With reference to Mr R John Smith, who writes in regard to traditional churches with financial problems, and to his comments about the Americanised showbiz of modern, large churches like Victory Church in Cwmbran, may I add one or two choice observations?

With the greatest respect for Mr Smith, who has appreciated visits to a 20- strong church, its quietness and pleasing Sankey hymns and all things tea and cupcakes. In Victorian times (when such churches thrived), when Mr Sankey himself toured this country with D L Moody and Alexander, filling our largest halls with seeking souls and biblical preaching of the cross of Christ, there was plenty of consternation from staid folks and those not wanting the comfy boat rocked.

Listen to the tearful, joy- filled testimonies of those in Victory Church. Our own church, Christchurch, is full on Sundays with hundreds of people saved by His Grace, living for His glory. No razzmatazz, just gratitude to God for His love.

An old chorus says the church of God is not steeples, house meetings or cathedrals, but the Church of God is people whose hearts have become the dwelling place of God in the spirit.

Paul & Yvette Taylor, Maesglas Road, Newport