Dear friends, supporters and prayer partners,
Greetings to you and thank you for your continued support and prayers for our brothers and sisters in South East Asia who serve the Lord under the Advent Christian banner. Once again the past six weeks or so since my last update have brought many matters for which we can thank the Lord, and there is much that we need to continue to pray about. My updates have been getting too long recently – there is so much to point you to – so I will use links to fuller reports on the ACMissioNZ website on some occasions.
Please keep an eye on the website – www.acmissionz.org.nz – as our website manager Mrs Tarnya Wessels does a great job of getting reports, prayer requests and praise items up as they come to hand. If you are not already signed up to receive notification of new posts either when they go up or once a week, or for daily prayer items, please consider BECOMING A SUPPORT PARTNER – sign up on the right hand side of the website’s home page or look for our facebook page which has links to all postings.
A report recently received from Sister Ruth Devairakkam in Kluang indicates that their one-on-one ministry to neighbours, friends and other contacts continues to be blessed by the LORD.
- A lady and a gentleman have requested us to pray that they will be able to find suitable jobs. Pray for a release of their potential that will turn into reality in their lives.
- Some of our contacts in our neighborhood have requested prayer for their future plans. Pray for God’s direction for their lives, which decision to make, when to take action on it, and to know for sure they are on the right track in His plans and purposes.
- Widows ring us up for prayer. Pray that the Lord will reveal His presence to them and remove their feelings of loneliness.
- The granddaughter of my father’s (late Rev. T. Devairakkam) friend will be getting married soon. She is a non-Christian from out-station. She rang us up after 15 years. We will be sharing Jesus with her when she visits us. Pray that she will be receptive to the Gospel.
- Young couples who visit us and ring us up, are facing marital problems. They need our prayer and words of encouragement. Please pray that they will experience healing and restoration between husbands and wives.
PRAISES TO GOD
Our contact in our neighborhood had the joy of seeing her desired miracle for her life and family. This lady’s genuine desire for restoration for her and her family has been fulfilled. She often rings us up to share her joy with us. We praise the Lord for His goodness that endures forever. She is learning to trust Jesus now.
We thank the Lord for you and your prayers. As prayer partners, you are part of every blessing that touches the lives of those who need our prayers”. (Emphasis mine – Ernie)
We recently asked Ruth how we could assist her group in their ministry. She indicated that they had two projects in mind that we could pray for, especially praying that the Lord would provide the resources they require to meet the practical needs they would like to address. She wrote…
“At the moment, we can only think of these 2 items. We are trusting the Lord for His unprecedented breakthrough for a miracle in meeting the following needs.
CONTRIBUTIONS FOR CHILDREN FROM POOR HOMES.
Last year, we contributed gifts to one of the Community Centers here. This Christmas we want to contribute some gifts to one of the Homes for poor children. There are 20 children in this Home. We have a recent contact, a poor family (non-Christian) with 5 children. We would like to give them all Christmas gifts.
TRANSPORT NEEDS – NEED FOR A 2ND HAND VAN.
Most of our contacts are from the low income group. For many months, we have been hiring taxis to fetch people for our Services and House Meetings. It costs RM 25.00 [approx. NZ$9.75] per trip (to and fro). Whenever there are more people, more trips are necessary to fetch them. Their housing areas are two to three miles away from Kluang Town.”
We have asked Ruth to send more details and pictures if possible and we will publish these as soon as we can – in the meantime please pray that the LORD will provide.
OUTREACH MINISTRY AT KHAGARIA, BIHAR
Pastor Paul Sundar Raj recently presented an annual report, for the year ended 30 September 2013, on behalf of his team, to the General Body meeting of the Advent Christian Conference of India in Chennai. It read in part… the bold emphases are mine, not Paul’s
“We greet you with thanks in the name of Jesus, the Saviour of the world. I thank all of you for your generous help knowing that your efforts won’t go without reward. “Without some preaching……..unless they are sent” (Romans 10: 14 & 15) let us all together build the kingdom of God.
It is impossible to build the kingdom of God with few, here the needs are more, people who are in darkness are moving towards hell. Who is going to stop them standing in the gates of hell? Why couldn’t it be you?
Some want to live within the range of Church Bell. But we being out of range of the church bell, making [others] to hear the church bell. Why don’t you give us a helping hand? May God bless you and give you the grace which He had given to the Churches of Macedonia.
For Praising God.
- God helped us to dedicate 15 children and baptise 62 people.
- Rajesh, Santhosh, Rekha, Suman, Phinky are studying in GEMS Bible School.
- God helped us to conduct VBS in our Khagaria Head Church and Branch Churches where 1600 children participated and came to hear about Jesus.
