An update from our Local director;
Bricks, another loads of sand and gravel have been bought.
Do you recall from April 11, the story of two sisters, Abir and Rana, in a north African country who were nearly beaten to death for their faith by their brother? He was instructed by his father, working in another country, and encouraged by his mother. Their crime was praying and having possession of a Bible that we (you) provided for them and all their fellow believers. (If you don’t’ remember this story, click here for a review.)
Being rescued by their pastor and taken to the hospital, God provided sympathetic doctors to care for them. When we learned of the medical costs you provided for them. Then we arranged for them to escape their family, who wanted them back to finish the job.
There is a great deal of improvement after comas, surgeries, therapies, and medication. Both are continuing their physical therapy and have begun to be able to move better. Their bruises are almost gone from their faces and bodies, and the doctors are examining them weekly. And they are happy with the reconstruction of their faces.
Their legal situation:
After leaving the hospital unnoticed, they remain in hiding from their family. Their daily needs are being cared for by their church, but the parents still want to sue the church and incarcerate the pastor for kidnapping. With the help of an attorney, we have been able to discourage them from taking action as it will lead to their arrest for the attempted murder of their daughters. So at the moment, all is quiet.
We ask for your continued prayers for their healing and safety.
Some photos of the current construction progress of the Bible College in Pakistan.
An update from our Local director;
I am pleased to inform you that we have started the construction work on widow's House.
The recent Youth seminar in Pakistan was a surprise to us. Besides all else that he does, Pastor Shaukat has, for half a year or more, been meeting with a pastor from a different denomination who had questions about our doctrine. As they met week after week, this brother "converted" to our understanding of scripture concerning the gifts of the Holy Spirit and other vital doctrines. So, to re-teach and re-train his young people, he asked Pastor Shaukat to come and speak to them. As you can see in the pictures, the room was crowded. But, what you don't see, is that 30 of these young people gave their hearts to Christ and 20 offered their lives to the Lord's service.
Remember, for them, "young people" is not just teenagers; it is anyone aged 12-30.
Pastor Shaukat will continue to disciple this other pastor and the leaders in his church. In developing countries, pastors often teach what they have heard on the radio or seen on television. Unfortunately, those mediums are usually Pentecostal or Charismatic. They think preachers in America and Europe know the Bible and view our preachers as the "authority" on doctrine. In fact, they think we all embrace those doctrines because they have never heard a preacher say otherwise. Our emphasis is to train them that the Bible is our only authority. Once that simple doctrine is accepted, it is easy to show the way to those who want to walk in it.
Anyway, it was a great conference, and I wanted you to see some of the photos Shaukat sent. Notice most of them are older, and there are as many or more men than ladies. Pakistan is primed to explode with the gospel, and we want to do all we can to light the fuse. Thanks for your help.
PS They have a youth camp in July that he has asked help for. I will send you the details in about a week. I hope you can help.
Shaukat preaching. The poster shows him and the host pastor. That is typically a Pentecostal means of advertising and promoting the man over the message. All denominations have adopted that method as that is all they have ever seen.
A close-up showing the ages of the "young people" and the ever-present drum.
Girls who won awards
"Boys" who won awards.
A Bible was given to every young person that attended. Notice their joy n receiving one and the reverence they show by placing a hand on their heart as they receive the gift.
Part of the crowd
There is no such thing as a miserable Christian in this group. On the contrary, they have the joy of the Lord.
Thank you to all who gave to complete the funding necessary for the Vacation Bible Schools in India and the building/repairing of the widow’s house in Pakistan. I hope no one was offended by my reminder, but I often have people say they didn’t get our email and didn’t know about the need, thus the reason for my repeating it.
As photos come in over the next few weeks, I will share them with you.
In the meantime, please pray for our people around the world. We may have a few bare grocery store shelves, but they have completely bare cupboards at home and no funds to purchase the little available food. I’ll send you a report in the next few weeks.
In case you missed the earlier emails, you can read them here;
India Vacation Bible School
Pakistan Widow's House
An update from our Local director;
Today, one footing is done.
We also bought 3 tons of lumber, plywood, and some tools.
From our local director;
As we are actually experiencing, I just would like to share some disadvantages in doing building projects during rainy season.
1. Prices of building materials go up because most projects stop during rainy season and so importing of materials stop and the remaining materials are being priced. So, the prices are in the mouths of the sellers. There is no more standard price.
2. Because of the rain, the soil is too watery and so the foundation bankers collapse. Because of this:
- My existing building, my house, can move, be stringed down, which is my most feared.
- We need to buy extra lumber. We are buying 3 ton of 3"x2", 3"x1" and 20 sheets of 4'x8' 6mm plywoods and make the covering around inside the foundation (pictures attached).
- Prices of those lumber and plywood go up.
- Because of banker collapsing and extra works are exerted, ground diggers priced their labor fees more than the standard price.
- We have to buy more tools for ground works including big tarpaulin and wall plugs because of extra kinds of performance needed.
- Because of raining and wet, the builders cannot use power tools under the rain and so they are breaking hard objects manually my using harp iron big hummers.
- When rains heavily, the workers need to avoid wetting so they stop to wait the rain stops and so the work is not fast yet we still pay daily wages.
- The rain wash away the stored sand so there are some losses.
- We have more stress doing the work during rainy season. We need to run around under the rain and can easily catch colds.
