Friday, February 29, 2008

Paul and Becky Abels

AbelsWow!  Where do I begin?  I certainly could write a book about the last three months (don’t worry I don’t have the time or energy to do so).  One day blends into the next as we tackle the task at hand for each moment.  The days have been filled with activities, ministry, blessings and lots of people.  With the people come joys and sadnesses, ups and downs, moments of rejoicing and times of stress.  Missionary life is certainly NOT what some believe to be “an easy life.”  Pressures surround us daily as we carry out ministry, make plans for the future, and work on problem-solving.  Why do I mention all this?  Because we need your prayers.  Perhaps you don’t know how to pray for us – that’s nothing new.  The  Apostle Paul says in Romans 8:26 that we do not know how to pray as we ought. But that should not stop us from praying because the Holy Spirit intercedes for us in accordance with God’s will.  Thank you to those of you who take time to pray for us.  And for the rest of you, perhaps you would consider adding us to your prayer list.  “The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.”  James 5:16

Christmas was a joyful time shared with family and church members.  The choirs and theater groups did a great job presenting at the churches and we enjoyed special meals and fellowship times with several groups of people. It was a special blessing to have Matthew home with us for three weeks. We took a couple of days at the beach between Christmas and New Years to relax after all the Christmas rush and to prepare for the next stage of ministry.

A group of five Canadians arrive the first days of January to spend the month with us.  They blessed us with their presence and labors and gifts.  It was fun for them to participate in our Children’s Camp at the ARCA.  Our theme this year was about prayer and missions.  The following week we hosted the Annual Conference at the ARCA.  And the next week we geared up for our youth camp.  The Lord worked in our lives as we learned about discipleship and how to prepare for the Great Olympics of Life. Our son-in-law, Silvio, was the morning speaker for camp and he did a great job!  Camps are always such a blessed experience and spiritual motivation for our youth and all involved. This year over half of the 130 campers were over the age of 18.  

At the end of January our family grew to include three more young people – Paul’s niece Melissa and nephew Jonathan from Arizona and Ryan, a college student from Minnesota who will be teaching at the English School for six months.  So, those of you who were feeling sorry for me experiencing the “empty nest” can be assured that I haven’t had to go through that challenge yet.  We are also happy to have Paul’s folks with us for about three months.  Plus, my two neighbor girls spend quite a bit of time here and eat with us three times a week.  I’m glad to have young people in the house because there is always something fun happening.  I must admit, though, that I do get more tired out than I used to with all the constant activity.

Joanna is miraculously juggling her responsibilities as mother of two darling little girls, director of the Lighthouse School, English teacher , and choir director and cell group leader at church.  Silvio is just as busy at work, school, church, home and play. I worry about them being too busy, but I can’t say much J  Christina and Daniel are nearing their first year anniversary and seem to really enjoy married life.  Daniel is in his last year of medical school and Christina is in her last year doing internships and working on her senior project. Andrew is happy at Bible School.  He was chosen to be the leader of the Ambassador team from AFLBS so he will be traveling and ministering all summer throughout the US.  Matthew has raised a good part of his support for mission trips to China and Mexico and plans to leave on March 19.  Besides all his other activities he is now working on his part as Bert in the musical “Mary Poppins” to be presented at the end of the year.

The big push now is getting ready for the Passion Play.  Easter is very early this year, so we are pressed for time.  The next weeks will be filled with practices and preparations.  Pray that it will be a wonderful evangelistic impact.  I am also going on a trip with the ladies for a Women’s get-together in Iguacu Falls for the International Women’s Day March 7-9.  We all have to get yellow fever shots because that terrible disease has become a threat in several places in Brazil.  During this month we are expecting three more visitors from the States – Del Palmer,  Dick Gunderson and Lester Hill.  

