The P----- are being evangelized in Kayapó, a foreign language to most of them; they desperately need a translation team, and the door is open now. Pray for a team. And please pray for a course for indigenous translators held in July. There are 4 Kayapó men and one S---- woman who want to go but need funding. The Kayapó would be doing Old Testament translation if the way opens up.
We have been greatly blessed by a Korean short term mission team from YWAM Toronto. During there week here they were able to do an art project in the chapel lobby (special murals to beautify the ugly and moldy plywood divider walls), host a Korea Night at the Evangelical Church of Aomori, and join together for worship and fellowship with the College & Career group that has met at ACC in the past. Please pray that the many new friendships they made here will serve to build up Christ's Church in Japan and a spirit of mission at home in Korea and Canada. We hope to send out a Prayer L
Please pray for Yuko's arm which become quite badly infected a few days after she hit her elbow against a piece of wooden furniture. This incident serves to remind us how precarious our ministry programs are at our current level of staffing at ACC (just us two) . . . that we are always just one misstep away from having to cancel everything. So far she hasn't been hospitalized because the IV treatment and antibiotics seem to be having an effect and the swelling can be kept under control through regular icing. We will get the results of the blood tests on Monday. Please pray that there isn't a more serious, underlying issue to this infection, and for a quick and complete recovery.
We are happy to announce that a couple of 6-11 month ministry opportunities at ACC are now officially posted on OMF's website:
Tutor/Ministry Assistant: https://opportunities.omf.org/mission-asia/detail/English-Tutor-and-Ministry-Assistant/50373631
Maintenance/Ministry Assistant: https://opportunities.omf.org/mission-asia/detail/Maintenance-Worker-and-Ministry-Assistant/50373633
I would love prayer as I prepare to give a seminar at Amplify, a conference hosted in partnership with the Billy Graham Association and the Lausanne Movement in Wheaton, IL June 26-28.
Provide a Ministry Update to be posted on KWM's website (note: this is available globally -- any sensitive information not to be shared on the KWM website should be sent directly to Don Nicol) .
This is our 3rd day in Colombia.
John Steinman and I had two wonderful days in Armenia. We met with Jake and Leidy Paul and visited their work with young expecting mothers at the crisis pregnancy center in the afternoon. We also spent some quality time with Ruben and Beverly Ramirez, and visited Shalom, the church they pastor. We felt the presence of God in their midst. We witnessed the work of his grace restoring people and bringing them freedom and new life in Christ. We joined them in their ministration of healing through teaching and prayer, celebracion and praise with singing and dancing at the Wednesday night service. Almost 400 people were in attendance.
Today we arrived in Barranquilla.
In the evening we met with a group of about 25 individuals, families, youth and children, who have come from Venezuela. It was very challenging to hear their stories of how they left their country and are settling in a new life in Colombia. After having shared the gospel with them, we prayed for each one of them individually. They have all accepted Christ as their Saviour and have decided to make God their place of refuge. Amidst the challenges of their stories, their fears, concerns and pain, there was a sense of comfort in hearing the word of God and in the fellowship of the Gospel.
We heard stories of pain and of God's grace through the people of faith who are embracing and providing some shelter to this small group of Venezuelans. There are a few thousands in Barranquilla. This outreach is under the leadership of the Bravos and of brother Yeiger, his wife and children.
Pray for students and staff on missions trips (ending mid June) in East Asia, "Desert Rain", Peru and Denmark, as well as on Create mission trip in Guelph (all summer).
Time to say Goodbye
We have felt for a while now that God was leading us back to Canada. On 21 April the time came for us to leave Pakistan a country that has been ‘home’ for us for over 29 years! The last couple of weeks in Mirpur Khas were punctuated with sorting, packing and more sorting and packing. A number of farewell parties, gifts, many invitations for chai, lunch and supper! We were touched by the love and appreciation expressed by so many which made leaving very hard indeed.
We have spent May in the Toronto area, debriefing and making plans with Interserve, visiting friends and Churches. We even fitted in a trip to Estevan, SK, to see daughter Rebecca and her family. We are also slowly getting used to being in Canada again and learning to pay attention to the weather report – it actually might rain (or snow) or get cold. Imagine that!
