Hanneke Cost Budde April 29
Click here my latest news letter.
Thanks for all your faithful support and may the Lord bless you!
Happy Hanneke and kids.
Bill and Sheila April 28
Please pray for a meeting that Sheila will have on 11 May with a group of Pakistani Christians interested in sending their people cross culturally to serve in missions. Pray for wisdom and guidance for the next steps forward.
Scott and Beth Hurd April 28
We'd like to provide a brief update on Anne's health and their continuing journey.
At this stage, things have largely stabilized into an ongoing pattern. At present, there are no further medical options for removal of the cancer, and there are no current treatment options (like chemotherapy) that will reduce or eliminate the cancer itself. Anne has a local medical team that understands her case very well, and is providing helpful, responsive care regularly (like when she becomes dehydrated and needs fluids -- she just drops in, and they fill 'er up!). Their primary goal is to do whatever possible to stabilize and improve Anne's day-to-day quality of life, and allow her to be as active as possible, while managing the ongoing symptoms.
There is a drug treatment that is designed to help with the symptoms caused by the cancer - but it is not without its own side-effects. Anne and Coleman have decided that having this treatment is definitely providing more benefits than undesirable effects, so she is receiving monthly injections of Lanreotide. The first 3-5 days after each injection are pretty rough - nausea, pain, discomfort, etc. but then Anne typically has 7-10 days of feeling quite good and energetic. As the drug wears off later into the month, the symptoms return at varying levels, so things are a bit more challenging up to the time of the next treatment.
We are deeply grateful for the continuing prayers of friends and family all around the world, and if we are being honest, we all feel times of sadness, and long to see Anne healed in a miraculous way. But we are also profoundly thankful for the consel, encouragement, and practical support we continue to receive from so many, and we see clear evidence of God's hand at work even in this situation. Scott will be traveling in May to visit both Canada and the US around some leadership meetings in Denver, and Beth will travel to North America over the school break this year in July. We will treasure those times together as a family for sure!
Please continue to pray:
1) for Anne's daily comfort, peace, strength and healing;
2) that God will be glorified through this situation, that it will unfold according to His will, and that Anne and Coleman will continue to trust in Him daily for all their needs;
3) for Samuel and Eleanor to continue to thrive and grow;
4) giving thanks for the provision of a caring, highly competent medical team that continues to treat and monitor Anne;
5) that Anne will be able to regularly time with Samuel and Eleanor;
6) for plans that will see Anne and Coleman moving to their own home later this year, with the help of an au pair for whom they are now searching;
7) giving thanks for Coleman's faithful, selfless support of Anne and the whole family;
8) giving thanks for Anne's unwavering confidence in God's grace and provision, and the opportunities she has had to speak into others' situations as well;
Anne's and Coleman's latest update (from their blog) is linked below. It's a bit long, but it does convey a glimpse into their circumstances, an honest reflection of living in challenging times, and also the confidence of trusting in God each day.
Thank you to all of you who continue to pray, and who have been the very hands and feet of Christ to our whole family. We give thanks for you daily!
Rosemary Walker April 28
Warm greetings from Bunia, where I am very much enjoying my life and ministry here. Thanks to all for your prayers and for your practical support. Sorry not to have written more often and more personally, but my class preparation and records take much time. Also, we have to work around the frequent power shortages each day, and sometimes I guess the internet connection or the power of the electricity is too weak to send our messages. Aside from that and a few other inconveniences such as a serious water shortage, things are going along fine. I am invited to our pastor’s wedding this Saturday, and am looking forward to that.
The work and my students are a joy. I teach five days a week, and am hoping to be able to leave the computer lesson outlines that I’m preparing with the church and school leadership for others to be able to teach an introductory computer course to beginners in the days to come without having to start more or less at scratch as I have. Happily, they had an old typing text at the teacher training college (the ISP, Institut Supérieur Pédagogique) where I’ve taught before, and when the academic dean gave it to me to help me plan the computer course, I was amazed to see my name in it! This book is a life-saver for me, as it outlines how to sit properly at a typewriter/computer, etc., and then moves into touch-typing from the very beginning - “fff jjj fff jjj ddd kkk ddd kkk…”. My ISP students are beginning to memorise where to place their fingers, and I trust that they will be able to type properly without looking at the keyboard before August rolls around. Of course, it would be a little easier for them to progress if they had access to a computer more than once a week; but we are grateful for this one time, and I have found a keyboard on line, printed off several copies of it, pasted them on cardboard and given one to each of them so that they can practise typing at other times as well.
