• About Hesed

    How the fellowship got started

    Hesed Christian Fellowship was founded in 1996 by Rev Peter Richmond. A group of people had been meeting in his house, and the first formal meeting was held in the village hall in New Hedges, near Tenby on 13th October.


    Hesed is the Hebrew word variously translated as mercy, grace and loving kindness, and described as committed, covenant love. Well known examples are Psalm 23:6 “goodness and hesed shall follow me”…and Micah 6:8 “act justly and to love hesed and to walk humbly.”


    Peter was very committed to teaching the whole of Scripture, and preached extensively on the Old Testament and Biblical feasts. Prayer for Israel was always part of the meetings, and a Passover meal was held every year.


    Over the years the fellowship continued in a few different venues on Sunday as well as weekly prayer meetings in homes.


    In 2005, people became aware of the extent of persecution of believers all over the world… that is a story in itself but, as a result, Pembrokeshire Prayer for the Suffering Church (PPSC) began in May 2006.


    After a while, Sunday services ended, but Hesed continued as a weekly prayer meeting and to serve our brothers and sisters in need.


    In September/October 2018, members had the devastating news that Peter had cancer. This did not stop his ministry, and he continued to lead PPSC while he underwent chemotherapy, even taking the meeting one evening after treatment that same morning. He was admitted to hospital over Christmas that year, and from his bed he arranged the urgent help for a family in Romania mentioned in the blog.


    When he was discharged, Peter went straight back to work, but in the middle of March he learned that he had six months to live, and at the end of May, the 13th Anniversary of PPSC, he led his final meeting.


    Hesed weekly meetings continued in the house, and Peter celebrated Passover with his church family, mentioning the words of Jesus when he said that he “eagerly desired” to celebrate his final Passover.


    On Tuesday, 20th August, members of Hesed met as usual, except that Peter was in a bed at the end of the room. He had a short discussion about sending aid to a church in Asia – still serving. At the end of the meeting he pronounced the Aaronic blessing – and those were just about his last words. By that evening he was unresponsive, and he was promoted to Glory in the early hours of Thursday morning.


    It seemed impossible, but PPSC has continued, and a small number of what Peter used to call “the Hesedim” still meet weekly to share, pray and make sure that PPSC continues.


    Covid held things up for a while, but the work is being renewed. PPSC was blessed recently by the presence of Gilbert Hovsepian via a video link, and he said that “God is not predictable, but He is consistent. The church is often predictable but not consistent.”


    God willing, Hesed and PPSC will continue to be consistent and faithful.

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