Monday, August 21, 2006

Update from Tanzania - Jesse Long

It is Saturday night (August 19, 2006). Last night, we accompanied the short-term team to the Kilimanjaro Airport Earlier in the week, we were all able to go on a “Safari” at the Ngo and said our goodbyes. On the way, we saw Kilimanjaro for the first time…AMAZING!! It was as perfect an ending to a trip as any of them could have asked for.rongoro Crater. It was a day I can hardly begin to describe and a welcomed break following 9 days of pretty intense ministry.

I will back up to give you a more accurate picture of our time with the team. There were thirteen of us from the States who divided into two teams of 6/7. We also always traveled with a Tanzanian driver and/or Pastor and saw many churches and schools spread over some of the roughest and most diverse terrain I have ever traveled. My team (“A” team) was led by Andrew Olson. He is only 14 years-old but was an amazing translator/preacher/friend to us and the people of Tanzania.

Our first day of ministry on Sunday, August 6th. Near-by, was a school where we were able to show the ‘Jesus’ film after the service. This was a common sight throughout our 9 days of ministry.

The picture shows a fairly typical set-up and also shows the type of church we most commonly worked with during this time. In all, between our two teams, we were able to minister in 30 places over the 9 days…it was very exhausting.

Following our scheduled days of ministry, the leader of our group, Pastor Kevin Olson, was good to schedule some time for debriefing, reflection, and seeing some sights. I have included some pictures to try to give you a little idea of how great this was. Even Tanzanians (and the safari tour guide we had on Wednesday) said our day in Ngorongoro Crater was “once-in-a-lifetime” kind of day. During our day we saw lions, ostriches, zebras, foxes, hyenas, giraffes, hippos, black rhinos, elephants, flamingos, cheetah, water buffalo, Kudu, gazelle, wildebeest, crested cranes, warthogs, etc. Nothing short of being there could do it justice but suffice it to say, it was unbelievable to see all this in the wild. The vehicle actually belongs to the mission here and was how we traveled throughout our time.

This morning, Ben and I jumped a bus and took a 9-hour ride down to the Lutheran Junior Seminary here in Morogoro (3 hours West of Dar Es Salaam) where we will be until October 1st attending language school. We arrived around 3:30pm and are very pleased with what we have seen so far. The accommodations have running water, electricity, internet, laundry facilities and good meals. We have already met students from around the world and look forward to starting classes on Monday morning. Pray for wisdom and quick learning.

I want to say here that I am very blessed to have Ben as a ministry partner. We get along great, see virtually everything the same way, even like the same kind of food, and both speak Portuguese (which comes in very handy when we need to discuss something privately in the presence of others). God is so good.

God bless you all for the blessing you are to me. Keep the prayers coming. They make all the difference in the world (and in heaven, too, for that matter!)

With much love and gratitude,

Jesse Long

MTI Graduate Paul Blom Leaves for Slovakia

Paul Blom departed Saturday, August 19 for Slovakia as a short term missionary with Eastern European Missions Network. He will be serving in Martin, Slovakia, where he will be teaching 1st-3rd grade English at the Bible School.

Paul previously attended the Association Free Lutheran Bible School and the Ministry Training Institute in Plymouth, MN. He graduated from Trinity Lutheran in Issaquah, WA with a degree in Bible with emphasis on Youth Ministry. He has served on short-term mission ventures to Mexico, Eastern Europe, and Tanzania. He served as youth director at our Redeemer Lutheran Church in Kirkland, WA for the past three years.

As he prepares to serve in Slovakia, Paul is raising funds for his mission service. Please consider joining in prayer and financial support of his ministry. EEMN welcomes financial contributions in his behalf.

Paul can be reached at .

“I’m so glad I am being prayed for,
It is reallysuch a great blessing!
I just can’t say thanks enough
to you and to God for all His blessings.
Praise the Lord.”

Paul Blom

If you are, or know of an AFLC member who is serving as a missionary for another mission organization please let the AFLC World Missions Office know at .

"He who loses what he cannot keep gains what he cannot lose." -- Jim Elliot

Friday, August 18, 2006

AFLC Family from Pipestone, MN Accepted as Wycliffe Missionaries

Steve and Glenda Kvale from our AFLC church in Pipestone, MN were accepted as Wycliffe missionaries as of July 5, 2006. They are now in pre-field training and will attend training camp for two weeks (September 16-30) at the Wycliffe USA headquarters in Orlando, Florida.

