Monday, April 12

C & K. “The devastating locust infestation in 2020 in Ethiopia led to a government response which killed all the bees pollinating the “HH”’ apple orchard. Pray for a solution and a recovery of lost harvest. Please pray for me as I am under fairly sustained intense pressure. Pray that I might respond and lead with grace, wisdom and peace.” 

Mary Jane Fandrich

When we ignore or marginalize those who do not resemble us, we initiate and eventually imbed anger and resentment. We do this mostly subliminally, but often overtly.
When anger and resentment for rejection and hurt continues into adulthood, its expressions take us by surprise.
In my business, financial advisement, one unspoken rule of thumb was that people expect of you what they would do themselves. So if my clients’ expectations were that my business was self serving or dissembling, that was, in most likelihood, their modus vivendi.
We don’t usually recognize what we are communicating by habitual body language, or non-communication. These patterns are learned with the socialization process in all individuals.
But we in our ‘Christian’ community are commissioned to give witness to the change that has overtaken us by God’s Righteousness , and the blood poured out on the cross for our sins. “Jesus, thy blood and Righteousness, my beauty are, my glorious dress….”

Thank you Nicolaus Zinzendorf, or was it Charles Wesley?

What would I do without Google?

Commissioned? It’s a big word.

God help us to salute and say “Yes, Sir!” 

Jack Voelkel

April 10

As many of you know, Jack has been suffering from sciatica for the last 8 months. During this time we and many of you have been laying this need before the Lord and asking for His healing.

So often during our daily devotional readings He has given us clear promises of healing and has asked us to trust Him.
• (Lk 5:13) A man, covered afflicted with leprosy, begged Jesus, “Lord if you are willing you can heal me.” Jesus said, “I am willing, be healed!” (We were encouraged to believe that the Lord wanted to heal Jack.)
• (Psalm 27:14) “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” (We were encouraged to wait patiently for His healing.)
• (Habakkuk 2:3) “The vision is for a future time…if it seems slow in coming, wait patiently, for it will surely take place. It will not be delayed.” (A call to faith.)
• (2 Peter 3:9) “The Lord is not slow in keeping His promises, instead He is patient with you.” (We were to continue trusting.)
As we pondered these passages and turned them into prayer, we were ready to receive healing immediately or over time; by supernatural intervention or through surgery. Since healing had not come in 8 months, despite physical therapy, chiropractic visits, a steroid injection, and continued exercise classes 5 times a week, we decided to opt for surgery, which was scheduled for April 13.
We have been grateful for messages from some of you mentioning your accompanying us with specific prayers for Jack’s healing.
Then a week ago, Jack began to notice less pain and greater freedom in walking and standing. Consulting just a few days ago with the physician, it seemed advisable that surgery should either be postponed or cancelled for now. When Jack mentioned to the surgeon that many had been praying for him, he chuckled and with a twinkle in his eye, replied, “Tell them to keep on praying!”

This week we have been able to walk on the golf course again, which we have sorely missed. Each day there has been steady improvement, and none of the sharp pain in his leg which Jack had been experiencing previously.

We are full of gratitude to the Lord and to many of you who have faithfully been standing with us over these months. Thank you for joining with us in praying for full and sustained healing.  

Angela Morris

April 9

Angela's replacement surgery scheduled on 5 April, was cancelled due to being non-essential. Other doctors refused to undertake the challenge due to her 36 years of lymphedema in that leg. So please pray for Dr. Chaudry who plans to do the operation at Holland Centre, Toronto.

Ian Shugart

Ian has finished his chemo treatment. Next up is surgery. He appreciates your prayers during this difficult time. Listen to Ian's message on the Runaway Bunny.

Threefold Ministries

The winter of 2020/21 has literally melted away, but the “remnants” of a unique 2020 year remain around the globe. Common experience shrinks the world a little doesn’t it? We hope you enjoy this look back at what life looked like in 2020 in a small community in Nicaragua that also binds us together. Whether you are a regular partner, a Ride contributor, a past team member or supporter, have given in memory of someone, or simply appreciate the work and want to stay connected, this story exists in part because of you.

Shay and Israel

April 8

All Knox family are invited to join our wedding online at at 1pm EST on April 24th, 2021. The service will be left online for one week for those who prefer to view later.

John Bowen

April 7

The Archbishop of Canterbury has today announced the recipients of the 2021 Lambeth Awards. The awards, which recognise outstanding contributions to the Church and wider society, have been given to over 30 individuals. They include scientists, musicians, academics, activists, peacemakers, doctors and clergy.

