Bill & Sheila McKelvie, Interserve. We continue to remember our friends in Pakistan, where the number of Covid-19 cases is increasing, and locust infestations are devastating the crops. Pray for the provision of daily needs for the poor. Pray for SaCHA delivering food packages to needy families.
Today they are filling the trenches with rocks. The rocks are huge!
Glad to see they are working hard! The for man is to pay the wages. I give him the money for this. Seven men...107.000/- for every one per day and 20.000 for breakfast on top of that. About $80.50 per day! (These are average wages for manual labour here. As they are doing so well and are working hard, I will bring a soda on Saturday. That is a real treat here.
Today they will bring six more lorries with rocks. One trip is 70.000. A total of 7 trips is 420.000 for the filling of these ditches. Then we have to get seven more trips for building on top.
A total of 840.000/- which is just under $500/- total.
I thought it might give you some idea of how I can have a house built around $25.000/- Canadian.
Foundation being build for our family home!!
Finally, we have started the building of our family home. It is all inspiring. Reverent George Lowe had left me some money, and now we can finally start this project.
God is so good! The house will have three bedrooms, one with a door opening to the outside for the older boys. The rooms will be big enough for bunk beds for the kids.
A large living room with a kitchen area and dining area. There will be a shower and toilet for the kids and guests and a bathroom with a toilet in the self-contained bedroom.
There will be a storage area and a large closed in veranda.
I will keep you updated on the progress!!
Please pray that the house will be well built and will be a blessing to all of us and anyone visiting!
Meanwhile, back at the ranch………..July 22, 2020
“Follow Me” It sounds pretty simple, but somehow, it gets confusing. That’s
because we try to overlay following with our own analysis of the program.
What do we know?
It’s very disconcerting not to be able to add an inch to our height. Such a simple thing.
If there’s anywhere I’d rather be right now, it’s Beirut. There is so much to do.
But God has me nailed down on my Canadian plot of land, and a more pleasant place there couldn’t be to avoid covid 19 and heal for 8 weeks from a heart attack (not the romantic kind).
So chalk up 2020, July 22 for the out of the blue run to the cardiologist at
Peterborough Regional Hospital (Dr. Ball) and soon following:
The holocaust in Beirut.
Sitting here and following on the moment through WhatsApp the actual and following disaster in Beirut, praying for the American Women’s Club members by name, getting reassurance that none of them were hurt, only their glassed in living rooms were a shambles, hearing of their immediate plans for gathering anything and everything to go out and help, ………….
American University Hospital was damaged, but not the emergency room, and so is still operational. My cousin Dr. Ramzi Hajjar works there , and of course his apartment windows were blown in. All of my family members are safe and well.
Four public hospitals were destroyed. St George’s Hospital is closed. Hotel Dieu is still working. A few hotels are able to take in people now homeless.
At times like this, it’s good to have a supply of lentils and rice in the cupboard.
Survivors are openly thanking God for His protection.
May they truly know Him through this experience.
More later, and remember to pray a lot.
After a long stay in Canada I finally made it home to Tabora.
I am very sorry that I was not able to get in touch and see many of you.
Thanks so much for all your prayers and support!
May the Lord bless each of you and I do hope to see you next time....God willing!!!
I have attached my latest news letter with some pictures.
Lebanon is a country in the Middle East where the Gospel is openly preached! With a significant mission work being done by different churches and mission organizations, the country is a base for spreading the gospel to other parts of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region. Yet the country is severely affected by a crippling economic crisis and the impact of the COVID 19 Pandemic. And just this Tuesday, an explosion ripped the city of Beirut and added to the pain that the people have to bear. 200,000 people are left homeless due to the explosion. As our Christian response, we are making a call for support. Please go to the church website and click on GIVE, and choose Beirut Give. You could also send a cheque and write Beirut Give in the memo portion.
