Holding forth the word of life;
that I may rejoice in the day of Christ,
that I have not run in vain,
neither laboured in vain.
Philippians 2:16

Fight the good fight of faith,
lay hold on eternal life,
whereunto thou art also called,
and hast professed a good profession
before many witnesses.
1 Timothy 6:12


I realise Shakespeare’s King Henry V was no friend to the Reformers and the gospel they held dear, in fact a great enemy, and that there is an irony in my use of his battle cry at Agincourt as a title to this piece, but nevertheless I will pinch the heroic phrase without blushing. In the light of what happened to 1521 ‘s editor last November, and the dawning of a new millennium he did not expect to experience, perhaps I might be forgiven this once.

On the 22 November 1999, while in hospital awaiting a minor operation, he collapsed having great difficulty in breathing. The doctor who first arrived upon the scene has since told him that, medically, he was ‘about to die’. Had the incident occurred at home, without the necessary medical equipment, he would certainly have done so. It was clear God had seen to it that he was in hospital when the attack took place, within easy reach of the emergency team. The grace of God, the expertise of the hospital staff, the love of his large family, and the constant prayers on his behalf by Christians around the world: all this has kept him deeply grateful to his Lord, and assured him that the VOCAL PROTESTANTS’ INTERNATIONAL FELLOWSHIP (VPIF) has heaven’s Permission to continue its ministry. So, ‘Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more!’

There is certainly a great need for the VPIF, and Protestant bodies like it, in these unique and appalling times when the impact of Satan’s presence is seen in whatever direction one looks :around the world. So deep is the cesspit through which we are all obliged to wade, too evident for detailed comment here, that we are encouraged to believe these must surely be the last of ‘the last times’ the Scriptures outline, and about which our godly forefathers spoke and wrote with great anticipation. If only God’s people yearned for, and ‘prayed for, Christ’s glorious Second Advent as much as they do for revival! Still, in the meantime, a mighty battle is in progress throughout planet earth, although the majority of His people appear not to have noticed it for they do little about the situation. God’s wonderful revelation of truth ‘once delivered unto the saints’, Jude 3 – is in the subtle process of being altered by the Vatican; the worldwide realms of academia and the media being used as influential channels through which the apostasy is gradually smothering the earth. Little wonder a moral morass follows in its wake. Hence, the need as never before for vocal Protestants to make their voices heard, because the days are desperate.


The VPIF is an infant among Protestant bodies, in its 14th year, having been launched on the first day of 1987. My ‘vision’ for its future was evidently not as large as God intended it to be, because at the start the work was entitled the Vocal Protestants’ Fellowship, there being no thought of lit as international. Then, suddenly, after a few months Dorothy Whitford in Australia asked if she could represent the work over there. Could she? Certainly! Immediately I understood what the Lord intended, that the ministry’s Protestant influence should be worldwide.

This was an astonishing realisation to me personally when one considers that in 1968, having been invited to represent the Protestant Truth Society in Wales, I was working out how I could form a Protestant Union for the Principality. Now, nineteen years later, the world was to be my ‘parish’! Truly, God’s thoughts are higher that our thoughts. (ls.55:9) Thus, the VPF had the letter T added to it, as others from various parts of the world kindly agreed to assist the work. Now, the VPIF is known in 31 countries.


The VPIF paper was published from the start, entitled uniquely `1521′ the famous year ‘Martin Luther courageously appeared at the Diet of Worms to give an account of his ministry. The first printer I called upon was bewildered, and not understanding the significance of the paper’s title, persisted in calling it ‘one thousand five hundred and twenty one’! Its aim was, and still is, to be truly reformed and evangelical; that is to combine the doctrinal, historical, topical and controversial – always to be informative and challenging, but never inexcusably boring. As editor I seek to maintain that standard, and I trust the reader agrees.

1521 is distributed free of charge, as is all VPIF literature, without the least hint of a begging letter! The entire work rests upon the sovereign grace of God, who alone provides what is required for the continuation of the ministry. On this one occasion as the work is being mentioned, it is fitting to praise him for his faithful and wonderfully generous people.

Then, in the first flush of enthusiasm, the ‘vision’ hazed over somewhat, losing the necessary sharpness of reality. Why not, I thought, 1521 in twelve different European languages? Some translators were hurriedly collated, one or two less proficient than the others, but with letters written in English arriving from the Continent of Europe, how highly impractical my plan appeared. It was dropped.


One evening, after preaching in the north of England, I was surrounded by a group of enthusiastic brethren and sisters who reminded me of the need for proclaiming the gospel to the many who never hear it. I listened, and then found myself saying, ‘I agree. Why don’t we hold a series of gatherings around the country, venturing forth from various local churches to preach in the open air: preaching, refreshments and fellowship, and a church rally in the evening?’ And so was born the annual VPIF Programme, with at present its ‘pool’ of 44 preachers situated around Britain. God willing, at the close this year, 147 such gatherings will have been held. Who said that vocal Protestants have no interest in the gospel, but instead, only ‘bash’ Rome? In fact, seeking to follow Jesus’ example (Matt.23), it is because we love him and his message that we sternly oppose those who are leading sinners astray from the truth of God’s Word. How appreciative I am of the preachers, and the sisters who work hard behind the scenes, and everyone involved prayerfully for each gathering.


Then in 1995, the VPIF sought to cater for the many keen vocal Protestants who desire to get actively involved and to have an outlet for vocal Protestant witness. Thus, the VPIF ‘army’ of letter writers was formed, at present numbering 100, of whom about nine live beyond the British Isles. When called upon, on average about four times a year, from their armchairs they have proclaimed the gospel and expressed their feelings about the prevailing trends: to the Queen, the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Prime Minister, and to various other individuals and organisations deserving rebuke. There is an important ‘nuisance’ value in this ministry, from godly people, who write graciously and from a sincere heart.


So sophisticated are the means of communication today that the world has shrunk, and is described as ‘a global village’. The Internet, particularly, has seen to that, and many millions in every country have access to it. What a marvellous opportunity, therefore, it affords God’s people to break into the ‘Web’, and to spread the vocal Protestant message to all parts of the globe, the vital three-fold message which appears on the back page of each issue of 1521, including this one: the uniqueness of Christ’s person, his work and his message – and the stern opposing of his enemies within and without the Church. As soon as possible, therefore, the VPIF will have its own Website. I would seek your prayer support in this matter.

Also envisaged – even from the beginning of the work – is the seeking out of likeminded brethren and sisters in Europe, not merely from a desire to share fellowship, although that is very precious, but from a practical point of view. Believing chapters 17 and 18 of ‘Revelation’ refer to Rome and Vatican influences over ‘all nations’ (18:3), the future for the European saints living geographically within the shadow of Antichrist will be bleak. They will require all the practical and spiritual help they can get, not just from afar, but on the spot. The VPIF, and other vocal Protestant bodies, will be able to supply that need; to locate the communities of faithful folk, to pray with them, feed them, console, advise and encourage them.

As for Britain, already an increasing number of God’s people are discovering they have no suitable church to attend. Each Lord’s Day, therefore, they worship at home. In the light of Jesus’ words in John 10:5 they are right to do so. To fulfil the need for the exposition of God’s Word, and to answer calls for assistance, the VPIF will be supplying tapes of sermons (free of charge, in accordance with our policy).

So, the VPIF commences the new millennium with great confidence in our sovereign God. I invite you, dear reader, to heed the call for battle – Once more unto the breach…!sk your pastor. Three cheers for the sandwich-board and banner carriers, and praise God for them!

Dr. Peter Trumper