Missions – Loving Our World

Mission Conference

The WRPC 2017 Mission Conference is April 23-30. It is the same week our church is involved with the Habitat Faith Build Project in Highland near Jefferson Elementary.
     We host representatives from a number of organizations that are supported by our Mission Action Plan. There is an opportunity to pledge your support during the worship service.

 

Mission Action Plan

Guiding Scripture: Acts 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
     Jesus commands that we reach out to people in our local area, region, and the world to share the Gospel and His love.
     Food for thought…PCUSA news quote – “Christians cannot ‘ignore or postpone’ their witness to Jesus Christ,” Adeney insisted. “All sorts of groups can do relief, development, and advocacy,” she said, “but only Christians can witness to the saving power of Jesus Christ – the surest prescriptions for health and wholeness.” Missions, for us, is reaching beyond our community and loving our world.

 Nicaragua

Families
Involved
Serving
Humanity, Inc.
(FISH)
Ministering to the heart, body, mind, and soul … changing lives for eternity.
MEDICAL assistance:
  • Prescription medicines
  • Diabetic supplies
  • Pre-natal vitamins
  • X-rays & other diagnostic tests not provided through the government social programs
  • Dental services through a local Nicaraguan dentist in Granada
  • Eye exams coordinated through the local Rotary Club in Nicaragua
  • Orthopaedic shoes & wheelchairs for those who need them
  • Emergency transportation to & from local hospital in Granada
  • Distribution of medicines and vitamins donated monthly by Christian Aid Ministries
  • Supplies for young paralyzed man
  • Procuring a Nicaraguan doctor’s services when the government-sponsored health clinic is closed
  • Coordinating patient contact with medical teams visiting Nicaragua from the U.S.
  • First Aid
  • Transportation around the Islands for medical teams to visit patients
  • Cooperating with World Vision to provide preventative educational programs
  • Special Needs Children Receive Education, Counseling, Medical Intervention, & Family Support

    An opportunity to receive an education! Thanks for your assistance!

    • $25 buys needed school supplies for a child
    • $40 buys supplies for a newborn & mother
    • $42 buys school supplies, uniform, and a backpack for one child.  $47 for a boy.
    • $85 makes it possible to deliver medicines, clothing, food, and an evangelism team to Zapatera
    • $400 puts a roof over a family’s head
    • $400 sponsors Pastor Walter and Zayda for one month
    • $3500 provides basic building materials for adequate housing for a family
    • $24,000 provides for all the children living in the SHELTER
    • $54,000 will provide a year’s budget
    • The SHELTER – a refuge for children in extreme risk $24,000 per year – Provides a safe haven for children who have been identified at great risk of sexual abuse, neglect, and violence.  Currently providing care to twenty-one children and three very needy women.
 

Honduras

Empowering young women to break the cycles of poverty … Saving young men from lives of gangs and violence … Nourishing minds … Nourishing bodies … Nourishing spirit …
 
Osman Hope is an ecumenical Christian-based non-profit organization that serves children through partnerships with churches, local governments, private agencies, and individuals. Designed to help economically disadvantaged children throughout Honduras and Central America, our shelters are currently located in San Pedro Sula, Villanueva and Santa Cruz de Yojoa, Cortes, Honduras.
     Honduras faces many challenges, especially considering that 4.7 million of 7 million total inhabitants live in poverty, and that almost half of the population survives on less than $1 US daily. Social problems facing children include drug, alcohol, and glue addiction, forced child labor, prostitution, and trafficking for sexual exploitation and labor. Children’s rights organizations and the Honduran government have estimated that 20,000 children live in the streets daily. It is not uncommon for children to leave school and begin work at a young age to help support their families. Child labor laws exist but are loosely enforced, and most children who work do so to support their families in the agriculture, commerce, or maquiladora sectors. Compulsory education ends at the age of 13, and a 2004 survey showed that the women and men average only 5.6 years and 5.3 years of formal education, respectively.
These realities are why Osman Hope exists. Once sponsored, a child will be welcome to attend one of our shelters during the week where they will receive care such as healthy meals, hygiene, rest, recreation, tutoring, and spiritual education respectful to their culture. Still run by a volunteer administration, Osman Hope now employs 9 persons in two shelters and has maintained lasting collaborations with individuals, non-profit agencies, families, churches, and government entities in the United States and Honduras.