Click here for prayer letter.
Luke and Yuko Elliot April 26
Please pray for the very important meeting between the board of the Aomori Christian Center and representatives of OMF Japan that will take place on Friday, April 28 (Thursday, April 27 in North America time). The main item on the agenda is working through the technicalities of the transfer of ownership of the ACC property to OMF from another mission organization that is no longer active in the region. A decision also needs to be made on whether ACC should be shut down for the 9 months we are gone (for safety and cost saving) or whether an attempt should be made by some board members to run programs during the summer.
Please also pray for the "ACC Sunday" we will be doing at Kominato Church on April 30. Luke will be preaching and doing a PowerPoint presentation. This is an important partnering church with which we need to re-strengthen ties.
Elizabeth Matthias April 26
I've failed miserably on the timing of my prayer requests this month! Celebrating the sacrifice and resurrection of our Savior got me wonderfully distracted! Now, back in the trenches, pressing on in Christ, here my requests:
New opportunities begin this month to train student-pastors as well as to teach and supervise counseling students in another church--workers for the harvest! Persistent prayer also needed for counseling sessions, the requests for which continue to increase, as well as the depth of the needs. Revival?!
Bill Fitch April 25
Click here for Bill's report on his recent trip to Africa.
Karyn McDowell April 25
Please remember Karyn in your prayers. Her father, Archie, died today in his 97th year. He had recently gone into a seniors' home. Karyn and her sisters will miss him greatly. Karyn was one of his chief caregivers and supporters for the past several years. Karyn is an dedicated supporter of KWM workers. His funeral will be held this Saturday at 12 noon at Pine Hills Cemetery, 625 Birchmount Road, Scarborough, ON M1K 1R1
Marg Roth April 24
We have had lovely weather today and hope Toronto has as well.
I got to get to a wonderful service Easter Sunday at one of my daughters church. They also had a baptismal service at the beginning with 5 older teens being baptized. My granddaughter was one. At the second service there were 6 more young people giving their testimony and being baptized. It was wonderful being at a service with so many young families.
My last hospital stay 6 months ago left some wrinkles in my life I am still working on fixing. One thing that had been bothering me the last couple of years was my lack of having much of an outreach but that has been overcome. I have PSWs who come twice a day so it is like a little United Nations to be a witness to. Some want to talk and other have questions. Two have told me they are Christians. One is South Korean and we usually have a bit of an English lesson while she is here. I am glad that The Lord has brought me a new ministry.
Wed my granddaughter is going with the robotics team from Woodside Christian School to St Louis MO to compete. Please pray for them as they compete that they will all keep well , do their best and honor our Lord in it all.
This should be a wonderful experience for her. Competition goes to April 29.
As always I miss Knox and keep you there in my prayers. I so much appreciate the support sent both prayer and financial and am grateful.
Wally Lee April 27
Please remember Wally Lee as he reocers from his surgery and awaits biopsy results. Wally and Bernie are faithful supports of KWM workers.
Jack and Mary Anne Voelkel April 23
Nikki Toyama-Szeto [who will b e featured at your KWM weekend, May 6 and 7] is a dear friend and a precious and very knowledgeable woman of God. We are so glad that she can minister to all of you at Knox and only wish we could be right there with you. We will be praying from afar.
im Mason April 23
Please click here for my latest prayer bulletin.
Hanneke Cost Budde April 21
I have been very busy today with work at home and at the office and at Manoleo.
Yesterday I took Faraja to the hospital after failing to get tests done the day before. He has tonsillitis. I was happy to get out of the hospital and took him to the dentist. We sat in the waiting room for 2 hours only to be told that they cut the electricity and the drill was broken anyway... The doctor told us he would be at another clinic in the evening. We went there to sit in the waiting room for another hour. He did drill and fill 3 cavities... using his gloved hand to put in the fillings. This took him one and a half hour! We went home in the dark. I don't think I will visit him often! I must admit that I was quite frustrated.
Today we went to Malumba and the work there is almost completed. Mahona and Faraja had come along. We were given some fresh water melon's. We came to Manoleo and helped Thomas who had many clients. We gave him one of the melons. Now I just finished making spaghetti sauce... Karibu for your favourite meal!