I have not even begun to scratch the surface of the real “stress” factors in our life.  As if having all this activity weren’t enough, we’ve been going through many difficult times with relationship difficulties between people in our church (very emotionally draining) - moral failure on the part of some key  people, marital separations, etc.  Pastor Jaime is separated from his wife at this time and therefore has stepped down from his responsibilities as president of the AFLC and pastor of the local congregation. Paul is taking over some of the preaching and teaching in his place.  Pastor Nilson is taking on more responsibility in the Campo Largo church to help us out there.  We have meetings and counseling galore. So, I just want to ask again in closing that you remember us in prayer.  I hope to get a regular newsletter out soon with pictures for you to enjoy.  One thing is for sure, the one thing we can count on, the one thing that never changes – God is in control and He is faithful.  May we all be found at rest in Him. Thank you for your continued support.   Sustained by grace, Paul and Becky

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Jore's Update

Jore Family We wanted to update you regarding the pastor who had been arrested.  He was released from the police station last Saturday but has been required to report back this past week.  It seems he was indeed guilty of the charge of forgery.  He had gotten in with a group of people who had been committing such crimes and thankfully he was caught on his first try.  Please pray for a spirit of genuine repentance for him and wisdom in restoring him as a minister of the Gospel.

We forgot to thank you in our last update for praying for our time with Del Palmer and Kevin Olson.  We had a delightful time with them and they encouraged our family a great deal.  We also had several meetings with the pastors and church leadership here in Jinja as well as several trips to the surrounding villages.  Del came to see the work and encouraged the local leadership.  He also shared with them the AFLC World Mission's vision and purpose.  Kevin's main purpose for being here was to help us plan for the training program we hope to begin late this year.  He also blessed us with his handy-man skills in helping to fix our dryer, fridge, car, and lights!  Much progress was made and we were very much encouraged by their time here.

Life is going well and we have been healthy.  We will be traveling to Kampala tomorrow for an ultrasound and checkup for Rhoda.  We are just two months away from the due date! We have recently updated our blog ( so be sure to check out the new pictures! God bless you all and thanks for your involvement in the ministry here.
Nate, Rhoda, boys, and baby

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Check out Kvale's Web Page

Kvales webpageSteve and Glenda Kvale are AFLC Missionaries on loan to Wycliffe Bible  Translators.  They have a web site at: 

Take a look at their site and find out more about their ministry.

Impacting World Missions Through Our Prayers and Our Kids by Craig Wentzel

child prayingIn the last few months, the World Missions Committee has seen that prayer and the preparation of our children are necessary priorities for our mission work in the AFLC. We have a good picture of the importance of our prayers and of our kids to world missions in the story of Hannah in I Samuel 1-3. Hannah is best known for two things: her prayers and her son, Samuel. In fact, if not for the effect she had on others through them, we wouldn’t know her at all! Faced with a difficult family situation, she prayed, and the Lord answered her wi th a son who had a great impact on the world, including US!

The Impact of Her Prayers

First, they had an impact on her! I recently heard that O. Hallesby compared prayer to a person in a boat throwing an anchor to the “shore” (God) and then pulling on the rope. Is the person pulling the shore closer to the boat?...Or is he pulling the boat closer to the shore? I believe the Lord wanted Hannah to pray so that He could “draw” her to Himself. He wanted to give her a son, but He had great plans for that son, and she had to prepare him rightly for God to use. As she prayed and offered him back to the Lord for His service, God eased the burden He had given her for the new life of a child. “Her face was no longer sad.” (I Sam. 1:18) And, then, He answered her: “the Lord remembered her. And…she gave birth to a son.” (I Sam. 1:19-20)

Second, Hannah’s prayers had an impact on Eli, the priest. They were a testimony and an encouragement to him as he observed her earnest prayers and then saw God’s answer to her and actually became entrusted with that answer: Samuel!

Third, her prayers had an impact on Samuel. Every time, someone called his name, he was reminded that “God hears”. He, himself, was the answer to his mother’s prayers! Hannah told him why she gave him up to the Lord: he belonged to the Lord because of her promise to give him back as His servant. Because of her great example, he also became a man of prayer. Ps. 99 tells us: “Samuel was among those who called on His name: They called upon the LORD, and He answered them.”

How can WE have an impact on the world by OUR prayers? Like Hannah, we need to be dissatisfied with the way things are (our “comfort zone”) and take on God’s burden for new life in others. Recently, I realized that I had misplaced some very important records necessary to figure my taxes. For 2 weeks, I looked everywhere! I became desperate to find that which was lost! I prayed earnestly, knowing that the Lord knew where they were. Then, when I had no more hope, the Lord brought them to light! The joy and relief I experienced when they were found gave me a taste of what the Lord feels when a lost, eternal, soul is found! Will we let the Lord draw us near to Him in prayer so that we can feel His burden for the “lost” and become URGENT in finding them?

