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  • Chapter 4: 1941 - 1966

    4.1 1943 - Fourth Anointing

    During 1941, two years after the start of World War 11, the Stanboroughs was taken over by the Government. Doctors, nurses and patients began to arrive from University College Hospital in London to be cared for in surroundings that were more peaceful. Mr A.H. Thompson was the Manager and Matthew was the Doctor's Secretary. One day he was walking down the corridor in front of a Consultant from the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery. He noticed Matthew's walk and went to ask Mr Thompson if he could have a talk with Matthew sometime. This was arranged and after examining him, the Consultant suggested that he attend the National Hospital in London for further investigation.

    At this time Matthew was studying to become a Fellow of the Royal College of Secretaries and he had just one year before his finals. An appointment was soon given to him. The Professor examined Matthew and then asked us if he would be willing to go into the Lecture Hall in the afternoon and let all the student doctors ask questions and give their opinions as to what was wrong. We agreed and at the end of the day we were told that he had Encephalitis Lethargica.

    Apparently there had been an epidemic of this in the early 1920's. They said at that time, the germ was brought over on bananas from Africa. Matthew had become a Seventh-day Adventist and in order to keep the Sabbath, he gave up his work in an Accountant's Office. He took a temporary job in a fruit shop, which was owned by Mr N. Guest, Senior, just at the time of the epidemic. His doctor's records showed that he suffered flu-like symptoms. Recent research suggests it could have been a virus. The report from the hospital stated that Matthew would be bedridden within two years and would experience an early death. He tried to continue studying but found that what he read was not sinking in. Pastor E R WarlandI wrote to the College giving them all the information I had and to our surprise they returned all the fees right back to the beginning of the course. This was another blessing from God.

    Gradually Matthew got worse and we prayed earnestly about the future. He decided to request anointing. He asked Pastor E. R. Warland, who had been a friend to him in many ways, and Pastor G. D. King to conduct the service. When we rose from our knees, we could see that immediate healing had not taken place, but we still believed that God was in control. The anointing was in 1943 when Matthew was thirty-eight and in spite of his affliction he was able to work full-time at the Press and later the Granose until retirement age. The Lord stayed the disease and gave him the strength to work, though in a limited way.

    4.2 1941 - Fun With The Juniors

    Also in 1941, I was made leader of the Junior Missionary Volunteers. This involved teaching - with the much-appreciated help of many energetic and supportive young people - classes from Busy Bee to Comrade, as it was known then. I enjoyed this work for a number of years.
    In 1945, Mama and Dada came from Edgware to live with us in Sheepcot Drive. This enabled me to do some part-time work at the Granose.

    One day in 1946, Mr W. Raitt, Senior, suggested that I should start a Sunday School in the Stanborough Park Church. I was thrilled with the idea and immediately decided to visit the homes in Kingswood, the Avenues, St Albans Road and North Western Avenue inviting those who had children to send them to our Sunday School.
    Mrs E. Crocker volunteered to help by playing the little organ and teaching a class. We opened the sub-gallery on the day appointed and awaited the arrival of those who might come. I had already invited ten children from our church so we had the assurance of some turning up. The attendance gradually grew until nearly sixty were regulars.

    Visiting the homes was most encouraging. One day a lady, by the name of Mrs J. King, answered the door and said she would certainly send her two boys, Harold and Malcolm, and that she would be willing to help. I accepted her offer and gave her the tiny tots to be taught Bible lessons using sand-trays. Visits to her home continued with Bible studies following. She found a new joy in serving God, became a Seventh-day Adventist and is still a faithful member of the church. Mrs D. Swift, who lived in Spring Gardens, also sent her son and daughter each week. A strong friendship developed and eighteen months later she joined the church and became one of our well-loved teachers in the Stanborough Primary School.

    One year during the summer holidays, I thought the Sunday School children and others from the church would enjoy an outing to the Zoo. This proved very popular and I hired four coaches, each seating forty children plus two leaders. All gave me their entrance fee and their share towards the cost of the coaches.

    We arrived safely and I joined the queue to pay. All the others were let through a gate and counted. I paid from my wallet the cost of entrance. The four coach loads went their separate ways in a very orderly fashion. When lunchtime came, I assembled my forty children on a patch of grass close to a refreshment counter. Like many others, I fancied an ice cream, so I went to buy one. I could not find my wallet. What a shock! It contained all the money to pay for the four coaches. Asking Mrs Tew to care for the children, I went back to the entrance to see whether it had been handed in.

