Evangel Island Journey – Preface (restored/expanded fall 2019)
Preface to Timothy Smith’s Evangel Adventures
by the late Evan Jones, Director of the Kodiak Baptist Mission
Evan (pronounced “Even”) Jones in his kitchen, Kodiak, 1996.
Evan Jones was a visionary leader whose ministry transformed the Kodiak Baptist Mission from an orphanage to a community ministry with deep roots in Kodiak and the surrounding area. His wife and children have continued to minister in the Kodiak area with great effectiveness. He and his wife Anne “discovered” my parents, Rev. Norman and Joyce Smith, retired but quietly continuing their mission work in Ouzinkie, and brought them back into renewed fellowship with the Kodiak Christian community.
When my Father passed away in 1996, Evan Jones preached at his funeral. Later, he was instrumental in the ordination of my Mom to serve as pastor of Ouzinkie Chapel, a position she held until her death in 2006. I’m honored to have his introduction to my articles on the ministry of the Evangel and the work of Norman and Joyce Smith.
Evan Jones’ Preface:
Tim stood and looked at the remains of the once proud little vessel that his father had captained and his mother had made home in the years they sailed the waters around Alaska's Kodiak Island. Through the ministry of the Evangel, the message of the Gospel was brought to the little villages and even the canneries where people gathered.
A flood of memories called out to him. These are memories, Tim's memories–not a history,
but memories. A history can be written very accurately with names and places and
dates all letter-
Evan Jones, August 2003
Left: Kelly Smith (white shirt) and his sons surveying the remains of the Evangel, October 1996. The author in the Evangel Museum circa 1997.
I Am Going to Walk Among the Stars
Earth has been fine and I have trod,
Worn and lonely paths below
But always has my Spirit looked high above
To the stars and their mysteries sublime.
“The heavens declare the glory of God,”
The Shepherd boy wrote to us
As night unto night he gazed
At the light of 5000 circling suns.
Pride falls away the moment we gaze
At the vastness that we call space.
I am little on earth, a simple speck,
But the Saviour promised eternity
And I shall walk among the stars.
I know I’m taken from the earth
And from a simple clod
And walk thru this life my heavy step to plod
But I shall walk among the stars
With eager steps and free.
I believe I have my Saviour’s words
That this will some day be.
Evan J. Jones, I, November 2003
Evan Jones passed away from a brain tumor on December 24, 2003
Top: Evan Jones and Anne Jones (seated) visit my Mom, Rev. Joyce Smith, in Baker Cottage Baptist Mission (Ouzinkie Chapel) in this undated photo.
Bottom: In Memoriam -
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