The Impact of Her Child

First, Samuel, her son, had a great impact on Hannah! He, as God’s answer to her prayers, showed her God’s love and power in her life in the most personal way. What she did with Samuel opened the door for the Lord to give her more children. (I Sam. 2:20-21)

Second, Samuel had an impact on Eli, God’s disobedient “servant”. Samuel became God’s “mouthpiece” to him, warning him of God’s judgment and giving him an opportunity to repent!

Third, Samuel had an impact on the world, leading God’s people to victory and setting up their 1st two kings. Ps. 99 puts him on an equal par with Moses, the giver of God’s law, and Aaron, the father of the priests for God’s people. Samuel was a great prophet and the only king-maker for Israel!

How can OUR children have an impact on the world like Samuel did?...By our giving them godly and sacrificial examples, a concern for pleasing God, and most of all, by surrendering them to the LORD to do with as He pleases, as Hannah did. Are we willing to let the LORD have OUR OWN CHILDREN as missionaries?

By Craig Wentzel

Monday, February 25, 2008

Training of Pastors and Teachers by Nate Jore

“Go and make disciples of all nations… teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” -Matthew 28:19-20

Training (Medium) Can you picture Jesus sitting on a hillside teaching his twelve disciples? Can you picture a Ugandan pastor teaching the Word of God to a small group gathered under a mango tree? Teaching is at the core of the Great Commission and is the primary reason we have come to Uganda. Paul instructed Timothy to take what he had been taught and to entrust it to reliable men who were qualified to teach others (2 Tim 2:2). Our goal in Uganda is to equip reliable men who will train others to follow Jesus.

Pastor Kevin Olson, former AFLC Youth Director, has begun a training program called the Ambassador Institute designed to provide training in overseas settings. He came to see the work here in Uganda for two weeks in January with the goal of helping us to begin the training of church leaders. While he was here, he had the opportunity to discuss the different aspects of training with the local pastors, and to interact with two groups of potential students in the village. He and I also discussed at length the different training needs that exist and the different possibilities for meeting those needs. A three-phase system was suggested in which phase one would be geared towards training lay leaders and phases two and three would be more advanced training for pastoral ministry.

We are currently planning phase one of the training program. The main challenges in ensuring a successful beginning are to have godly teachers that are trained and prepared to teach and to have all the logistics worked out (location, meals, transportation, materials, etc.). Our goal is to provide training that is affordable, self-sustainable, reproducible and effective. If we succeed in these endeavors, the training will be able to grow and expand quickly, resulting in the training of many people at the grass-roots level. We are making an intentional effort to keep phase one from being dependent on outside funding. If it can be locally sustained, then it can grow and expand rapidly as teachers are called and more students desire to be trained. At this point, it looks like phase one will take place in village locations that are accessible by bicycle to the students who will attend, thus eliminating the cost of transportation for the students. If the training were to be held in the city, it would drastically reduce the number of students who could afford to attend. The training will take place on Saturdays, thus allowing students and working adults to participate. We are looking at a two-year program that will be divided into three terms per year. The plans I have mentioned here are still tentative as we are still considering the best options.

The most crucial aspect of training is finding the right curriculum that will be taught. We have been considering different methods and styles of teaching with Pastor Kevin Olson, as well as looking at existing materials that others are using. Our main concern is that the training will connect with the students in their cultural context and answer the questions that they have. We are planning to have training in the local language even though most of the students are quite familiar with English as it is Uganda’s national language. This will bring the training closer to home and will not exclude those who are not confident in English. The main teachers will be the local pastors with whom I have been meeting and planning for the past year.

Thank you for your prayers for this new training program which we are hoping to begin yet this year. May God bless the spreading of His Word, that it may produce faith in those who hear.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Ingrid Giles Home After Surgery

Ingrid My surgery went very well on Friday afternoon.  It was a couple of hours later than planned because one of the surgeons was delayed with a patient in Zacatecas.  They let me out of the hospital on Saturday night and I am now recovering at home.  Today (Monday) I am feeling much better -- I even got dressed!