Knox World Mission Conference 2017: May 6 and 7
Responding to a God of Love and Justice
Saturday, May 6: Formation Day
In conjunction with the Knox World Mission Conference, our spring Formation Day will be focused on God's mission. We will be hosting three, day-long discipleship tracks:
Responding to a God of love and justice: How should Christians respond to the justice and compassion issues of today? What does the bible say? How do we make a difference as a church and individually? How do we put our Christian convictions into action in our culture? (Teaching led by Nikki Toyama-Szeto, you can find her biographical blurb below.)
Evangelism for Ordinary People: Engaging our friends and colleagues with the gospel and orienting our lives around invitational witness must be intentional, or it will be neglected. It can feel intimidating and overwhelming … as well as delightful and inspiring. It is more easily undertaken in the company of friends. Come join this track for practical equipping for sharing the good news of Jesus with those around you! (Teaching led by Nicky Laxton-Ward: Nicky is currently on pastoral staff at First Alliance Church in Scarborough and has previously served for many years with IVCF, as well as worked with John Bowen at Wycliffe College. She is a gifted evangelist and teacher of evangelism)
Understanding Your Muslim Neighbour: in our multi-faith world, Christians must learn the skills of listening and understanding in or order to share our faith well. This track will include dialogue about the Islamic faith along with lots of opportunity for questions with Rev. Devadason. In the afternoon session of this track, Jon Fuller will lead in an interactive session, with case studies, helping us learn to understand, relate to and love our Muslim neighbour. Come prepared to be stimulated and stretched. (Teaching led by Rev. Benjamin Devadason is pastor of New Life Christian Church in Scarborough, and Jon Fuller spent a lifetime of service with Overseas Missionary Fellowship, serving as a church planter in southern Philippines, then International Director for Mobilization, and now serves as Canadian Director of OMF).
9:30 - Worship
10:00 - Teaching session 1
12:00 - Lunch
1:00 - Teaching session 2
3:00 - Closing
Registration + Price
Register here: knoxtoronto.org/formation
The cost is $20 per adult, and $10 per child.
Age 2-12 are invited to participate in a special program with our Children's Ministry team. Nursery care may be available for infants from 0-2, based on need. Please register early so we can properly accommodate all the kids!
Sunday, May 7 @ 11 am: Shalom and Human Responsibility
How do we live out God's call for us to bring peace? Our guest preacher, Nikki Toyama-Szeto will continue to explore with us the Biblical foundation of ministries of mercy and justice.
Sunday, May 7 @ 5pm: One Body, Many Parts: Bringing Partnership, Innovation, and Biblical Justice to Missions
We will be focussing on partnership with the global church during this service, and will include stories of people who are doing creative things with their lives, their jobs, and their resources, as they engage with God's call.
Guest Preacher: Nikki Toyama-Szeto
Nikki is a brilliant thinker, writer and speaker on the topics of justice, human trafficking, ethnicity, gender and leadership. She is passionate about making space for the other in her life, ministry, and work.
Nikki writes and speaks from her experiences as a leader in organizations like International Justice Mission, the Urbana Conference, and InterVarsity Christian Fellowship.
Nikki has authored or co-authored three books:
- More Than Serving Tea: Asian American Women on Expectations, Relationships, Leadership and Faith,
- God of Justice, and
- Partnering with the Global Church.
Mary Jane Fandrich April 21
Preparation for the ministry in Lebanon
You may think that by now one would have it all together, but there is always more to learn. A fellow missionary picked up on an aspect of culture that I had not been conscious of in spite of my close association with and experience of living in the Middle East. Our Anglo/American culture of Law and Sanction does not mesh well with the Middle Eastern culture of Honor/Shame.
It is amazing to watch God orchestrate His witness and His Praise in the dislocation of human activity. He has replaced the guidance of the Home of Hope, putting in place men who are willing to draw the staff together for prayer and Bible study. He used a family funeral to further His kingdom and witness to uncommitted relatives. He returned me to health after a long bout with the flu. Thank you for your prayers! Pray for my summer of preparation for return to Lebanon. Theresa alerted me that I need to inform myself regarding the dynamics of ministry in "Honor/Shame" cultures.
As in any family, the order of authority must be maintained. So with a group like 70 castaways, we carefully support each other in matters of discipline. This is particularly important as we come from mixed backgrounds culturally. Lying and cheating are prohibited behavior, but the approach to correcting such behavior can be quite different.
As has been observed in many contexts, "You can get the child off the street, but you can't get the street out of the child". Only the Gospel can do that. The King has one more move!