Dave Jeffery

Our family would like to invite anyone and everyone who knew our husband and father, Dave Jeffery, to attend our online-only memorial service taking place on Saturday April 17th at 10 am (PST) and 1 pm Toronto time. Due to Covid guidelines in BC we are not allowed to have more than 10 people in the room for a memorial service, so we have decided to do the service online. Our church has very generously agreed to host the memorial on their website using their existing livestream system. This the link to our church's website.

Jack Voelkel

April 7

Remember Jack who will undergo back surgery at week from now.

Barbara Hanna

April 4

Barbara was admitted to Toronto Western hospital yesterday with pneumonia

Dave Jeffery

April 1

It is with sadness that I am emailing to let you know that my dear husband of 36 years passed away on Friday, March 26th. Two days earlier he felt strongly that it was time to check into the Palliative Unit of Abbotsford Regional Hospital for an end-of-life procedure. He shared his wishes with the health team that could make that happen and was told there was an empty bed in the unit the next day (Thursday) and that there might be one available on Friday as well. We were taken aback by the rapidity with which things were moving along and cancelled on the Thursday offer, but Dave said he would be ready to go in on Friday. And he was ready; he never looked back.

Dave, Robby, Leanne and I arrived at the hospital at 9:30 am and were taken to a private room in the palliative wing. What a blessing in these COVID times that the four of us were allowed to be there together! We sat for the first while talking with the ward chaplain who had been relating to Dave for the last year or so. Then we chatted with the doctor, nurse and social worker who would take care of Dave so capably and sensitively through the next few hours. The doctor asked why Dave felt the time had come to die and Dave was able to speak to that question in compelling detail.

First and foremost, he was maxed out in his use of his BiPap machines, so was really struggling to breathe when he had to go off ventilation even for short times. This lack of air wearied him and fed his anxiety and air hunger. As well, his weakness was making our use of his sit-to-stand lift risky. Neither of us looked forward to using the Hoyer lift that would replace it and that we had already acquired from the ALS Society. Dave could have chosen to live on with invasive ventilation--a tracheostomy—but even back in October of 2014 when he was diagnosed with ALS he knew that he would never want to go that route.

As well, Dave was losing appetite and occasionally didn’t have enough strength left in his left hand to feed himself, so I would take over. It was difficult for him to hold up his head while he ate and, after eating, he was increasingly experiencing a flood of saliva that he would have to work hard to swallow or spit out. I mentioned a couple of times that it might be time for him to start using the feeding tube that he hadn’t needed up till then. He wasn’t much interested in going that route even though it would have eased the stress of eating for him. Being able to taste and enjoy real food was a non-negotiable for him.

At night there was pain all along his left side as he lay on it hour after hour. How he ever managed to avoid getting bedsores, I will never know. Sometimes he would be able to move himself partially onto his back to give his side some relief, but that was never comfortable for long. When he would try to return to sleeping on his side he sometimes didn’t have enough strength to do so and he would have to call on me for help. This growing lack of mobility really fed his anxiety. About the only bright spot for him in the long nights in bed was the use of a bed cooler that one of the members of our care group put together for him. He could turn it on and off by himself and in short order it cooled the heat in the soles of his feet that prevented his falling asleep.

When the interviews with the chaplain and medical team were over and we had prayed together as a family, Dave was administered a sedative intravenously. He went into a deep sleep using his BiPap machine for the next three hours. When the medical team judged that he was sufficiently under to be unaware of the removal of his breathing mask, they switched his BiPap off. There was an unnerving silence and then signs that his body was trying to make up for the sudden lack of forced air. He died at 3:15 pm--soundlessly and showing no signs of distress--exactly half an hour after the BiPap was switched off. Robby, Leanne and I ended our time at the hospital standing around his bed reminiscing, talking about and to him, and crying now and then. It was a precious time; my first time to witness a death.

So how are we doing as a family after Dave’s passing? The five of us have had breakfast together twice and are spending more time together. On Sunday, breakfast was followed by viewing our church’s livestreamed Sunday service. We ended time by sharing how we are coping with our loss and I think it helps us grieve well when we share like that. I am being constantly humbled by how committed our kids are to making sure I’m doing okay. Jonathan and Leanne are setting up a bedroom for me at their place for whenever I want to enjoy life with them at the fish farm. Jonathan’s sister, who is living with them, minded their dog while they were at the hospital on Friday and is working full-time on the farm all this week so that Jonathan can take the week off to help out however he is needed. Bitsy is working full-time as a teacher, but has a knack for finding ways to bless us all. It was such a treat to return home to a plate of her excellent chili and cornbread after our time at the hospital on Friday. Our loss is pulling us closer as a family and I take great comfort in that.