I'm still a little sore, and I'll be on a very restricted diet for several weeks.  Already, the surgery seems to have done its job.  My recovery seems to be going quite well.  Please pray that I don't lose too much weight! 

Thank you all for your prayers, and thank you for the encouraging notes that some of you have sent.  It makes me feel good to know that people are thinking of me and praying for me -- besides the fact that prayer works!


Chmiels Traveling to Czech Republic

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         THANK YOU so much for your prayers! Yes, the Lord answered your prayers and we are flying to the Czech Republic tomorrow. We consulted two different doctors (Friday and Saturday) and they both said that Miriam should be ok traveling. Of course they both said that they cannot guarantee that nothing bad will happen but at the same time they both thought that it was likely that the flights should not be a problem. But they also suggested that it would be better for us to first travel to the Czech Republic and only when we see that Miriam is doing fine, only after that we should continue to the States. So that is the plan right now. We are leaving Ukraine tomorrow morning; we should be in Prague tomorrow afternoon. We will probably spend about a week or 10 days in the Czech Republic and then we are planning to continue to the States (Minneapolis, MN).

We are hoping to see some doctors in the Czech Republic too. But the only doctor we know (a specialist) was not able to get us an appointment in February. So we will just go see a general practitioner close to where we will be staying and we will hope and pray that the doctors she will refer us to will be good, knowledgeable, helpful and nice. :)

If you would like to see some more new pictures, you can always go to

Thank you so much for all your prayers. We definitely feel them!!! And even though we still do not exactly know what is going to happen next, God has proven Himself faithful in always showing us the next step at exactly the right time!


Tomasz and Miriam

This Week in Uganda

Nate It has been a bit of a long week here, but God has shown Himself faithful.  Many have been asking about Richard of whom we wrote about last update.  I talked to him last week and he said that he has quit smoking and drinking completely and that he is happy.  He came to church the first Sunday and has come to Bible study twice.  He just found a temporary job in a different location making cement blocks which means that we don't see him around here every day as before.  The job also has him working long hours seven days a week, so he has not been attending Bible study and church services.  My main concern is that he have the spiritual encouragement that he needs for his young Christian life.  His two teenage sons are Christians and have been a great encouragement to him. Please don't stop praying for him.

The Lord has been doing some purifying around here.  He has been purifying us through different hardships that we have faced recently which have caused us to draw near to Him and to each other.  I was particularly discouraged on Friday, and that evening I received three phone calls, two from the US and one from my brother Ben in Tanzania, all aimed at encouraging me.  None of the three callers had any idea of the rough week we had had.

The Lord has been purifying in our church as well.  Without a lot of details, I had to ask one of the pastors to stop attending our Saturday pastors' meetings because of his divisive spirit and lack of godly character.  Another one of the pastors is being held at the police station on charges of forgery.  I went to try to release him on Friday, believing him innocent, only to find out that he is guilty.  His friends were asking me to pay a hefty bribe to release him which I could not do.  The outcome of the situation is still uncertain at this time of writing, but I believe I did the right thing before God.  The remaining pastors really encouraged me at our meeting today that I had done the right thing.  Forgery is a felony in Uganda with a maximum sentence of 14 years.  He could get anything from 0-14 years at this point, but we shall see.  (The legal system in Uganda seems to have a lot of loop holes for those who have money to bribe).
So, how was your week?  I must say that it is amazing how much peace there was in the midst of the stretching experiences this week.  God is always faithful and your prayer cover for our family is a HUGE blessing to us.  As you pray for us, please remember to cover us with a spiritual shield from the attacks of the Evil One.  It is not uncommon here for an individual to go to the witch doctor to put a curse on the one they are angry with.  We do not need to fear such a thing as we are covered by the blood of Christ, but we do need to be alert to the devil's schemes. This kind of opposition is expected when God is at work. Despite the heaviness of this week, we feel an undercurrent of excitement to see what God will do. We are in a crucial stage of planning for the training program that we hope to begin, Lord willing, this year.
Rhoda and the boys are doing well. Our little one is due to come in just 2 months now, for which we are all eager.
Thank you, friends, for standing with us in prayer. You are a tremendous support and encouragement to us.
Many blessings,
Nate and family

Update from Jesse Long

jesse in haydererDear friends,

We had a very refreshing and productive ti me in Arusha from February 8-12.  We had a lot to do which made the time pass very quickly but just having a change in pace was good.  On Sunday afternoon, we had the opportunity to go out motorbiking with one of our friends there who also has a bike.  He took us to see some amazing areas.  We climbed hills, chased gazelles (I almost caught one…I felt like a lion!), passed solitary Massai dwellings, explored dry river beds, etc.  It was amazing.