Mary Jane is currently recovering from a heart attack that started as she was enjoying a pleasant walk in the countryside. She continues to recover from her heart surgery in Peterborough Hospital. She's up, walking, sometimes a little breathless and with lowered energy. Soon she plans to be back in her trailer to recuperate further. MJ has seen God's hand at work in the events of the past week, and is cheerfully trusting for the future, planning to slow down a bit, "for the month of August"!
I am so glad to hear from you after meeting with you during the Lausanne Global Workplace Forum - 2019 and glad to hear that our saviour is keeping you family safe and protected.
The World is at Crisis as the health situation is uncertain. Like other countries, Pakistan has been hit hard by the Corona pandemic as Confirmed corona Cases are increasing every day. Our country as a whole is in a total state of smart lock down. Government of Pakistan is trying all efforts to provide health facilities but cases have been increasing and unfortunately deaths are being reported. Schools are closed and churches, malls and other businesses are not fully functional.
Out of this, the Christian community in Pakistan has been badly affected as the majority belongs to the daily wages worker, sanitary worker, brick kiln workers, house maid worker and low scale workers in different walks of life. I believe, Now is the time for Christians to show God's amazing love for those affected, Our God is faithful and will provide a way for us to overcome it!
As per my ministry , with the prayers and support from my family & friends , we have been reaching out to the Brick Kiln Families from different Villages; as the brick kilns are closed they have left nothing to work and earn their livelihood. Sadly, they now have a fear of being died with hunger more than Coronavirus.We have been personally supporting some of the families for a month for food needs but the need is getting expanded. Please remember those families in your daily prayers so that we can have divine support from our heavenly father to provide them food packages.
This letter has been difficult for me to get on with. The details of our lives seem so trivial compared to all that is going on around the world with the COVID-19 pandemic, natural disasters and the ongoing injustices, divisions and hatred that continue to affect huge percentages of our globe’s populations.
Please be in prayer for the delivery of Container #4. It is the last container but once again we find ourselves in a crunch, with last minute paperwork issues threatening to derail the delivery time. Please pray that the paperwork issues can be resolved in time for a Thursday delivery of the container, and that this container will not be selected for inspection. The forklift is already reserved for Thursday, and all our volunteers have worked their schedules around a Thursday delivery.
We give thanks for all prayers answered so far, and look to the Lord to grant a good ending to what He has so graciously overseen to date.
2020 has certainly been a year like no other. Out here in BC we are fortunate to have avoided the high number of Covid-19 cases that other parts of Canada have had to deal with. However, there have still been significant changes to our lifestyle. Social distancing has become the norm. We are getting used to meeting with our Bible study group and other friends outdoors in our carport rather than in our livingroom. Our church will be restarting services this coming Sunday, but we will have to sign up in advance for one of the four services offered. Each group will be limited to 50 people and at least for the remainder of the summer we will be watching pre-taped services, just as we have done at home for the last several months. No doubt most of you are facing similar situations.
"When Jesus is all you have left, you realize Jesus is what you ultimately need."
Tim Keller asks followers for prayer as he begins continues chemotherapy.
While the apartment is the same square metres, the balcony is tiny, so the rooms are larger—I prefer the reverse, but I have a deep sense that it is the Lord’s will for me. It’s only about 80€/ month more than the previous apartment with the agreement that the rent won’t increase over the next 10 years—which I can hardly believe! Prayers are appreciated for the coming week to sell the landlord‘s furniture in the apartment, and the rental agreement to be according to the Lord’s will. And for strength to accomplish all the good things God has planned in advance for me to do in the coming week—a minimum of counselling continues as well as packing things here. The verse in my Bible app today is Is. 40:29!!! May this be so!!!
"I am pleased to introduce Julia Bartel as the new Mobilization Coordinator for the Missions Hub! Julia has a passion for God's global mission and experience with shepherding and discipling others to pursue God's call. She brings strong gifts and skills in servant leadership and community empowerment, through her previous experience as an intern with Power to Change, as well as strengths in communication, having an English & Media degree from University of Toronto. We are excited to see how Julia's gifts and passion will enable her to serve well in this role!" -- Nestor Abdon
“We are so excited that people are responding to the Good News. We must get a job and permit to stay here by the middle of October, or make other plans. We feel that God has placed us here and will provide these essential items. In Chiapas, there are many cases of COVID and deaths. Hil’s father is acting as a remote paramedic via the smartphone.”