Africa
10295726_744298578934998_8675549362567185735_n
     Founded by a child of our own church, Moyo wa Afrika aims to provide health and education services to people in need throughout Tanzania 
through linking communities to services they need.
     We are working to empower communities in Tanzania through supporting projects Tanzanians are interested in implementing but don’t have the resources or know-how to accomplish.
     We provide support and resources for health and education development throughout Tanzania. We have a special interest in 
children but are willing to work with any community on any project that they see is necessary for the development of their community, and that they are invested in supporting through their own efforts.
 
 

Congo

Congo, 1995, marks the beginning of ROW. Our first team traveled to the Sankuru River and went down the river with a Methodist missionary. The trip was life-changing for all of us and we came back determined to do more. Since that time, we certainly have!

For 12 years, ROW treated 100,000 cases a year of a disease called River Blindness. While doing this, we also immunized 1.4 million children against childhood diseases. In addition, we were responsible for what’s known as a health zone in the Congo. With about a 150 mile stretch of the Sankuru River, we were responsible for basic healthcare and long-term care of tuberculosis, leprosy and HIV. In addition, evangelism was always a part of our work.

During our stay on the Sankuru River, we lost our ship, the Kuto Misa, and built a new one upside down on the sandbar. Miss Angie was approximately 50 feet long, wooden and carried 17 tons of medicine and supplies. She lasted for five years until we hit a rock and knocked a hole in her. Throughout the six years of the Civil War, ROW continued its ministry of evangelism, health care and education along the Sankuru River. Our headquarters was a city called Lusambo. We helped to open a school in Lusambo that was the #1 school in the area! In addition, we refurbished the hospital in Lusambo and stayed in a local convent during the war. We’ve done a great deal with distributing solar powered Bibles and solar powered light bulbs on this river. We showed the Jesus Film in the native tongue of Lingala for villages along the river.

Our largest ship is named Mama Mickie. Mama Mickie and a brand-new barge travel the Congo River from Kinshasa to Kisangani and back again. She delivers food and supplies and is a business so that our staff can be self-sufficient. In 2006, we started a chapter of our organization that we call ROW Congo.

ROW started an orphanage in Kinshasa, establishing sewing schools in Kinshasa and Kananga and putting in clean water for about 5,000 families in bush villages. We worked closely with the Protestant University of the Congo to develop their medical school. In addition, ROW put in solar powered light bulbs in five different hospitals and clinics in the Kasai region. Working with ROW in 2012, we raised $50,000 to replace 375 mattresses that had been burned in our hospitals and clinics because of an Ebola scare. We also rebuilt the guesthouse at Good Shepherd Hospital and the Lubi II church in the same area.
 
Bulape School Update – Congo

When Jimmy Shafe visited Waverly Road back in February he said that he would soon be starting construction on a new primary school in Congo, made possible by a private donation from a member of WRPC. The school is in a village called Bulape where the community had lacked a modern school building with brick walls and a permanent roof. Construction on the building started during the summer and is now complete!

As you might imagine, a project of this sort is a major undertaking. To build the school, 50,000 mud bricks were made one-at-a-time on-site using a single brick press. The bricks were dried, stacked into a kiln, and fired. Then the bricks were used to build the walls for the school. In addition to the school building itself, they have also built latrines, which are almost finished. And finally the school will be furnished with 180 wooden desks which seat 2 students apiece.

When everything is done, the name of the school will be the Tshiluba phrase for “School of Learning and Love.” Jimmy says, “Everyone in Bulape seems very pleased with the project and very proud of themselves for doing so much work!”