Another exciting opportunity we had during that weekend was to visit with a fellow missionary who recently returned from the States with a piece of equipment we are considering promoting here in the future.  It is called the Acclaimer and it is put out by Faith Comes by Hearing Ministries.  It is a self-contained DVD/video projector/sound system.  (You can check it out at the following website:  The beautiful thing is that it can be run on AC, DC, or solar power.  Our goal is to find a sustainable way to equip the local people here to carry on the film ministry that we have been involved with over this past year and a half.  The fact of the matter is that even if we're to give some evangelist all of our equipment, the cost of a vehicle to transport it all to the various village locations would not be manageable.  With the Acclaimer, however, the whole unit weighs less than 50 pounds and could easily be transported by bicycle, donkey, or even on someone’s back.  We are still in the planning stages of how all the details would work of helping the people here acquire equipment like this.  We covet your prayers.

On a slightly different note, I want to share a letter with you that we recently received:

February 3, 2008

Ben and Jesse,

Subject: Thanks for the gift you brought on January 20, 2008

Greetings in Christ Jesus:

As stated above, the Christians of the church here at Barakta village would like to thank you for the gift of Bibles that you brought when you visited our church.  We are so grateful and pray that God richly bless you.  Also, we want you to know that we have already done as you directed and have distributed the Bibles to those Christians who do not have the ability to buy one on their own.  Furthermore, those who received the Bibles send their sincere thanks.  May you continue in the heart that you have shown!

Thank you.


Evangelist of Barakta Village

I share this letter because I honestly feel that many of you deserve this thanks as much, if not more, than we do.  Without a doubt it is your prayers and support that make it possible for us to be here and do the things we do.  God is working in this part of the world, not just through our availability, but also through the generosity of you who have partnered with us to make this work possible.  The truth is, if it were not for you, we could not be here much less be the recipients of a letter like this.  Thank you so much for your prayers and on-going support.  More pictures have made it onto our blog in recent weeks.  Check them out at  God richly bless you all.

In Christ,

Jesse Long

Mbulu, Tanzania

PS – Ben took the attached picture without telling me he was taking it.  I didn’t think it turned out too bad so I thought I would send it out so you all can have a recent picture of me and can rest assured that I am alive and doing well.  It is me in front of the church we visited this past weekend.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Continue to Pray for the Chmiels

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         Since we know many of you are praying for us (and we appreciate it VERY MUCH!!!!) we would like you to know the latest updates…

Our good news is that Miriam’s blood clot is gone. There are still some leftover problems and our doctor said that she will have to be on blood thinners for at least four more months. But after that she should be fine. The only problem is that her blood should be checked often and they are not very good at doing that here in Ukraine. We do not know why but so many times the doctors here seem not to worry about any “potential” problems. Somehow they are not interested in preventing problems; they only deal with them when they come… But still, it’s great that the blood clot has dissolved!!!! Praise the Lord for that!!!

Our bad news is that Miriam had an ultrasound done on her remaining ovary today and there is a big cyst again!!!! :( Not only is it disappointing (we were somehow not emotionally prepared for this news) but now there is also a big question mark on whether Miriam can travel or not. You probably understand that we are trying to be super careful since she already lost one ovary recently. Her left ovary also had cysts and it twisted and then had to be removed even though Miriam did everything she could to prevent it… She was really careful, she was mostly at home resting etc… We had been told that if she does those things, it would not happen, but it did… So now, since she only has one ovary left, we are really thinking about what to do because we want to do everything possible to prevent any more problems.

But at the same time we really want to leave Ukraine ASAP. After all our bad experience we do not really trust the system here anymore. All the doctors and nurses are all really nice and we really like them as people but they have given us so much wrong advice plus they are very limited in what they can do equipment-wise, lab-wise etc… that we just feel like we need to seek medical help somewhere else…

On Saturday we are going to see a different doctor (who is supposedly very good) and hopefully he is going to help us decide whether it is safe for Miriam to travel right now or not. We were supposed to fly to the Czech Republic on Saturday but that will have to be postponed now.