They will be involved in support positions for Bible translation efforts. Steve will be assigned as a computer specialist, Glenda and the children will be assigned other areas to be determined.

Glenda is an AFLBS alumnus (1987), Steve is an alumnus of CFNI (1984).

Contact them for email updates at or .

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

People Responding in Tanzania

Greetings in Chirst Jesus! I have just arrived back in Mbulu (city nearest Waama Bible School) after nine days of intense ministry in the Tanzanian countryside with Pastor Kevin Olson and the team he brought with him from the States.

We split our team into two smaller teams and we were able to present a short program over 20 times. We did most of these in churches, but also in a number of high schools and even in one town square.

We also showed the Jesus film over 15 times, many times in the local dialect. This was the first time many of these people had heard the gospel message in their language or even seen the Jesus film. (The dubbing into the local language was finished just weeks before we arrived and we were priviledged to be the first ones to show the Jesus Film to the masses.) In all, thousands of people saw the Jesus Film and hundreds of people got their lives right with God through our program, the preaching (by Tanzanian pastors), and the Jesus Film. It was a tremendous jump-start to Jesse and my ministry here in Tanzania. Lord willing, I will be able to send some pictures at a later date.

We now have a couple days of much needed rest here at Waama Bible School, then we will go on a sight-seeing safari for a day. Then the team will leave for the US on Friday. Jesse and I are slated to start language school on Monday the 21st.

This last week and a half has been absolutely amazing in so many ways: seeing the Lord work in so many lives, seeing the Tanzanian church, meeting the leaders of the Tanzanian church, seeing the Bible School (even being able to stay in the house we will be renting!), and being able to do all this with Kevin Olson (missionary who has been here and has a good reputation in the area). God is truely a gracious God. Praise His name.

We do have some prayer requests you can pray for, too.
  • Jesse and I will be needing a lot of extra grace as we head to language school. Pray for a supernatural ability to absorb the language. We have six weeks to learn Swahili well enough to teach in it!
  • Pray too for wisdom as we learn the culture and interact with the church, especially the church leadership. We have much to learn about protocol and how things work in this country.
  • Pray for us as we undoubtedly will start to go through culture shock at some point in the future. Things have been so busy that we have not had time to go through culture shock yet.

Thank you for the part that you are playing in reaching the Tanzanians for Christ and in building up the church here. May God richly bless you for your partnership with me.

Serving Him,

Ben Jore

Monday, August 14, 2006

We Made It

We have completed our 8 day evangelism safari.

We came to the end of our strength emotionally, mentally and physically by about the 5th day. We took our emptyness to the Lord and he gave us great strength to finish the race strong. We had planned two places per day, but we visited between 4 and 6 places almost every day.

Now we will have two days of rest in Mbulu and then a visit to the Serengetti before a day in Arusha.

These guys will have so many stories to share about life here such as roads, foods, bathrooms, and cultural differences.

We have even more stories to share about the spiritual work that the Lord has been doing. People have been coming to know the Lord in great numbers. They have been seeing the Jesus film for the first time in their own language. The churches that received help to put roofs on their buildings have finished that work and pass on TONS of thanks. We have seen Bible School students from our year here working in the churches in nearly every place we have been.

However the work that the Lord has been doing in our lives is probably greater than the work that He has been doing through our lives. We have been SO humbled to watch the Tanzanians serve us when we came to serve them. We have seen the joy of the Lord in their hearts even in the midst of trials. We have grieved with some that have lost family members. We have worshiped with people for literally hours. One church wanted to thank us for the gift for their roof so much that they sent two people by bicycle for a full day just to give us a letter of thanks, a report of how the money was used and a small gift. We talked for about 10 minutes, and then they returned the whole distance again.

Yesterday team Kevin went to three worship services and then showed the movie at night. Some of us got back after midnight again.
Team Andrew has been visiting the schools and the students have been VERY enthusiastic.

People have asked the students where they learned swahili because they have been reading their testimonies so well. The people have loved the clapping Jesus loves me song because we ask them to clap along with us. The cooks have loved the swahili food blessing song. It is quite amazing how well the communication has gone.