I shall be attending Honor, Shame, & the Gospel, Reframing Our Message for 21st Century Ministry conference to be held at Wheaton College (my alma mater) June 19 to 21. That will follow the graduation ceremony from University of Toronto for the M. Ed. degree in Linguistics and Literacy, a preparation that will put me in a position of more authority with education in Lebanon. This will include sharing time with my daughter, Christina, her husband, Stefan and Anna, my now 16 year old granddaughter. If her plans settle on attending Wheaton College, she will be the third generation of my family to do so.
I have just enjoyed a wonderful restful visit with my son Eric, and his family in Tokyo. Just to amaze you, I got a round trip ticket Toronto/Tokyo for $550 US. Can't fly to Dallas for that!
That visit has coordinated with Palm Sunday/ Easter and Cherry Blossom Season in Japan. Amazing. The contrast in cultures is mind boggling.
Jacob and Natasha Chandler April 20
As summer approaches MoveIn teams across Canada prepare for the season of building relationships outdoors with neighbours, many who come from unreached nations. Pray for neighbourhood children camps, outreach projects, and casual outdoor gospel-conversations.
Laurie Armstrong April 19
I'm at home with a detached retina (2 laser procedures so far, likely 1 more this Fri in Toronto). 80% success rate for this treatment, so am praying that I'm in the 80% and that it heals properly 1st time, AND with no cataract. (Unlike the other eye 10 yrs ago, 3 detachments, 3 surgeries, 4 months at home before it finally healed, + another 6 months of no vision in that eye until it was deemed safe to deal with the surgery-related cataract.) Tho even if this laser procedure turns out to be unsuccessful, it would put me in much better shape for full surgery.
I'm extremely thankful for amazing TO surgeons who were able to move quickly on getting treatment organized - it was detaching very quickly, resulting in really tight timing and window to catch it before full detachment.
So far so good. Fortunately I have lots of audio books! I'm off work entirely this week except for what I can do by phone and 5 minute segments of phone messages or emails. I'll know better after my next appt level re restrictions over the next 6-8 wks.
For students: 175+ staff and students begin summer missions trips end of April (university campuses: Montreal, Peru, Paris, East Asia, "Desert Rain"). Pray for bold, Spirit-led, loving & fruitful witness.
Nabeel Qureshi April 18
Click here for Nabeel's latest blogs: vlog 23, vlog 24 and vlog 25.
Phil Reinders April 18
Please pray for Phil as he recovers from shingles.
Ray Chin April 17
Please remember Ray Chin, Knox Session Clerk, as he recovers from recent surgery and awaits a biopsy report.
Ruth Thomson April 16
Happy Easter! Ruth is back and doing very well. May His resurrection mark the death of your sorrows, tears and troubles. And may it mark the resurrection of your joy, favour and fulfilled destiny.
Mahona Pascal April 14
Wishing you all the best and happiness as you celebrate the this important day of our life. Happy Easter from Mahona
Here is my prayer, I hope it's yours too:
"Dear Jesus, I can’t begin to thank You enough for taking care of my sin when You died on the cross. I acknowledge Your sacrifice, and I believe in the power of Your resurrection. Thank you Jesus. You are the most High and I praise your name.
Ruth Thomson Medevac April 14
Ruth Thomson was evacuated on March 26th from Alta Floresta, in the Brazilian Amazon, to Brasilia due to health reasons. She was feeling very weak and having a high fever. She is currently doing well, has regained most of her physical strength back and has been authorized to fly back to Canada where she should be arriving soon.
We are very thankful to Everton, Operations coordinator from PEC (the Medevac) air transportation who coordinated the rescue operation. We are very thankful to the large family of God in Brazil, including the pilots and nurses, fellow missionaries and co-workers for their faithful support of Ruth at this time.
The regular cost of a flight like this would be around CAD $26,000. Ruth had no insurance. Everton did not charge!
Please click here to make a contribution to help defray the cost of this flight. All donations are tax deductible.
Ruth is a Bible translator and has been working in Brazil for over 50 years. To read more about Ruth’s work please click here
Knox members can click here and designate for Ruth's Medevac...thank you!
Hanneke Cost Budde April 13
I am planning to come to Toronto the second week of July and leave by the end of August as I need to be back for Kiri's graduation.
Naomi is recovering and the surgery was done well. She has been staying with us and it is great to have her. The biopsy will take another 3 weeks to get the answer. We continue to hope and pray that it won't be cancer.
The kids are home and Baraka is maturing slowly. It is such a relief not to have to argue and deal with his moods. He has gotten taller and his voice is a deep bass. Mahona's imitation of his voice and manner of speech is priceless.
Tomorrow we will go to the church service in the morning and in the afternoon we will paint some eggs.