When you are praying for us, please pray that we know what to do next!!!! First we need to know if Miriam can travel… but if she can travel, we need to know where to go… At first we hoped to take care of all our medical problems in the Czech Republic. But then couple different things fell through… couple different accommodation options in Prague did not work out… a doctor we wanted to see gave us the earliest appointment for March 13 etc etc… So when we learned that Samaritan Ministries (we are members) would cover our medical expenses if we came to the States, we were considering coming back to Minnesota for a month or so. In fact many things seemed to fall in place much easier with the option of coming back to Minnesota than going to Prague… There would be a place for us to stay, our clinic confirmed that they would be able to take care of both the ovary problem and the blood thinning problems, Miriam would be able to see a very nice Christian doctor etc… Our only concern was that if for some reason our medical bills got really high, we need to be 100% sure that Samaritan Ministries will really cover them all. But Tomasz called them again today and they again said that they will cover everything related to the cysts, the surgery and the blood clot problems…

So please pray for wisdom and very special God’s guidance for us. At this point we are really exhausted and feel really helpless. It feels like whenever things finally seem to be getting better or we finally feel like we know what we are doing, something happens and we are back to square one…

We appreciate you all very much!!! Happy Valentine’s Day! :)

Tomasz and Miriam

Ingrid Giles - Surgery February 15

ingrid closeup I am going to have an operation tomorrow (Friday, February 15th).  I had expected to schedule it for early next week, but it just so happens that the surgeon who comes in from the city to do it was going to be here tomorrow, so my doctor suggested doing it tomorrow.

It is a laparoscopic partial fundoplication.  They are going to take the top part of my stomach and wrap it part of the way around the bottom of my esophagus.  I won't be able to eat real food for three or four weeks -- I'll be on liquids first and then soft foods.

I'll go into the hospital around 10am and they'll begin to do surgery around 3pm, and then I'll spend the night and come home on Saturday, if all goes well.  Marcela and Danny will take care of me.  :-)

Please pray for me!  Thanks!


Friday, February 08, 2008

Missionaries on Loan

AFLC World Missions has accepted two new missionary families and placed them on loan to other organizations

Tom and Lidia Lumppio

Lumpios 3The Lumppios are members of Grace Free Lutheran Church in Maple Grove, MN.  They are both graduates of the Ministry Training Institute at the Association Free Lutheran Bible School.  Tom and Lidia and their family have been serving with World Mission Prayer League in Mexico.  They are home in the United States at this time on a short furlough before returning to Mexico.

Steve and Glenda Kvale

Kvale Commissioning 098 Steve and Glenda are missionaries on loan to Wycliffe Bible Translators.  They will be stationed in Florida where Steve will be working as a computer specialist.  The Kvales are members of Christ the King Free Lutheran Church in Pipestone, MN.  Glenda graduated from the Association Free Lutheran Bible School in 1987.

Information about all our missionaries can be obtained by clicking on the AFLC World Missions link to in the right hand column.

Update from Darwin Jackson

"Father, into your hands I commit my spirit." Luke 23:46

"I am in God's hand and happily take each day as His good gift, leaving tomorrow free of all personal claims, to come or not to come, as our Father sees best. I have strength and can work hard and have the refreshing joy of salvation like a band concert going on inside. So I praise the Lord!"

Paul Lindell (Former WMPL Director less than nine months before he died of cancer)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         Thank you all for praying while I was in Sinaloa again. To be honest I didn't really feel ready to go because I had only been in Nogales for three days before that, and I had heard some disturbing news about what has been going on down there since we left. And being a worry wort, I guess I was bracing for the worst even though I was excited about showing the Jacobson's around as they consider serving with us in Mexico.

I had heard that the church in la Cruz was closed because pastor Jose couldn't do it any more. But instead one of Jose's sons is leading the congregation, and doing a great job! Pray for Elias to continue strong and that God would raise up other helpers there.

