Roadside Mission of Boston
Brother Jim Costigan and his wife
Jo-Ann have been doing mission work on the streets of Boston for over ten
years. God delivered brother Costigan from a life on the streets and
gave him a burden to reach people on the streets with the gospel. With
a population of over four million people of many different nationalities
living in Boston and it’s suburbs, this is a great and effective open door
for the gospel.
Brother Costigan works the streets almost daily, presenting the gospel to the people through street preaching, free gospels, New Testaments, Bibles, gospel tracts, and preaching cassette tapes. A number of businesses now allow him to keep gospel tracts and preaching tapes on racks in their place of business, where people can take them free of charge. At times he broadcasts preaching on the streets by use of a P.A. system. His ministry on the streets has varied from witnessing to and feeding the homeless, to speaking with international diplomats about their souls!
The Costigan family receives financial and material support through Charity Baptist Mission. The mission board also sends them hundreds of pre-recorded preaching cassettes monthly for distribution in the Boston area.
Greetings from Boston, March 2015
Jo Ann and I say thank you so much for your love, prayers and support; as the word of God is still going out. Again, we thank all of you who have been praying for us.
Over the past year I have been in out of the hospital numerous times. On July 31st I had to be admitted to the hospital for five weeks due to kidney failure, but you would not believe how many tracts I was able to give out: from housekeeping all the way to the doctors and nurses.
Being a Veteran what better tracts for me to use than military ones, of which I have two different types with testimonies from Iraq and Afghanistan. No one refuses to take one, but you have to remember that I was in the hospital from July 31st to September 23rd. I had days that were so bad, all I could do is pray, cry and wait to get better to go home. Many days it felt like I was being tortured the pain is so bad, I lost so much weight now I'm down to 155 pounds. This all started from the radiation I had to have for cancer in 1978, and then again in 1987. It is now causing my kidney tubes not to work well anymore, so they had to put tubes in through my back into both kidneys. I finally couldn't take any more pain, and nothing they gave me would help, due to my previous drug use.
This is the biggest time I have ever had in trusting the Lord; there have been a few times I almost died in the last six months. I was told by the doctors that these tubes had to stay in me or I would die, but the pain is so strong that I told them to shut the tubes off, and I wanted to see if I could pass my urine out of me on my own because I felt that is what to Lord wants. Of course the doctors thought I was crazy because this could go bad. I told them I'll take the risk, so far the risk has turned into a reward. It's my decision, and now we will wait and see if things are going to keep going well, and the tubes come out. By the time you get this news letter a lot of things will have gone on. I will send you an update soon, but if you want one sooner call me (508)-212-9790. Please pray things stay good because I don't want to go to Heaven yet. Most of my family needs me for many reasons as you can understand. I want you all to know that I feel stronger, and I believe I will be getting back on the streets this spring. So you also keep strong in the Lord and keep busy for him as well.
The joy of the Lord is my strength. Thank you so much for staying with us all these years.
Your friend and missionary, Jim Costigan & Jo Ann
P.S. The reason I haven't called many of you is because I lost my phone book when we moved. Please call me with your phone numbers, so I can put them in my new book. For some of you it has been years since I have talked to you. I also had the tubes removed, and I'm doing GREAT. Praise, the Lord!
Greetings from Boston, June 2013
As most of the world knows April 15, 2013 would be known as the “Boston Marathon Bombing day”. I started my day watching the news at 6:00am and found out it was the marathon day and knew where I would be giving out tracts that day. I loaded my bag with tracts, got on the bus and then the train to any destination “Copley Square”. At first tracts were slow, so I moved closer to the finish line. I was asked by an official if I could move back a bit because I was in the way with my chair. I then gave the man a tract. I watched as he began reading it, which made me happy to see. I told him “no-problem there are plenty of spots to go”. I moved my chair behind the race where I started and began putting tracts on cans. Then I heard some loud noises but paid no attention and then sirens, police, fire engines, and ambulances. It seemed something big happened that I didn’t understand until I asked people coming up behind me and they all seemed to be moving fast and away from where I had first left. “BOMBS - 2 Bombs” The noise I thought might be National Guard Canons, I was told was 2 bombs. I couldn’t believe it: the spot I was asked to move from was where the bomb #2 went off. I could have had some ball bearings blown in my head. Can you imagine being that man I gave the tract to? The tract was ‘How to be saved and know it” from Fellowship Tract League. Twenty minutes later as I was hanging on the corner giving out tracts and talking to people, a man came and stood next to me posing for pictures with flag that had stains on it. I asked what were all the stains on his American flag and his wife taking pictures said, “Blood”: He just saved a man that lost both his legs, look at all the blood on his shirt. Yes this man was then known as “the Cowboy” in the news. I have a color copy of him with that blood stained flag and wanted to meet him again to talk to him again about the Lord.