Please pray two new staff for the LAM office and a few new missionaries who have joined us in the recent months. We lost one office staff, and actually needed to hire two new people as we continue to grow by the grace of God. In August, we will be providing online training for everyone.
Three people who have been attending Celebration P C have asked me to be baptized. We are very happy about that and hope to have a baptism on Lake Ontario before the end of August. We have resumed church activities on site last Sunday. We met on the lawn. It was such a joy, despite the small number. Half of the congregation was my own family.
David is still the same. To look on the bright side, he hasn't gotten any worse, for which we are thankful. He is not in good shape. Thank you so much for your prayers
Jacky is home. She is not feeling well and is still having asthma trouble. For a Covid test, she has to go to Dar! This is not possible. It is a 14 to 18-hour bus ride on an overcrowded bus.
She was given a prescription, but the medicines are not available in Tabora. I have asked Mahona to send me a picture of the order, and I will try and get it here in Holland.
Thanks to everyone for their prayers!
I am so looking forward to getting home.
It's been an enjoyable, though rather exhausting two weeks getting back into life in St-Laurent this month - cleaning my home, picking up boxes that had been left with patient friends, unpacking, putting things away, getting my vacuum cleaner fixed and my car registration up to date, etc. I've continued to work on translating, getting my reports done after Nassa Theological College (NTC) reopened and belatedly had their second-term exams. and taking the Kairos Course. I've also responded to many emails, trying to encourage NTC staff and students as they near the end of the academic year, and continued to assist with practical projects over there. For the last two weeks, I've been back in my own place and enjoying renewed ties with neighbours in the building.
Please be in prayer with us for the arrival of Container 3 of 4. It is supposed to happen tomorrow, but the customs broker has not sent us the bill yet, and they will not deliver until we pay the bill. Please pray that it will be sent in the next couple of hours. If there is a delay in delivery, not only will it incur storage penalties, we will need to change our fork lift rental agreement last minute, inconveniencing the contact through whom we have been able to secure the rental and all also the volunteers who have set Tuesday aside to help with the unloading.
Please also be in prayer for Luke as he operates a forklift "for real" for the first time. Although there will be at least two volunteers with far more experience operating forklifts, Luke is the only one qualified in Japan (with one day of theory and one day of hands on training) and therefore, for liability reasons, should be the one to operate it.
Update, July 20
Thank you so much for praying for the paperwork for Container 3 of 4. The bill arrived and was paid for in time, and the container will arrive at ACC between 9 and 10am tomorrow, Japan Time.
Please pray that the Lord will hold back the rain during the unloading and transportation of materials. The weather forecast is for cloudy skies before and after but 80% chance of rain for that very window of time that we will be unloading. A good portion of the load is bales of insulation and any imperfection in the plastic wrapping would render the glass wool insulation susceptible to damage.
Final Update-July 21
Thank you so much for praying for the unloading of Container 3 of 4 and for the storage of its contents. The weather forecast predicted an 80% chance of rain for the window of time in which we were unloading and transporting the materials but, as you will soon see in the photos in the Prayer Letter we hope to send out soon, it was blue skies and fluffy white clouds. A pastor who came up to help us in the afternoon told us it was was raining down in the city about 20 minutes drive away and, as I write, it is now raining here in Moya.
For the past two containers we barely managed to finish unloading before lunch and it took several days to relocate all the materials into storage. Today, in spite of having fewer volunteers, we finished unloading around 10:30am and by 3:30pm we were completely finished with storing the materials. (Granted, there were fewer materials and they were easier to manage, especially with the forklift and with some experience under our belts.)
