As a boy, I had often marched down the same aisle in black cassock and crisp white surplice loving the church with all my heart but this time it was different. From now on I would fight for Jesus alone. As we processed along, my eyes were firmly fixed on the polished brass cross high above my head. The hymn we were singing added, "Publish glad tidings, tidings of peace, tidings of Jesus, redemption and release." This famous hymn written by Mary A. Thompson (1834-1923) to the tune "Tidings" by James Walch was for Captain Ray an encouragement in later years work in the United States and elsewhere around the World.
Years before, I had sung this great missionary hymn by at rallies held at our church. I sensed that this Christian adventure would carry me in my lifetime to faraway and strange places as I too published glad tidings. I would discover a fascinating variety of peoples. This vision seemed almost too remote to be possible. God had called me to become his traveler, to bring glory into other people's lives.
I was gripped by one overriding and naive obsession which was to pay God back for what he had done for me! "How could I follow Him?" I asked myself. "Who would help me enter this service for Christ to speak out glad tidings?" For weeks these all absorbing questions remained unanswered. Then, one day while browsing through "The Church at Work," I noticed a headline that stirred me.