We celebrate the life of former NZCMS Mission Partner and long time member and supporter, Rev Gordon Langrell, who recently passed away. Gordon's funeral will be held Wednesday, 11 December, 1:00pm at South West Baptist Church, 244 Lyttelton Street, Spreydon, Christchurch. The tribute below has been compiled by Bishop Henry Paltridge from out of St. Martins.
We first met Gordon through the NZCMS League of Youth over 50 years ago. Gordon had come to know Jesus as Saviour and Lord as a young man. He had a zeal for the Gospel as a teacher being involved in the follow-up of the Billy Graham Crusade in 1959 and taught at Middleton Grange in 1965. During this time he led the Sunday School at St Martin’s, Spreydon, where within two weeks, he had visited every child’s home and made notes about the children’s interests, including sports. Often he even went to watch them play.
After theological training at Ridley College in England, he was ordained and served a curacy in England before return to New Zealand. Soon after he married Annette and had two sons and a busy ministry in Taita, Wellington.
After ten years in Taita they went with NZCMS to Singapore from 1982-1983. Gordon wrote that it had been a privilege and a thrilling experience to join the Singapore Diocese. It has developed a strong missionary commitment, especially in South East Asia. But it was not all easy! The heat, some relationships and expensive schooling impacted their decision to come home to New Zealand. When revisiting Singapore in 1995, a small church plant that they had been involved with had become three large congregations. “They certainly did not need us”, was Gordon’s reaction.
They returned to parishes in Christchurch with an evangelistic and pastoral zeal and always had a heart for people on the fringe! Gordon was a faithful member of the NZCMS Support Group in Christchurch as well as a regular participant at the weekly CMS Prayer-meeting.
Gordon greatly supported Annette’s passion to befriend overseas students. Their contribution to mission did not end when they left Singapore, having visited many churches of different nations, fulfilling Jesus command in Mathew 28:19. “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations”