A tribute to Barry…

A tribute to Barry...

A tribute to Barry...

This tribute was written and presented at Barry's funeral
service by Hudson and Rosemary Deane. Rosemary is Barry's younger sister.

Hudson: Our sister May, our very
special nieces and nephews, Becky and Dennie, Rachel, Andrew and Saskia, the
late Debbie and dear Ian, who with their children are to us, a very real part of
our family, in the true sense of the word, thank you for giving us this
opportunity to speak on behalf of the family.

Rosemary: Telling our 96 year old mother of Barry's
death, was the cruellest job I have ever done in my life. My father and she were
first generation Christians. Although our mum had been to church all her life it
wasn't until my dad took her to a meeting where a missionary told with great
passion his story of the change in lives that he had seen through going and
telling. Mum says it was as if a light was switched on in her spirit and she
accepted Jesus as her personal Saviour.

When she was having Barry she used to pray that if he turned
out to be a boy would the Lord lead him to be like that man who had told her and
go and tell others.

At birth it was discovered that Barry had a block in his food
tract and he was starving to death. A lovely Christian Dr Gordon Anderson took
him into my mother before he operated and said, "Lets just leave him to the
Lord and I'll do my best with His help." So Mum said goodbye to her new son
and the Dr's wife sat with her through the long operation. Several days later
he was out of danger but spent many weeks in Karitane hospital being carefully
fed. All of us who have seen Barry's stomach from the outside know that that
surgeon did a brilliant job.

He was evidently a very cute child with fair curls and very
funny expressions. Our older sister Jaqueline was recalling on the phone to us
the other day the fun they had in Brighton with cave and beach adventures and
playing tennis together. She said he was a very even tempered happy boy with
none of the usual sibling rivalries. She has lived in England for the last 50
yrs and contact with Barry has been limited to visits on his ministry trips.
When Don and Jaqueline's daughter was killed in a road accident two and a half
years ago, Barry left immediately to be with them.

While he was a youth the family moved to Wellington. This
gave Barry new scope for his daring. He was fond of hair raising cycle trips
down the Wellington hills with no brakes then on to powerful motor bikes and
finally trucks that wrecked our driveway every time he visited.

He taught me to drive. "Faster Rose, faster", he would
say. He taught me how to go around corners without using the brakes. As a young
child I was a nuisance to him and his friends as I trailed along behind. But as
we matured, we grew to be good friends and I was allowed to climb his pine tree
and throw cones on to passers by and listen to his crystal radio set at night,
if I would clean his room of its apple cores each morning.

Hudson: At the age of 20, his best friend Alan Drown, was
killed in the Tangiwai disaster. Barry was to have gone with him to a camp in
Auckland but changed his mind. When the news of Alan's death came through,
Barry was so shaken up that he gave his life to the Lord. Alan's brother wrote
to us last week and said, "We thank God for his life and guess that he and
Alan will have got together." His life direction changed radically and his
mother's prayer was answered as Barry developed a passion for telling the
gospel to others.

Rosemary: We had a very close knit family. Our dad read
the Bible to us each night after dinner and we spent evenings playing board
games or music (all this pre TV) and we had great camping holidays. Our extended
family joined us for holidays, Christmas and birthdays. We didn't have many
cousins but David, Terry, Ingrid and Nick are here to support us today as they
always have, and cousin Carolyn in Florida has sent her support. We have
wonderful family memories and are very blessed.

Hudson: It was about this time I came on the scene. After
Barry graduated from Bible College he had trained as a teacher and served in
country districts of NZ. His evangelistic ministry in Open Air Campaigners, at
camps, at Maraes, and in home and church meetings was developing and it's for
this that all of us as a family most honor him. His life was focussed on God's
call to tell the world about the good news of salvation God offers us. He didn't
waver from that call. He preached the Gospel first in Samoa, then up and down NZ
with May and the family, then in the Pacific and in Australia, Sth East Asia,
Sth Africa the USA and the UK. With music and prophetic teaching crowds of
people were drawn to hear. Although some of his prophetic teaching has been
considered controversial, his main concern was to lead people to find that their
sin and guilt, that leads to eternal judgement, can be forgiven because our Lord
Jesus Christ took our penalty when He died on the Cross. That was the central
focus of all his life and preaching. His deep desire was to honour God, to warn
people and to lift up Jesus as Saviour -– the most important message in all the
world.

Barry & May Smith
Barry & May Smith

He has been deeply devoted to his wife May and his family.
May is undoubtedly the most cherished wife I know. He has consistently tried to
live what he taught and bring up the family in godly living and by Biblical
principles. They lived in our home while they built in Te Atatu. Later they
moved to Oak Ridge in Northland, then travelled in those huge caravans and
finally set up at Pelorus. The family has always shown welcoming love, warmth
and acceptance of so many. They have had great times of fun together but also,
whenever they are together, every day they would gather after the evening meal,
read and talk about the Scriptures and pray together. As a family we have been
recalling many stories -– with Barry life was always a great adventure -– the
river, the tractor, the chainsaw!

Rosemary: Barry was the best brother anyone could have.
He kept in touch regularly. Sometimes he would say he was coming to see us and
then phone to say he couldn't. Some times he would call to say he couldn't
and then turn up. He needed to be understood! When he phoned we would waste the
first minutes of the toll call swapping the latest stories and laughing. Then we
would share our concerns and joys of our respective families, then maybe share
something we had been reading in scripture that had blessed us, and he always
told us how many people had come to the Lord that week.

Hudson: Each time he'd say goodbye to our Mum before he
left for one of his trips. He'd say, "Well Mum, I'm off to win some more
souls for the Lord. Just pray." And she did. He was the most caring devoted
son any mother could be blessed with. He phoned her every 3 or 4 days wherever
he was in the world and kept her up to date with his ministry. She has
maintained a quiet acceptance each time he has said goodbye and now in her deep
sadness she says, "He's waiting for me."

Barry Smith in his office at Pelorus Bridge
Barry Smith in his office at Pelorus Bridge

Rosemary: The book of Proverbs tells us that the Lord
puts us in families and Jacqueline Barry and I were very blessed with the one he
put us in. Proverbs 17:17 says, "A friend loves at all times and a brother is
born for adversity." My brother is not here to share my adversity any more but
he has taught me to trust the One who sticks closer than a brother, the Lord
Jesus Christ.

Hudson: Today, we say on behalf of the family, to the
Lord Jesus Christ and Our Heavenly Father, thanks for so filling Barry's life
and ministry with your Spirit and your heart for the lost people of our world.
Thanks for giving us the privilege of being part of Barry's life and family.
He'd want the focus to be on you today Lord, and he'd want us to take the
baton he hands to us all, for the task is not yet finished. There are many more
who need to find God's grace and forgiveness.