Though we have returned to Canada for a few years, we will continue our association with Interserve. Sheila will continue to be an active partner. While the details of her duties are still being finalized, she will work part-time with Interserve’s International Office as before, but also part-time with the Canadian National Office. This will certainly involve both national and international travel.
Bill will be working full-time in Newfoundland as a family doctor with Eastern Health in Whitbourne and Chapel Arm. We thank God for providing this job and on familiar turf too. This is where Bill has been doing summer locums for the past 9 years.
We are also thankful that God has provided a basement apartment below our older son, Daniel and his family. So we’ll be getting lots of opportunities for grandparent duties.
• We just received an email saying that Bill’s long-time medical colleague, Dr Ebenezer, has just left SaCHA, the community health project Bill had worked in. Please pray for Imroze, the project coordinator, who will have to lead the project.
• Pray for our settling in to our new home and new jobs.
• Pray for guidance on what other ministries we should become involved in when we return to Newfoundland.
• Continued support for Sheila’s work with Interserve.
We wanted to thank you all for your faithful support of our ministry over the past 29+ years. God has been faithful in providing us with people like you who supported us in prayer as well as financially. He is indeed good all the time!
We are back home in Tucson again, after a month-long ministry trip to California and Costa Rica. A 3-day car breakdown and a sleepless night reminded us that it was a critical trip with some opposition from the Enemy, but at the same time, we were well ungirded by your love, your friendship and your prayers.
Those days went so well! If you have a moment, enjoy the pictures and a few details in the letter attached below.
If this note is all you have time to read, please thank God with us for all the answers to prayer and pray for Mary Anne as she prepares to teach in our church here in Tucson on Isaiah 40 and 41, on June 3rd and 10th!
Brenda and I just returned home from our Josiah Venture Spring Conference in Czech Republic. It was a wonderful time with about 300 of our staff. We studied the book of Romans together and Brenda and I enjoyed many opportunities to care for and shepherd our team. We are so thankful that you as our Knox family have partnered with us for so many years!
Some Prayer Requests:
- Pray for Brenda and I as we continue to settle into our new home here in Abbotsford. We have found a church to call home and are enjoying being a part of a community group. Our busy time of travel is over until September so we are looking forward to getting to know our new neighbourhood over the next few months.
- In just a few weeks Josiah Venture's summer camp ministry will be in full swing throughout Central and Eastern Europe with thousands of young people attending these English, sports, or music camps. Many of them will be hearing the good news of Christ for the first time. Pray that God will work in many young lives in a powerful way!
- In our new role as the Director for Josiah Venture Canada we are involved in forming many new relationships and connecting churches, schools, pastors, potential donors, and young people to this ministry. Pray for good contacts and connections as we communicate some of what God is doing in and through Josiah Venture and ways that people can partner with what he is doing.
- We always appreciate prayer for our young adult children. Amy as she lives and serves as lead writer for Josiah Venture in Czech Republic. Brad as he lives in Austin Texas working as a graphic designer. Katie & Dane and our 8 month old grandson Leo living in Midland Texas. Dane is working as a videographer at a large church.
Donna attends InterVarsity's Campus Staff Gathering, preaches at 2 Toronto area Chinese churches, and teaches a training session on intercultural welcome to the university-aged summer Pioneer Camp Ontario staff, pray that all involved would encounter the Lord Jesus Christ and grow as lifelong disciples and kingdom leaders.
We are applying for our visa this week. Hil's opportunity to teach in a recognized school may help us.
Just a quick to update you on my trip to Colombia and Venezuela. Our plane was two hours late in leaving Pearson.
This morning John and I found out that because of the upcoming presidential election in Colombia in the next few days, all seven boarders between Colombia and Venezuela will be closed this Wednesday at midnight and will be reopened on Sunday, May 27, at midnight.
Our first plan was to go to Venezuela on Friday, May 25th and be there till May 29th. We have now to work with an alternative plan and may not be able to visit the two cities in Venezuela where we had made arrangements with local pastors. And we will have to change tickets again since we might have to return to Barranquilla.
We are on our way to Armenia in one hour where we will be visiting with Bev and Ruben Ramirez, Jake and Leidy Paul, their church, ZonaJ and the crisis pregnancy centre, etc.
