Pastor Stanley Beresford and his Pulpit

We Protestants don’t ‘do’ relics. We don’t fill our churches with holy objects associated with historical individuals. Such objects soon become foci of worship and we forget that the men who originally handled them were merely sinners saved by grace.

Nevertheless we possess in our chapel an object that will mean much to British Pentecostals. We have the pulpit, currently used as a lectern, of Pastor Stanley Beresford. He was a great Bible teacher within the Elim movement, and often preached in America as well as around the UK. His were, in my view, the glory days of the Pentecostal movement- the era before it became obsessed with money and showmanship. Pastor Beresford had received the call to pastor the Blackburn Elim Church in the late 1940s and was still there in 2003 when I joined the fellowship. He was by that time an elderly man, and I regret that I never heard him preach. There was still, however, a twinkle in his eye and a kindly word of encouragement when he had listened to me preach.

There is nothing sacred or holy about his pulpit, but it must have heard some fine gospel messages throughout the years. I pray it will continue to hear the oracles of God expounded to the sons of men.