 

Fred-Foy-and-Cecily-Strang

God’s call on the Strangs’ lives to serve in cross-cultural ministry has been evident since childhood.  As a youth, Fred Foy served Hispanic migrant farm workers, and Cecily grew up as the daughter of PCUSA national missionaries in Appalachia.  Fred Foy began service with the Maasai people in 1982. Cecily and Fred Foy met at the New Wilmington Missionary Conference, were married in 1984, and after a time of academic preparations, moved to Kenya with their new growing family to live and work with the Maasai in the Great Rift Valley.  The Strangs served in partnership with the PCUSA and the Presbyterian Church of East Africa for two years.

At the conclusion of that time of mission service, the Strangs returned to the US, serving congregations and in university settings.  Throughout these varied posts, the mission to serve the underserved among the Maasai has been vitally connected.  The Strangs have returned nearly every year to Africa – with mission teams, with their two boys, Jesse and Jacob, and sometimes in solo ventures.  The deep relationships cultivated over the past thirty years are astounding and humbling.  It is a joy for the Strangs to be able to return to long-term, cross-cultural, incarnational service with The Antioch Partners (TAP).  Also, it is a special joy to be serving with a gifted young couple, Chase and Audrey Arndt.  The Arndts have been in partnership with the Strangs in study, service, and mission for a number of years and this TAP team effort is an exciting new venture for them both.

Fred Foy, an ordained Presbyterian minister with a Ph.D. in African Christianity, is working in the areas of training local Christian leaders and the development of the Oldoinyo Kiti training center on the Kenya-Tanzania border.  The Oldoinyo Kiti center is being spearheaded by local Maasai community leaders and the Maasai Special Projects Fund, Inc. www.mspfonline.com. Cecily, an RN with a PhD in nursing research (malaria) and global health policy, is working with Maasai people and others in community health with special focus on malaria care.  She is working with global malaria concerns, instruction, healthcare leader training, and international cultural immersion opportunities in clinical and service learning.
 
The inspiration for Malawi Matters springs from the large concentration of warm, hard-working, and humble Malawians who make South Bend, Indiana U.S.A. (and the surrounding communities) their home. They are our friends and neighbors and have become our family … now their families in Malawi are our families, too. Their stories have changed our lives and compel Malawi Matters to help stem the destructive tide of HIV and AIDS that is decimating that country. By facilitating the necessary education and training needed in Malawi, we hope to bring an end to the present crisis of children raising children.

Japan

PC(USA) Rev. Bill and Ann Moore, Mission co-workers in Japan, serving at the invitation of the Reformed Church in Japan

NOVEMBER 2015 – 30 YEARS OF MISSION

Dear friends,

One of the blessings of serving as mission co-workers of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is that every three to four years we are given time to return to the U.S. for Interpretation Assignment. This is a time to make personal visits to congregations that faithfully support our work in Japan, strengthen ties with family and friends, and learn from Presbyterian World Mission staff how we may more effectively engage in God’s mission and interpret it to our denomination.

      

Ann and Bill Moore at               Bill preaching at a church in     The Rev. Nobuo Morisato leading worship
PC(USA) Headquarters              the Hopi nation                        at the Japan Mission Osaka Church

This spring and summer we were privileged to be on Interpretation Assignment with half of it based in North Carolina, where Bill’s family is centered, and the other half in Southern California, where Ann’s family lives. The high point of our time on the East Coast was visiting our supporting churches, some of whom have supported our family from the time Bill’s parents, John and Kathy, began service as missionaries to Korea 60 years ago. It was moving for us to realize that for six decades these congregations have faithfully supported the world mission of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) by support of our family’s work in partnership with Christians in Korea and Japan. Without this support through prayer, encouragement, and gifts we could not have engaged in this long-term mission work.

