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Christ – A Sure Foundation In Portugal

The Salvation Army in Porto have, after many years of struggling against the red-tape of bureaucracy achieved permission to build their brand new headquarters building which will incorporate their new Church, offices, day centre and preparation area for the meals-on-wheels and other services.

Fr Bob and Diane Bates, from St James Anglican Church, were privileged to be invited by the leaders of the local authorities and the various managers of the local Salvation Army branch's departments to witness the symbolic laying of the first bricks.

Pictured below are Fr Bob and Diane with Captain Filipe Gonçalves, the local leader (second from left) and Colonel Gordon Daly (originally from New Zealand, Gordon is responsible for the Army's work across the Iberian peninsular).

Fr Bob commented that the erratic brickwork would not have been acceptable in his days as a Chartered Surveyor, but it was built on a 'sure foundation' and a cornerstone would be added which could always be trusted. He said that, "In the year when our church building of St James celebrates the 200th anniversary of its foundations being laid, it is good to see a new building being started, new foundations laid, to allow the work of Christ to be continued. I am almost sure that Filipe and I will not be around for this building's 200th anniversary (although he is younger than me!) but I pray that we may look down together from amongst the 'Crowd of witnesses' and see celebrations, a continuance of the good relationship between our people, and that God's work is continuing as we work together."