Monday, April 27, 2009

Update from Marcela Giles

 Marcela Giles Dear family and friends,
I write to you because we really need your prayer support.   Since last Friday we have been hearing of serious cases of the swine flu in Mexico.  Aguascalientes which is only two and half hours away from us had 17 deaths caused by the swine flu.

"The oldest fair in the country, the San Marcos in Aguascalientes, which has taken place for the last 181 years, was suspended. The fair famously features bullfights but just six minutes before the toreros were to start, it was cancelled. The economic impact of such cancellations will mount as the panic — and the potential declaration of a pandemic — takes hold.  Aguascalientes, for example, counts this time of the year as the high-point of its business calendar. The fair provides employment for a lot of people. (See the story about how the vaccine the CDC has prepared for swine flu.) "

Jerez is a very rural town,  so..pray that God will keeps us safe from getting the danger.

Right now my husband is in Phoenix with his Dad, unable to come back today like they had planned because of a car problem.  Also, due to a string of unforeseen problems, they don't yet have money to pay for the trip. Please pray that God will provide for their needs. The birth of our baby boy is coming up very soon.

We are trusting the Lord in the middle of everything.  He is in control of everything, and we know that if He is allowing this,it is for a reason.  He gave us Psalm 91 this week, promising that He will keep us safe.

We are peaceful and joyful because we know that God is bigger than any disease.

Please pray that my husband Dan Giles (jr.) will be here for the birth our baby boy. Also pray that my little girls won't get the flu, we are not going out at all, at this point it is better to stay indoors and clean everything very well.
I just want to remind everyone that we are doing well and are at peace.  We just need your prayers.

Thank you
In His Name,
Marcela Giles

Ingrid Giles

Ingrid Hello, Everyone.

First of all: We are well, and we are at peace.

Mexico is experiencing a swine flu outbreak that the World Health Organization on Saturday called "a public health emergency of international concern."  (I know there have been a few cases in the US, too.)  The President called it a national emergency, which gave him the power to cancel all kinds of things in Mexico City, impose quarantines if necessary, and so on.  It's all happening so fast; only God knows what course this will follow over the next few days and weeks.  There have been at least a couple of cases in this state of Zacatecas including one in a nearby rural town, and at least one school here in Jerez announced that classes will be suspended until May 6th.  I expect that more schools will be closing in the next few days.

Interestingly enough, every single person on our ministry team read or discussed Psalm 91 sometime in the last few days -- before we were aware of this outbreak.  As soon as we heard the news, verses from the Psalm came to each of our minds.  "Surely He shall deliver you... from the perilous pestilence."  "You shall not be afraid... of the pestilence that walks in darkness, nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday."  "A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not come near you."  We have been thanking God and claiming these promises.

My dad and brother are stuck in the States; they were due to start driving down here today but for various reasons they couldn't.  (The van, which has been a wonderful gift from God, finally had its first breakdown since we got it and is in repair.)  My sister-in-law, Marcela, is due to have her baby possibly as early as next week.

My mom, Marcela and I feel at peace about the whole situation.  We are of course taking the recommended precautions, but we are not really worried. 

Please continue to keep our health and safety in prayer, and pray for wisdom to make decisions as unforeseen situations come up.  Thanks!


Ben Jore Update

Ben and babyBelated Easter Greetings! I trust your Easter season has been filled with joy. Our Lord is risen!

Second semester ended very well. It was a long but good semester. Jesse and I were able to spend 5 days of our 2-week Easter Break relaxing, recharging, and soaking up some sun in Zanzibar. It was a much needed break. We left there ready to tackle the third and final semester of the year. But before we headed back to Mbulu we were able to spend a few days in Arusha and even attended a wedding for a couple of our friends.
It was such a blessing to celebrate with them.

Third semester has already started! Even though less than half the students had returned from Easter Break, we started teaching this past Wednesday. I am really excited for this semester. I will be teaching English, Daniel, and Bible Doctrine I. Unfortunately this is a very short semester - only 6.5 weeks of teaching (as opposed to 11 last semester). But we trust that God will continue to do great things despite the brevity of the time. Finals are scheduled for the week of June 8. The following two weeks have been set aside of the corn harvest.
Graduation will follow on June 28.