Another blessing we received was the invitation of the Presbyterian Heritage Center in Montreat, North Carolina, to take part in their Japan mission emphasis during 2015 by giving a presentation we called “Presbyterian Mission in Japan—Looking Back and Looking to the Future.” This was an overview of how the Lord has used 156 years of Presbyterian mission involvement in Japan for the advancement of God’s Kingdom as well as musings on how God may use us in the future. We were pleased by the large attendance at the presentation and the interest in this subject.

The high point of our time in the western part of the U.S. was an invitation from Andy and Sunny Yu, retired PC(USA) mission co-workers, to visit a church they work with in Arizona in the Hopi nation and discovering that Hopi Christians face challenges similar to Christians in Japan. Both communities are very small religious minorities within their larger culture and both of them are under pressure to conform to the religious expectations and practices of the respective cultures in which they live, such as veneration of spirits manifested in nature. From Bill’s experience of learning from the Christian community in Japan he was able to share with the church ways in which Hopi believers could remain faithful to Jesus Christ and at the same time embrace important elements of their own cultural heritage.

One of the challenges we had during our four-and-a-half-month Interpretation Assignment was fulfilling our responsibility of leading and administrating Japan Mission in mission partnership with the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) while being absent from Japan. This Japanese corporation (Japan Mission, for short) that we lead provides the legal and financial basis as well as mission strategy input for our partnership with the PC(USA). Thanks to our office worker, Jun Hashimoto, we were able to maintain the mission office through emails and telephone calls.

This month (November) we give thanks for the 30 years of mission work in Japan that we have been given. As we look back on these years that were mostly spent in new church planting, we realize how God was preparing us for our present assignment. The challenges and achievements that we were afforded over the years have given us the ability to take on the responsibilities of a large mission organization in Japan. The objective of the Japan Mission Board of Directors is to develop further resources so that Japan Mission may expand its witness not only in Japan but to other parts of Asia. Through our Yodogawa Christian Hospital in Osaka we already have a tremendous witness to patients and their families as well as to 1,700 hospital staff. We seek to reach out in new ways to witness to the love and salvation that God offers through Jesus Christ.

An exciting ministry of Japan Mission is our Osaka Church, which is located near Yodogawa Christian Hospital. The Rev. Nobuo Morisato, one of our hospital chaplains, is doing an excellent job of pastoring this congregation, which meets in our Osaka sub-office building. Starting with two or three members, this congregation has grown to an attendance of 30 at Sunday services. Made up of present and former Yodogawa Christian Hospital patients as well as residents of the surrounding community, the Osaka Church reaches out in Christian love and service.

We thank you for helping make possible our 30 years of witness in Japan. We have been blessed by the opportunities for mission that we have been given and we trust that we have been a witness and blessing to those we serve. Due to a serious shortfall in resources available to Presbyterian World Mission, some of our PC(USA) missionary colleagues have been recalled this year. This has deprived the important ministries and partners that they served and diminished the world mission involvement of our denomination that has had a tremendous impact for 178 years.  Please continue to give and if led to do so, please increase your gifts so that the good news of Jesus Christ may be shared more abundantly in word and deed throughout the world.

