Dear ANS friends: I trust you are all keeping well and a special welcome to our many new subscribers who have joined our ANS family after receiving a message from Marlene Bagnull, the founder and director of Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference. I hope you are both blessed and challenged by the stories you hare now receiving in your in-box.
Marlene has invited me to be one of the speakers at the upcoming conference that is due to take place August 10-13, 2011, at the Philadelphia Biblical University. I’ll be talking about how we can help the persecuted church as the keynote speaker on the Friday evening and also will be taking some seminars. I hope those of you in the area will be able to attend the conference. You can get more information about it by going to: www.writehisanswer.com/Philadelphia
Terry Dene rock and roll reunion
You may be wondering what ny headline “A rock and roll reunion” refers to. Well it is about Terry Dene, who in the 1950s at the age of 17, became Britain’s first wild man of rock. It was a period when the country was looking for the British Elvis and Terry, like so many others, got his big break at the 2 I’s Coffee Bar in Old Compton Street in London’s Soho district in 1956.
Every would-be star, like Cliff Richard and Tommy Steele, would strut their stuff on the tiny stage but, when Terry Dene [then Terry Williams before he got his stage name] got up in front of the audience packed in like sardines, his excellent voice, stage presence and sultry Elvis-like good looks, blew most of his contemporaries away.
He was soon signed up by Dick Rowe from Decca Records, who became known for the fact that he once turned down The Beatles, soon Dene put out a hit record called White Sport Coat.
Wherever he went, mass hysteria reigned with thousands wearing the badge “I’m a Dene-Ager” to demonstrate their rebellious independence from the rest of grey, conformist and war-ravaged Britain.
But at the age of 18, he was called up for military service – just like Elvis was – and sadly his life began to crumble as jealous fellow recruits bullied him unmercifully and, within two weeks, Dene had a nervous breakdown and was discharged causing questions to be asked about him in the British House of Commons.
Then, while at his lowest point, he happened to be in London’s Trafalgar Square and came across the Mobile Evangelistic Crusade Mini Van and after discussions with the team there, Dene decided to follow Christ and later joined the Salvation Army. He also released a Gospel album of his favorite hymns and songs.
It was shortly after this, in 1973, while he was then living in Sweden, I began work on his life-story called “I Thought Terry Dene was Dead,” which chronicled his rise and fall, and then his new-found faith. Decca Records also brought out an album of the same name for which I wrote the liner notes. He even lived with my family in the UK for a time after he had returned to Britain.
Now I am thrilled to say that I have finally linked up with Terry Dene again after 28 or so years and, last week, I was able to have a long trans-Atlantic phone chat with him. There is now even talk of a movie now being made based on my book and I am hoping soon to write a special feature for ANS about my dear friend who is now 72 years of age and still performing at rock and roll reunions across the British Isles.
By the way, you can get a copy of the book by going to: http://www.amazon.com/Thought-Terry-Dene-Was-Dead/dp/0902088556/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1301538115&sr=8-1
Front Page Radio
As many of you will know, I have a weekly radio program called Front Page Radio on KWVE 107.9 FM in Southern California at 5:00 PM (Pacific Time). My special guest this week is Fern Decker, who during the program shares her remarkable story about how God delivered her from an abusive relationship. She also revealed how she was once a welder, most unusual for a woman, homeless for a while, and now she is living a victorious life for Christ.
If you don’t live in the area, you can hear it on the Internet at: www.kwve.org
How you can stand with us in supporting persecuted Christians around the world
For those of you who are new to ANS, I just wanted to briefly share with you that when my wife Norma and I started the news service all those years ago, we made a decision that we would never charge our subscribers for the stories that we would send out and also that none of us would receive a salary, but work as “Media Missionaries,” and thereby raise our own support, something that has continued up to this day.
We are a faith-based news service and we are dependent on friends like yourself to help us continue to provide this important material.
So, as you receive our unique stories several times a day, you may feel God’s prompting to help us continue bringing these stories into your in-box and you can do so by making a donation at our secure site — www.assistnews.net/assist/donations.htm — and then click on “Where Needed Most” or designate your gift for the support of Dan and Norma Wooding.
If you prefer to send a check, just make it out to ASSIST (tax deductible in the US) and mail it to ASSIST, PO Box 609, Lake Forest, CA 92609, USA.
May I thank you in advance for those of you who can support us in this way. I can assure you that will be deeply appreciated by Norma and myself (as well as your wonderful team of writers) and I’ll promise to continue to keep on bringing you news from the “Frontlines of Faith” and, by so doing, shine a light on the terrible persecution that our brothers and sisters are going through. By so doing, they will know that they are not alone in their suffering, but they have many friends praying for and standing with them.