We can now help Jesse and Ben get ready for their longer stay. They are looking forward to continue the same ministry that we have started and they have met many important contacts in these short days of ministry.

Pray for Ben and Jesse and for us as we recover our strength over the next few days. We love all of you and we are looking forward to seeing you back home again.

Serving our Savior,
Pastor Kevin Olson

Friday, August 11, 2006

Tanzania Report from Andrew Olson

My time here in Tanzania has been going very fast. I just got checked out for Malaria today, because I had a high fever, but the results came back negative. The fever could’ve come from many other things though, such as: lack of sleep, water or trying to exchange money!☺

I got to share with a Muslim while we were showing the Jesus film today. He didn’t accept Jesus into his heart, but I was able to ask him some good questions and give him my Swahili Bible.

Our normal schedule for church ̈programs̈ is this. Introduction, Songs, The Clock Skit, Testimonies, The Word of God and then movie time. We have gotten the great privilege to be the first to share the Jesus film in Iraqw. It was just recently translated, and I can see the difference when everyone can understand the life of Jesus in their native language.

Speaking of language, translating has been going very well. The work I thought I would be doing, is different than the actual work I'm doing here. More than just translating, I've been helping the team adjust to the new culture and I just ̈took up preaching̈ as Pastor Alex said. I don't know about that though..

The people on team A ( the team I’m on ) are: Ben Jore Jesse Long Jared Langness Kayla Russum Heather Kohler

We have learned allot from the people here. As I've probably already said many times, the openness to the bible here is incredible! Everyone will listen to you as long as you have time to talk. Time for sleep and prayer has been a little hard to get a hold of due to the packed schedule but everyone seems to be holding up well. Everyone was a little nervous about the food when we left, but by the grace of God, everyone loves the food, and we haven’t had any ̈bad experiences̈ with meat… yet.

Dad’s theory remains true to this day. Every time we show the Jesus film, we always encounter problems, but every time we still show it, and many come to Christ. Last night we were at a secondary school, we had finished our songs and testimonies, and when it came time to power up the projector for the movie. The power inverter blew! Even though we had 250 kids waiting for us for about an hour. God provided a way, and we were able to find a power converter, so we were able to use the wall outlets. Africa is ripe unto the harvest! God Bless!

Answered Prayer - Opened Eyes

Barb, teaches the pre-confirmation aged kids and they started writing down prayer requests in their own notebooks in class. Two of the girls present were visiting their adult sister who is a member of our congregation. They had not seen nor heard from another sister of theirs for about a year. She lived up near the border and the people that had contact with her could give the family no news of her whereabouts or what had happened to her. Well, Barb’s class prayed on Sunday with these two girls that God would have their sister get in touch with them. That same night when the family was at home the telephone rang . . . it was their lost sister. Can you imagine the wondrous amazement and joy of those two 11-year-old girls at realizing there is a God in heaven who really hears their prayers?

Todd and Barb Schierkolk

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Indian Pastor's Wife Dies

The wife of Tumati Luke, one of our senior pastors in India died today. Luke and his wife served the Lord at our church in Vengal Rao Nagar. Please be in prayer for Pastor Luke and his family.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Paul Abels traveling on Furlough

It’s been a very good experience for us to be back in the States. People have received us warmly everywhere we go. We feel loved and encouraged. The gypsy life is already getting a bit tiring, but we always get excited when we start sharing about the beautiful things God has done and is doing in Brazil. As we reflect on the significance of our obedience to following God’s call and your obedience in praying and giving to send us, we can’t help but praise the Lord for His marvelous saving power in transforming lives through common, willing vessels who are surrendered to Him. Thanks again for your part in helping people come to Jesus.

The day after we left Brazil Daniel proposed to Christina (with our permission and blessing, of course)! They are planning to get married next March. Christina and Daniel are both busy at college and in church ministries. Christina teaches Sunday School and helps with the worship team at the Campo Largo church. She is now living with sister Joanna and niece Deborah for a month while our son-in-law Silvio is participating in a leadership training course in Hawaii through the Haggai Institute. We are thankful for this wonderful opportunity he has to become better prepared for God’s plan in using his leadership abilities to bless lives and spread the Gospel. Andrew and Matthew have been traveling with us in June and July, visiting churches, conferences, and camps and also spending some time with relatives at the beautiful lake cabin in northern WI.