If you would like to pray for us, please remember the following:
• Continued healthy processing of grief, both individually and as a family.
• I have never been the executor of a will before. There is a lot to attend to and I don’t want to overlook anything, so I would appreciate prayer to that end.
Dave so hoped to be greeted at Heaven’s gates with a “Well done, good and faithful servant”. Rejoice with us that he’s celebrating Easter in the presence of his Lord and Saviour from here on in--for eternity! Death has truly lost its sting because of Jesus’ saving work on the cross. We are forgiven because He, the sinless one, paid the price for restoring us, the sin-soaked ones, to right relationship with His Holy Father.
For those many of you who emailed Dave over the six and a half years of his ALS and who expressed appreciation for who he was and how he had impacted your lives, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your words of affirmation moved me to tears time and time again as I was reminded of how blessed we have been to share life with him.

Jesus is Risen! Dave is restored to even better than full health! Hallelujah!     

32 - 32310 Mouat Drive
Abbotsford, BC V2T 4J1 

Leah Hopp

March 31

Please praise God with me for many answers to your prayers for the ministry here in Karamoja, Uganda. One family will leave the work to return to the US. Please pray for the mission as well as we have a healthy transition.

Carluci dos Santos

March 31

As in many other regions of the world, there are several restrictions on the mobility of people in the region of work with the Enawene-nawe. The indigenous are leaving the tribe only for essential issues, like grocery, medical appointments, and similar. But they continue to come regularly to Vilhena, as they need to do their business. The missionary homes has been rented, the couple moved in, and we are already having a movement with the visit of some indigenous people of our target group.

1.2 We have a very good story to tell, a truly historic moment. The attached picture shows missionary Bemyray with Xohi, the first Enawene-nawe visit to the house and attentively reading the Bible he just received as a gift. This young man, Xohi, is from the Enawene-nawe and had gone to Vilhena for he needed to fix his car. As the repair took a few days, he visited the missionary base on different occasions. The missionary proposed to read the Bible with him (Xohi has some basic knowledge of Portuguese). As you can see in the attached picture, they had a very good time reading the Bible together. The missionary gave Xohi the Bible they were reading, which he accepted with a lot of joy. Missionary Bemyraj has been contacting the indigenous that come to the house, and getting their phone numbers. This will allow Missionary Bemyraj to continue to contact with them using message apps. Of course, the pandemic limited the work, and slow the process. However, the work has happened despite the restrictions. As with other indigenous peoples’ ministries in Brazil, they make good use of WhatsApp. 

Jim Mason

March 29

Please click the link below for our latest prayer update.

Jack & Mary Anne Voelkel

Beautiful mobile websites

We had a wonderful time at Laguna Beach even though Jack couldn't actually walk down to the ocean itself. Our little apartment which sits on a hill overlooks the ocean and we feasted our eyes on its ever-changing beauty, day after day. (see the pictures below>) Sometimes we would drive down to the cliff overlooking the ocean, park the car and Jack would walk with his walker until he got tired and then rested and drove home again. He is eagerly awaiting back surgery on April 13th, and we are praying and believing for God's healing touch and for Jack's ability to both stand and walk without pain.

He has been writing articles for the Mission this week: a short history of the LAM on its would-be 100th birthday ---for the UWM magazine and currently he's working on an article about his most satisfying work as a missionary to disciple and mentor men.

This brings our love to you and a couple of pictures: the view from the living room of our home away from home at Laguna and below that, a picture of the shoreline just down the hill.  

Carluci dos Santos

March 27

We are pleased to enclose our most recent newsletter and hope you enjoy reading it. Please click below.
At this time when many of us are still suffering some kind of "lockdown"(was it really just over a year ago when it all started?) we are called to remember that this is a time of resurrection and hope as well.  

Dom Goold

March 25

I’m recovering still from being sick (neg for Covid) Feb and a good part of March. Some symptoms have continued, so I am heading to a lung clinic April 5 to see if there is a reason for the continued symptoms. I am thankful for sources to seek out to find out why my symptoms are not leaving and what they mean. It could be that I have developed asthma. Or it could be its just taking a long time to leave my system. My Doctor wants to check to make sure.

In any case, I am working on a newsletter…but its coming together more slowly than I hoped. Still recovering from a very intense weekend with the course I was taking. Hoping to send it to you this Thurs or Friday. 

