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Archive for the ‘2011 Cruise’ Category

Greetings Everyone,

We arrived in Townsville at 5am on the 9th after a great crossing.  Of the twenty we’ve done this is the first time I’ve managed to go all the way without seasick tablets.  We had a steady 15-20 knots on the beam with smooth seas and only the occasional squall.  It was SO good to feel normal!!

We caught up with friends in Townsville who invited us to their home for some gastronomical delights and we are now heading south hoping to get enough angle on the wind and reach Bowen for church on Sunday.

Thankyou all for your prayers.  It’s been a great year!!

God bless,

Pam and Phil

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Greetings Everyone,

You never know what to expect here.  In Panaeati the original leader of the church has moved to another island leaving a very healthy church and two joint leaders, Peter and Steven.  Peter is as impulsive as his namesake and Steven is quite and thoughtful.  We paid for them both to go to Bible College some years back.

When we arrived they picked us up in a sailing canoe and we slept overnight in the village showing videos in the evening.  They told us they wanted us to take them 20 miles to Brooker Island to help them start a new outreach there.  We were really excited about this move as it will be the first CRC church planted in the Calvados Chain — a large lagoon with a dozen or more inhabited islands.  Steve and Caroline came on Maranatha with us.

We showed videos at night and spent the daytime encouraging the new leaders and equipping them with a guitar and some pastoral and Sunday School materials.  The Panaeati people are committed to supporting the new work.  They plan to build a house there and send a leader to live with them until they are established.  We all returned rejoicing.

Back in Panaeati last weekend we showed some more films and I preached on Sunday challenging them to adopt a three year plan to read the Bible right through.  This is the fourth place I have given this message with good results each time.  Many tell me they wanted to do this but lacked a plan and had given up.

Now we are planning to return to Australia probably early next week.  Steve came down with malaria at Brooker and is recovering but still feeling weak.  Pray for him and Caroline and for some of their boat instruments that are playing up, including their autopilot and for all of us for the right weather and a safe passage.

See you soon.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

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Greetings Everyone,

We’ve had a WILD time.  THe weather has been AWFUL!  We anchored in Liak with an on-shore wind and the boat rolled so violently from side to side that it cracked the dinghy by bashing against it and we couldn’t sleep a wink.  We moved to another anchorage prepared to endure the 10 kms walk each way each day rather than the incessant rolling and the unneeded excitement of timing the violent shore break to get ashore.

Then it rained, torrentially every day and flooded the roads so that we had to wade through the various culverts to get back to Liak.

BUT the results here were WILD too.  I had set out this year to teach Isikel, an illiterate young man with a great heart for God, to learn to speak and read English so he could go to Bible College.  I expected to only get him started but to the amazement of both of us he progressed at an incredible rate and is now reading the Bible — slowly but getting almost every word and speaking again slowly but communicating well.  He is ecstatic and I’ve left him materials to continue on with the help of his friend, including a KYB study on the book of Mark.  We are both praising God and looking forward to great things in his life.

As well as this, we’ve visited three churches to encourage them and Phil and I are doing a tag-team preaching today at Liak — our last trek there before sailing on to Panaeati Island tomorrow.

God bless you all,

Pam and Phil

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Greetings Everyone,

The conference was a resounding success!!  It was a first for the men.  Usually they run Youth, Ladies or Sunday School conferences.  Some of he comments were:-

Pastor Kingsford – “Usually conferences are inspirational — be filled with the Spirit, etc.  This one was foundational — integrity of character, the husband’s and father’s role — we need these things in order to be men and leaders.”

Jerome – “I learnt a lot of new things.  I want to think about them some more.  It has really helped my ministry.”

Simon (on forgiveness) – “It took me seven years to forgive the policeman who ill-treated me.  It was like a weight coming off me.”

Esau (refering to Hebrews 4:12) – “I never new the word of God had the power to heal — to go right inside you and cut out bad things (referring to emotional problems resulting from childhood mistreatment) like a surgeons knife.”

The worship time with all the deep voices harmonising together was tremendous and the men really enjoyed the times of sharing — the early morning prayer time (4.30-5.30am), the discussion groups and free time to sit and chat in the afternoon.  There was a good mix of ages from our age to quite a lot in late teens, early twenties.  Phil spoke really well and runs a big risk of being asked to do it again.

On Monday we are sailing (probably motoring in the still conditions) to the north coast where I want to spend a week attempting to teach Isikel, a young man with no education, to read English — at least to get him started.  We will spend about a week there and then go to Panaeati Island to do some work before heading back to Australia around the 7th of November.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

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Greetings Everyone,

It was worth the wait.  We set out two days later for Sudest with the wind to order — thanks for your prayers — and had an enjoyable sail and two fish on the line.  Jelewanga is a lousy anchorage but we had three windless days and high tide all day — perfect combination.

We’d been feeling rather negative about the new outreach at Sudest as we had heard the damage to the radio was deliberate and there had been jealousy and division over the clothes and other things we had taken last year.  But we had the BEST time with the situation quite the opposite to our expectations.  The problems had been sorted out and the people were together and incredibly hungry for the things of God.  All they wanted was as much teaching, worship and prayer as we could fit in to the short time we had.  Jerome did a great job preaching, I did the counselling course and the fist day of my leadership course, Phil showed DVD’s at night (and replaced the radio) and we all prayed for virtually every man, woman and child.

The positive signs were:-

1)  There is good growth in the church especially with four new husband and wife couples, solid and serving side by side.

2)  The church recognized through the leadership teaching what a godly man their leader Ken is and two of them told him so publicly in the meeting.

3)  Some inland villages had said it was difficult for them to get to the church so Ken had built “a highway” for them.

4)  Ken, who had never been to school, is now starting to read and speak English by sheer determined effort.

5)  They have planted two new outreaches on Sudest which we hope to visit next year.

We left rejoicing.  Keep up the good prayer work.  Phil’s men’s conference is 10th to 12th October.

God bless,

Pam and Phil

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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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