Next week Mfaume is returning to the university and the Monday 24th. May 3rd I am going to a retreat with the women from AIM. Margreth Anderson and I are going 2 day's early so we can fly to Dar. I will have my birthday in a beautiful place in Kilwa, south of Dar, at the beach!
Easter Message from Billy Graham in 1953
n this classic Billy Graham Easter message from the The Hour of Decision, hear what the evangelist said is the greatest proof that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. Click here.
Hanneke Cost Budde April 9
Right now I am at my vet, Buckeye who has a party of opening his new house. It took him several years to build but now it looks great and they can move in.
Do not wonder any longer about our menu: fried goat meat, fried stomach and chicken intestines, meat in lots of very oily gravy, French fries, fried chicken, fried banana's, fried cabbage, rice, pilau, water melon and banana, yes... Soda's and water. Some of the greasy food I can't "stomach"
Nicaragua Team Report April 9
Ruth Thomson April 7
You have prayed and I am now getting stronger every day. You see, I am now able to open the computer and write to you. Thank you for all those prayers; they are what put me back on my feet.
But what I am really wanting to write you about is to give you my sincere thanks for your response to my pleas for the orphanage. Thank you for the money you sent in, giving sacrificially I know. That money saved the day for the orphanage. There is a severe drought in Kenya (both domestic animals and wild animals in the Parks are dying) which has made crops fail and food prices sky rocket. Your money came just in time -- when the orphanage was down to zero – for David (my adopted son) to buy food and take it to them. Thank you, thank you! See pictures as attachments.
Luke and Yuko Elliot April 6
Thank you for praying for us and the Aomori Christian Center throughout the winter. Spring is sinking into our bones and finally relaxing our winter hardened muscles.
We are now fully engaged in preparations for our 10 month home assignment in Canada that will begin on May 9 and last until February. It is our hope to be based near our sending church (Knox Church) in Toronto for most of that time, and from there make visits to current and potential ministry partners in other regions.
Following our Home Assignment Seminar in mid-May we plan to move to a location near one of our supporting churches, Gorrie Bible Fellowship, for the end of May and June. We are so thankful to those who have worked so hard toward finding us a place to stay and for the use of a vehicle that will fit our whole family. So far an available house has been found but we are still in need of a van for May/June so please pray for the Lord's provision in that regard.
June 11 we will be sharing at Mississauga Chinese Presbyterian Church and
June 25 we will be sharing at Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church.
We will be keeping the rest of May and June clear in order to spend time with Gorrie Bible Fellowship and to get to know the area better.
July and August we are scheduled to house sit near Bathurst and St. Clair W. for a family from our home church. We are so thankful for this provision. During this period our older children will be attending Knox Church's day camp program throughout July/August as well as the overnight camp at the end of August. We hope to have opportunities open up for us to speak/share at churches, prayer groups, etc. throughout this period.
September ~ January/February is still filled with uncertainty. We are thankful for a lead for a place to live near High Park and await the outcome on this. We are so thankful for those who have been helping us in our search. Please pray for the provision of suitable/affordable housing, for the Lord's guidance and provision in relation to our children's education, and for opportunities to share about our ministry and vision at churches and other venues during this period. We are not actively seeking the use of a vehicle during this period as insurance in Toronto would be prohibitively expensive for us and we should be able to get by with a combination of public transit (locally) and rental cars (for out of town engagements).
Doing a home assignment every four years or so is one of the requirements of our ministry. It's purpose is in part to share in the work of representing our organization in Canada but the main goal is to strengthen and deepen our existing relationships and partnerships and to form new ones as well. We will be sharing about the need to rebuild the Aomori Christian Center's main building (which is very old and not up to code) in order to carry on this important ministry into the next 50 years. We will also be seeking to recruit short- and mid-term workers to join our ministry team to help us organize and lead day camps, overnight camps, and student ministry and to assist us in the physical work of keeping the Center going.
Mission Hub April 5
As Spring blossoms--thank God--we are thankful to be able to reflect on a very busy and fruitful winter here at the Missions Hub. If there is one word to sum up this season for the Missions Hub, it would be 'students'. It has been awesome to come alongside university students through discipleship & outreach events, prayer meetings and times of fellowship and engage them in God's global Mission. We are so thankful for the work that Chez Johnson, the Missions Hub's Mobilization Coordinator, has been doing to lead this student engagement. Please scroll down to see some news items and a brief recap of some of the great things that have happened through the Missions Hub over the last few months.