I recently purchased a plane ticket to return to the US this summer! I am scheduled to arrive in Minneapolis on July 2 and stay till mid-September. I hope to see each of you this summer. If you would be interested in having me share with your church, Sunday school class, youth group, etc. about the ministry in Tanzania, please contact me and I'll do my best to fit it in. Thanks!

**Electricity Update** Unfortunately I don't have a whole lot to report... except that things continue to go at an African pace. The power company's flatbed truck still has not been fixed, so we still don't have the main transformer for the campus. As a result we still don't have power. Rumor has it that the power company is scheduled to review the budget next month and hopefully will budget some money to fix the truck (the previous money in this fund was "misappropriated"). We'll see what happens, but we're not holding our breath. On a slightly more upbeat note, money continues to come in for the rewiring costs.
Currently the school has enough money to rewire 3-4 more buildings on campus (probably staff housing). So the school is trying to contact the electrician so we can get these buildings rewired and ready to be hooked into the power grid... whenever that might happen. Thanks for your prayers and gifts on behalf of this project.

We praise God that despite our busy schedule we still have time to travel to neighboring villages on many of our weekends and show the Jesus Film. This past weekend we showed in two villages only about 5 miles from the school. It was so inspiring when about 1200 people turned out for these two showings and dozens of them came forward to give their lives to Christ. May the good seed grow and bear fruit! Please keep this ministry in your prayers. We have three more Jesus Film weekends (7 film
showings) planned for this semester.

Finally, I'd like to let you know that Jesse and I have requested to remain at Waama for one more (and final) year here at Waama. We feel like the school has made some great strides forward in recent years and is on the threshold of self-sufficiency. We hope that one more year here will "push them over the edge" and into self-sufficiency.

Thank you for your partnership in this ministry. May God richly bless you,


Saturday, April 25, 2009

Schierkolk's Newsletter

Schierkolks Newsletter When I returned home and heard that I had been invited to run a 15K race I almost choked. I did manage to beg off of that one but . . .


Click here to read the complete newsletter.

Annual Conference in India

Luther I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

By the grace of our Lord and through your prayers the AFLCI ministry is going on well.  This year AFLCI annual meeting will be held from April 27 to 29 as usual.  Most of the time all pastors and believers share the Word of God and pray together for the salvation of unreached groups in our country and for some of the other issues that India faces.  One of the days the executive council and pastors committee will meet and discuss the future work of AFLCI.  During that time I will read the report of the AFLCI work of previous year.

Kindly pray for these meetings.  Generally these meetings help all the AFLCI believers to come together as a family and encourage each other to grow in Faith in Christ.

In Christ,

Luther Sastry Dasari

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

John Abel Out of Hospital

We are praising the Lord that John had a successful treatment and plans to leave the hospital today.  We hope he will feel well enough to travel yet this week and be near us to recuperate.  Thanks for your prayers.

Becky Abel

John Abel Hospitalized

This is a quick prayer request letter.  I really want to get news out also, but for now, please pray –

Missionary John Abel, Paul’s Dad, is presently in emergency surgery in Campo Grande where he went to do an evangelism campaign.

He has trouble urinating the past days and went to the hospital last night and had a catheter put in. It is a holiday here in Brazil and they were not able to get a urologist to take care of him.  The last I heard the bleeding required emergency surgery.  We are waiting for further news.  It’s hard to be away from home and family at times like this.  Please remember John and Ruby in your prayers today.

Also please pray for me and for Yara as we are in Campo Mourao teaching at the Bible School.  Last night we had a class of 30 students.  We are doing modules on Conflict Resolution, Interpersonal Relationships, Camping and Children’s ministries.

Paul is in Vitoria with Pastor Del Palmer and Pastor Jim and Linda Fugleberg.  When I talked to him this morning they were already ministering in a church there and Paul was translating.  Pray for this time of encouragement. Next week we will be having a national pastor’s retreat here in Campo Mourao with our visitors being the guest speakers.