In gratitude for your support of Presbyterian World Mission,

Bill and Ann

Nepal

Aashish Presbyterian Church – Mahendra Bhattarai
April 19, 2016
Hello WRPC family (a year after the earthquake)
Dear Leaders and Friends,
     Greetings in the name of Jesus, our Saviour!
     Praise God! A group of us Pastors met in Kathmandu twice to share thoughts towards starting Aashish Presbyterian Ministries-Nepal with a vision to extend the Kingdom of God and start new or strengthening existing fellowship/ churches. Eight fresh or working potential candidates have been given orientation classes too. We hope to start this work from June 2016.
     Our Church activities have been taking place normally although we have not been able to do any outreach work directly from our Church here.
     The Ripple-Nepal school fees support programme is going well too. We are trying to support more parents so they can continue sending their children to school. A big thank you to you all who are assisting us in all these activities with your prayer and other support.
     The short supply of petrol has eased although it is not completely normal yet. The Community Outreach Volunteer programme run by Pastor Bhattarai is going on fine although the volunteers in the terai had to struggle to move around when there was violent political movement in their area.          Three Elders were ordained at Aashish Presbyterian Church, Damak, Jhapa by former Moderator of our Council, Rev M. H. Subba . We were able to have Good Friday and Easter Services.
     We are planning to have Annual General Meeting of our Aashish Presbyterian Church, Kathmandu.
     Let us pray the proposed anti-conversion bill is withdrawn as it is against freedom of religion signed by Nepal with UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UN UDHR) and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and accepted by the State to be in practice in accordance with Nepal Treaties Act 2049. Intensive meetings have been held on this subject for over six weeks among representatives of National Churches Fellowship of Nepal (NCFN), Federation of National Christians of Nepal (FNCN), Nepal Christian Society (NCS), Dharmik Chautari (DC) and Christian Commitment to Building New Nepal (CCBNN).
     As notified by the Legislation Committee of the Parliament Secretariat for response, a joint statement will be submitted by the organisations mentioned above to the Legislation Committee, the Speaker of the Parliament, the Minister for Law, the Prime Minister and other authorities demanding Article 26.3 of the Constitution be revoked where religious conversion is stated as being punishable crime. We are also demanding that the explanation (“footnote”) to secularism be deleted as it interprets secularism as protecting the religion (and) culture continuing since time “immemorial” implying other religions of the minorities being of no importance! Individuals, Churches and District Christian Societies are submitting suggestions to correct all such errors in the Constitution.
     A prayer meeting of Churches of Kathmandu Valley (consisting mainly of three political districts of Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur and some areas beyond) is being organised by Federation of National Christians of Nepal (FNCN) on these issues.
Over 247 just noticeable or shocking tremors have occurred since the two big earthquakes of April 25 and May 12 last year. We are living on top of two colliding geological plates of the North and the South some 30 km beneath us! New damages of smaller scale have occurred too. Small fractures or clearly visible cracks are now visible in many houses where they were not seen before.
Getting a full cylinder of cooking gas is a struggle for many. This affects our cooking capacity. Apparently, it is not so much as the commodity being in very short supply but the related officials taking advantage to make money personally through creating inflated cost for the consumers.
We ask for your prayers on the points above at home, work or in congregations!
May God continue blessing you to be instruments of peace and prosperity for those who suffer for no fault of theirs!
Jaya Masih!
Regards.
Mahendra Bhattarai
Servant in Christ
Aashish Presbyterian Church
 
Annapurna Panchakanya School
News as of August 11, 2015
     Thanks to WRPC, the children of the little village of Sera, Nepal, now have a new school to replace the one that was destroyed in the earthquake of April 25, 2015.
     Since 2009, the WRPC Outreach program has supported the little Annapurna Panchakanya Primary School in Sera, Nuwakot, Nepal, with funding for an English teacher to teach the children “Business English”, which is needed to allow them to find paying jobs when they complete their schooling.
     When we learned that the devastating earthquakes in April and May had damaged the existing school beyond repair, the WRPC Outreach Committee immediately sent $5000 to help local school officials begin to build a temporary school to be used until the original school could be replaced, in addition to $5000 that was sent to the Aashish Presbyterian Church, which we also support.
     We soon learned that the Nepali government would be unable to replace the existing school in the foreseeable future, and a separate plea was presented to church members and friends for additional “beyond pledge” funding to enable upgrading the temporary school to serve as a full-time replacement for the old school. Funding poured in from church members, friends and the community at large, helped by a favorable front-page article in the Kingsport Times-News. As of this writing, a total of $24,210 has been sent in total disaster funding to Nepal in 2015.
     A medical mission group from Malaysia, which came to the village for a medical mission weekend, learned of the effort to rebuild the school, and donated some additional funding as well as uniforms and backpacks for the children.
While there is still some work to be completed…putting up plywood partitions between classrooms, painting and the like, the school was deemed ready for use and the children have moved into it.