Next week Paul and I will begin experiencing the “empty nest.” Andrew will be working on a farm for a month before going to Bible School. Matthew will start soccer practice Aug. 14 at Hillcrest where he will study for the first semester. We will miss them greatly as companions and fellow-workers and wonderful sons. They have been very helpful all summer, pitching in with yard work, washing cars, shingling roofs, singing and sharing in the churches and making friends at every stop.

Meanwhile, back in Brazil the ministry goes on. Yara was involved in directing 3 camps in July, and we had good reports concerning all of them. The churches are going forward with many people involved in visiting, preaching, and teaching. New people have come to Christ and are now being discipled. There are challenges, too, so we ask that you continue to hold this work up in prayer. It seems that some of the many volunteers in the mothers program are getting tired and discouraged. May the Lord raise up others to be willing to serve in this ministry. A building project has been started for a family with 5 children who are living in terrible conditions. People from our new church plant are joining together to help with this project that is being made possible by a gift given in the U.S. by Nathan Larson in memory of his father. There is a place for everyone to use their gifts and talents and resources in the building of the kingdom. It starts with Jesus in our hearts. He’s the one who moves us to compassion and beyond to meet the needs of hurting people in a fallen world.

Thanks for your prayers,
Paul and Becky Abel

Paul Abel's Remaining Travel Schedule

July 23

Cumberland, WI 9:30 Timberland-Ringebu and 11:00 Hosanna Free 715-822-5255

July 23-25

Osceola, WI ARC Family Camp Program Monday night 715-294-2877

July 26

Hayward, WI 6:00 p.m. 715-634-6269

July 27-29

Hitterdal, MN Shingle John Abel’s house 218-962-3458

July 30

Fargo, ND a.m. St. Paul’s Free Lutheran 701-237-5555

Argyle, MN Our Savior’s Luth. 7:00 p.m. 218-437-8483

Aug. 2

Roseau, MN Rose Church 7:30 p.m.

Aug. 6

Valley City, ND Grace Free Luth. a.m.701-845-4177

Shakopee, MN Faith Free Luth. 6:00 p.m. 952-496-3126

Aug. 7-11

Summer Institute of Theology AFLTS Mpls., MN 763-544-9501

Aug. 13

Janesville, WI Trinity a.m.608-757-1237 District Pastor’s gathering p.m. Newark, IL

Aug. 14-15

Milwaukee, WI area

Aug. 16

Argyle, WI Cornerstone Luth. p.m. 608-328-1001

Aug. 17-24

Hancock, WI 920-570-1766

Aug. 20

Wautoma, WI a.m.

Aug. 27

Winchester, WI Grace Lutheran 8:15 and 10:00 a.m. 920-836-2382

Sep. 3

Appleton, WI Cristus Lutheran a.m. 920-757-7775

Sep. 6

Hayward, WI Wesleyan Methodist Youth night 7:00 p.m.

Sep. 10

Cloquet, MN a.m. St. Paul’s Free

Colfax, WI Faith Lutheran (not confirmed)

Sep. 13

Amery, WI Amery Free Lutheran 715-268-9218

Sept. 17

Cokato, MN Good Shepherd a.m. 320-286-286 Cokato Evangelical Luth. p.m.

Sept. 20

Newfolden, MN Alma Church 8:00 p.m. 218-874-2101

Sept. 23

WMF Rally Larimore, ND 701-343-6292

Sept. 24

Grand Forks, ND Trinity a.m. 701-772-1218

Brandon, MN Chippewa p.m. 320-834-4686

Sept. 26

All Boards Meeting Mpls., MN

Sept. 27

Wilson, WI Christ the King p.m. 715-772-4464

Sept. 30

WMF Rally McIntosh, MN 218-563-3792

Oct. 1

Webster, SD Tabor a.m.

Centerville, SD Immanuel Free p.m. 605-327-3311

Oct. 3 Arlington, SD Calvary Free 605-983-5254

Oct. 4

Pipestone, MN Christ the King 507-825-5958

Oct. 5

Rapid City, SD

Oct. 7

WMF Rally Faith, SD Bethel Lutheran 605-967-2381

Oct. 8

New Leipzig and Mott, ND a.m.