Sorry I have not let you into the loop of our ministry these days, but thank you for remembering us in prayer as we live out our lives because of the Gospel in this place. 

In Christ, Becky

Brazil Trip Update

Dear Praying Friends,

clip_image001Our trip is going well.  We are in Vitoria.  Yesterday we met with the leaders of the two churches here in the city.  It was a holiday so they didn’t have to go to work.  They were overjoyed that we had come to their city to see the work they are doing for the Kingdom.  They said, “This is a historical day.”

Jim Fugleberg preached in the evening and all the seats were filled and there were a few people listening as they looked in the windows.  The church has a goal to add on and double the size of their sanctuary.

Tomorrow we travel to Maringa, then to Iguaçu Falls, Campo Mauro and finally to Curitiba.

Prayer Requests

· God’s empowerment as we proclaim His Word.

· Safety and ease of travel.

· Openness to the Word

Pray for the Schierkolks

Dear praying friends,

Missionary - TS We have a few prayer requests.  Would take time to pray for our ministry?

1.  I remember two kids, a brother and a sister, in the Kid's Club out in Frente Popular (our Tuesday club) about six years ago looking at each other with a decided nod that, yes, they were going to ask Jesus to come into their hearts.  Omar has continued helping out every once-in-a-while at that Kid's Club and continues to attend the youth group with Danny Giles.  Their mom has come to each of the Christmas outreach programs over the years and is a good friend of the lady I write about below in the third prayer request.  Their dad had gone to a Kid's Club/Feeding center about 25 years ago that was run by our dear friend who attends our church, Lois Raser.  His newborn granddaughter was the one you were all praying for recently, who was in danger of having her leg amputated.  Well, this past Sunday marked the fourth in a row that the WHOLE family (6 of them) has worshiped with us at church!  So we're pretty excited and want to share the encouragement of that news with you, our faithful fellow-workers in prayer.

2.  What does a pat on the hand mean?  Well, not so terribly much, UNLESS the one who patted your hand is the woman who previously hated you and from whom you are divorced and whom you haven't seen for over three years but now after having your car break down in front of a Spanish-speaking church in the United States which you then started to attend and where you repented of your sins and came to Christ and then after seeing the movie "Fireproof" in Spanish and feeling like God wanted you to go back to your town in Mexico (where there is very little work) and try to win the one who hates you back and to try to restore your family which consists of three little boys and a two-year-old girl who was born to your ex-wife in an illicit relationship while you were gone and you've been trying for almost two months now with very little success except for the fact that you just started doing the 40-day "Love Dare" and are now about two weeks into it.  THEN the fact that your ex-wife patted you on the hand, after the two of you came separately to church and were chatting afterwards . . . THEN that pat on the hand is a very, very, very encouraging development!  Yes, this is little Samuel's daddy and mommy.  A huge thank you to all of you who have perservered in prayer for this couple.  Please keep praying that God would help Sammy's dad to win the trust and love of his wife again.   If he does I think I'm gonna write a letter to the folks who made "Fireproof" and tell them about it:)

3.  Another couple of kids that you have prayed for are the Jehovah's Witnesses, Diana and Betsy.  They attended the English class for kids that Barb taught for several years.  Their parents and older brother also attended the English class for adults.  Praying, racking my brain and my heart for a long time to figure out a way to bring up some discussion with them without causing a defensive argument about six months ago I finally decided to go over and have a few of the Sunday school lessons copied there each week, hoping that the "temptation" would be too great for them and that they would read them.  Well, last week, Marta, the mom, finally asked if she could ask me a question . . . and we spent the next half hour discussing the Bible.  That was a huge breakthrough!  Not that she's anywhere near seeing the lie she and her precious family have bought into but at least we have a line of communication open and for that we praise the Lord.

