Greetings to our friends, supporters and prayer partners, and once again my thanks for your support and encouragement in so many ways. There is much to thank and praise the Lord for, not the least being the many pastors, Bible women and lay people in “our” countries who serve the Lord so faithfully and diligently in answer to His call. In some countries, they do so despite difficult political and/or religious opposition, even persecution, and in some cases despite some of the leadership of their organizations moving away from their commitments to serve the Lord in sincerity and truth and instead seeking to look after “number one”!!
Please thank the Lord for, and pray regularly for pastors, Bible women and lay people in Advent Christian organisations in India, Thailand, Malaysia, Myanmar and the Philippines who serve the Lord faithfully according to His ways and precepts.
INDIA – YESUWAY JEEVAN MISSION/AMERICAN ADVENT MISSION
Thank you for continuing to pray for the Mission’s bank account situation as I have been explaining it over recent months. Thank the Lord for another answered prayer and another step along the way to the account being re-opened. The bank has agreed to re-open the account but using a different name – it used to be and had been for sixty or more years under the name “American Advent Mission” but the bank advise that they will only re-open it using the name “The Women’s Home and Foreign Mission Society of the Advent Christian Denomination” which was the name used when the organisation was first registered in India in the 1920s! (I am going to be interested to see how they get that name printed on our cheques!!) We are of course grateful that they have indicated they will re-open it but they will not do so until we provide “proof of address” for the new named organisation. This is difficult because all the organisation’s accounts and contacts are in the American Advent Mission name but Immanuel has come up with a “cunning plan” and is seeking the help of the Indian government’s Tax Department. He hopes to get a document this week that will prove that the organisation is where it has been for 50 or 60 years and he will have great pleasure in taking it to the bank! Please continue to pray that this last step will happen quickly so that the team in Chennai can get on with more positive things and funds can flow to India easily again.
Please also continue to pray for the sale of the Guindy land – Immanuel is again seeing some interest from prospective purchasers. The sale would bring the possibility of much needed financial stability for the Advent Christian Conference of India and its ministries and allow YJM/AAM to greatly extend our ministries
Extremism and Persecution of Christians are alive and well in the 21st century.
In similar vein to the article we recently published on the website (www.acmissionz.org.nz) concerning persecution of Christians in Myanmar, we have received information from one of Yesuway Jeevan Mission’s Ministry Partners in the State of Odisha which we share below. The persecution was not of our ministry partner or his believers but occurred about 60 kilometres from where he is ministering, across the western border of Odisha in the State of Chhattisgarh.
In early September the 32-year-old Indian secretary of a Pentecostal church – Bro. Somaru – was dragged from his church and murdered by a radical, anti-Christian group. The church was virtually demolished and his body left on the ground along with his bloodstained Bible.
Please pray for this brother’s family which includes three small children and for their fellow believers in that area.
YJM’s ministry partner in Odisha, Pastor Ahaj Kumar Pani, who has been ministering in his home city Jharsuguda and five villages in the surrounding area, has recently added a further village to his circuit. He wrote recently…
“We have started a new mission field in the Rampur village where more than 20 believers are coming to join with our prayer fellowship. Please pray for this ministry and for the spiritual growth. (Picture below left)
An 18 year old young girl was being possessed by the devils spirit since long time in the Rampur village, God did great miracle and healed her completely while we all together prayed for her. Please pray for her better life. Her name called Priyaka John.” (Picture below right)
Pastor Pani has for many years ministered to the homeless and hungry in his area. He wrote…
“We feed to poor and hungry believers in our mission fields. These peoples are living with out food and clothes. Please pray for this ministry.”
During this year he has been able to greatly increase the scope of this ministry because of gifts from ACGC’s “BREAD OF LIFE” program. Please pray for this programme and thank the Lord for those who have given generously in the United States to enable these gifts to be sent to India and other countries.
Thank the Lord too for Pastor Pani’s care and compassion for the underprivileged and for his ongoing ministries.
MALAYSIA – Kluang Advent Christian Group’s ministry
Since the last update Sister Ruth has written as follows…
Praises to God for Answered Prayer & a Prayer Request
Thank you so much for your fervent prayers for us and the contacts we reach out to, who are transformed and touched by our Father’s love. You are part of the blessings we are experiencing in Malaysia.
1. Our contact who was delivered from committing suicide, is now knowing more of Him and sharing God’s love to her colleagues and friends. Her heart has become tender and teachable by God’s inward peace and harmony. She is knowing His presence, His care and love through His abiding and living Word. The fire of God is consuming the old nature and renewing her mind with His Word. Glory to His Name.
2. Another friend of ours has been released from a strong evil influence upon her life. All the strong negative desires and obsession in her has been removed by the grace of the Lord. She is now very dependent on God and relies on His Word and sees Him as the most needed person to seek. Praise God, for His mercy endures forever.
3. Our contact who was going through a painful divorce, shared how our prayers have sustained her and she is now able, with new strength and ability to face the challenges in her life. She is surrounded by good and caring friends at her work place. She always keeps in touch with us. We praise God for He is good.
Please pray for my husband Wilfred’s friend who lost his wife two months ago. He met up with Wilfred to share his grief and pain. Pray that God’s Word that was shared to him will console and strengthen him. He will be meeting up again with Wilfred soon. Pray that the love of God will bring him inner peace and strength to face all that he is going through, and that God will guide and lead him for directions and answers that he needs most right now.