Beulah, ND Prince of Peace p.m. 701-873-5650

Oct. 15

Sioux Falls, SD Abiding Savior a.m. 605-371-3800/ Living Word 605-361-3044 Ortonville, MN Abiding Faith Free p.m. 320-839-3949

Oct. 18

Anoka, MN p.m. Solid Rock Free Luth. 763-433-8610

Oct. 22

Dexter, MN Zion a.m. 507-775-6492

Onalaska, WI Christ is Lord p.m. 608-781-5821

Oct. 25

Maple Grove, MN Grace Luth. 6:30 p.m. 763-463-2300

Oct. 28

WMF rally Radcliffe, IA Salem Luth. 515-899-2396

Oct. 29

St. James, MN Hosanna a.m.507-375-4009

Kenyon, MN Hauge Lutheran p.m. 507-789-5851

Nov. 1

DeKalb, IL Grace Free 7:00 p.m. 815-58-2531

Nov. 5

Arlington Hts., IL Cross and Crown a.m. 847-394-0362

Gifford, IL St. Paul’s p.m.217-568-7196

Nov. 8

Ottawa, IL Faith Luth. p.m.815-434-7017

Nov. 12

Sheridan, IL Fox River Luth. a.m. 815-496-2536

Newark, IL Helmar Luth. p.m. 815-695-5489

Nov. 19

Nov. 23-25

Thanksgiving in Hitterdal, MN 218-962-3458

Nov. 26

Northwood, ND Ebenezer Luth. a.m. 701-587-5196

Nov. 28

Ulen, MN 218-498-2808

Nov. 29

Thief River Falls, MN Our Saviour’s p.m. 218-681-4643

Dec. 1

Hillcrest Christmas concert

Dec. 3

Fergus Falls, MN Calvary Free a.m.218-736-4282

Dec. 9

AFLBS Christmas Concert

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Building Needs in Maringa

Jonathan and Tamba Abel have informed us that the house that they have been renting in Maringa has been sold. The people who purchased the home will be living in it and the Abels will need to move. Please pray that they will be able to find a new home at a reasonable price.

The church in Maringa has been meeting in the Abel's home. It has now grown to the point that it will need to have a building of its own. Pray that the church will be able to find an acceptable building as well.

Update from Youth Worker Trip

Our time has been so jam packed we have not had time to breath. Last night we got back from two places at 12:30 at night and today we have a four and 1/2 hour drive ahead of us.
But today we got warm water to shower with, tea, and a short chance to use the internet!!!

The day we arrived in Tanzania they commissioned the Jesus film in the native language of the people. We have been able to show the Jesus film to these people in remote areas in their own mother tongue for the very first time. I wish you could see the faces of the people and their response to the message. Their eyes are wide open as they hear this beautiful word of God and it sinks deep into their hearts. It is like the difference from listening to the Word on the radio verses meeting the Word in person.

Last night both showings had over 200 people and they were in the same area. I suppose 50 people in the one showing and possibly 75 in the other showing raised their hand stating that they wanted their sins to be forgiven and their lives to be Christ's.

We now will be traveling for 6 days and it will be an intense time emotionally and physically, but every place we go we will be showing this good news to people in their language for the first time.

Everyone's health has been great, thanks for your prayers. The food
has been great and we have eaten like kings and .
We have been greeted by all of our friends and we have been overwhelmed with the love the people have been showering upon us.

We have not had time to read e-mail, but just barely time to send this message.


Pastor Kevin Olson

Monday, August 07, 2006

Answered Prayer - Darwin Jackson

"Avail yourself of the greatest privilege this side of heaven. Jesus Christ died to make this communion and communication with the Father possible."
Billy Graham

Brother Salvador took us to a store to find a friend of his who wasn't there, but we had a great time sharing the Gospel with the store owner.
From there to some more friends who began to gather, we had five of them. We first tried the cd in Totonaco that I made. And it worked great! We gave Salvador all 11 of them so that he could pass them out. Afterward, we carefully shared the Gospel with them, and all of them came to Jesus! They say there are twelve smaller towns that circle Huehuetla, all without evangelical churches. One has a few Jehovah,s witnesses, but they say no one listens to them because they don't recognize the name "Jehovah." But the name of Jesus is like a key that opens doors wide open. Do continue to pray for this opportunity, it would be a great mission station to reach many towns yet unreached with the Gospel.
The funeral service in Zacapoaxtla was awesome. Brother Pablo did a wonderful job on his first time. He was clearly, evidently filled with the Holy Spirit, preaching to the living to come to Jesus to have the same assurance of forgiveness of sins and entrance into heaven as did brother Braulio who left us. Thank you so much for your prayers. I wish you could be here to experience how God is answering them.
Thanks for "availing yourself of the greatest privilege this side of heaven" with us, your fellow workers,