On Wednesday we fly to Barranquilla to visit with the Bravos. We would be driving with Hernan Bravo to Venezuela on Friday, taking some food supplies to a children’s feeding program. (As you might know, or not, there is a huge food crisis and hunger going on in Venezuela right ow).
We will likely do that on Monday instead, given the closure of the boarders this Wednesday.
We will meet the Atiencias in Bogota next a week tomorrow. They have a continental wide biblical expository preaching training program.
Please find attached our most recent Prayer Letter--heavy on pictures and light on words.
This update is for those who have been following developments regarding the ACC's access road and the need to repair the causeway across a city owned stream.
Many years ago in Toronto I had a mentor in International Student Ministries who sometimes, when time was inadequate to pray through a lengthy prayer letter, would pray what she called a "Hezekiah prayer." She would lay the letter "before the Lord" and pray, "Lord, you know. We entrust all this to you."
Late Friday night we received an email from a city official regarding Moya district's formal request to the city to repair the causeway connecting ACC's access road across a city owned stream. We have copied and pasted a translation of the full email at the end of this update for either in depth prayer coverage or "Hezekiah prayers." The heart of the email is that the response that the city intends to give to Moya district is as follows:
"The causeway of which a section has crumbled away was constructed, after receiving permission from the city, by the Ski Hill Road neighbourhood council and, therefore, repairs also should be carried out by the residents of the neighbourhood."
Please pray for wisdom as we craft a letter of appeal in response to this initial position taken by the city. Our position is that we are paying to repair our access road but the city should pay for repairing the causeway because it is on city land and ACC and our neighborhood are not the causeway's only stakeholders. ACC's access road is used by city vehicles and workers to access the stream, and by members of the general public who pick mushrooms and edible plants along the stream.
I m feeling well amigo!! After I presented my speech, they told me I am doing very well at the university!
If I can do PhD then I can teach at the university! I was talking on the importance of helping children to get education is to prepare a wonderful future for the coming generation!
A lecturer from Kenya asked me a question on a community day! "What will you do in helping the society?" My answer, I will be helping orphans specifically in making sure they get proper education for their future!
I gave lots of examples about how Mama struggles in making sure we are getting all education supplies and health services.
I wish I have a camera to be recording some video to share
Janet MacDougall, a former Knox attendee and strong KWM supporter, entered into the presence of her Lord on Thursday past. She was found in her home, having died of an apparent heart attack.
I’ve been tied up with trying to get all the last minute things done before leaving Brazil, including selling my car. . Now I have arrived back in Durham as of the day before yesterday.
As I write this Brenda and I are sitting in Vienna waiting for our train to Czech Republic. We’re here to attend Josiah Venture’s annual Staff Conference along with some leadership meetings. We’d appreciate your prayers for:
- One of our roles at these conferences (about 300 in attendance) is to meet informally with our staff and their families and engage in pastoring and shepherding them. We believe that the healthier our team is the more fruitful they will be as they minister to others. Pray for good connections for Brenda and I and wisdom and discernment as we meet with many.
- While here we’ll have the opportunity to meet with the team leaders of each of the 14 European countries that Josiah Venture serves in. Our purpose in these meetings will be to discern together how Josiah Venture Canada can best partner with and assist in resourcing these ministries. Pray that these meetings will be productive...in many ways they will help to set our agenda in Canada for our next year.
- Over the next few weeks Brenda and I will be on various planes, trains, and automobiles. Pray for safety and good connections as we travel.
Thanks so much for your partnership with us...your prayers are much needed and always appreciated!
Hey, who is there? “Dr. Mkulu”
Mkulu, who? ‘Yes, a lecturer who will teach us Theories, concepts and methodologies in our Educational Planning module’
What’s that? “I don’t know, but you will know it after she teaches it.”
That was another week that we got to meet our new lecturer Dr. Mkulu. That time was the beginning of a new module ‘Theories, concepts and methodologies in Educational Planning’. Before we started, I thought it would be pretty easy but later it was a big challenge as we were asked to follow some steps and principles. There also were complicated concepts along learning but the teaching was deep and moving.