England

 

‘Covenanted together within the love of Christ we share a common vision to see the Kingdom of God extended in Northumbria and to carry the torch of the gospel wherever the Father leads us.’

‘Dynamic and erratic, spontaneous and radical, audacious and immature, committed if not altogether coherent. Ecumenically open and often experimental; visible here and there, now and then but unsettled institutionally. Almost monastic in nature, but most of all enacting a fearful hope for society.’   William Stringfellow

 ‘The renewal of the Church will come from a new type of Monasticism, which only has in common with the old an uncompromising allegiance to the Sermon on the Mount. It is high time people banded together to do this.’  Dietrich Bonhoeffer

     Northumbria Community is a dispersed network of people, hugely diverse, from different backgrounds, streams and edges of the Christian faith. As Companions in Community, we are united in our desire to embrace and
IMG_4223express an ongoing exploration into a new way for living, through a new monasticism, as Christians that offers hope in our changed and changing culture. We are A Way to express The Way and acknowledge there are many other valid expressions of the desire to follow Jesus Christ in today’s world.
     We are united by a Rule of Life, which we call our Way for Living and which can be summed up in two words: Availability and Vulnerability. Each of us has to learn how to live out this Availability and Vulnerability, to God and to others, within our own unique combination of circumstances, roles, responsibilities and relationships. Since these are constantly shifting, so application of our Way for Living can never be fixed or finalised. We find ourselves living with questions rather than answers. This is why Northumbria Community is always in draft form and never a finished product. It remains a dynamic, ongoing work in progress, aware that ‘constant change is here to stay’.

Whilst the detail will vary from Companion to Companion and from one day to another, the important questions for us remain:

Who is it that you seek?

How then shall we live?

How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land?

Northumbria Community is the gift of God to those whose hearts are set on this pilgrimage and whose lives are constantly being redefined and redirected by the living out of these three questions. As Companions we are able to help each other keep these questions alive.

     Our Rule and our rhythm of Daily Prayer (Celtic Daily Prayer) reflect the influence of the monastic tradition in the development of our Community ethos. Seeking God as the one thing necessary, in our continuing quest for a new type of monasticism, is at the heart of our life, whether alone or together. Our identity is rooted in the history and spiritual heritage of Celtic Northumbria. From this source of inspiration, our Community has learnt to live the ebb and flow of contemplation and action, monastery and mission, solitude and community. It is this blending of ‘a prayer that is quiet and contemplative with a faith that is active and contagious’, lived out in our ordinary everyday experience, which has been our foundation as we have grown and developed. We seek God on the inner journey in order to learn how we can better live with others and serve the world of our influence whether it be great or small, wherever the Father leads.

United States

Kentucky Cornerstone – Ministering to the People of the Appalachians
     Director Ms. Dora Ross has always had a passion in her heart for serving her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and helping needy people in her community. With all the local industry leaving Lee County and no other jobs available many families were hurting and needed help. This led Ms. Dora to establish Kentucky Cornerstone in April 1996. She went from church to church telling of the need for help in Lee County and opened her home for Mission Outreach teams to stay while working on mission projects in the area. She also used her home for distribution of food, furniture, appliances and clothing that churches brought in for the needy.
     Today the need continues. According to the Kentucky Office of Employment and Training the unemployment rate as of March 2016 is 11%. Kentucky Cornerstone receives many pleas for assistance from the County Health Department and County Welfare Agency. Many of these request are for seniors and shut-ins whose homes are in such poor repair that these agencies have had to get involved.
 

Mission Trips

     Sometimes members of WRPC have the opportunity to participate in mission trips in our country and abroad. These programs allow members of the congregation to spread the love of Jesus Christ through work and ministry. It provides an opportunity to expand horizons and reach new people. And it allows participants to grow closer to Christ through sharing with others.
     The next opportunity is June 12-18, 2016. The High School Youth group will be going.