Nakuru County Transformational Network continues, in order to bring a Christian influence on the workings of politics in Kenya.

DBC Greengrocers – new opening hours

Shop opening hours with effect from Monday 30th March are Mon – Thurs 9am to 1pm.

We have a 2 customer limit in the shop at all times.  Please respect social distancing rules to safeguard yourselves and the fab team of volunteers working very hard to keep the shop open.

Orders can be phoned through on 01273 300441 between 8.30am and 1pm. Initially, leave ONLY your name and telephone number and we will call you back for details of your requirements or you can email your orders to with your telephone number so we can call you with day of delivery and any items we are unable to provide. 

Please note that we can ONLY take one order per week – any more than this will be put aside till the following week.

You can also phone in and collect orders during the opening times provided to help us out.

At present we can only accept cash payments for deliveries but are working to try and accept BACS payments in the future. We will talk to you about this when letting you know the details re your delivery.

Thank you for your cooperation, support and patience through these unprecedented times.

Stay safe, stay well and STAY IN where possible.

A prayer for connection

Dear God,

Being alone is hard. We were created for community, not confinement.

But we’re grateful that no matter how alone we may feel, You never leave or forsake us. And, we’re grateful for technology that helps us stay in touch with each other.

Today, please remind us that this time of social distancing and isolation will not last forever.

Give us the strength to endure this difficult season, and deepen our connection with You and Your people.

Empower us with an extra dose of Your love, peace, hope and joy, because we need it. Remind us of Your promises, and please heal our land.

In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Lockdown by Brother Richard Hendrick

Yes there is fear.

Yes there is isolation.

Yes there is panic buying.

Yes there is sickness.

Yes there is even death.


They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise

You can hear the birds again.

They say that after just a few weeks of quiet

The sky is no longer thick with fumes

But blue and grey and clear.

They say that in the streets of Assisi

People are singing to each other

across the empty squares,

keeping their windows open

so that those who are alone

may hear the sounds of family around them.

They say that a hotel in the West of Ireland

Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.

Today a young woman I know

is busy spreading fliers with her number

through the neighbourhood

So that the elders may have someone to call on.

Today Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples

are preparing to welcome

and shelter the homeless, the sick, the weary

All over the world people are slowing down and reflecting

All over the world people are looking at their neighbours in a new way

All over the world people are waking up to a new reality

To how big we really are.

To how little control we really have.

To what really matters.

To Love.

So we pray and we remember that

Yes there is fear.

But there does not have to be hate.

Yes there is isolation.

But there does not have to be loneliness.

Yes there is panic buying.

But there does not have to be meanness.

Yes there is sickness.

But there does not have to be disease of the soul

Yes there is even death.

But there can always be a rebirth of love.

Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now.

Today, breathe.

Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic

The birds are singing again

The sky is clearing,

Spring is coming,

And we are always encompassed by Love.

Open the windows of your soul

And though you may not be able

to touch across the empty square,


All services and meetings cancelled until further notice

In light of advice from the Government and the Baptist Union of Great Britain, we are suspending all our public meetings, including Sunday Services, until further notice.

We will be moving Church Services online and will be live streaming on the church Facebook page on Sunday from 10.30am.

Wednesday Prayers will be streamed live on our Facebook page at 7.45pm.

Please continue to support the church shop and consider making extra donations to the food bank via the basket available at the shop.

At a time when all our sources of security are being shaken, and some toppled, be assured that God remains the one constant in all of this and that He promises to walk with us, especially in days like these.

If you have any specific need, or prayer request, please post it on our Facebook Page or email

Thank you and God Bless,

Malcolm Haines, Pastor

Prayer points for the difficult times we are facing

God is our refuge and strength , an ever present help in times of trouble.  Therefore we will not fear! Psalm 46 v 1 – 2a

Reflecting on the world-wide situation, the Baptist Union has issued this statement:

“Each one of our churches has a vital part to play in being a Beacon of Hope at the moment. Our neighbours and communities need love, hope, peace and an eternal perspective and we can offer this in abundance, in the name of Jesus (2 Corinthians 4:18).