M&M’s & MRead Now
What does that mean? Am I trying to outdo the candy company with one extra M? Do I stutter when I type? Is my keyboard stuck? No, no, and no. What it means is – officially -- May is Motorcycle month!
And what do these three problems have in common? They are all problems that affect our national church planter's ability to evangelize more villages, train more preachers and start more churches.
Speed, time, and distance:
On foot, a preacher can only evangelize a small area. He doesn't have hotels to stay at. So he carries a bag of food and ventures out for the day. Soon, he has knocked on every door within his area. His radius on foot may be five miles, and with a bicycle, he can stretch it out to fifteen, but with a motorcycle, his radius of evangelism grows exponentially. -- If he has one.
It is common in some countries for a preacher to run into angry mobs of fanatic Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, or Animists. They are not content to scream, threaten and hurl insults; they want blood. They want to beat, cripple, cut off limbs and kill the messenger of God who has come to share the gospel with them. Many preachers have long been wounded and now limp and cannot run. Others can, but they cannot outrun every assailant that comes after them. On foot, they are helpless. On a bicycle, they stand a chance if they get enough of a head start. But they can quickly outdistance clubs, machetes, rocks, and flames on a motorcycle and return to preach another day. – If they have one.
An attacking bear:
We have often mentioned this threat, and as time goes by, it is becoming more of a problem. In India, it is tigers and bears; in Africa, it is hyenas (the only beast in the jungle that lions fear) and rhinos. There are dangers to our men, no matter the continent, that they cannot outrun on foot or escape on a bicycle. Their only hope of escape and survival is the speed and distance a motorcycle provides. As they travel further looking for that next unreached village, whether on foot or with a bicycle, they return home later and later. It's dark, and they can easily be seen as a meal or a threat because they unwittingly got too close to bear cubs playing in the brush on the side of a road or path. With a motorcycle, this problem is negated as the engine's sound would alert and frighten the wild animals of their impending arrival. – If he has one.
The Only and Obvious Solution:
Though you have often helped with this need, and though our next issue of the Progress Report will highlight it in greater detail, I wanted to get a head start and let you know that during May, our goal is to provide as many of our men as possible with a motorcycle. One group in Africa needs ten. One group in India needs more than fifty. And there are many groups of dedicated, worthy men like them worldwide. Globally, we can purchase a motorcycle for about $1300 (which can carry two preachers and a box of bibles or three preachers with no boxes). And though you can give any amount at any time, as the need will always be there, we have recently had so many requests that we decided to make May our Motorcycle Month. (M&M's &M)
So, rip open a bag and enjoy yourself for a moment. Then give online below and send an offering so together we can evangelize more people, allowing them also to enjoy Heaven forever. I don't know how much “PLAIN-er” I can make it.
Ukraine UpdateRead Now
Greetings praying friends!
Today is the beginning of 85 days of war. It is still so hard to wrap our minds around this horrible statement. We never dreamed that war would be a part of our lives, ministry, or everyday vocabulary. We were overwhelmed by the emotions and problems it heaved upon us until we came to a place that we could truly rest in God's care and provision for TODAY. "Give us this day our daily bread, Do not worry about tomorrow for today has enough cares of its own, Cast all your cares on Him for He cares for you" have been passages of Scripture that have carried us through. We do not know what tomorrow will bring but we rest in the fact that He has carried us thus far and will continue to do so!
Holy Trinity is continuing to accept and care for war refugees. Everyday new people arrive and others leave on their way to more permanent living arrangements. Working with refugees is trying and emotional. Please keep the church volunteers and all the people working to care for refugees in your prayers. Pray for them to be able to deal with their own grief, pain and worries properly as they give so much to others.
We have several praises to share. 1, One of our biggest new expenses caring for refugees is the electric bill. In Ukraine, non residential property has an extremely high tariff for electricity. We heat and cook with electricity. We were able to collect all the necessary documentation to apply for and be approved for a new government program that drastically reduced our electric bill. This program will last until one month after Marshall Law ends at the end of the war. This is a huge answer to prayer. It will allow our relief fund to stretch even further! 2, Ukraine is experiencing a huge fuel crisis. The lack of gas/diesel fuel due to Russia bombing refineries all of the country has caused huge lines, extreme prices, and rationing at the gas pump. We were able to sign a contract with a national fuel chain to purchase fuel in advance with a coupon system and given priority to not wait in 4/5 hour lines. This will enable our church to continue to transport humanitarian aid to partner churches in areas with little food, water, etc as well as servicing the needs of “our” refugees in Mukachevo. 3, We received another big load of food, cleaning supplies, Bibles and, beds from EveryNationEducation this week and the men who brought the aid stayed on for Sunday worship. They were a real encouragement to our people and their testimonies were powerful. Most of our refugees in residence are unchurched but attend worship on Sundays. 4, We have several new volunteers from the community who come on a daily basis to help.
The Lord is building a team of displaced Ukraine/Russia missionaries in Budapest to start a war time ministry with the 400,000 refugees in Budapest. Please pray for this ministry to be a tool for Kingdom advancement! As our participation in this ministry advances, we will keep you updated.
Thank you for continuing to pray for Ukraine, for our family and, for supporting our relief efforts financially. You are providing life changing and life sustaining support for vulnerable and scared war refugees who do not yet know Jesus Christ as their Savior. You are helping us Shine His Light brightly in Mukachevo and all over Ukraine.