There were great students and lecturer-centered discussions. We talked about Educational planning, about being an educational planner and more. One thing that stuck out to me the most was that we are all planners of our own lives, the way we plan for our own lives speaks about how we too would plan for education.
Day after day, the lessons became very interesting. I learned that flexibility is definitely something we all need to learn. To bring changes in Education we must be prepared for it. If I were to ask you ‘What will you do to be where you want to be tomorrow?” Then ask yourself if what you are doing today is getting you closer to where you want to be tomorrow.
Education in many developing countries like Tanzania doesn’t work out accordingly because we don’t start at least with taking our responsibilities and actions in bringing positive changes that may be of great benefit to everyone within the whole country. So, what should Tanzania do to improve equity and quality Education? Educational planners and experts have to learn and earn knowledge on Educational Planning.
Planning in Education is something that takes time. It is not easy, it is a step by step, everyday process but it is wonderful when it is done right.
What I can say now after learning -Theories, concepts and methodologies in Educational Planning module’? I have become filled with new kind of knowledge, joy and hope that will enable me to plan and work with Educational planners in my country, so that our Education will exceed the needs of every individual in the country. It is a life-long journey of transformation, no matter what time may bring, but I want to explore as much of the depth of education in Tanzania and use my knowledge in extending this change that is needed in Tanzania.
Semester One Rocked My World
Assignments written, presentations given semester one exams turned in, this means that semester one is almost over! Time always flies, and suddenly we were finished our first semester at Saint Augustine University. It was a very busy semester yet an exciting one. Reflecting on what has brought me to this point, I can say that semester one has rocked my world in the best way possible. It was a blur of tears, joy screams, hugs and wonder. I got transformed by learning the most amazing knowledge that may change this world someday.
Some Lessons to remember
Be obedient and trust God’s calling; if the Lord taught me any experiences in the first semester, it is what trusting Him looks and feels like. Unfortunately, it’s hard for me to explain or even begin to describe. One of the big lessons that I gained that semester is to be obedient and trust God’s calling just as my mom told me even before I applied for master’s degree at Saint Augustine University.
Mom said “Son, I know it’s going to get hard but just trust His calling, when you begin to doubt just look back on all that God has done this far and keep trusting and know He is faithful. You will see the light eventually” Trust, let Him take control and be obedient, work hard, pray and He will take care of the rest”
As always, my precious Mom used to share Bible verses with me that they encourage me today. In high school my mom and friends from Canada signed a greetings card and the bible verse was Psalm 32:8 it’s written, “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go, I will counsel you with my eyes upon you ….” By the end of this semester, I saw how fitting this verse was. With so much reliance on God, I overcame every trial that came through my study schedule day in and day out.
We can make our own plans, but the Lord determines our steps. Visions were born within every human being. Before I applied for university I planned to apply to study in Canada and in Kenya. When I expected to study at that time in my life then the Lord determined my steps by taking me to Saint Augustine University. I didn’t know exactly why but what I knew was He was with me leading me every step of the way and He became a most precious treasure of my life. ‘We can make our own plans, but the Lord determines our steps’--Proverbs 16:9
Public presentation offers many opportunities to grow in speaking; Presentations have offered many opportunities to grow in speaking. All of our tutors focused on helping us to present well through group presentations. During this semester I was able to do public presentations wanting to several times in classroom. On some occasion I was appointed to pray in front of people specifically my classmates. For sure it has been a slow, slooooowwww, growing process of making preparations.
Don’t give up, trust God and do well. Another thing I have learned is to not give up, I could always believe that I was going to do well academically. During this road of success there are many things that can lead us to fail. I knew that a desire to learn brought me to the university so I couldn’t give up and not work hard. My principle was, pray hard, work hard, quit quitting, don’t cheat but have fellowship with others.
Best steps to become the better Educational leader
In this whole semester I have loved changes, I loved the challenges and excitement of newness. Before I moved on I loved to look back and write on the lesson that I learned over the first semester. I was more than exited to write on how to become a good tutor or leader. According to me, the following are the ways of becoming a good leader and tutor.