I’ve been down in that area since the bombs. Tracts, Tracts, and more Tracts. There is a memorial area down there now. People come from all over the world, I guess you can say to pay their respects to those that died, and there I am handing out tracts and witnessing and playing a harmonica. I play my own version of Amazing Grace and people finish walking around the area called the memorial and they heard me playing Amazing Grace. They say how appropriate and beautiful it is. I also play When I Survey the Wonderful Cross. I witness one on one and give them tracts to them. I witnessed to the police commissioner and gave him tract also. And, yes, I’m not kidding, the Prime Minister of Ireland, the bomb squad, FBI, ATF, Homeland Security, CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, and Aljazeera (the Middle East version of CBS). I also found one of their business cards on the ground. I am going to send them all kinds of tracts. I have also been put on Los Angeles, San Francisco, Russian, and now Boston documentary TV playing Amazing Grace and testifying why I was at the marathon and what happened. And the grand finale, I was outside of the interfaith service they had for the dead victims of the bombing. The President was among them in attendance while they were having service. I was outside putting tracts on all the cans for blocks around the neighborhood and I gave them to as many people as I could. Thousands upon thousands have been going out of my house and on the streets here in my city.
Keep us in your prayers. I would appreciate if anyone can help pay to rent a U-haul truck because I’m moving to a better apartment that I will be able to get in and out with my chair. It is in the first floor level with the ground, no more stairs and the V.A. is going to give me a brand new wheel chair. God is blessing me so much I stand in amazement at times. I hope you all know what I mean. The Lord is so good! Thanks again I will write again soon.
Love Jim and Jo Ann
P.S. There are other expenses to moving and also for my transportation around the city by bus and train and it costs a lot, But I know the Lord will pay the bill. Thanks also to those who have already helped Luke1:37
Greetings from Boston February 2013
We thank you for all for your prayers, love, and support to this ministry. Many things go on down on the streets and it would take a book to say it all. Like, giving out hundreds of tracts in a three hour period at the station with multitudes of people getting off the trains and head right my way. The burden was so much upon me my eyes began to fill with tears as I saw so many souls that have no idea of where they are and where this world is heading. We are so close to the return of our Lord. If I could say anything to you, it would be to get yourself a good load of tracts and warn your city and towns. If you need some tracts, I have the best contacts for them. Some people have let their heart go cold to the one that moved them with compassion and a burden. “Go Now” don’t waste all your time with all that the computer world is offering. It’s all heading to the implant of chips to the world of lost souls. But thanks be to God for his unspeakable gift. It’s not just for you and me, the gift of eternal life is for whosoever will!
I’m out all the time, but where are the Christians? Where are you? I’ve lost lots of support, because I couldn’t go out for a few months due to medical problems etc., but guess what? I’ve put my hands in my pockets and gave the doctors, nurses, hospital workers and ambulance driver’s tracts. I’m not tooting my horn, but the facts are facts. So now go.
I am having another operation and will bring tracts into the O.R. as I’ve done in the past. But this will be the last operation for my leg. For 2 ½ years I’ve gone without a leg and have fallen at least 10 times because of poor balance and with winter being here it makes it harder because of the cold. But I’m OK!
I will work the Underground Railroad, where thousands upon thousands take trains back and forth to work or wherever they are going. And it’s warm down there. I’ll be like the groundhog that will come up in the spring to see his shadow. One thing’s for sure, I need your prayers. I have been putting 100% into getting the word of God out of my house and into the houses of lost sinners. Right now there are no sandwiches or coffee for the street people. I run into them all the time and they get the Word of God through Gospel tracts. I intend to carry some sandwiches on my wheelchair, but no coffee. Please pray for the people living on the streets. Many of them have mental issues and sometimes I wonder if we are getting through to them. But the arm of the Lord is not short that they can’t get saved. One man comes to my mind named “Eddy”. He has been in and out of the homeless shelter for many years and use to come regularly to my bus or van for coffee and sandwiches. Now, I see him while in my wheel chair and he says he got saved. Amen!
Right now I am having a test done on my heart at 7:30 am. Already four tracts and a testimony have been given out. So far, these people have not refused a tract (it’s Christmas time) this is when most people won’t refuse them. My doctor had me sign my name on the tract and I wrote “Thank You for your help Doc”. Imagine one day in the future he sees it on his table and remembers me; (one of his first patients) then reads it and gets saved. The front of the tract say’s “Thank you for your service” that’s what they say to the veterans these days. But in the hospital (being a veteran myself) I say to them “Thank you for your service”.