We want to call all our churches to prayer and to provide you with some words and ideas to help because we believe in the power of our collective prayers and actions at this time.”


Let’s continue to pray for all our brothers and sisters across the world who have been, and are continuing to be, affected by COVID-19.  We pray that all will know God’s overwhelming, steadfast love.

Pray for the countries currently suffering from the greatest outbreaks and for our own country as we see an escalation in confirmed cases of the virus.

Pray for those in our communities who may feel vulnerable and scared.  Pray that the love of God might be their peace.  That they may know that even in the darkest times, God’s love brings hope.

Pray for older people who are concerned about shopping, (particularly as there are shortages), regular hospital appointments and general day to day contact with other people.  

Pray for wisdom for church leaders to know how to keep people connected and safe especially now that churches have had to suspend meetings and services.

Pray for the medical staff on the front-line of care – pray that they will be sustained physically, emotionally and spiritually in the coming weeks. Pray that God will be their shield and their strength. 

Pray for our world leaders and for the leaders in our own country that they will seek the wisdom of God as they make decisions over the coming days. 

Pray for all those leading the scientific response to COVID-19 across the world. Pray for the scientists from across the globe as they look for ways to alleviate symptoms and as they seek a vaccine for the future.

Pray for all God’s people in this time of uncertainty and concern. That our eternal hope would make an earthly difference.

Pray for a sense of calm and clarity as well as strength to face what is ahead, that Christians will be ‘beacons of hope’ and ‘carriers of the message of peace’ at this time. May we be a people of hope in encouraging others in the face of crisis to lean on God’s sustaining presence and unfailing providence.

Lord in Your mercy, hear our prayers!

Visit of BMS missionaries – 1st March, 2020.

Who they are:– David and Jenny Mewes, a former engineer and ballet dancer, who spent 8 years in Qingzhou, in the district of Weifang, Northern China with a population of 1.2 million people. They recently retired from missionary service due to David’s ill health and are now living in Scotland.

History of BMS in Qingzhou:– The BMS has 4 branches of work in Qingzhou – churches, a hospital, a school for teaching nurses and seminary for training pastors. Although it is a communist government, all these buildings are still standing and functioning. There are a number of Baptist churches with approximately 400 worshippers in each church. One of the churches, built in 1885, is situated in the middle of a busy street surrounded by tourist attractions.

Present day China:– China is an atheistic, communist country.  Christianity is permitted but it is against the law to teach children about any religion.  The stark choice is between being a member of the communist party or embracing Christianity! Unregistered churches are illegal and pastors of these churches risk going to jail. These churches do however teach the children stories from the Bible.

David and Jenny’s work in Qingzhou:– They were placed by the BMS in a secular college preparing students and teachers for the yearly English exam, using a modern style of teaching. They also taught the teachers’ children, shared the gospel within their department (not outside) and welcomed students into their home. BMS has also set up a pre- school in the area where local Christians do the teaching.

Leaving China:– David became critically ill with a sudden heart attack but was miraculously healed by the power of prayer when he was being transferred to a better equipped hospital in Beijing.  Sadly they had to return home without completing the work they had been called to do, however, through this dark time, David & Jenny’s lives were transformed by the experience of God’s goodness to them (Psalm 34 v 8). They will now be working for the BMS, touring the country as ambassadors in a speaking role.

To listen to Jenny’s testimony head to: –

BMS Birthday Scheme

BMS works among some of the most marginalised and least evangelised people, in some of the most fragile places on earth. It aims to bring life in all its fullness through seven key ministries: church, development, education, health, justice, leadership and relief.

As a church we support their work and have signed up to their Birthday Scheme which is administered by Maria, one of our members. To find out more, head to

The DBC scheme raised over £300 in 2019 and the money will support two projects:-

1.  Guinebor II (G2) Hospital – a mission hospital in the desert outside Chad’s capital city providing life-changing healthcare to some of the poorest, most vulnerable people in the world. In Chad, there is only one doctor for every 25,000 people, and many die from treatable illnesses.

2.  BMS water engineers who work with rural communities in Uganda, digging boreholes and providing clean water, thus bringing health and life to the rural villages.

Thank you to all those who gave via this wonderful scheme during the past year.

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