Karen and I had the opportunity to visit BCMN-endorsed missionaries Grant and Rebecca Skelton in Hong Kong to get a firsthand view of their work. We found that the church is growing and thriving while enduring many trials.

Grant, Rebecca, and their three children have been in Hong Kong for 5 years. Grant was called to pastor Gateway Baptist Church in Hong Kong. Ralph Doan planted Gateway 30 years ago. He pastored the church for 5 years, and then a bi-vocational national pastored the church for 22 years. When he had to retire, the church was without a pastor for 3 years.

When the Skelton’s arrived in 2019 they found a church of 30 people who owned 3,000 square feet on the 11th floor of an office building. Owning a place the church can meet in is an important thing for a church to be able to grow. The demographic of the church was primarily Chinese, who spoke Cantonese, and Filipino ladies, who spoke English.

A few months after their arrival, they faced their first big trial – rioting in the streets. Hong Kong was in chaos. Led by college students the people of Hong Kong were resisting the changes China was imposing on Hong Kong. One Friday as the Skelton’s left the church, the train station across the street was severely damaged and police were using tear gas to disperse the crowd.

The riots were followed by Covid. They faced the same difficulties with Covid as the rest of the world. The church went through many shutdowns, and attendance dropped. But the shutdowns did provide many opportunities. The Skeltons use a witnessing plan called Creation 2 Christ. It is a ten-week Bible study specifically designed to help people who know nothing about God or the Bible to understand the gospel. As the Skelton’s met people in their apartment building or on the streets, they would ask them if they would like to go through Creation 2 Christ, and because people had more time on their hands some would agree to go through the study. All through the Covid shutdowns, they saw people saved after attending this course.

When the Covid shutdowns were over they began to see the church grow again. They are currently averaging 70 with high days like Christmas near 100. Many new families are attending, and this has created the need to remodel the church. They will begin the remodel soon. The remodel will allow for a 120-seat auditorium and 4 Sunday School rooms.

One other big challenge the church faces is the makeup of their church. There are four distinct groups of people who attend.

1. Hong Kong Chinese who speak Cantonese.
2. China Chinese who speak Mandarin.
3. Filipino ladies who speak English
4. People from around the world who live in Hong Kong and speak English.

This means that each service must be interpreted. Grant speaks in English, and an interpreter translates the message into Cantonese, while another interpreter translates the message into Mandarin for people who have ear buds to hear the message in Mandarin.

Grant has four specific prayer requests.
1. Pray for his children that they will know and love the Lord
2. Pray for souls to be saved and the people of the church to witness.
3. Pray for men to step up to teach classes, evangelize the lost and surrender to ministry.
4. Pray for Gateway Bible Baptist Church to be able to win, disciple, train and send church planters who will start churches in all 18 districts of Hong Kong.

The Skelton’s are sent out of Florence Baptist Temple in Florence, South Carolina, Bill Monroe pastor.

Grant expressed his appreciation for BCMN. While he was on deputation and then his first furlough, he was glad for the BCMN churches that would allow him to present his field because he was a BCMN endorsed missionary. When he went to a BCMN church, he knew he would find a Baptist church with a pastor who had the same doctrine and desire to reach the world for Christ as he had.