As she has been since the earliest days of the Missions Hub, Katie Fuller has been doing a great job behind the scenes helping to organize and coordinate our operations. In her roles as an Elder of Knox Church, a key organizer in collaborative Missions events, and a Missions Coach with TEAM, Katie has been a steadfast champion for the Missions Hub. It is precisely because of her unique gifting, relationships and Missions Hub experience that we are so grateful to announce that Katie will be the new Missions Hub Coordinator. With the strong support of Knox Church and TEAM, Katie will be taking over the day to day coordination and management of the Missions Hub from Tom Affleck later this Spring.
While Tom will be focused on other areas of ministry / work, he does look forward to prayerfully supporting Katie and Chez as they lead out on this exciting new chapter of the Missions Hub history. The hope is to reach and engage the next generation in downtown Toronto with God’s global Mission, and Tom cannot think of a better duo to spearhead the charge.
Please do pray for Katie as she begins this exciting new leadership position. Please also pray that the Missions Hub would grow in its fruitfulness for God.
Free Training with Tim Challies (www.challies.com)
Managing Your Time and Energy: June 13th
'There simply aren;t enough hours in the day.’ We hear that a lot from Missions folks here at the Hub. It seems that the demands on our time and energy are endless. Workers are being asked to do more with less (and less). It is easy to feel overwhelmed and unproductive. The question is, what do we do about it?
We are thrilled that Tim Challies, author of 'Do More Better’ and the creative force behind www.challies.com, will be facilitating a training at the Missions Hub on June 13th called 'Managing Your Time and Energy’. Tim will share practical tools and practices that can help us to be more effective and productive in our work for God.
Please note: Space is limited! Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
Missions Hub 2016 Annual Report:
2016 was a wonderful year for the Missions Hub. We saw collaboration deepening between Missions groups, campus Ministries and local Churches. It was exciting to see God at work as 100's of people attended collaborative Missions Hub events, meetings, prayer day's and training seminars. Please have a look at our 2016 Annual report for more information.
Peter Bloom April 5
Please pray for Peter Bloom, Jeff's father. He underwent emergency surgery for internal bleeding in head.
Hanneke Cost Budde April 5
I am in Kahama at your favorite hotel..Tomorrow I will pick up Baraka and a friend of his and Jacky.
I spoke with Naomi abpout her cancer examination. The medical care is totally absurd here.
She had surgery in Singida whereby they removed a large area of tissue. They put this in a jar and left it under her bed. Today she was to leave the hospital. She called me...what about the tissue?...I contacted the doctor....Well she was to get a form and that this form and the tissue to Bugando hospital in Mwanza.
Now she is trying to get this form and get tickets to get on a bus to arrive in Tabora tomorrow. Then we have to get this tissue to Mwanza and hope and pray they will do a biopsy and not throw out the tissue as they did with Mahona's biopsy!
Mahona's hearing device is great. I can talk with him in a normal voice so I don't have to yell all the time. It might be more helpful to me than to him! I took a small video clip but it is to big to send.
I am quite tired from driving...50 almost all the way and getting again a speeding ticket! going 67 where there was no sign to indicate the speed but coming to the end of a village there is a sign for the opposite way. Some person takes a picture and sends it 50 km. further up the road to an officer and you get a speeding ticket! It is a pain to drive here!!! Tomorrow I am driving back...pray for stamina!
Jim Mason April 5
On Monday was the launching in Accra of the Africa Study Bible. Click here for April prayer letter.
Ruth Thomson April 5
I am so much better. All your prayers and all the prayers of God's family have put me back on my feet. My lungs are almost dry and I am getting stronger each day. Only one thing remains--to see about a lump in my mouth. Other than that I am cleared to travel back to Canada on the 13th.
John and Jane Reaves April 4
Chao took the train to beautiful Wuhan to visit us. Here is a Photo of 3 of us at a nearby restaurant. dear Jimmy was tooo busssy reading a book to pose with us. Dr. Hu helped me a little learn some Chinese technology on my phone. Folks in China Can do almost everything on their phone.
Mahona April 4
After listening to Mahona's testimony, and learning of Mahona's hearing injury, Heather, a young woman at Knox, was able to secure a listening device for Mahona. This is his response:
"Warm greetings and a big thanks from me! I'm really surprised to get this hearing aid, it's really helping me more than you can ever imagine .
I am very excited and I praise God for you, Heather, and for your love , hospitality and kindness. You are the gold in my heart!!
I am praying and I will continue that the Lord will continue to bless you in all that you do.