- This year in as much as 45 places through film ministry about 15,000 people came to hear about Jesus.
- God helped us to start 15 new prayer cells in different places.
- We distributed about 130,000 hand bills and 25,000 New Testaments.
- God has helped us to conduct yearly Convention, Prayer Camps, Youth meetings, Women’s prayer meetings etc., in a blessed way.
- God used 75 men and women to answer 150 questions from the Gospel of John Bible Quiz.
- One Sister, Sironmani, while giving birth to a child was predicted by doctors will die due to some maternal problem, is now alive with her child as a living witness.
- One Bro. Jawahar, had spent Rs.5 lakhs [500,000 rupees] for his wife’s medical treatment only to see that there was no use in spending for her as her condition was growing even worse day by day, but after prayers and by God’s wonderful grace she is now delivered. The problem she suffered was she had gastric problem for which she met a Doctor, and later found that she was also having problem in uterus. She was advised by doctors to have it removed, and she got removed of her uterus as advised by doctors. But after the operation, she developed aches and pains all over her body that gave her severe pain. Her husband Bro. Jawahar, spend about Rs.5 Lakhs for her treatment little by little, but she was not cured. By this time Bro. Jawahar accepted Christ and prayed for her with the Church members, God heard all their prayers and healed his wife.
- A man borrowed Rs.150,000 from Sister Saritha’s husband, but refused to pay back the money and even assaulted her husband. The depressed husband died after a few days. This Saritha accepted Christ and by God’s mercy the man who borrowed the money returned the whole amount Rs.150,000/- within one day to this sister. Glory to God.
- One Bro. Subhash had a stone in his urinal path. The church members prayed together for him and the stone came out. Glory to God.
- Bro. Jewahsr’s two children got lost and by God’s grace and prayers they came back.
- There was great flood in river Sanna which caused danger to the lives of people. Many left their villages. We 10 servants of God stepped down in the water and prayed, since then the water began to subside. The village people started believing Jesus.
- One Rajkumari and Sandhan got up from bed were surprised to see a snake had been lying there with them in the bed. By God’s grace the snake hadn’t bite any one of them.
- The village people chased away one Panjalal because of accepting Jesus, and restrained us from showing film show [Jesus film]. Pray that there will be open doors for the ministry.
- The parents of Sister Mamtha and Sister Geetha are beating them both because of accepting Jesus. They need your prayers please.
- Bro. Udhay Pandith is spreading improper report about the land that is purchased for building a Church. Please pray for his repentance.
- Bro. Uphendar’s wife and children are having brawl with him for accepting Christ. Pray that the situation will change.
- Ranjith Doss and Lal Mohan hinder those who come to church and even plot to assault the Pastor. Please pray for their repentance.”
These PRAISE and PRAYER points show us that God’s power is working miracles in Khagaria and is bringing great blessing to many, but they also remind us that the power of the evil one is also very much in evidence in Khagaria especially in the resistance and opposition our brothers and sister continue to receive from those of the Hindu faith. Please pray for Paul and his team of ten Pastors. Please pray for Paul’s wife Sudar Mathi and their children William Carey and Joanna – Sudar plays a very active part in the ministry, especially with specialist ministry to the women.
YESUWAY JEEVAN MISSION’S MINISTRY
Under Mission Manager Immanuel’s leadership, YJM continues to support the ministries of ten organisations in four different States of India. Six of those organisations minister solely to underprivileged or orhaned or sick children in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, whilst the other four’s ministries also touch children in various ways. It is always a joy when we are able to report some activity or project which brings smiles to the faces of chidren who would rarely have anything to smile about without the care and compassion that our ministry partners show to them.
Yesuway Jeevan Mission is very grateful to one of the Advent Christian Churches in Charlotte, North Carolina, which recently sent funds to buy each of the children at the Grace Helen Schache Memorial Silver Fern Hostel at Guindy a new shirt. Mission Manager Immanuel had special shirts made which had the silver fern logo embroidered on them – although in blue not silver! At an afternoon tea function on 23rd October, the 80 children currently at the hostel were given their shirts and had a “treat” of tea and biscuits.
Our sincere thanks to the members of the church in Charlotte for their thoughtful gift which gave the children another encouragement and opportunity to smile!
One of YJM’s newer ministry partners is BALUNAYAK BANJARA TRIBAL MINISTRIES in Andhra Pradesh State which is led by Rev. B Balu Nayak (pictured with his family) who is himself a member of the Banjara tribal community. They minister in four separate areas of the State – Mahabubabad, Baluthanda, Gorimella and Salarthanda – and Brother Balu Nayak is based at Mahabubabad.