Darwin, Mary Ann and Gracie Jackson

Nathan Olson Returns from China

As I packed up my bags, and was preparing to embark on my journey to China, the Father kept bringing Psalms 96:1-3 to mind. “Sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth. Sing to the Lord, praise His name; proclaim His salvation day after day. Declare His glory among the nations, His marvelous deeds among all peoples.” So I as entered into the communist country of China, these verses served as my motivation to be proclaiming the Word of the Lord, and His glory, wherever He would lead me!

After 30 days of watching God move in amazing and unexpected ways, I returned home from China to the United States. Although our team of 28 jumped at chances to share Christ in any circumstance, we were working primarily with students in both high school, and college. As I was paired up with specific Chinese students to work with, I was able to share with them what is close, and dear to my heart: Jesus Christ. As a result of the communism amidst China, I had to be very careful as to when I shared about God with these lost souls, not only for the sake of their protection, but also for the protection of fellow Chinese Christians. However, God is always in control, and I saw Him open countless doors for the gospel to by shared. Through God's work, our team witnessed many come to a personal relationship with Christ, and experience a urgency also to pass that hope on to others that they knew.

Through God’s power and plan, we now have new brothers and sisters abroad in China, and need to be remembering them in prayer. Prayers are needed for the freedom of believers, as many still meet in secret underground churches. For the faith of the Chinese Christians, that it would remain strong, and steady, even amidst persecution. Lastly, prayers for the gospel of Jesus Christ to be spread and shared by those who believe, that those who are saved would be able to share about the hope that they have inside of them! Praise God for His continuing work around the world!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Kristen Agrimson Leaves for Guyana

On August 3rd I will be going down to Guyana, with a group of 11 people from my church. We will be working with a missionary that plants one church every year and the location that we are going to now is a new church that was opened up only two weeks ago. The neighborhood is primarily Hindu, but the people there are searching for the truth and very receptive to the gospel. We will be putting on a Vacation Bible School in the mornings and doing crusades at night. Please pray for us as we reach out to the community there.

I was blessed to have the opportunity to go to Guyana 2 years ago also. It was a life-changing experience. The majority of the people there have nothing materially. They live in houses with hardly anything holding them up, they have dirt floors, no electricity, etc., yet those who know Jesus have a joy that I do not see in most Christians in the United States. I was reminded that no matter how many things I had or what my status in life was, I would not be truly content until I put the Lord first in my life. I have met many people that think short-term mission trips are a waste of time and money, but God used this trip to completely change me and get me re-focused on what was important. I went down there with the intention of blessing the people down there, but instead I was the one being blessed and changed.

Please pray for us as we travel and spend time down there. Pray for the children and adults that we meet and that they would be receptive to the gospel. Pray that my team and I would be a shining light for Christ and that we would be bold as we proclaim salvation through Christ alone. I look forward to seeing God work!

Kristen works in the AFLC Missions Office as and administrative assistant for Home Missions.

Jesse Long going to Tanzania

In case this does not hold everyone’s attention to the very end, I will get right to the main point: On July 24th, I will be going to Tanzania, East Africa for what could turn into a very long time…please pray for me!

Now I will tell the longer version for those that are interested…
As many of you likely know, in September of 2005, I accepted a job at LEKTRO, Inc. here in Astoria, OR. Since that time, I have been working as a sales consultant, selling the highest quality, towbarless aircraft tow vehicles available in the world today. If there is anything a person could want in a job, I have it. God has blessed me with a wonderful Christian
boss, great co-workers, the best housing arrangement a person could ask for, a fabulous vehicle to drive, good pay, and opportunities for travel, multi-cultural interaction, and even ministry.
Several months ago, however, I began to feel like God was leading me towards seminary. As a result, I began the application process and anticipated beginning classes in Minneapolis, MN on September 6th.