Hanneke Cost Budde April 2
Margreth [one of my girls] has come to go with Naomi tomorrow to the hospital to see what is wrong with her. She looks great!
Ruth Thomson April 2
from Gabriela, miss Ruth's friend: "Hello, she is doing wonderful!! Praise the Lord. We went to see the doctor and she's really getting strength each day. She does have something in her lungs. She has presented Ruth's case to other specialists here. But they all don't know what she really has. She has NO cancer, NO tuberculosis, NO blastomicose and nothing more concerning...BUT there was something. We only give thanks to the Lord. He is curing her.
Hanneke Cost Budde April 1
This is the latest picture I took this afternoon of the new clinic. Mfaume helped with the painting. The fundi who welded the door made it to short so we had to put it in on a higher level and add more height to the floor. Never a dull moment!
Margaret is coming tomorrow and will go with Naomi to Singida to the hospital. Pray that she won't have Cancer.
I will also send you a message regarding Thomas who got a bit of a shock yesterday when he found out that his son needs to study an extra year to qualify as a lawyer. The changes that our government is making is very hard on many parents with kids in school.
DOING MISSIONS AS A FAMILY - CHINANDEGA, NICARAGUA
By Kim Trimboli
Almost two years ago at a Family Ministries Breakfast, Jeff Bloom announced that he was planning to take his family on a mission trip and who was interested in coming. Without hesitating, I said "YES! WE ARE! WE'RE TOTALLY IN!!!" Dave, who is the voice of temperance in our household, was more cautious about what a family mission trip would look like with 3 kids. However, we have always desired to present to our kids a firsthand view of the needs of the children around our world - to instil in our children a sense of gratitude for what they have been given and to inspire a sense of duty too, because "to whom much is given, much is expected." Luke 12:48b
SchoolBOX offered an amazing and relatable opportunity to help build a school for children in Nicaragua. For our own school-aged children, this experience would be uniquely relevant. Especially reassuring to us was the fact that SchoolBOX had the necessary infrastructure in place to safely accommodate young children in a developing country.
SchoolBOX is the grassroots ministry that Tom Affleck founded in 2006 and his wife Sarah Kerr runs today from a donated desk by Knox World Missions at The Missions Hub. Wendy, Gerry, Grace & Matthew Rogalski travelled down to build the Jennette Affleck school with SchoolBOX in 2013 and loved their experience.
The first thing my kids did when we told them of our plan to go to Nicaragua with Schoolbox was to set up a lemonade stand in front of my parent's house. Smarty kids realized that they could count on Oma and Nonno as generous clients - not to mention that the road in front of their house gets a lot more traffic than ours.
Fast forward to February 2017. The reality of what we were about to do set in and I started to panic. There were shots to get, teachers to inform, supplies to buy, summer clothes to dig out; what if one of us got sick? what if the children are totally shell-shocked and not able to cope with the poverty that we would see? I started questioning our decision to go. One afternoon, I ended up at Missions Hub to organize a few things with Sarah Kerr, the Executive Director of SchoolBox who would be joining us on this trip and I mentioned my fears to Tom, Chez and Katie who were also there. They were such an amazing source of information and support. They pointed me to resources for the children and advised me about travel clinics. My panic started to ebb. I was thankful that I ended up at the Missions Hub that day.
We arrived at Terminal 3 at Pearson Airport on March 8, carting five 50 lb suitcases, each containing a box of Spanish Bibles. Tom sent me a quick email that said that when our bags get scanned at customs in Managua and, "All you need to say is 'Biblias para una iglesia' (Bibles for a church)". He also said, "It is good to pray before going through customs that everything goes smoothly ". Wait, what...? When I was a kid, my parents took me to a dinner hosted by Brother Andrew who told of his exciting and miraculous exploits smuggling bibles into eastern bloc countries. I have to admit, I felt a little cool. Customs ended up being a snatch; my prayers were answered.
Our last hurdle cleared, we were greeted by a cheerful SchoolBox entourage dressed in matching T-Shirts who were indeed a site for sore eyes.
In Managua, we met the SchoolBox crew and our fellow travellers - two families from Ottawa. Jeff, Claire and the kids would hook up with us in Chinandega a couple days later. We had an orientation and given a special addendum to the safety manual - what to do in case of an Volcano Eruption or Earthquake, piled into two vans and headed to the Jeanette Affleck school in Leon. Nothing could prepare us for what happened when we got there.
