Mary - Cameroon
It’s planned to resume the finalising of a number of reading books for three Mbam language communities, starting in early July. In some cases, earlier editions of books need to be revised to include recent changes in their writing systems; others are newly-drafted books (of 20 lessons each) that need to be made ready for printing. For all of us involved, it means paying close attention to detail, making wise decisions and maintaining steady concentration throughout the whole process. (Finalising can seem never-ending!!) These projects are now under the oversight of CABTAL, our national partner. The Nulibie project team is first in line – please pray for perseverance, good relationships, good health, and freedom from computer problems.
The printed New Testaments in two other Mbam languages (Nugunu and Yambetta) have finally arrived and safely cleared customs here after considerable delay. Dates had previously been set for these dedication events, but fresh planning and preparation now needs to be done. Pray that anticipation of receiving the Word in their heart languages would be rekindled, and especially that people’s hearts would hunger to know the One who is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
The extra cold and wet spell of weather here has brought sicknesses of various kinds, affecting many; pray that we would take proper precautions for staying healthy and that the sick would quickly recover.
Caleb - USA
So many things are happening at the moment, it’s hard to know where to start. Personally speaking, I’ve learned so much over this past year. Football is just a tool to get into as many lives as possible to share Christ, but we all have relationships that we need to bless by sharing Christ so often it’s a matter of having Christ on the mind and in the heart and letting Him guide you. Always the biggest prayer request when you think of me is that Christ is guiding me! If I’m doing the guiding, then something bad is about to happen.
This year I have coached over 120 players. The next few weeks will also be my last time coaching the team I began with when I first arrived. I started when they were 8 and now they are 18, so 10 years! Good news is that God has moved in their lives; several are regular church members and I pray for others that seeds have been sown. For the team I coached last year, I found them “CU”s at their schools and told them it was mandatory they go. To my great surprise, I asked a player if she could help run a camp and she said she couldn’t as she was on a missions trip in Puerto Rico with another girl from our team. That was very encouraging as neither were into the “Christian” stuff we did while they were here, but God must have turned them whilst in college!
Right now we are building a new facility and after much struggle and problem after problem… the shovel has finally hit the ground. It means we are in a difficult financial situation and have to run a tight ship, but we need to be good stewards of what the Lord has provided for us and we need a home to be ‘our church’. Our prayer is that when people come to the football facility we are building, they will experience Christ there. We are building it in such a way to hold worship events on the field and various other activities.
During the summer, we are running camps. Around 2,000 kids and adults are reached through this ministry. I am running part of the Sports Ministry Training Course, to coach coaches how to share Christ. Then while this is happening, I will coach the Women’s semi pro team here. God brought about a girl, Megan, who is a God send as I like to keep my distance from the girls on the team, so basically send her in to meet them for coffee, run Bible times and go a little deeper. With the team we share Biblical devotionals.
With the guys in the office, upon recommendation from a friend in sports ministry, this year we have begun the “Genesis Process”. It’s an amazing course and I would definitely recommend you looking into! It’s helped us to become closer to each other in Christ and being honest about what we’re doing wrong. Missionaries are under the spotlight more and it’s very easy to do “presumptuous sins”, so Genesis has helped take a deeper look at ourselves and our habits and God has helped us grow as a result.
There are other stories, a 19 year old pro player had his ankle snapped… torn ligaments and broken bones. His friend texted me asking me to come minister to him… I didn’t even know him but went up to see him. I’d seen him on TV but had never met him in person. I just told him this could be best time in his life because football is on hold now and he should look for God. He questioned God’s existence and I just left him with, “If there is a God, there is a plan and you should seek Him. If there is no God, you’re just unlucky and this is a mess”. He has started going to church with two other pro players from that team. Please pray that God moves in his life and that he stays on the path.
David - Prisons UK
It would be terrific if you could use the following as a prayer prompt.
Last month I requested prayer for ministry going forward in one of the prisons (which has thus far gone forward in an unprecedented away). Your prayers are being answered. A ‘Simple Enquiry’ was set up to establish what was being done by CPR and how this fitted in with HMP’s rules etc. It is has been an amazing encouragement so far and although the official finding has not been released, the Governor in charge said he was very pleased with what we are doing. Also, the head of the Education Department has asked for a meeting this Tuesday because of the overflowing success with which they thought they could help, perhaps fund!!! BUT, I am reminded of the verse that says: “The king of Israel answered, “Tell him: ‘One who puts on his armour should not boast like one who takes it off.’” (1 Kings 20:11, NIV).
Please, please pray this through to its conclusion. The courses we are producing are taking on a whole new level and we are hoping they will gain some formal accreditation for their educational value – again please pray specifically about this.
Hannah Fortune, Jared’s wife, has been an enormous help in writing the courses with me – we need many, many, courses because of the Lifers and other areas we are exploring. Roger Weil’s book, ‘Foundation of the Christian Faith’ has 21 studies including Mind Maps to enable those whose reading skills are not at a high standard or simply for those who think in a slightly different way – I know folks with Phd’s who prefer Mind Maps. Please pray for the funding we need for Hannah’s position to become permanent. If any of our supporters wish to do these courses free of charge, please let us know and we will try to assist you.
We are also seeking to employ a new member of staff – this may be part time initially rather than full time, to enable further theological training. We are through to the final stages for this appointment – please pray that all those involved, the board, those conducting the final interview and the candidate himself, will have real wisdom from the Lord. His enthusiasm, preaching, Bible leading skills is superb and very much anointed from the Lord. We have worked together since October of last year.
Another jail in which we are developing a team could have some fascinating work opportunities – converting books to digital media – Kindle, iBooks etc. The best man in the country to do this is only 20 mins from this jail!!!! So full steam ahead here too. No extra funds are needed for this as everything is in place – as far as we can see thus far.
