A Brief History of BPF:
Birmingham Pentecostal Fellowship (BPF) is the first Indian Pentecostal community church in Birmingham with Malayalam (the mother tongue of the people of Kerala, the southern state of India) as its medium of worship.
There was a flow of migrants belonging to south India, particularly Kerala, to UK for job since the closing years of the 20th century. Most of them were female nurses. Some of them were Pentecostal believers, and they began to gather in various places for prayer. That is how a small prayer fellowship was begun in Malayalam, on 16 July 2002 in Sutton Coldfield. About 11 members gathered together on the first day to worship the Lord in one of the believer’s house. At the same time, there formed another prayer group in Birmingham City Centre in 2003, and believers gathered from various areas like Selly Oak, Kings Heath and Small Heath. The former one was named as ‘Birmingham Christian Fellowship’ (BCF) and the latter as ‘New Life Church’ (NLC).
Formation and Development of BPF:
Having realized the significance of unity for the furtherance of God’s Kingdom and for His glory, the believers of both BCF and NLC decided to merge the groups together and move as a single unit with a new title ‘Birmingham Pentecostal Fellowship’ (BPF). As a result, they came together on Saturday, 4 September 2004, and held a fasting prayer in Kings Heath. On the 5th September, they had their first Sunday service together. People started coming from various locations of Birmingham and surrounding places. Mr K J Mathewkutty and Mr Sam T Varghese were leading various services of this Fellowship. Pastor Wessly Lukose from Rajasthan, India, who was doing his Doctoral Studies in Theology at the University of Birmingham took the responsibility as the Senior Minister of the BPF since 19 June 2005 at the request of the Church. The main language of worship is Malayalam as almost all the existing members originally belong to south India, particularly Kerala. However, currently the services have been evolved into a bilingual nature (Malayalam-English). People come from various parts of Birmingham and beyond. Gradually cell groups were formed in various places, and now BPF has six such cells, meeting during the week days in several places such as Sutton Coldfield, Small Heath, Selly Oak, Bromsgrove, Worcester and Telford, aiming prayerful discipleship and leadership. Later in 2009, outreach activities were initiated in Walsall, Coventry and Erdington. On 9 September 2009, BPF was given the status of registered Charity by the Charity Commission of UK. BPF continues to grow, aiming to be a multi-lingual fellowship to create a Christ-like community.