Well, I will be on the bus soon heading for the train station with my Christmas tracts, but I could use some extra support. Transportation fees have doubled and by the end of the week it costs me $30.00 just to get around town. I could use an extra $100.00 per month marked for transportation. This will help me get me on buses and trains so I can get the Gospel out.
Thank you all, Jim & Jo Ann
Greeting from Boston, February 2012
Jo-Ann and I thank you for your prayers, love and support for this ministry. I have been blessed by the Lord and things are going well here. One day while at the V.A. Hospital to take care of some business I gave a tract to the secretary. She said I use to give her tracts 20 years ago when she was on the first floor and she thanked me. While waiting for my ride home a van pulled up and the driver looked familiar to me. As I was getting a tract for him he said “hello” to me and said I use to give him tracts when he worked for a different company. He said “I bet you’re getting one for me now?” “Of course”, I said, these things happen to me all the time. God’s Word will not return void. “So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it”. Isa 55:11
While at the train station the other day I gave out 150 tracts in two hours. I don't usually count tracts like that, but there was not one found on the ground afterwards. At the station many people like to talk to me. One day a lady who looked very familiar to me, and finally I recognized who she was. She was the head nurse on the unit where I was a patient 35 years ago. As we talked she was shocked that I remembered her from so long ago. It was a great opportunity to give her a tract and testify to her about the Lord. Please keep me in your prayers as I go out sowing the seed. I have a great tract with a picture of a terrorist on the front which says "Is peace possible in the Middle East?" It is powerful tract, because people can relate to it now with our country being so involved overseas. Not only that, but the cover catches their eye.
Back on September 23rd a woman got saved. Anytime I see her she thanks me for that day. Over 35 years ago on that same day I got run over. As I get older the cold days are becoming harder to go out on, but I feel so good knowing the Word of God gets into so many people’s hands. Who wouldn't feel good after that? Think of how many people you meet just by going food shopping or getting gas for your car? Multiply that by 7 days and you would see your pack of tracts get smaller each day and before you know it you’ll need some more. A pack of tracts to me is better than a brick of gold. It’s a joy to the sower's heart as they go forth sowing the seed.
I know this might seem crazy, but I’m in need of a new electric wheelchair. If you know someone who has one to give away please tell them that you know a missionary who would put it to good use. Please call me at 508-212-9790. I’m believing God to get it for me, so I'll be waiting. Some people wonder if I’m still out there in the streets. The answer is YES, minus one leg and a half of a finger. Anyone who knows me doesn’t ever question that. But by God's Grace and His strength I’ll continue on. Once again thank you for your prayer and support. I'll be waiting for that phone call.
Love, Jim and Jo Ann
Greetings from Boston, February 2011
Thank you for your love, prayers, and support to this ministry. This past September one of my nurses came to the house and told me that she got saved. She said this particular morning was like none she ever had before. She went out on her porch patio and was reading one of the tracts I had given to her. While reading the tract she broke down crying and asked Jesus to save her. She told me that she now goes out on the porch patio, but it is not like it used to be, it is now a place of peace. She said her husband had been noticing that she doesn’t look as tense as she use to. She is now telling her husband the gospel. Please pray for Kathy. She lives in New Hampshire and is looking for a church to attend. Praise the Lord!
So, this is what I’m doing, talking to all kinds of people in need of Jesus. Even through my infirmities and adversities there are doctors, nurses, and patients that I meet all the time who I tell about the Lord. So you can see that this is a great part of my ministry and to those who think I should get out of this ministry because of my health; well what would you tell Paul, John, or what about Jesus? Did they quit the ministry? No, all the way to death they did the will of God. “Not my will, but thine be done”. So if I’m slow getting my newsletters out don’t worry, I have not quit! Although some churches have dropped my support please keep praying for us.
One day I was going to the train station to give out tracts and one of my grandsons named Michael, who is 15 asked me if he could go with me. Praise the Lord! What a Christmas gift.
Also please pray for Jo-Ann; her sight is going bad and she is always so tired. I’m afraid for her. I keep thinking that she isn’t getting enough oxygen to her brain. The doctors are not sure of what is going on. If any of you can help with an answer please let me know. I’m also going to get help from one of my grandsons on how to use the computer. This would be great for the ministry. I’m sure some of you have wondered why I haven’t done this a long time ago; well, I’m still in the stone age and working my way out. I’m going to put together a web site as well.