Last month two of our YJM staff members, along with Rev Paul Aruldoss from the Advent Christian Conference of India, who first introduced this ministry to us, visited Mahabubabad and spent three days with Brother Balu Nayak. Brother Deveraj, Immanuel’s clerical assistant at Guindy, prepared a report including some of the pictures that he took during the visit.
If you have not already read the report please do so (link here) and pray regularly for this ministry and for Brother Balu Nayak and his wife and believers as they serve the Lord faithfully in this remote area of India.
Please continue to pray that we may soon find the LORD’S chosen buyer for the land co-owned by the Mission and the AC Conference of India at Guindy. With the withdrawal of the legal action brought some time ago by a group of FBHC pastors, there is now more interest from potential buyers and the price they are willing to pay has risen somewhat. The income from the invested capital returns from the sale would bring financial security to the AC Conference; would allow YJM to substantially increase its support of existing and additional ministries and would relieve Immanuel of significant pressure.
Thank you to those who have been praying for John and Maeo’s friends and colleagues Pastor Boonta, his wife Phon and their daughter Bow. John’s last advice is that “Phon is up and around a little bit. She has been using a wheel chair – borrowed her daughter’s I think to get around the house. We have provided her with a walker for temporary use until she gets more of her strength back. She is eating regularly and her appetite is increasing. She has not had any headaches since she has returned home, so that is encouraging.” and was due back to the hospital at Khon Kaen, which helped her most, for a check-up early this week.
Sadly, there is still some way to go for Phon – another friend of hers has told us that “Phon’s face is paralyzed on the left side; she has a “loud sound” in her left ear so listening is a struggle. The right side of her mouth has to do all the chewing and talking, which she continues to do a lot of, so it gets sore. Her left eye is much better- at first because it was open all the time it hurt because of dryness, so she was using eye drops a lot, now it still doesn’t blink automatically but it doesn’t hurt.” Please pray for quick and as complete as possible healing for her so that her husband can return to ministry and again enjoy an income. John has indicated that Pastor Boonta has advised that he is available from November to preach for one Sunday a month at Christian Mission Naratchakwai, so that will be a beginning of ministry for Boonta and assistance for John. The picture at right, of Pastor Boonta, Phon and Bow with John and Maeo, was taken in happier times when I visited them early this year
You will remember that late last year John and Maeo played a major part in the forming and registration of an organisation – “Christ for all People Church Association” which is a group of evangelical churches in the area around Nakhon Phanom which used to be part of the New Tribes Missions organisation, and which CMN has worked closely with for many years. Since its formation the group has worked well together, has held regular joint fellowship and worship meetings and have been planning and implementing growth and outreach strategies.
John recently reported, with thanks to the Lord, for the progress made with one of the new churches that one of the organisation’s members has planted. The church is in a village – Ban Na Lao – which is about 75 miles from the Christian Mission, and about 15 miles back in the mountains from the nearby town of Sakon Nakhon. In ten months the church has gone from 2 or 3 people to about 65 believers from several nearby villages and has a church building which is free from debt and is nearing completion. Electricity and lights have recently been installed and tiling on the floor and a false ceiling and painting are in process to bring it to completion. Please thank and praise the Lord for the working of His Spirit in this area and pray that many more may hear of the love of God and His plan of salvation in Jesus Christ through this new church.
Several months ago, Christian Mission Naratchakwai donated their pigs – a pair – to this church as a means of providing funding for the construction of the church and providing food for the members and villagers. As the original pair have produced piglets church members have been given a pair and when they produce piglets one of the litter is given back to the church and these then breed with others and provide food and funds for the church. The church will be returning a pair to CMN soon and they will continue to assist with the process. If only our western economy was as simple as this, obviously very successful economy!!
Please continue to pray for good health for John and Maeo and for the ability for them to put aside enough “time out” from their busy schedules for relaxation and to get enough exercise.
In my September update I reported that sufficient funds had been sent to Pastor Paul, to enable him to purchase mosquito nets for all the villagers to reduce the incidence of malaria which has been causing such severe illness in the village. The smile on each of the faces of the last group of villagers to receive their nets tells the story of their gratitude.
I also mentioned that Pastor Paul was concerned at the lack of a means to transport those who are sick and injured from his village and the other 84 villages in the area to the one available hospital in the region. He suggested that he would like to have a motor cycle available to act as an “ambulance” for all the villages in the area.
Please praise the LORD that within a few days of the update being published, a New Zealand brother phoned and said he was posting a cheque to enable the motor cycle to be purchased and the money has been received and is on the way to Myanmar. Special thanks to the donor and to those who prayed, believing, that the LORD would provide.