4.  Last fall someone who lived here in Jerez died and left money in their will for our church here in Jerez.  After months of waiting and some confusion I think we got to the bottom of several of the issues that were holding up the disbursement of the gift.  Unfortunately, the executor of the will is having trouble accepting some of the terms of the will, which in that person's defense, were somewhat confusing.  But now the issues are clear, the executor has received everything they are likely going to receive and has the ability to pass on to the church here the gift that was left.  Would you please pray with us for the executor and the people who are giving that person advice, that God will put it in their heart to do the right thing and give them the assurance and peace that they need in order to do it?

Thank you so much for your work in prayer with us, storming the gates of hell and tearing down strongholds on our knees.

In Christ,

Todd and Barb Schierkolk

Greetings from Chmiels

Ukraine 4 Greetings from Krakow! As you know, we are in Poland now, waiting for the birth of our daughter. Her due date is in exactly two weeks. Our Ukrainian doctor thinks she would be early, the Polish doctors here in Krakow do not think so... So we are curious to see when she decides to make her grand appearance :-)

We would like to thank you so much for your prayers! Not only did we make it safely to Poland but we are also very thankful for the last couple of weeks we had in Lviv before we had to leave for Krakow. We had couple more good youth meetings in which we were able to wrap up our school year with the youth. We also got an opportunity to share with the whole congregation on our last Sunday in Lviv. You see a picture from that. It seemed like the adults were encouraged by the youth and the children sharing what they had learned this school year.
Ukraine 1
We also wanted to ask you for special prayers for Mrs. Tanya. She has been our friend for the last two years and you too know her from our many updates and newsletters. Mrs. Tanya has always been interested in God and she always said she believed in God and prayed to Him daily. But when it came to Jesus, she refused His sacrifice and Him being the only way to God. Many times we talked to her and also Pastor Don Richman explained the way of Salvation to her when he was in Lviv. But nothing seemed to change for Mrs. Tanya. Just about two weeks before we left Lviv, she brought Tomasz a short passage to read. It dealt with some other religions and it was pretty anti-Christian but she really liked some of the ideas from that article. It was disappointing to us to see her seeking God in all these wrong places. But it also gave Tomasz a good opportunity to talk to her again. We were praying for Tanya a lot during those days. Then within the next couple of days Tomasz talked to her again and she said that she is starting to see things very differently. She also said that on Monday morning that week, about 8am, she wanted to call us because in that moment she felt VERY strongly that someone was praying for her! And she was right. About 8am was when we were reading our devotions and praying… and praying for her!

Ukraine 2Tanya has not yet made a decision for Jesus but we believe that God is drawing her to Himself and we will not stop praying for her until she too is a child of God, saved through what Jesus had done for her. Please join us in praying for Mrs. Tanya if you can! She is now reading “The Case for Christ” (by Lee Strobel) and we are praying that the book and everything else that she comes across these days would minister to her!

We also need to share another big answer to our (and your!) prayers. Yes, in our last email update we asked you to pray for a car for us. We were looking for many months with no success… Every time we thought we found something, the car was either gone before we could ask someone to go see it for us (we were in Ukraine, looking for a car in Poland or Czech) or the car turned out to be in very bad shape even though the owner was advertising it as in “perfect or very good condition.” But only shortly after we asked you to pray with us, a friend of ours (a car mechanic) called us to tell us that he found a car for us in southern Poland. He went to see the car and found it to be in very good condition and he was recommending that we buy it as he thought the car was a reliable and safe vehicle for bad roads (such as we have in Lviv). It’s a Subaru Forester 2005. Ukraine 3 We have not seen the car yet but our friend already purchased it for us and brought it from Poland to the Czech Republic, where it is now waiting for some technical check-ups required by the Czech law and for registration. After that it will be available for us to use!!! The car is a little newer and nicer than what we were looking for but after many months of looking, we believe this is the car God had prepared for us. We praise God and we thank you so much for also praying for this specific need we had.

For more pictures, you can go to:

Thank you for your faithful prayers and your friendship! It means a lot to us!


Tomasz, Miriam and Baby Girl (ready to be born soon! :) )

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Team Travels to Brazil

Dear Friends of World Missions,

clip_image001We have a team traveling to Brazil to encourage the missionaries and present our vision for our future work to the pastors and leaders in Brazil. The team consists of Rev. Del Palmer and Rev. Jim and Linda Fugleberg.