1 Pray and trust - some of lecturer like Dr. Chrispina have been powerful, influencing us by praying before the beginning of the classes with the intention of asking protection, sense of understanding and help from God. In order to fulfill the desire, we must talk to God asking for our help, the Bible tells us to depend and trust in Him. ‘Proverbs 3: 5-6. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He” will make your paths straight
2 Know your students; the process of coming to know students as learners is often difficult and challenging but it is very important for the teacher to know students so that to maximize learning. In this past semester all of my lecturers knew us by name as well as our personal profile, they were kind and friendly. They know us and this creates a psychological safe environment for every one of us to increase engagement and success as well as to develop greater emotional intelligence in the classroom. It was really wonderful
3 Know your subject. As a teacher, it’s important to know your subject because it makes easier to teach, to translate and to encourage understanding. My tutors introduced their subject and a course outline as a whole. This helped us to understand the framework of the whole course as well as how we could be organized for more understanding and generation of the quality learning. During meetings, we knew the subject and lesson that we were going to discuss.
4 Be available and make the lesson relevant - this is another thing that I learned as a tutor or leader don’t be involved in too many things, lest you forget other schedules in the ministry and school. Make sure that you attend to the place you are supposed to be by maintaining time. All my tutors facilitated me in semester one at Saint Augustine university have been available all the time to help equip us with knowledge
5 Teach with kindness in an organized place- philosophers believe that there is no single best way to lead or teach. As a tutor one should apply different ways that will enable students or members to know what you are displaying but make sure you accompany these with kindness. If a student is a very slow learner, guide him/her by doing guidance as well as correcting him/her with kindness. The classroom must be well organized
6 Pay attention- a good leader or tutor knows where his students are and what they supposed to do. He/she have to pay a great attention to impart the students with the knowledge that will help in transforming their lives. For instance, doing a presentation for the first time was hard but our leaders paid an active attention in making sure we are doing in a right and positive manner.
7 Lead by action and ask questions- a good leader and tutor sets an example that he/she wants the students to follow by actively work hard in all activities in the organization. This time the Lord has provided me with amazing people to whom I have gained an amazing experience in leadership that will help me to make my next steps a reality. We were guided wisely, being asked question if we understood or not. It was more than the lesson.
8 Be an encourager and accept changes -a tutor helps the students to build confidence when a student does something good cheer him/her on as he/she reach the dreams. This can help students to have willingness, hope and anticipations to take the necessary steps to see real changes in educational institutions, government and in their personal life
In conclusion, the transformative experiences on how first semester looked like, I prayed that the Lord would guide us to honor the call He has placed on each of our lives in whatever door opens over the coming semester!
Beginning of the Second semester, March -July 2018
As I woke up this morning I couldn’t help but think about how faithful God has been through all this. I am over-filled with joy to say the least. To think of the valley and darkness I have overcome through Jesus this past semester, the very things the devil put in my life to try to destroy me, God used for good. To see and begin second semester, beautiful sight, and good health just reminded me about God’s unfailing word and how he tells us that…. ‘although there is sorrow and pain, cries through the night – Joy comes in the morning (Psalm 30:5)’
Seeing the fullness of the Lord in a way I have never imagined. Seeing everything a semester ago, I was stressed about completely, the disappointment about hard courses, paper writings and presentations seemed to not even matter. I am looking forward to where God is taking me and I promise not to look back!
Happy new semester everyone, welcome to March-July 2018!!! With a new semester starting that means many students will seek a fresh start in their life and set new resolutions. New plans will be set in motion. Some students will be striving to be a better student, or to truly chase after their dream this second semester. It is always so great to have these goals to change their life in some way.
While about to embark on this new semester, I don’t have to wait for the new semester to begin but I simply have to be active and ask God to truly work on myself and on the other students by giving a fresh start every single day. I am looking forward to see what the Lord has in store for us in this semester.
All very valid questions my lecturers and friends have been asking us daily as soon as we touched the soil of St. Augustine University.
How are you feeling?
Are you ready?
What are you most excited about this semester?
What are you most nervous about this semester?
What are you thinking about being at the university again?
My thoughts, answers and emotions have been scattered like a kicked ant hill. I felt nothing! Not excited, not nervous, not sad, just nothing but the mere thoughts of sitting with Jesus and reading books to search my heart is overwhelming.