In November 2014, World Outreach Director Rev Jeff Walsh, Asia Pacific Area Director Rev Penny Vann and I had the opportunity to visit the property owned by Pastor J’s TWM – The Word Mission – on the outskirts of Yangon City.
The highlight of our visit was being able to meet the 53 children who Pastor J, his family and his team care for. We learned that the children come from ten different tribal areas in various parts of the country – there are children from the Mara, Wa, Daichin, Akham, Lahu, Chin Pum, Zu Tu, Le Tu, Asochin and Kachin tribes which live in 5 different States or Divisions within the country. We were introduced to each tribal group of children separately and were very warmly greeted and entertained by the children and had the opportunity to have pictures taken with them after the formalities – again by tribal group as well as together – see picture below.
Pastor J explained to us that he has brought these children to Yangon to ensure that they are able to get the best possible education and to ensure the best possible prospects for their futures. He told us that all of the children are orphans or are underprivileged in some way – “some children have no parents and will stay with TWM forever, some have mother without father, some have father without mother, some parents have divorced and abandoned the children; some children have been abandoned by their parents”. Most of them had no prospects for education in their tribal areas. TWM outreach workers – church planters – are also caring for a further 17 children in the Shan State, making a total of 70 children being cared for by the organisation. That care of course includes being shown Christian love and compassion and being taught of God’s love for them and His plan of salvation through Jesus Christ.
Another highlight of the visit was being able to meet with the children, and with Pastor J’s team of workers, in what was the then just completed construction of a large, very well built building which had been funded largely by a large gift from a New Zealand supporter– see pictures below. The building is designed to be and will ultimately become their church sanctuary and meeting hall, but in the meantime, until other facilities can be constructed, it is being used as accommodation for the girls of the group. We also had the opportunity to share a meal with Pastor J, provided by his family and helpers.
In an endeavour to provide the best possible facilities for the children, TWM has purchased (with borrowed funds) 12 bunk beds for the girls who will be living in the new building, each costing the equivalent of NZ$163 (US$125) – see picture. If any individual or family or church would like to contribute towards the cost of these I would be very pleased to hear from you.
With his tremendous faith – TWM’s “promise” for 2015 is from Abraham’s words in Genesis 22:14 – “The Lord will provide.” -Pastor J is also hoping to upgrade the rest of his facilities. He would like to provide good facilities for all who live and serve the Lord on their compound – to upgrade the living quarters for them all to a similar standard to that which the girls presently enjoy in the new building.
The existing living quarters for the boys, the Bible College students and his helpers and their families look like this…
Pastor J is looking to the Lord to provide for a building of similar quality to the new building mentioned above, the plan of which looks like this….
If God confirms the plan and provides, the new building will be 30 metres (100 feet) long by approximately 11 metres (35 feet) wide with two storeys, and be constructed from tile, cement, stone and steel. It will contain boys’ and girls’ dormitories, class rooms, a prayer room, a library, and dining and cooking facilities. Pastor J believes that when the building is completed they could start a private, Christian school.
I asked Pastor J about the cost of the project and the time it would take to construct. He replied as follows – the emphasis is mine….
“The total cost will be 101,000 US dollars. They will build between 4 and 6 month. The constructor said that they need 20,000$ for the foundation for the building. Lastly we can start the foundation for the building and build step by step within 1 year or 2 year because I note that it is not easy to get the fund for 101000$. But I trust God that He will make the way for us.
Thank you for asking me about the building projects. By your prayer support and help for this building we can change the lives of the children of Myanmar forever for the Lord. Our children are your children. The children are our future. We are your children for future. Where you stay we will stay. Your people will be our people and your God our God. May the Lord deal with us, be it ever so severely, if anything but death separates us and the children.”
Will you pray with this man of faith and those who work with him in The Word Mission, seeking the Lord’s clear guidance and ultimately provision for this very big project – for the Gospel and for the children who they care for? Please contact me at email@example.com if you require any further information.