    I knew which turnstile I had gone through so I asked the man behind that counter. "Sorry, my dear," was his reply. My heart sank. I am sure you can imagine my feelings. As I turned away, my eyes dropped down to a ledge that was under the counter and there was my wallet precariously balanced on it. Dozens of people must have passed through that turnstile after we entered. I am sure God closed their eyes to it and kept it safe for me. A prayer of gratitude went up from my lips that day.

    After some years, Mr and Mrs Lale took over the leadership. Later they received a call to the Mission Field where, sad to say, they were brutally murdered. A young man continued running the Sunday School after the Lales left but because of lack of volunteers it had to be closed.

    Pastor and Mrs E L Minchin and FamilyMaster Guides - 1946In 1947, Pastor E. L. Minchin and family came to Stanborough Park and became Leader of the Youth at the B.U.C. He introduced the Master Guide courses. For over a year a number of us studied different subjects that were needed for the Master Guide Badge. I gained mine and became leader of the Missionary Volunteers or Pathfinders, as they are called now. We covered from Busy Bee to Master Guide work. I thoroughly enjoyed this association with the young people and also the camps with Pastor H. T. Johnson and later with Pastor K. Gammon. In 1951 I had the pleasure of going to the World Youth Congress in Paris, in charge of the girls, and then to Stockholm in 1955 in charge of the ladies, while Pastor J. Mahon was in charge of the young men. These two events greatly influenced many of our young people.

    4.3 1949 - Cawdells' Sale

    Granny Horspool's 100th BirthdayOne day in 1949, I went down to Watford to do some shopping, and noticed that Cawdells, a large department store, had a sale on. I was in need of a vest so went in to price them. I purchased two and handed over a one pound note to the sales lady. Four GenerationsIn those days, the money was put in a holder that travelled along wires to the Accounts Office on the top floor of the building. The bill was stamped and the change enclosed. It was then sent back to the counter concerned. There was change for only ten shillings instead of the pound given. They apologised for the mistake but said that I would have to wait until the next day, when the takings would be balanced with the bills.

    I received a phone call the following afternoon asking me to go down and collect the money. Mr Mugford, the manager, talked with me and offered me a position in the Accounts Office. As I could not work full-time, I was allowed to bring home much of my work. Later I became secretary to the manager of the Furnishing and Carpet Department and to the manager of the Restaurant. The years spent there were very happy ones. As the months went by, I could see the Lord's leading.

    Pastor V H Cooper - 2003In 1951, Mama and Dada were offered a council house in Abbots Langley. At 25 Sheepcot Drive, we had only two bedrooms, one being little larger than a box room, which meant that we were very cramped, but happy. As our home was already furnished, they were able to bring only a four-foot bed, a small chest of drawers, a single wardrobe and their china and cooking utensils with them from Edgware. They now had a house with two bedrooms, lounge, dining room, bathroom and kitchen to furnish. What a blessing I was working at Cawdells! I was able to purchase lino and carpets, (which Cyril Roe kindly laid down for us,) two easy chairs, a dining table and four chairs, a double wardrobe for the front bedroom and a single bed for the small bedroom - all at 33.3% discount. Granny, who had been staying with my cousin Ivy, was able to go and live with them.

    Granny Horspool had her hundredth birthday there in July 1954. The telegram from H. M. Queen Elizabeth thrilled her and was placed among many other telegrams and cards from relatives and friends. She died 29th December, 1955 and Pastor Victor Cooper conducted the funeral service.

    4.4 1956 - University College London

    Watford Grammar School for Girls - 1950Peace Memorial HospitalDuring these years, Adina was a pupil at Stanborough Primary and then Secondary School. In 1953 she took her "O" Levels, which was as far as Stanborough School went. She then attended Watford Grammar School for Girls where she did her "A" Levels in 1955. Although Manchester and Leicester Universities accepted her, Adina decided to stay another year and do the Entrance Examination for London University in January 1956. She was still only seventeen.

    Mr G AnnisAs the time for the examination approached, she was admitted to hospital. The day she should have been taking her exam she was down in theatre. The Watford Peace Memorial Hospital had arranged for her to do the exam at the hospital under supervision, if she were well enough, but she became an emergency and was taken to theatre twice in that week.