I am not in a hurry to find a successor as CPR will continue to change and, under God, transform/develop so it may be a different role that is needed by the time it comes to me hanging up my motorcycle boots, BUT at the same time it would be wonderful to have someone already in the wings ready to take up the task. So please not only pray about the future of CPR but also pray I will continue to know His strength and enabling.
YOUR SUPPORT IN PRAYER AND DOSH is changing lives – thank you from the ‘students’ within HMP.
Transforming young lives through Christian schools
We take for granted in this country that every child has access to education, but in many other countries school is denied children because they are too poor, or war stops them or sometimes because they are Christians. Here are some situations where Barnabas are helping to build and equip Christian schools. Replacement class rooms in the Democratic Republic of Congo for 393 children. Construction of a Christian school in Myanmar for 105 children. Bangladesh 2012 a church-come-school destroyed by a cyclone rebuilt so 120 children could go back to school. At the moment Barnabas has helped to fund at least 84 Christian schools in 15 countries these have provided 15,500 school places.
Pray for these children as they go to school not only for a good education but also one of the first books they learn to read is the bible, pray that the seed planted in their hearts may produce fruit in the future.
Pray for the continuing problem of the drought which is effecting South Sudan, Kenya, Uganda and some other parts of East Africa which are cut off by war. These people rely on growing their own food and also their animals, this has been impossible because their plants and animals have died so they relying on the rest of the world to feed them and is where as Christians we cannot turn a blind eye to their situation. Pray that the lord in his mercy would provide rain but also we would see our need to give.
On 26 May, 29 Egyptian Christians were murdered and a further 22 injured as they travelled to a monastery. Men were taken off the buses, their identity cards checked to see if they were Christians then told recite shahada indicating they were converting to Islam. All the vvvv murdered men refused to renounce their Christian faith in this way. Pray for the ongoing problems for Christians in Egypt and the Egyptian government as they seek to stop this senseless killing of Christians
Geoff, Fay & Danni
The big question we are asking is, how can we share the gospel with those who often don’t remember their own name or family members? This is some of the things we have been learning on the pastoral team for which we would appreciate continued prayer.
Isaiah 49:15-16 (NIV) 15 “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast
and have no compassion on the child she has borne?
Though she may forget,
I will not forget you!
16 See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands;
your walls are ever before me.
The thing that has struck me from these verses is that it is not we, but God that keeps us, our memory may fail us but God remembers! Nothing can separate us from the love of God not even Alzheimer’s.
There’s a lady I visit every week who has known the Lord all her life, I often feel heartbroken when looking at her frail frame, unable to leave her bed or talk. On this particular day, after reading her a Psalm, I played an old Sankey’s hymn on my phone. As we got to the chorus she belted out “What a friend we have in Jesus” which made me jump out my skin but reminded me that my Jesus was her Jesus and was still very much with her even if she didn’t have the words. I hope this can encourage you the same way it has me.
Please continue to pray that we on the Pastoral team and those who volunteer can remind those who we see of the hope they have in Jesus, and that He will continue to give us wisdom in how to share the gospel in this area which is so unknown but not unknown to Him.
Tim & Alison - UK
Where are we at? Well we are not quite sure. Life seems to be a real life roller coaster and often we don’t have time to think but have to function in automatic pilot.
Tim has recruited Dan, at times, to do the inputting of finance, so he is able to keep up to date and catch up a little in some areas. Tim should be away with the teams, but due to the family situation, we felt it best for him to stay at home. This has meant phone calls, emergency answering of emails and having others give the finance report. Please continue to pray for the team in Afghanistan and all they are facing at this time.
The term is coming to an end, with reports and details being specified for the next steps of the children / families Alison supports. It has been challenging to think or plan regarding September. This is partly due to paperwork not being in place, for the new children, and our family situation.
Life has been challenging with the reintroducing of family members: some planned and some against the children’s wishes. There are times, partly because we are getting to know each other, when it is not clear how to move forward or best support the emotional needs. Please ask for specific prayer requests because they are often changing.
Helen & Alastair - Ireland
BUS school tour were really encouraged by being able to return to 16 primary schools we have visited over the past few years and to build on the relationships that have developed. Praise God that the bus and the team were all healthy!
We are gearing up for IMPACT Ireland (4-18 July) and, after an initial three days of training, the teams will be sent out to six partner churches in Athlone, Ballinasloe, Cootehill, Letterkenny, Roscommon and Tullamore. Although our numbers of participants are down on previous years, several of those have been with us before. Many of our staff have the opportunity to join a team with about 60 people being sent out in total.
TEENSTREET takes place in Germany, from 24 July-2 August. Alastair will be attending TeenStreet for the first time as part of the service team, along with many other OM Ireland staff! Pray for safety for the many teenagers and leaders who are travelling to TeenStreet from all over Europe and other parts of the world. Pray for all those attending, that God would speak to them.
Throughout the year OM offers many short term opportunities and we are sending several people out this summer. One Irish lad, who has been to previous TeenStreet events as a teenager, is going to Moldova for a two week sports outreach. This is really encouraging, and we pray he will be blessed as he serves on a team. Another four are going on a customised trip to help at a refugee camp.
Alastair is making a quick visit to London this weekend (1-3 July), to share at Christ Church Bromley’s Mission Sunday. Alastair’s sister and family are visiting for a month from mid-July before returning to Mali and we plan to meet up with them. Hannah has now finished primary school (after eight years) and although she is sad to leave she is looking forward to starting secondary school. We have two birthdays this month! On 16 July Daniella turns 10 and Hannah is 13 on 17 July.