We trip through it in a hurry every Sunday. “I believe in … the Resurrection from the dead, the life everlasting…………………Amen.
Isaiah speaks of the thick darkness that overlays the ‘nations’. That darkness overlays the Islamic world and leads them repeatedly into self-destruct. So what? “Go into all the world and preach the Gospel”
Try that in Hamra.
“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ”. Burdens?
What burdens? Burdens of disrespect and rejection, of illness (cancer for us and lepers for Jesus) disability (blindness, muteness, lameness).
Every culture has its pet racism, for us it’s Hispanic and Black. In Europe, it was Jews.
Have I gone too far?
White supremacism, no question, in this world system. “In Christ there is neither Jew nor Greek, circumcised or uncircumcised, … bond nor free.
“Rejoice, rejoice, for your light has come.” “I am the Light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the Light of
Life.” Jesus said it. We believers live in it. It’s exhilarating. Neither life, nor death, nor any other... can separate us from the Love of Christ.”
Currently, great stress has been laid upon us, and we are fearful, holing up in our dwellings, and off our streets. But let us not be paranoid.
Similarly our community in Lebanon is struggling with access to funds to reach out and care for the believers and unbelievers that God brings to them. 60 Syrian refugee children and one Pastor and a few volunteers and teachers everyday teaching them about Jesus and some math and Arabic, and FOOD. Another believer gathering boys cast out by HOH to teach them God’s word and help provide for them. People of the Light, reaching out everywhere in Lebanon.
So far, I’m holed up in the hinterlands of Canada, where I happen to own land bought 50 years ago. Wilderness land, but habitable by means of an artesian well located in the local village/town and a rented house trailer. (Bear, cougar, deer, coyote and rabbits share the property.)
But my eye is on Lebanon, where our community is working on bearing the burden and needing help.
Huge thank you to Highland Park Presbyterian Church in Dallas for feeding the hungry and caring for the hurting here.
Please click below for our prayer update for July 2020. Very sorry for the silence over the past few months. We are well, but very busy both with our regular activities and a whole lot of new challenges and opportunities both at work and with our church here in Singapore brought about by the pandemic situation.
Singapore is managing the COVID-19 situation very well at present, and we are starting to experience limited relaxation of some of the tighter constraints, but expect to see limits and restrictions around movement, gatherings, and international travel for many months yet to come.
We’re excited to be thinking about our transition back to Canada in December, and pray for the Lord’s grace and blessing on each one of you as we look forward to reconnecting in person in the not-too-distant future!
I have given nurse Tinah more of a supervisory role on the community health team. This will hopefully free up some more head space for me to focus on research efforts. Please pray for the transition.
I've submitted all the documents needed to renew my work permit now except for a letter from Interpol. My friend went to Interpol to inquire on my behalf, but they have added another step for those who want their letters printed. He applied for printing, but will have to return later to pick it up. Please pray that I can get everything sorted with Immigration before the end of July.
One of our mission evangelists will begin furlough by flying back to the States on July 29th. They will leave Nakaale next week Friday.
Occasionally a letter arrives with such good news you just have to share – this is one!
I send this to lift your heart in this Covid season.
Paul and Marty Clark are missionaries with Scripture Union in Peru, where for years they helped many boys living on the streets into the homes SU operated.
When it was popular I loved the song “Singing in the Rain.” These stories off some of the boys who had been in the SU homes made Paul & Marty want to “Dance in the Rain.”
Enjoy, appreciate, God at Work and Pray!! Jim
Billy, our son, gave me a small, framed poster which I have up on my wall. Just last night I quoted its Spanish version to one of our discouraged Scripture Union staff workers:
“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it’s about learning to dance in the rain!”
David (Psalm 27) could well have penned those words!