All this began to change on April 22nd when I received an email from Ben Jore. Ben is a graduate of our Free Lutheran Bible School and more recently of Northwestern Christian College with a major in Biblical Studies. He is also son of missionaries to Brazil and currently working with his church youth group as well as serving as Dorm Assistant at the Free Lutheran Bible School. In this email, Ben asked if I would consider going as a ministry partner with him in response to an invitation he received from Waama Bible Institute in Tanzania.

It is important to understand at this point that much of East Africa, including Tanzania, is currently experiencing a revival that has resulted in explosive church growth. Unfortunately, in the majority of cases, the only people available to lead these new churches are themselves merely infants in the faith. In fact, few can even read. On occasion, pastors/leaders are selected simply on the basis of literacy, not spiritual maturity. Waama Bible Institute is seeking to meet this desperate need and we have the chance to support them. The Church in Tanzania needs our help so it can grow strong in the truth.

Despite the reality of the need, however, I honestly hoped this opportunity would just go away or God would somehow close the door or call someone else. With every passing day, seminary sounded much more appealing. After all, it was predictable…structured…civilized. Yet, I decided that if God presented me with such an opportunity, He must want me to at least consider it. As I thought, prayed, and sought counsel for this decision, God impressed on me very clearly, through His Word, that this was a call He intended for me to answer.

While there are still many unknowns, much apprehension, and plenty of logical reasons not to go, I have never felt such a strong and clear call from God and I know He is making the way clear before us.

While we anticipate taking advantage of many opportunities, Ben and I have three primary objectives:
  1. Teaching at Waama Bible Institute (English, Computer, Bible…as we progress in our Swahili skills)
  2. Film Ministry - Traveling to villages showing the Jesus film and The Passion of the Christ.
  3. Assist in establishing/refining online format of seminary classes offered through AFLC World Missions. (This is being established particularly for those in Tanzania,Uganda, and India who do not have the ability to travel to the U.S. for study.)
As we move forward on this venture, we need your prayers more than anything else! Please pray that we…

  • Are able to make all necessary preparations in the limited time we have left.
  • Have a supernatural ability with Swahili – we will be at language school in Tanzania from Aug. 20 to Oct. 1
  • Find an available/reliable truck to purchase…at a price we can afford.
  • Remain physically healthy. Special prayer would be appreciated as I manage my diabetes. If God just wanted to heal me, that would be fine, too.
  • Never lose sight of our dependence on God in all of this.
  • Maintain our faith and faithfulness regardless of how God may change our plans or what He may call us to during this time…especially those things we may not be expecting.
  • John Wesley said, “Give me one hundred preachers who fear nothing but sin and desire nothing but God, and I care not a straw whether they be clergymen or laymen; such alone will shake the gates of hell and set up the kingdom of heaven on earth.” So, finally, pray that God would make us part of such a number and that we would always remember that as
John Wesley also said, “God does nothing but in answer to prayer.”
For those interested in helping with the financial aspect of this ministry, here is a summary of our basic, currently known needs:
  • $5-7,000 for a truck to use in village film ministry
  • $1200 each for our 6-week language school
  • $600-700 for solar panels (our primary source of electricity while at Waama)
  • $800/ea per month for basic living expenses (fuel, food, housing, etc.)
  • $1000 for a generator to enable village showings of the Jesus Film
For gifts (tax deductible), send to: AFLC World Missions Department, 3110 E. Medicine Lake Blvd., Plymouth, MN 55441-3008 (be sure to put “For Jesse Long” on the memo line)

For those interested in receiving regular news/prayer updates, please subscribe by sending an email to To send any general email correspondence, write to my normal address:

Thank you in advance for your support, thoughts and prayers. May God richly bless each one of you for the blessing you have been in my life and for the part you will play in this ministry.
Nothing without Him,

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Encouragement in Mexico

When we first started going to Genaro and Carmen’s home on Friday evenings to lead the cell group, we talked about the possibility of their leading and not us. They strongly felt that they couldn’t do this. Through prayer and teaching their NO has become a definite YES. This is another very exciting answer to prayer as it is always our goal that the national Christians lead the work. Little by little they have taken over parts of leadership and now, after three months, they have taken over the complete leadership of the group. Their enthusiasm is awesome. They spend hours pouring over the Bible study. Every Friday afternoon they visit neighbors inviting them to the study. They are remarkable people with a super desire to see people saved and God is using them. Please continue to pray for them as they lead the study and visit neighbors. May their lights shine bright in their colonia.

