The Highlight of Stateside Assigment
by Anthony Edgmon (Alpedrete, Spain)
“Howdy! My name is Anthony Edgmon and I am from Denison, Texas.” This is how I proudly introduced myself during my college years while traveling on ministry teams for Welch. The West Fork District association had given me an opportunity to grow up and learn a lot about music thanks to District youth competition. Whether quartets, sextets or choirs the Cornerstone youth always enjoyed the fellowship and fun of those friendly competitions. Since then, God’s call has taken me far away from Texas. I have the privilege now to minister in the country of Spain as a FWB international missionary. One of the great joys of returning to the U.S. for Stateside Assignment is the opportunity to visit my beloved Texas.
My family and I returned to the States this summer and one of the first extended trips I made was to Texas, spending eleven days in early August visiting several churches and two district association meetings. On that occasion I was with the Pleasant Mound Church and First Church in Bowie during Sunday services. I also had a blast sharing with the kids during VBS at Collin Creek Church. Then it was off to the New Salem Church where the West Fork District meeting was held. I am so thankful for the opportunity the Lord gave me to visit with Brother Clarence Hearon at the district meeting. This dear man was the pastor at Cornerstone when our family first began attending. During the latter part of that trip I visited the Eagle Heights Church, Pine Prairie and the Cross Life Church in San Antonio where the Central District Association Meeting was held. It wasn’t long after I returned from this trip that we began to hear the news of a hurricane threatening Texas. Hurricane Harvey touched down August 25th.
After the storm hit I wondered if it would be possible to hold services scheduled in southeast Texas from September 27th through October 2nd. Thankfully, we were able to proceed. I flew into Houston Hobby and picked up my rental car. As I drove through one of the neighborhoods near the airport I could still see a lot of debris lining one of the streets. When I spoke to my wife on the phone she asked me how things were going in Houston. Everyone at the church we attend in Tennessee had been praying and wanted to know how everyone was doing.
After arriving in Houston on Wednesday Sept. 27 I drove to Bryan, where we enjoyed pizza and fellowship in the family life center before sharing in the service. Bro. Marcus Brewer let me stay with him and use his internet for an important video conference Field Team Meeting with my fellow missionaries in Spain and Curt Holland, the new Director of Field Personnel. Bro. Doug Dickey was gracious enough to set up a lunch with several pastors from the Central district area as we met in Hempstead on Friday. I thoroughly enjoyed the fellowship and the meal with Doug Dickey, Marcus Brewer, Randy Puckett, John Collier, Matt Calhoun and Howard Bass.
Sunday’s services took me closer into Houston again. Sunday morning was the first time I had been able to see the new work – Woodforest Church – in Montgomery/Conroe. This church has started since the last time our family was in the States in 2013. God is doing some great things in this church and I was very thankful for the reception and generosity of this new congregation.
On Sunday afternoon, Oct. 1, I drove down to Victoria dealing with some traffic jams and road construction on the way. In all my years living in and traveling around Texas this was my first trip to this part of the state. I was thrilled that folks from the Thomaston FWB Church and Authentic Church joined with some of the folks from Lighthouse for this joint service. It was great seeing churches come together like that to hear about and support what God is doing in Spain.
Then, on Monday, I met with Bro. Dino from the Hispanic Church in Houston. He and one of the men from the church took me out to lunch, but something caught my attention as we came up on the Greenspoint Mall. I noticed a ton of cars in the parking lot and people lined up all around the outside of the Mall. It turns out that the portion of the Mall that formerly housed a Macy’s store had been set up for Hurricane evacuees. According to news sources, more than 800 evacuees were being moved to this temporary location. My heart goes out to all of those effected by the flooding and the wind damage from this historic hurricane.
I am thankful for TX FWBs. It has been great getting to know up close the diverse churches across the great state of Texas since I have been a missionary. Some invested in my life as a young man, but many are currently investing in the ministry we are involved in to plant churches in the spiritually needy country that is Spain. Thank you!!