The brother who sent the cheque and a number of others commented that the use of a motorcycle to transport the sick and injured was not a particularly satisfactory way to handle that situation. The picture at left below shows Pastor Paul’s village, perched on top of a hill in a very mountainous area – there are no roads in the area, only walking tracks, so any other kind of vehicle would just not be suitable to use. I suspect that a trip to a hospital would involve the rider of the motorbike, and another person at the back with the sick or injured person sandwiched between them. It would certainly be easier and quicker than walking and carrying the patient. This idea of multiple riders on a motorcycle is very common in many Asian countries – see picture from India below right!!
Please thank and praise the Lord that a generous gift has recently been received to fund another Burmese church planter – Brother Justin Noah Ling – for a three year period and these funds will soon be on the way to the Advent Christian Conference of Myanmar’s leaders. Please pray for this church planting ministry which is carried out by all the leaders of the Advent Christian Conference of Myanmar both in and around Yangon and in several other States to the north and south of Yangon. God is using these young people who commit themselves to serving Him, and many are coming to faith through their efforts.
You may have heard on the news recently that a series of earthquakes occurred in the central Philippines, doing considerable damage and causing loss of life in excess of 200 people. A number of islands in the area were affected by the quake which was measured at 7.2 on the Richter scale – a very large one!! ( And since then a typoon ~Tarnya)
Advent Christian churches at Banilad, on the Island of Cebu and at Loay and Maribojoc on the Island of Bohol were affected by the quake and continue to be affected by on-going aftershocks. Thankfully no lives were lost or injuries sustained by AC people but considerable damage to church buildings and parsonages, and members’ homes have been reported.
At the Banilad Blessed Hope Christian Fellowship Church in Cebu, where Pastor Jonathan Navacilla is the pastor, the church building has been damaged to the extent that it is now unsafe. The greatest damage to the building was on the first floor which is the accommodation for the pastor and his family. An estimate to repair the damage is approximately 90,000 pesos or about NZ$2,600. (Picture at right)
Damage to the two churches on the Island of Bohol is more severe. The church at Loay, pastored by Eden Pallo, was badly damaged (picture below left). BPACCI President Rev Efren Miranda reported recently, following a visit to Bohol… “The front of the building appears to be alright, but when you look at the sides you can see how severe the earthquake has spoiled it. The many aftershocks that have continued to happen have provided more damage. The parsonage, a small structure beside the main building where Pastor Eden resides, is now utilized as a temporary worship center, as the main building could collapse at any time. The church has agreed to set demolition of the building before it creates further damage; especially, since there is still seismic activity every now and then. Yesterday (Sunday, October 20), we sensed quavering during the service in the morning and two more trembles still continue to the time of my writing to you (Monday, October 21). Power has been restored, but the problem of the community now is the supply of water”.
He also visited the AC church at Maribojoc (picture below right) and reported as follows…
“In one of my recent reports, I mentioned new ministry openings. One of them was an outreach of the Maranatha Christian Fellowship, Nasipit, Agusandel Norte and opened in Maribojoc, Bohol. When news spread about how the earthquake had shaken the municipality, I called Pastora Emma Rezabal, who informed me about the situation. I was not able to proceed to the area immediately, because it was isolated for two days due to landslides and broken bridges. The photo shows the extent of damage the earthquake has caused to the building. They also told us about the heavy damage this place has suffered compared to that of Loay. This structure is newly built; in fact the inside furnishings were still ongoing. This new fellowship was just launched three weeks ago. Pastora Emma Salatan Rezabal requests any assistance that may be extended to the church. The people in this area suffer from lack of both water and electric supply.
Several of the Loay Advent Christian Church members’ homes have suffered partial damage and one the member’s houses was completely demolished. It is situated in the distance, so I was not able to take a photo of it. The transportation is limited due a good number of broken bridges. I spent much of my time travelling thru habal-habal (a single motorcycle), which are now collecting high rate of fares”
ACMissioNZ has forwarded NZ$2,000 from our Emergencies Fund to BPACCI to be shared equally among the three churches mentioned above, for relief to their members and assistance with rebuilding homes and churches and ACGC have also sent US$5,000.If anyone feels the LORD’s leading to contribute further to what will be massive relief and rebuild projects for the three Advent Christian churches, please send your gifts to our treasurer Mrs Glenise Burge (ACMissioNZ PO Box 202162 Southgate Post Centre Manukau Auckland 2246) marked “Philippine earthquake assistance” and they will be promptly forwarded to and administered by the Philippine Advent Christian Conference.
Many thanks once again for your prayers and your partnership with us in Advent Christian ministries in south-east Asia. God bless you as you serve Him in this way.