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Archive for September, 2011

Greetings Everyone,

Today we left Rossel for Sudest with eight on board (some extras for Misima) and four logs as deck cargo then turned back as there was not a breath of wind.  We will wait one or two days then motor if we have to.

We had a profitable time at the two outreaches.  At Walanga Bay we were able to assess the situation and look to a remedy.  A former pastor has tried to take over the new church, calling himself a Sabbath Day CRC and has caused widespread confusion.  Phil gave them a copy of a letter saying the former pastor had been dismissed for unbecoming conduct and arrangements are in place now to send three young men to oversee the new church and train up a local leader.  The big problem on this island is the number of villages pleading with the CRC to start an outreach but not enough trained/ mature people to lead them.  I suppose it is a good problem in a way.

At the second outreach we showed some DVDs and I did the counselling course.  The elder was really challenged.  He has built up a good sized congregation and is shaping up as a very competent leader just needing some encouragement to make his own decisions and programmes.

Phil also put in a VHF radio at an outreach on the south side so they can now communicate with the main centre on the island instead of making a two hour walk over a mountain and then 1/2 hour paddle in a canoe across the bay.

The local people farewelled us fondly then welcomed us back with much joy as we returned.  Do pray for us for a good wind for the 50-60 mile trip to Sudest and then mild conditions for the anchorage there which is far from ideal.  Phil needs to fix their radio and we’d like to be able to show some films in the evening if possible.  The shore access is one of those miles of black mangrove mud ones and not my favourite.  Also, when the tide goes out the dinghy is stranded about half a mile from the water.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

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 Greetings Everyone,

It’s been an amazing week.  The youth managed to fit several games of volley ball in between the heavy rain and a lot of guitar jamming at other times and a drama on the wedding banquet that threatened to bring the house down.  Each evening they had a different speaker on the theme “To know Christ better and to make him better known”.

Phil wrapped it up on the last night with a talk on putting on the full armour of God.  Each evening was packed, more than a hundred people — and twenty plus went forward at the alter call on Friday to either commit their lives to God or to seek further direction on the call on their lives.  I spoke on Sunday on a three year plan to read the Bible right through and many pledged themselves to follow this programme while another dozen or so went forward for recommitments.

I put the counselling material I’d been teaching into practice with three young men individually.  I knew each one of them and that they had had  very damaged pasts.  One was the twelfth child born to his mother and she didn’t want him and was about to break his neck when he was born.  Each of them really responded to the course and could see why they struggled so much with self esteem.  (One rated himself on a scale of 0-10 as a 0).

I prayed with them and gave them 10 Scriptures to repeat, learn by heart and soak in until they overrode the negative messages of the past.  Tears flowed and I could see new hope in their eyes.  Phil was listening in and we shared the joy of seeing how moved they were and pray it will be a decisive time for each of them.

We’re moving today to the north coast to support two new outreaches.  One of them lacks a local leader.  Pray for safe travel through the reef areas for us and safe anchorages.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

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Greetings everyone,

Phil managed to extract Steve’s anchor from the coral and he and Caroline followed us to Pambwa where Phil installed an HF radio in the new Bible College and I did flannelgraph lessons with the Sunday School teachers.  We had fun with the narrow passage both ways with the strong tide and 30 kt winds and poor visibility but the locals put “beacons” in for us — sticks stuck in the coral — and we made it.  Phew!!

Since then we’ve had a mixed bag of activities back in Damunu with Phil screening DVDs  most evening including the whole series of “Driven by Eternity” and some of the sermons of the Pastor in Bundaberg.  Caroline has been giving sewing lessons and Steve giving instructions in mud-brick building with the aim of constructing a more permanent church building.  I taught a simple counselling course based on replacing th world’s identity message with Christ’s.  It was quite impacting.  One of the ladies told me often children in that area were given the names of demons or wild animals and it really affected their lives adversely and many times led into witchcraft.

It’s difficult to convey in words the effectiveness of what we are seeing here.  There’s a huge, unplanned emphasis on getting serious with God and GOING — doing whatever He calls you to, especially among the youths.  It seems to have started with a move of the Spirit after we showed the DVDs of the Ghanain pastor who spoke at the CRC conference in Adelaide last year.  We are looking forward to the week long Youth Conference which starts tomorrow.  Please pray for fine weather — it makes a huge difference to people coming from outlying areas and also means they can play volley ball and other outdoor activities.

Pray also for lasting fruit.  We’re already seeing many people recommitting their lives and I believe this is just the beginning and many more will come and come in power.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

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