Darwin Jacksons

God's Wonderful Work - Part 2

Read Part 1 Below

Not only was Dona Maria praying for a church to be established, but others were having their experiences as God was preparing to raise up this church. One Christian lady from the neighborhood where the church was established said that she had had a vision that a white man was building a church there, and when she saw me working there, she remembered the vision. I guess I did look pretty white, because most of the people were of very dark complexion. But the story that impressed me the most was one I heard this weekend as I returned to Campo Grande to help celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Church. Two weeks ago a lady showed up at church and asked the pastor if she could share a testimony with the church. Pastor Aguinaldo had never seen her before, nevertheless he let her share. “Some time before this church came into existence,” she said, “when this road beside the church was just a vacant lot of weeds, my son was shot here and came to fall down and die right next to this light post in front of your church. I in my anguish and grief came running over to see my dead boy who was lying in a pool of blood and I called out to God and asked Him to plant a church right here where my boy had died, to share the gospel so that young people might come to know the Lord and avoid the life of crime and drugs. I then moved away,” she continued, “and now as I came back to visit, I saw this church and thanked God for answering my prayer, and I felt that I just had to share that with you”. WOW again! What a testimony of God’s work. How wonderful to know that to accomplish His goals He uses us. It reminds me of the song “You can use anything Lord, use me”. Paul wrote to Timothy inspired by God, “In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble. If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work.” (2 Tm. 2:20-21) This is what God wants, and this is what we should want as well, to be a tool in God’s hand.

God's Wonderful Work - Part 1

I have often marveled at “how God uses us”, in spite of ourselves. A few years ago, Dona Maria Rosa, the matriarch of our church in Campo Grande, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil surprised me with that statement. Maria Rosa has been greatly used of God in our denomination here. She came to know Christ as her personal Savior at our church in Iretama, ParanĂ¡ in the mid 1960´s and since then has helped us plant three churches. At the end of last year her husband Arthur, who was of a simple background, yet a great man of faith who had been a leader in our church, passed away. In his last few years of life he was blind and deaf, but he never ceased praying for the church and for those of us who served it. After Arthur’s death, Dona Maria made a trip that she had been planning for many years, but never had the chance to do because of the dependence of her husband on her. Now free of that responsibility she left on a mission to visit all her family around Brazil to share the gospel with them. This trip took about a month and a half to achieve most of her goals and also covered about one third of the country. She shared how wonderful the trip was, and she had taken with her 1500 tracks and had not just distributed the tracks but shared the gospel with each person that she gave the track to. So she gave witness to 1500 people and saw many of them come to receive Jesus as their Savior. She was also excited to lead some of her family to Christ and see that others of her family had become Christians. When a lady like this says that you are an answer to prayer, you kind of go WOW! That’s what she said to me some years ago. She told me that she had been praying specifically to God that He would send someone who could really establish an AFLC church in Campo Grande. A call went out to three others before me to go there and to start a church, but as these men looked at the situation they all turned down the invitation. Finally due to a variety of circumstances I was sent as the last resort and I praise God that He used us. But there is more to this story.

Check back for part 2

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Missions Conference in Astoria

Bethany Lutheran Church in Astoria, Oregon held a missions conference on Sunday, July 9th.

World Missions Director Del Palmer presented the work of AFLC World Missions at Sunday school. Rev. Palmer also spoke at the morning worship service.

The Majesty Gospel Team from the Association of Free Lutheran Bible School provided special music and testimonies.

This was a special event for the church as Jesse Long, who has been working for the church, was sent to Tanzania on a short term missions trip. Jesse plans to be in Tanzania for at least one year. You can receive Jesse's updates be sending an email to

Following the morning services a pot luck was served. Jesse was given a generator to help with his planned ministry needs by the congregation.

Missionary to Uganda Ordained

Nate Jore, future missionary to Uganda was ordained June 23 at Arlington, Washington. AFLC President Robert Lee ordained Nate along with Richard Ramsbacher who will be pastoring the AFLC parish in Culbertson/Brockton Montana.

At this time the Jores are traveling on the East Coast raising support for their ministry in Uganda.