Hanneke Cost Budde

March 23

For a while I have had severe neck pains and pain in my right shoulder. After taking care of Jack and then Naomi things settled and so I went for X-rays this morning. It looks like I need surgery. I have sent the pictures to my mission in Toronto and asked if they could forward these to my physician and perhaps a date for surgery in July. For now I have been given painkillers... Oh joy!!
God is good! Naomi, my worker is doing very well after her hysterectomy. Jacky is now in her 3rd month of pregnancy and her boyfriend, Good luck has decided to tell his aunt, who raised him, about Jacky.
Pray she won't reject this young boy. He is only 18...a bit of a troubled teen.
We are looking forward in having Baraka and Faraja join us over Easter!

Carluci dos Santos

March 23

This is Dione Santos Oliveira Lima, our missionary among the Kayapo people in the Brazilian Amazon. She continues the work of Ruth Thompson and was Ruth’s co-worker for some 20 years. She’s fluent in Kayapo.

She has been very instrumental during the pandemic for the Brazilian authorities (and possibly no other Brazilian around) speaks Kayapo. So, they have relied on her to communicate with local Kayapo people. She’s been invited to go on trips with Health professionals, to serve as interpreters in hospital procedures, and she’s been asked to make a video encouraging indigenous people to take the vaccine.

Here’s a picture of her holding a baby, whose 14 years mother passed away with Covid, soon after this picture was taken.

On Saturday afternoon, I received a message from Dione asking for prayers for her, for the baby and the whole family. She has spoken with both grandmothers and the child is being hidden from the girl's father. In the tradition of these people's group when the mother dies, they kill the baby. Dione has expressed her willingness to keep the baby, if that should be the case.

The great-grandfather of this baby was the narrator of the movie Jesus in the Kayapo language and worked with Ruth Thompson.

FYI, in the Brazilian government policy dealing with indigenous people, the government doesn't allow interference with the Indigenous Peoples culture. The laws of the country do not apply to local indigenous people living on reserves.

The little baby is now with another young mother who accepted to take her in. Matters seem to have calmed since Saturday.

Let’s continue to pray for Dione, the Indigenous peoples she works with, the advancement of the Gospel among them. 

Carluci dos Santos

I am grateful I started to teach the Introduction to Old Testament online course, but I should rather say Introduction to the Scriptures of Jesus Christ and his Disciples. The OT is known as the OT because the New Covenant which is made with the blood of Jesus Christ himself. We have a total of 25 students from the GTA, Honduras, Colombia, and Venezuela. Please pray for me and for the students as we engage with the Mission of God through this immense literary heritage and Sacred book of our faith.

Hanneke Cost Budde

March 18

"Thanks for your prayers for Naomi, my friend and co-worker, who had a hysterectomy operation yesterday. She continues to feel better and will stay with me during her recuperation."

Tanzania's president, John Magufuli died on Wednesday. 

Xerggyo & Hil

March 11

They are working on their visa now with a scheduled return to T on April 8. Hil's grandmother is very sick and she is expected to die soon. Hil appreciates being able to spend time with her. [Pictured: A group of their prayer supporters and financial.]

Scott and Beth Hurd

March 11

It has been a busy start to the new year as we have moved back to Canada after more than 11 years in Singapore. We were greatly blessed to be able to celebrate the closure of our time there with many OMF and ARPC (church) family members, and we will deeply miss the regular connections with those we leave behind.

We arrived back in Ottawa on Dec. 5, and have successfully navigated a two-week quarantine, enjoyed celebrating Christmas and the first couple of months of 2021 with family in Ottawa (and meeting grandbaby #5 in person!), reinstated our health insurance, acquired a vehicle, and are presently spending time with Beth’s parents in Parry Sound.

We look forward to the transition to our new roles with OMF Canada by mid-year, and also the earliest opportunity to travel to Pennsylvania to help Anne and Coleman welcome their new arrival near the end of April. We pray for and eagerly await the opportunity to connect in person with all of you in Canada at the earliest opportunity as movement and travel restrictions relax.

Thank you for your continued prayer support - it has been the sustaining factor in our transition, and the source of our strength as we look toward all the new year holds. 

Dave Jeffery

My second book, ‘Teach me to Number my Days,’ is a collection of sermons, chapel talks, and other writings that span the last 24 years of my life. The title is based on Psalm 90:12 (NIV), “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”

‘Teach us to number our days’ is a literal translation of a Hebrew idiom that essentially means ‘teach us how short life is.’ I hope that, just as God blessed people through these talks when they were originally presented, they will be a blessing to each and every person who reads them in the future.  

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