In June we spent some time at our sending church, Liberty Baptist Tabernacle, in Rapid City, South Dakota. What a blessing it was to meet and visit with our new pastor, Gary Brooks! We enjoyed two weeks there, and had a wonderful Sunday, getting opportunity to preach and share about the PNG ministry all day!
The first half of our furlough road trip has been terrific! We have seen old friends, made new ones, and every church has been so gracious and receptive of our report and the preaching of God’s Word. Several specific needs have been met including gifts for a new outboard engine and new solar batteries! One pastor bought us new digital art for teaching, and he spent a whole day downloading on to an external drive all the clip art and Bible illustrations he had already collected for his own use in sermon preparation. Money has been given towards a new lawnmower, and a wonderful set of videos was purchased to help our PNG students understand the terrain and geography of Israel. We have been given books for the graduates, and even a new Sangean AM/FM/Shortwave radio that should help us keep up on the world’s news!
We have been blessed to be able to schedule a time with all of our supporters! After a meeting in Kansas, we will be spending over a month visiting our partners in Texas. Looking forward to seeing these dear pastors and church folks again! You might particularly pray for our trip to Alaska at the end of October. At this time, a negative covid test must be obtained within 72 hours of one’s scheduled flight into Alaska. This has made the logistics tricky. (I thought that was just a PNG problem!) Please pray we know exactly how to plan. We hope to be able to return to PNG early December.
On September 2nd, I was treated like a guest of honor at the Fort Meade Veteran’s Medical Facility! I had 6 appointments, and have nothing but praise to God and each member of the staff for their gracious and professional work. The audiologist was fabulous! New hearing aids, and all “extras” are ordered! Since we will be continuing furlough in Texas, when they come in, they will be sent to the VA in Dallas so I can conveniently get them adjusted and learn what I need to know about the new devices. These items are all FREE to me as a Vietnam veteran, and I am so glad to not have to invest our monthly support in this need. The hearing aids, batteries, and items needed to keep them working well would have cost nearly $8000 in Australia! The audiologist felt that I would experience a definite improvement in my hearing, as hearing aids are just “tiny computers”, and like all electronics have been greatly improved in the past seven years. Your prayers made the difference! Thank you!
Obviously, my information from the swamps is limited, but Pastor Danny called on the SAT phone recently, so here are a few updates:
Pastor Benson’s (2019) church plant in Varia is now organized as El Shaddai Baptist Church! His wife Betty led two to the Lord recently after teaching a lesson with the Betty Luken flannelgraph!
A government contract has been given for the cutting of the Baimuru Station airstrip. As this is a one-time event, pray also that equipment and funding is given for the regular upkeep of the airstrip.
Pastor Maisa (2016) is planning to host a Youth Bung (fellowship) later this year! All of our graduates and their youth would be involved, and I would be thrilled to see them carry it out on their own!
I am eager to return! Pray for continued travel mercies, and a good situation for travelling back into Papua New Guinea by December!