Ismael is still faithfully pastoring the congregation in Ceuta.
I was really worried about the work in el Rosario. When I asked our pastor in Mazatlan about it, he said with one of those ear to ear grins, "your going to be surprised." Sure enough when we got there we found out that Luis Manuel, the young brother who had been drawn to the Apostolic church (Ones Pentecostal) years ago had come back to us. After all the effort to win him back doctrinally, the Lord won him by grace. He said he just realized that they were motivated and driven by law, and that he loves Jesus for what He'd done and that's why he wants to serve Him. Praise God! He is battling with guilt now. He doesn't feel worthy to be a leader in the Church because of having left, but who is? Pray for him brothers and sisters. I believe God's going to do a great work through him.

Continue to pray:

  • For the Jacobson's as they consider Mexico. They are a dear couple who have been pastoring for twenty six years and are going to be retiring.
  • For the house to sell in San Diego so that my girls can come home to Nogales.

Let the concert play as we pray and trust God to lead us in His work, your fellow workers,

Darwin, Mary Ann and Gracie Jackson

"But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8

Ingrid Giles Prayer Letter

Img0105 Dear Friends,

The weather this week is very nice -- still cool, but not too cold.      

In the weekly women's Bible Study, we are learning about "How to have Mary's heart in Martha's world," using material that my mom prepared several months ago when she was a speaker for the women at a retreat for pastors and their wives.  Not many women come, but those who do have said that they don't want to miss a single session!

Claudia Gamboa, for whom you have been praying, is opening her own taekwondo school.  She works all day, and now two or three evenings a week she takes her children over to the school and teaches.  She is hoping that one day the school will make enough money that she will be able to work fewer hours during the day.  I admire her for coming alone to church with her four children (two toddlers) every Sunday, and sometimes walking if they miss the bus.  They are rarely even late!  I think it's very good for the children to grow up seeing the importance that she places on her Christian walk.

Oscar, the teenage boy for whom you've been praying, is maturing into quite the young man.  He has started mentoring his younger cousin and brings him to church now.  The boy is named Benigno ("Nino" for short) and is in my Sunday School class.  He is quite eager to do all the work and memorize the verse every week!

Dan and Marcela recently took the youth group to the city of Aguascalientes for an outing.  It sounds like they all had fun.  

I am contemplating having an operation soon.  I'm not sick and it isn't any sort of emergency, but basically the doctor says it's a good idea to do it soon, and now that I've done my own research I'm convinced he's right.  Also, if I'm going to adopt a baby, I'd like to have this out of the way first.  It turns out that the reason my stomach acid goes into my lungs is because my lower esophogeal sphincter (also known as the cardiac sphincter) has apparently been open all my life, and also I have a hiatal hernia.  They want to fix those things.  The only thing I still need to know in order to decide is the price (I don't have insurance), and they can't tell me the price until they do some more tests. 

Here is my prayer list:

Please (requests):

  • Pray for my mom and dad and my grandparents, especially during this time that they are together.  
  • Ask God to continue to provide for my financial needs.
  • Pray for my continued health, that I would soon be able to get the tests and find out the approximate price of the operation, and that God would provide the money if He wants me to have the surgery at this time.
  • Ask God to continue to provide Dan and Marcela's financial needs.  They are hoping to rent a house of their own soon, which means that their expenses would go up.
  • Please continue to pray for Claudia Gamboa and her kids.
  • Pray for God's guidance for me and the World Missions Committee as I continue the process of applying to be a full-term missionary.
  • Pray that Oscar's cousin Benigno would become a Christian.
  • Pray that God would give me the words and phrases necessary to do the best possible job of translating this Sunday School material so that it will be clear to children from all over the Spanish-speaking world.  Also pray that God would use these lessons to speak to the children and teachers who use them.
  • Pray that I'd do a good job as Sunday School teacher and superintendent.
  • Ask God to help me spend my time wisely.

Thank you (praise):

  • I have learned the cause of some health problems that I had always taken for granted, and they can be fixed!
  • I trust that God will continue to take care of my financial needs.
  • Oscar brings his cousin Benigno to church every week now!
  • Nena still needs a lot of prayer, but she is turning back to the Lord!
  • I get to live with my charming nieces and see them every day!
  • I thank God for my prayer supporters.  I believe this work wouldn't be possible without them.


Ingrid Giles

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Miriam Chmiel

clip_image001[1]Dear friends,

We just wanted to thank all of you so much for your prayers!!!! We feel your praying and we are encouraged by your many emails (even when we do not write back)!!!