This winter has been the worst I’ve seen since the blizzard of 1978. Every time we get out of one storm there is another one on the way. We now have 2 ½ feet on the ground. It is very dangerous because you cannot see behind snow banks at intersections. I’m glad to leave all the driving to others. They give me a ride to and from appointments, and when I go downtown or to the train stations.
I thank the Lord for all He does for me. I now own two fairly new electric wheelchairs. All they needed were batteries. I could not believe how the Lord got them for me, but he got them and they are awesome. It seems every time one breaks he replaces it. Well it’s time for me to go and I’ll write again in the spring time. Hopefully we have a spring, because it will take forever to get rid of the snow! You can’t even see over the snow banks and there is no telling when they will melt.
Lord Bless you all, Jim and Jo-Ann Costigan Luke 1:37
Greetings from Boston, July 2, 2010
Jo-Ann and I say thank you for your prayers and support. The Word of God says “My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work”. John 4:34 The main thing that Jesus centered on was doing the Fathers will, and to finish his work. We as Christians should have the same goal, which is to do the will of God and finish the work that God has called us to do.
Last summer I went thru the biggest trial of my life ever. I had fallen twice in two days and had to be rushed to the hospital, then was placed in a rehabilitation center from August thru December. I could not stand up or sit due to several severe injuries. Finally I was able to sit and was relieved of my injuries, but I could not walk. I lost two toes and after Christmas and my leg was amputated from the knee down.
At this time we were not sure what the Lord’s will was and how I could finish the work he called me to do. After much prayer I was ready to tell you I was through with the ministry. But the answer was clear from God. “Just do what you do best” the will of God. I had to cut back on working with the street people. Believe me they get many helps from other sources. I would meet them on a bench sitting out in the park. They would get a sandwich and most of all a gospel tract with my testimony. I sure could use some more Bibles and John and Romans from Bearing Precious Seed, they have very good print and quality. I am now getting request from Africa which went through a civil war. They are in need of Bibles and Bible studies.
By the way thank You Pastor Tom Bonn of Blessed Hope Baptist Church for buying two batteries for my electric wheelchair. That chair sure has come in handy with my limited mobility. I could use more “Financial stimulus”, there are many needs such as English and Spanish Bibles, John, Romans and the van needs a muffler and a battery, but what a boost that would be for this ministry!
Also, This past July, on my 57th birthday I was fitted for a new leg. My body is missing many parts now, but I remember what Paul said in 2 Cor. 5:1 “For we know that if your own earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, We have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens”. So no matter how many parts I lose down here, one day the Lord will cloth me with that heavenly body. Amen! Please pray for Jo-Ann, she is always tired and has pains in her belly, though they still don’t know what’s wrong with her. I fear for her feeling tired all the time. I am sorry for not sending a letter sooner (it’s been a year) it will not happen again.
Please remember the needs mentioned for this ministry. I will write again soon,
Occupying til He comes Jim & JoAnn Costigan
Prayer letter May 2006
Greetings from Boston,
It’s good to be able to write to you again and tell you some great things the Lord has done. First I would like to thank you for your prayers and support. Now that the price of gas is up to three dollars, it costs me sixty dollars each time I fill up my gas tank. This is vital since I depend on my car to get me to all the areas in the city where I preach and give out gospel tracts.
I am out on the streets again since I was released from the hospital. Since January, I’ve been admitted into the hospital two times. I have some bad news for you and would appreciate your prayers in these areas. Two months ago, I had half of a finger amputated due to either frost bite or circulation problems (the doctors are giving me different opinions). In the operating room, I said farewell to the finger as follows, “Well Mr. Finger, it’s time for you to leave me you’ve been through a lot with me these past 52 years, but you’ve got to go.” I now can tell people now that I have two pinky fingers on the same hand. However, this does not get in the way of me passing out tracts or anything else. I have found out that I can do just about anything as before. I just don’t enjoy looking at it. Preacher Luther Carver from North Carolina lost his finger years ago. Yet anytime I see him at camp meeting, it looks as if he can do just about anything. I also have a lower lung infection interfering with my breathing. This has been a battle I’ve been facing and will have to until the infection is resolved.
Yesterday after going to the hospital for a follow up appointment, I went to the train station to give out tracts and talk with people. I gave out about 125 tracts and 20 Spanish tapes. These are good tapes because I know the source. I had a good time. While downtown the other day, the Lord touched me to preach and it felt good. My lung problem did not get in the way. I met a young preacher boy that used to come out and street preach with me. He had not come out for about five years, but he started giving out tracts. He told me he wanted to start coming out again, but so far he hasn’t called me. People do this to me all the time. They get excited for the moment and then I don’t hear from them again. I refuse to chase people down. If the Lord puts it on them to come, it will be real and will last. I’ve been at it for the past 23 years, and I know it is the will of God for me.