    This was a great disappointment to us all and we prayed that in some way God would step in and make it possible for her to go to University in October. UCL, red-bricked Cruciform BuildingUnknown to us, Miss J. B. B. Davidson, the Headmistress, got in touch with London explaining the situation. In March, while Adina was still in hospital, a letter arrived asking her to go the following Friday for an interview. Mr and Mrs G. L. Anniss kindly offered to take us both to London in their car. Adina was still very weak.

    UCL, Portico and Quad in SpringOn arrival, we all prayed in the car that God's will would be done. Four professors questioned her for three hours on English Literature from Chaucer to the present day. Although exhausted, she was in good spirits. Answers had come to her mind for every question. Imagine our joy when the next week a letter arrived giving her an unconditional offer of a place. She started her studies in October 1956, graduated in 1959 and won the Rosa Morison Scholarship. She began her two-year post-graduate studies in October of that year.

    4.5 1960 - All Change

    BUC Committee - 1967During this period, Mr G. Norris invited me to go back to work for the Denomination. This delighted me and I became wages clerk at the Granose. Then a transfer was put in for me to do the same work under Mr G. L. Anniss at the Stanboroughs. Later Mr R. MudfordMr R Mudford became Manager and then after being transferred to the School, Mr B. Powell took his place. I worked with Mr Powell right up to the closing of the Stanboroughs in 1968. Then I went to the British Union to help him in the Home Health Education Service and later Mr S. Maxwell. I retired from doing part-time work in 1972.

    My parents enjoyed several years in their little home in Abbots Langley but once again, Dada experienced more health problems. It was difficult for me to keep travelling back and forth to care for them and to look after Matthew and Adina, plus doing part-time work. I had been told of the plans to sell part of Stanborough Park and immediately decided we must put every penny that could be spared in an account at Abbey National so that we might be able to put a deposit on a house. I bought only what was absolutely necessary.

    Orchard at Stanborough ParkThe Orchard was sold in 1958. When the plans were ready, we went to the agents and put our name down for Plot No.7. Months passed and gradually houses began to appear. When they were ready to start building our house, we arranged for an interview with Mr Clarkson, the manager, at Abbey National regarding getting a mortgage. Adina was still doing post-graduate studies so there was only Matthew's wages plus what I earned doing part-time work. We explained to him our situation and he replied saying, "Because you are what you are, though your income does not warrant a mortgage, I will pass this through." He told us they had never had a Seventh-day Adventist default. What a recommendation! We had to pay a deposit when they started building, a further payment when they were halfway and another when the house was completed. We took possession of 7 Ellwood Gardens in August 1960. Mama and Dada came from Abbots Langley to live with us. Adina decided to give up her post-graduate studies and take a teaching post at Gartlet School in order to help us financially. What a girl!

    When I left Cawdells, I continued to keep in touch and visit Mr B. LeFarr, the manager and Mr R. Montague, the assistant manager of the Furniture Department. One had bought his own shop and the other had moved to a larger store. We remained life-long friends. I told them of our moving to a larger house so that we could accommodate my parents, and immediately they both offered me 33.3% discount on anything I needed. God worked again on our behalf, as we were able to carpet the house at a greatly reduced rate and even pay off the account as we could.

    As I look back on my visit to Cawdells to buy a vest, I know that God was leading in my life. He knew the future and supplied our needs in a wonderful way. Because of Matthew's affliction, which made him unable to do the work for which he had trained, his wages remained very low. We did appreciate, however, his being retained in employment by the Denomination as this gave him some self-esteem.

    In 1964, I remember waking early one morning and on looking out of the window, I saw flames coming from the Stanborough Press. That day was a very sad one. Much of my parents and my life had been involved in the literature work. I loved books and helped in salvaging many from the flames. I was given two, bearing the scars of the fire, and still have them in my possession.

    In the summer of 1965, Mama was taken very ill. We had a budgie that she handled and dearly loved. Much time was spent talking to it and Joey would answer in a real Yorkshire accent. The doctor wondered whether my mother had caught the disease, Psittacosis, often carried by budgerigars. He arranged for the hospital to send a Radiographer, with a portable machine, to take X-rays.