Tomasz’s sermon went well on Sunday. From how people responded and what they said to him after church, it seemed like God really used both him and his translator, Edgar (a young Ukrainian guy from a different church) to encourage those who were there on Sunday. So praise God for that! And thanks for praying. It was really hard to be focused on the sermon preparation after we found out about the blood clot and with everything else that was going on last week…

Miriam is doing ok… It’s all a little bit of a roller-coaster (both physically and emotionally) but she is feeling better. She has to stay in bed to prevent the blood clot from dislodging but her leg does not really hurt when she is not walking. It is now a little bit of a battle between what is good for her leg/the blood clot and what is good for the rest of her body. For example last week our doctor told us that it would be risky not to put Miriam on certain hormones that would give her remaining ovary a break and some time to heal before it would be forced to “work for two.” But this week he had to take her off those hormones because they were adding to the blood clot problem. Also with all those blood thinners they are giving her, they have to try to help her leg but they have to do it without causing any extra bleeding along the way etc etc…

We are still hoping to be able to travel to Czech some time soon to get everything checked by Czech doctors but right now we cannot really plan much as Miriam needs to be in bed with her leg up.

But we are really blessed to have Miriam’s Mom here with us now. She came on Sunday and it is such a BIG help to have her here!!!! Especially since Tomasz came down with some kind of a stomach bug this morning so right now we are both in bed and Miriam’s Mom taking care of both of us. :)

Thank you again for your prayers and keep in touch. We appreciate all of you VERY MUCH!!!!!!!!!!!

Tomasz and Miriam

PS: The picture is for you to see that Miriam really is feeling better :) The Steele girls (Abby and Beka) came to cheer her up on Sunday.

February Prayer Letter - Dan Giles Jr.

Danny Giles

Greetings to all,

We hope that you all are doing great.  We are having lots of fun watching our two daughters grow, and the youth group growing spiritually and emotionally.

Last Saturday we took the youth group to the city park in Aguascalientes, and they all loved it.  The had time to get to know each other better, it was a great experience for them and us as well. 

Please pray for the youth group.  Jerez is full of drugs, and explicit underground.  It is very hard for them to follow Christ with so many bad influences.  Danny is providing a fun alternative to the boys, they come to play video games and hang out with Danny.   Danny is also helping  Guillermo(Memo) Perez to learn english because he is excited to go the Bible School in Minneapolis in two years.

We had a great opportunity to share the gospel in a very interesting setting here in Jerez.  It happened January 16th.   We went to a coffee house and had a chance to talk about Jesus.  We basically told the people there that without Jesus they were lost.  It is quite a long story, but if you want to know the whole story you can check it in our family blog.

We are still looking for a house in which to live, we really would like to live in a house that is across from Dan and Debbie's.  The owner came to us and showed us the house.  Unfortunately, the house is not empty. There is a man who rents the house, but he really doesn't really live there.  His lease ran out last December so the owner really want us to move in there, and we think it is absolutely perfect for us.  Please pray that either he will find a new  place to live or that we can find another place of our own.

Pray for the safety of our family.  Jerez has become one of the head quarters of one the  biggest drug cartels in Mexico.  A month ago there was a shooting that resulted in seven local and federal police man dead, and nobody knows how many more.   We know that God is more powerful than any power in this world and that nothing will happen to us if He doesn't allow it.

Prayer requests

-Health and safety for our  two little daughters and us.

-Our own house. 

-That the Lord will supply our financial needs.

-Pray for Danny as he teaches the youth group every Bible studies and sunday school.

-Pray for next Saturday, Feb. 9th, we are showing the movie "Like a Thief in the Night" at church.  May souls, hearts, and lives be changed.


-We praise the  Lord for you, thank you for your payers and support.

-For our daughters, Ariadna and Andrea, who fill our lives with joy.

-Because He has been faithful to His promises to us in every single way.

-For the youth group, they all come to church on Sundays now, when before they were not allowed.

-Because we have been able to learn from our parents, Dan and Debbie, they are great examples to follow.

-We love being close to our sister, she is a great blessing to us.


In Him,

Daniel, Marcela, Ariadna, and Andrea Giles