We were greeted by such fanfare by the students I started to wonder if we had crashed a celebration by accident. Then I read the signs that the children were holding. 'Welcome Kimberly Trimboli' one said. I went to them and said "I'm Kimberly Trimboli" and they gave me big smiles and lots of hugs. The children sang songs and recited poetry in honour of our visit and we were able to hand out school supplies to all of the children at the school. In addition to building schools, libraries and washroom facilities, SchoolBOX delivers over 18,000 educational packages to kids annually. Each one contains the basic supplies like notebooks and pencils that a child needs to stay in school. While we were in Nicaragua we were able to hand out hundreds of school supplies at three different schools. Knox's Childrens Ministry raised enough money to buy 140 of those school supply packages. What a privilege it was to be able to carry out their work!
El Puma, the community in which we were building the new 3- classroom school, is approximately 30 km south of the Honduran border in the province of Chinandega. According to the guide book that Gerry and Wendy lent us, Chinandega is the hottest province in Nicaragua. "Rotisserie chicken hot" the guide book said. Thanks guys. You can have your book back. But there was a breeze, some shade and lots of orange Fanta. We managed. We were able to play with the kids in the community, encourage them to stay in school and let them know how much God loves them. We cut re-bar, bent re-bar, tied re-bar, dug holes and shovelled sand. We were assisted on occasion, by the roosters and pigs that visited the site. In our short time, we finished all of the footings; foundation holes and rebar columns for the school foundation, surpassing the SchoolBOX construction crew's expectations of a team with 10 kids! What a great way to spend the week.
On Sunday, we worshipped with a congregation in the community of El Puma. Not only were we able to hand out the boxes of Bibles to our brothers and sisters; we were also able to encourage each other in our faith. It was an amazing day worshipping alongside members of the global church.
Every day we were in Nicaragua we experienced such generosity and hospitality as I have never experienced before. I received way more than I gave that Fanta-Fueled week and I can speak for my whole family when I say that going to Nicaragua was the most worth-while things we have ever done together. We want to thank the SchoolBox team for taking such good care of our kids and for looking after every little detail that you could think of. We thank Knox Church for covering us in prayer while we were in Nicaragua and coming alongside our families as we helped to make education possible for all children !Dios tenemos bendiga!
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Click jerry can in photo.
Mary Jane Fandrich March 31
Life goes on, especially for the family of faith. We mourn the loss of my cousin's husband, Raja, but not as others mourn who have no hope. Our hope is in the Resurrection of Jesus, who rescues ravaged families, and cast aways!
Warning, this is going to be a ramble.
These are all places where in the morning children are dressed, men shave, and women go out to do the food shopping. If there is any food to shop for. That may no longer be the fact in Idlib, where a teenage girl who lives with us now at Home of Hope has lost her parents, their clothing shop, and her whole community, or Haleb (Alleppo) whatever is left of it, or Homs currently being bombed, or Damascus during bus bombs, or Bab Touma, the Christian district of Damascus where I copied Arabic off the front altar at church. Or Ruth?. Well Ruth is Beit Lehem, of course, and the famine there pushed a family of four to emigrate, and eventually to return missing three members and adding one: Ruth.
Do you read Arabic? Well? The teenager from Adlib is eager to read the interesting story of Ruth from the ArabBible program in my computer, and finds it fascinating. This is the introduction to the Gospel, God finding and rescuing a ravaged and destitute family. Another girl, eager to show off her Arabic prowess, starts with the first chapter of Ruth and just keeps going. When she finishes the four chapters, she just keeps going through Psalms one and two, and finally runs out of steam.
I sit there grinning internally, watching God set His word before the hearts of girls cast away in this disgruntled society.
The little girls, Zeinab, Hoda, Nur, Doua, all need the strong discipline for social development that is beyond social psychology. It requires Godly wisdom that can only be gifted by request from the One Who can change the heart of a king.
Ruth Thomson March 30
Better news today, Thursday morning. Following blood and phlegm tests on Tuesday the doctor has ruled out pneumonia, fungal infection, anemia, TB and recurring cancer. He has taken her off all medications and her appetite and ability to hold food down has returned. She is feeling much stronger. There is still no conclusive diagnosis of her illness. She had previously planned to return to Canada next week, but may not be able to travel until she feels totally well. She is so grateful for all prayers.
Previous day: Ruth underwent a battery of tests yesterday. She is awaiting the results soon. She does not have anemia, but is very weak and cannot keep food down. She does not want to be in the hospital so is being looked after by Gabriela, a trained nurse, at her home.