    Four days later, I had a phone call from the Head of the Department asking if he could visit me. I said, "Certainly." He brought with him the X-ray pictures. A puzzled expression covered his face as he explained that there was a hole in each lung as big as a *five-shilling piece (1 ½ in/ 3.8cm) and that part of her spine was damaged. He wondered how she had come to the age of eighty without previously experiencing breathing or back problems! I was able to tell him of my mother’s illness and of her anointing. God had healed her from tuberculosis but had not replaced the affected parts as he had done in my father's case. The radiographer marvelled at my story and agreed that a miracle had occurred all those years ago. Mama was suffering from pneumonia and with the use of antibiotics soon recovered.

    I had been a deaconess for many years, serving first under Mrs N. Leigh and then under Mrs F. Lauderdale until she moved to Binfield. Mrs D. Tew took over the leadership and I was her assistant until she moved in 1965. I then became head deaconess in January 1966 with three others as assistants.

    In March 1966 Dada passed to his rest at the age of eighty-five. Since coming to live with us at Sheepcot Drive, he had been in and out of hospital at least once a year. He suffered much pain but was of a good spirit as he leaned hard on the arms of his Lord. I remember our minister in 1960 asking Dada if he had thought of being anointed. He told him of the two anointings he had experienced and then said he had lived his allotted time and felt it would be presumptuous, at his age, to ask for healing. The minister agreed with him and prayed that God would give him strength to endure.

    4.6 1966 - Healing At Crieff

    Early in 1966 Adina decided to do post-graduate studies in an Adventist University. Andrews University, USAAndrews in Michigan, USA accepted her for the academic year 1966-1967. She had been teaching at Watford Grammar School for Girls for three years and gave in her resignation for the end of the summer term. In May, she began losing weight rapidly, seven pounds per week, until she was too weak to work and became bedridden.

    One Sabbath morning I telephoned Pastor John Woodfield, a life-long friend, and asked him to come over and have prayer with us. This he did. He was shocked to see Adina so ill. When he came downstairs with me, he asked whether I had ever thought of taking her to Dr G. Brown at CrieffRoundelwood, Crieff, as the doctors had said that there was nothing more they could do for her. I replied that his suggestion had never entered my head but I would think about it. Monday morning I went to the Stanboroughs, where I was wages clerk, and Mr Lionel Hubbard came into the office and enquired about Adina. I told him what the doctors had said and he replied, "Why don't you get in touch with Dr Brown and ask her advice?" I felt that God was leading me as two people had made this suggestion so that evening I telephoned Dr Brown and explained my reason for calling. She said that if I got permission from Adina's doctors for her to be under her care, she would welcome my daughter.

    Permission was granted so the following week I laid Adina down in the back of her car and started our journey to Crieff. We stopped at my cousin's home in Leeds for a night's rest and journeyed the next day up to Scotland. I well remember arriving at Jedburgh and turning down a road where there were some shops. We both needed a drink and toilets. A policeman came up to us and said, "Do you realise you have driven down a one-way road?" I apologised and said that I had my daughter, who was very ill, lying in the back of the car and she needed a drink and toilet. When he saw her, his exclamations were unrepeatable. I had already told him I was on my way to a nursing home in Crieff. He obtained two cups of tea and two teacakes on a tray and went to the back of the car to help me sit Adina up. After we had eaten what he had provided, he then carried Adina into the shop where the toilets were. In the meantime, he did some phoning and before I was ready to drive away, an officer on a motorcycle had arrived and said he would precede me to Crieff.

    Two or three things happened on the journey that I could not have handled on my own. God knew of these events and sent someone to help me in my time of need. When we arrived at Akaroa, Dr Brown gave the officer a meal and thanked him for his kindness. I returned home the next day.

    After three weeks Dr Brown was able to tell me that Adina had put on 1/2 oz in weight. At the beginning, Dr Brown fed her on red fruits only with milk and orange juice to drink. She then gave her potatoes and gradually added different foods to her diet. No one was allowed to see her for two months. The scales had been turned and she slowly gained more weight each week. Her stay at Crieff lasted over three months. Then Dr Brown put her on a plane to Heathrow and Pastor P. Stearman took me to meet her.

    On arriving home she gave me a sealed envelope from Dr Brown. There was a lovely letter telling me how she had prayed in the quietness of her own room and with Adina night and morning for healing. She said, "The Devil had Adina on the edge of the grave but God would not let him push her in." Across the bill was written, "All charges cancelled with love." Oh, how much I have to thank God for! That was a year that had caused me much sorrow but what recompense at the end! I had worried constantly about how I was going to pay the bill, especially as Adina had given up her job and was unable to work for some time.

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