Well, today I had problems with my van. I brought it to my mechanic and as we were looking over it, part of a fan blade broke off and flew by my face missing me by half of an inch. I found a junk yard that sold me a used one for fifty dollars. I guess you get an idea where your support for this ministry goes. I have to keep this van, because I don’t know where I would get another van with a wheel chair lift for free. I am so thankful for the way the Lord provides. I have no regrets and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. In my next news letter I’ve got some great things to tell you that I believe the Lord is going to do.
Please pray for my dad Allan Costigan. He’s not saved and his health is failing him. He has a Catholic priest counseling him, but of course he’s got to get away from this priest and come to the high priest Jesus Christ. He lives in Alabama so this makes it hard for me to get to him but that may change soon so please pray about this. I will let you know as things progress.
Your co-laborer in the field till he comes, Jim and Jo-Ann Costigan
Luke 1:37 For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon him for? Deuteronomy 4:7
Greetings from Boston; Summer 2003
This has been one of the best Spring and Summers I can remember for tract
distribution. Jo-Ann and I have been going to areas that do not have a Gospel
witness as far as I know (no good Bible Preaching Church) So these people do not
get confronted with the real Gospel. Instead when they go to their church they
are being preached a social gospel and some by a so-called woman minister. Some
of these old churches (Methodist, Presbyterian and Baptist) use to preach the
Gospel. In just one weeks time I was able to put out 3,350 tracts. I went to
the motorcycle rally in NH and (200,000) people were there. I was able to give
out 1,000 chick tracts called “The greatest story ever told”. There are some
tracts that I do not like and do not use, but this one has nothing but the
I have a box of "This was your life" tracts that I like and within a 1/2 hour time, I gave out 300 of them at a train station. I told Jo-Ann it has been 20 years this year, of giving out tracts and preaching on the street. Many of the same people have been coming through this station on the way to work for the past 20 years. Some people will be going out one door of the station and will intentionally come to the door where I am standing and grab a tract. Some people when they have already gone by me will turn right around and come back to get a tract.
am so grateful the Lord has called me to this work. I have had some of the greatest moments in my life through this ministry. There is a place on the Boston waterfront called Castle Island. It is an old fort which was used to fight off the British and was also used in other wars. It is a tourist trap and is now a peninsula, so you can drive on it. There were so many people there this past weekend that they had to turn people away. Hundreds of tracts were given out that day. There are so many places to give out tracts it's a tracters gold mine.
I have met, and have been able to tract many Muslims lately. They have been immigrating from Africa and the Middle East to the land of opportunity. Please keep me in prayer as I am planning to write another tract. I have already done several tracts; my testimony and the "Freedom Trail" tract (which I use on the Historic Boston Freedom Trail) which tells the historical freedom trail that Jesus blood provides. Thousands of tourists walk this scenic tour or take a trolley car. People come from all over the world to see Boston, New York and Washington D.C. As wicked as this country is, it is still considered the best in the world. I thank the Lord that we still have the freedom to worship God, preach on the streets and put out gospel tracts. With all this terrorism and homeland security, we may lose it.
I went to the summer Campmeeting at in Bristol TN. Because of my health I flew three hours rather than drive 16 hours to get there. I had a cloth bag with my battery charger in it (for my electric wheel chair). I taped the handles so it wouldn't fall out. The security people just asked what was in the bag and didn't undo the tape to see what this very heavy thing was. It could have been a bomb. I am so glad I'm saved, if a bomb went off it would have sent a suicide bomber to hell and me to heaven. I was able to give tracts to everybody I had contact with, other wise you have to have a permit and can't go beyond to the passenger gate.
I ask you to pray fervently for Joe-Ann. I can't get into it all, but she is having a lot to go through. My health has been better and I know it's the Lord doing it. There is so much to say it would take a ten-page newsletter to tell you. Here is a funny one: I was fishing with my son and had grand kids we used bread for bait and I said we should brought corn or worms for bait. As I pulled the line it felt heavy, I thought I might have a fish, but it was a ball of fishing string with two hooks and on the end of one hook was a piece of corn. I laughed so hard and thought it was a reminder of Philippians 4:19 ..”but my God shall supply all your need”...you know the rest. God is so good to us, we have a great God and I thank Him for taking such good care of me. I will write again sooner and sure to tell you of some of His mighty works Ps 106:1-2
Thank you once again, your friends in Christ Jim and Jo-Ann
For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon him for? Deuteronomy 4:7
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