On September 16 Ruth and Wilfred gathered with members of the other Tamil churches in Kluang for a service to celebrate Malaysia Day. They reported a good time of fellowship and celebration. Ruth was invited to pray the Opening Prayer.
Please continue to pray for Ruth and Wilfred and their group for the Holy Spirit to continue to work in the lives of those to whom they minister so faithfully.
MYANMAR – BORE-WELL DEDICATED TO GOD’S GLORY in rural village!
Pastor Kenneth, has written and sent pictures of the completed bore-well in the village, funded by a gift from a generous donor in New Zealand, in which one of his pastors ministers – Okshitgone in the Yangon Division, about 2 hours’ bus ride from Yangon City. Pastor Hla Thaung is the pastor of the church plant of Pastor Kenneth’s organisation – Gospel for Myanmar – and he and his wife Za Za Oo have ministered there since 2008. They have 37 Christian believers in their group which meets in their home, all of whom are from Buddhist backgrounds.
Pastor Kenneth wrote…
“Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We praise God for the completion of our bore water well on the past Saturday. Pastor Hla Thaung and Pastor Mawi were doing dedication on that same day for the bore water well with some believers. I received these pictures on Saturday night from Pastor Hla Thaung. We do really praise God for His wonderful blessing and do very much appreciate to all the donors and who really pray for the mission work here in Myanmar.
At the present this bore water well is the best at this village and all the villagers are also very happy and all the believers also praise God for His great blessing on the village. On behalf of our Church, I also would like to say “Thank you” to you and to all the donors. We do very much appreciate for your love and concern for us. Your love and your work for the Lord will not be forgotten but it will grow with fruit of saving lost souls.”
Pastor Hlau Thaung and his believers have promised that they will share their good quality water with all of those who live in their village. Please pray that their willingness to do this will, in the power of the Holy Spirit, bring others to faith in Jesus Christ and to drink of “the Water of Life.” Most Christian worship services in Myanmar are carried out in homes. A few churches have separate buildings but government regulations make it difficult to get permission for Christian church buildings.
This is a picture of a recent service at Pastor Timothy’s home church. At that particular service, Rev Kei Sum, the pastor of one of his church plants from another suburb of Yangon, was invited to preach (see picture below left).
At a more recent service the wife of the pastor of another of his church plants gave the address. Pastor Timothy wrote…
“Last Sunday one of our pastors Aungthang and his wife came to my Church and his wife preached the Word of God to us. She is a good preacher, a Godly woman and good helper. I am sending to you their pictures.” (see pictures below centre and right)
Pastor Aung Thang, his wife Far Hnem Sung and their children have been ministering in the Pegu Division, north-east of Yangon, since 2009. Most of the people they minister to are Burmese Buddhists with small numbers of Karen Buddhists. These people are mostly farmers and “hand to mouth people”. (Subsistence farmers). He has a small church with a few members. They have a Sunday School of about 15 children. The family cares for 4 orphans as well as their own children. They are also helping poor children and orphans, especially with their education. His wife is a nurse and many sick people come to their house and she does what she can to help them, in the name of Jesus.
They are presently renting a small house (pictured below right) but in April they were able to buy some land and they are hoping to be able to build a house on it next year.
Please pray for this family and for their ministry, praying especially that they will be able to build their own home as the Lord supplies the funds.
THAILAND – Christian Mission Naratchakwai
Thank you for your prayers for Ploy who leads the team of young ladies who do so much in planning and preparing and running the Sunday services and other ministries at CMN.
Since our last update – on 14 September – Parn and Ploy had an “altercation” on a motorcycle with a “kwai”, a water buffalo, causing Ploy to be hospitalized with a fractured skull, bleeding in her brain and brain swelling. She was in hospital for 4 days and was then sent home with instructions to have two weeks’ complete rest to recover from the effects of concussion which she also suffered. She was back at the service at CMN on Sunday 2 October and returned to her studies at university on Monday 3rd. Please continue to pray for complete recovery for Ploy as some of the after-effects of concussion are still causing her concern. She says that “I can’t remember as well as before…”
Thank the Lord however that she has had no further fainting turns or headaches since the accident.
Praise the Lord that fortunately, Parn was not seriously injured, suffering only from bruising to her arms and legs and was able to recover more quickly and was back at university after only a few days.
On Sunday 2 October the team at Christian Mission Naratchakwai wrote on Facebook…
“We are here again for worshiping and praying. Thanks God for sending us here. Ploy is come back, thanks God for this.”
Please continue to pray regularly for the whole leadership team at CMN at this time – Maeo, Brother (Pastor) Boontaa, Ploy, Parn, Lita, Job, Kaew and Guitar. Maeo, Ploy and Parn will soon have extra tasks and responsibilities as they plan and prepare for the visit of the Project Barnabas Team – from 28 December to 11 January.
We would appreciate your regular prayers please for all members of the team – 7 from New Zealand and 1 from the United States. Travel and accommodation arrangements are in place and confirmed. Please pray for safe travel and for wonderful fellowship with God’s family at Christian Mission Ban Naratchakwai -for ministry opportunities, for opportunities to do some light maintenance tasks on the compound, and for our young people to be blessed and to be a blessing to the young people at CMN as they interact with them and encourage them with their conversational English and with their walk with the Lord.