True that our hospitals in Peru have collapsed, with corridors full of people in desperate need of oxygen. There is enough of it but for one out of every fifteen. That is a glimpse of the storm - the dark side of the coin. *
But here is the other, the one that has given Marty and me a ‘song in the night’:
Just got a phone call. I recognized the voice. It was José Luis, the badly crippled boy who came to faith in Jesus as a lad in our Home for abandoned boys in Iquitos and now, many years later, works in Samuel Rengifo’s carpentry.
“Guess who I have here beside me?” he said rather excitedly. “Pollito. Do you remember him?”
Soon Pollito was on the line: “Do you remember me? I am Gerardo, but you always called me ‘Pollito’. I left the Home when I was just eleven. But I never have forgotten the things you taught me. I found my mother and went up the Marañón River to Yurimaguas. I wanted to build a room for us to live in, so I started selling drugs. I became good at it, forgot my mother and went down the Amazon all the way to Brazil. Years later, when I came back, they caught me and I was sentenced to eleven years in Guayabamba. I served seven and have just been let out! I immediately came looking for Samuel. He was the Director of the Home way back when I was a boy. Remember? He is very kind, has given me a job in his metalcraft shop and a room in his house. With the money he pays me, I only need to cover my water and light bills. He even gives me food. I have given my life to Jesus and go to church with Samuel.”
Then I got Samuel on the line to thank him for all the things he does for these young men whom he had in our Scripture Union Home when they were boys.
“Let me tell you about Coqui and Jorge” he said.
“As you know” he said, “Coqui came to faith in the Guayabamba prison here in Iquitos. He now has a permit to go back there regularly. The guards are happy to have him because ‘he quiets the prisoners down’. Actually, he has an amazing ministry there, telling the inmates of how Jesus transformed his life.”
Then: “Of course I remember Jorge”.
One month every year, he would take off from the Home. “Sex tourism”, as it is called, is rife in Iquitos. Jorge would be taken into the jungle by a young Canadian every month of June.
I clearly recall the day Jorge said to me: “Tío Paul, please help me get a passport. I want to go to Canada. There is a man - a friend - who wants to take me there.”
That chapter ended when I told him to bring his ‘friend’ to discuss the passport business with me!
Jorge left the Home at the age of 17, looked me up at the S.U.’s main office in Lima, and told me that he was going to Argentina.
“So, whatever became of Jorge” I asked Samuel.
“Well” he said, “believe it or not, Jorge has lived in Argentina, Bolivia and Chile. Is now back in Peru. And here comes the good news. He is a committed Christian and regularly attends church in Lima, where he is now working.”
I hung up the phone. On a bright and sunny day here in our sixteenth week of strict quarantine, it would not take much more to get me and Marty dancing in the rain!
"One of the BEST DAYS OF MY LIFE!!! I was sitting on the verandah on Saturday when a car pulled into the driveway, and Patrick, Lance and David got out, pulled out their chairs and umbrellas and sat down on the lawn. Total shock from me. Then an SUV turned up and Roger and Clara emerged, also with chairs and umbrella. A little later Karen and Holly pulled up. By this time I was in total disbelief!!! We had a 2-hour chat!!!"
"We would like to ask for prayer for our son David. He has had Lyme Disease since 2004, and had been showing slow but steady progress over the last two and a half years. However over the last month his health has been slipping, and over the last few days it has taken a nose dive. The reason is not clear, but we are certain that the Lord knows. Please keep our David in your prayers."
With deep gratitude, John & Irene Leggett
Hanneke is writing her memoirs. Here is an excerpt.
We arrived at the village and introduced me to my new home. After the pastors got out of the car, my new friend and I went into our huge mud-brick duplex house. Her half of the house had been fixed up and had smooth cement floors and ceiling boards. Then I entered my half! It was not a very welcoming sight: the roof had caved in, and one could admire the stars from inside the living room. Spiders, cockroaches, and even a scorpion greeted me on my first night. I called Mara and told her I had a scorpion in my bathroom. “Cannot be!” was her answer, but then she came and had a look. “Kill it, kill it! She shrieked, “no, wait! Let me take a picture first!” (My first introduction to Tanzanian wildlife!)