We will be traveling and speaking on a daily basis for the next two weeks. Please pray for God to empower our proclamation of His Word.

Prayer Requests

· Empowerment from the Lord

· Safety and health as we travel.

Jore's Current Newsletter

Jore newsletter After many days of planning
and several changes to the
program, we began the Ambassador
Institute training in
February. We praise God for
this beginning of the work
that originally led us to
Uganda. The first class meets
every Saturday under a . . .

Click here for the complete newsletter.

Danny Giles Prayer Update

Dear Friends and Family,

Giles Prayer Update We hope that you had a very blessed Easter!!! 

  Our family is expecting with joy and anticipation the arrival of our baby boy, Roberto Emanuel, very soon.  It is a very exciting time for us.  Our oldest daughter, Ariadna, (right photo w/Andi) is very excited to have a baby boy in the house. She is beginning to understand the concept.

  We are very grateful to the Lord for giving us the blessing of having my parents here in Jerez right now.  My Dad and I (Danny) will take off this next Friday (17th) and go to Phoenix.  I have to return to the US for ten days before the Mexican Immigration will grant me another visa.  My mom, Debbie, will stay here helping my wife Marcela, since she is very close to delivering our baby.  The doctor said that he will be arriving in 2 or 3 more weeks.

  Omar (shown above-left photo, far right) a young man from the youth group, has been coming to youth group and Church for a while now.  After many years, his family came to church for the first time three weeks ago.  They genuinely seem to be very interested in knowing God's Word. Please pray for this family.  The whole family already feels a part of the church.  Their names:

-Emiliano (dad)

-Manuela (mom- center photo w/grandaughter Emiliana)

-Brenda (oldest sibling)

-Omar (middle)

-Ruby (youngest)

  We also have a new young lady who is coming to the youth group.  Her name is Karina and she is a cousin to one of the other young ladies in the group.  She is thirteen and has come twice to youth group.  She seems to really enjoy it. Please pray for her as well.

  God bless you and thank you so much for your support.  Without it, we would not be here.

In His Service,

Daniel, Marcela, Ariadna, Andrea, and Roberto Giles

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Greetings from Tanzania

Jesse Easter greetings from Africa!!  I trust you all had a blessed celebration of our Savior’s resurrection!  As I write this, it is Easter Monday and we are waiting at a beach café at the port in Zanzibar for our ferry which will take us back to Dar Es Salaam.  We are very grateful to have had about 5 days here of relaxation, recreation, and soaking up some sun.

Our time here was preceded by some days in Arusha picking up supplies for the coming semester and then a day and a half in Dar where I was fortunate to find a new motorcycle for myself at a reasonable price.  I was really hoping that my Honda 250 would hold up for the remainder of our stay in Tanzania but the time between significant repairs has been rapidly becoming shorter and shorter and it became apparent that purchasing a new one was unavoidable.  For those that care, my new bike (a Honda XR400) is significantly newer, more powerful, and much more suited for our use.  Ben hopes to also find a similar bike in the next couple months.

While we are on the subject, I should say that it appears God is calling us to one more, final year in Tanzania.  In the previous months we have once again been analyzing the situation here, our role, and how God might be directing.  Through this time, various things have impressed on us the need for one more year.  In short, we feel much progress has been made in the previous years not only at Waama Bible School, but also in our village ministry with the Jesus Film.  With one more year we feel this progress would not only be solidified but that we could also ensure more completely the self-sufficiency (which we feel is absolutely critical) of each side of this ministry.  On the side of Waama, we are helping accomplish this through heavy involvement in the current restructuring and updating of academic curriculum, among other things.  On the side of the Jesus Film ministry, we continue to make progress towards establishing as many as 3 teams of Tanzanian evangelists outfitted with solar-powered audio/video equipment.  Once these teams are established, they would easily be able to carry on that ministry with no outside support and on an even broader scale than we have ever been able to.

In recent months we have also had opportunity to communicate our vision to the leaders of the church and it seems they have been slowly but surly getting on board as well.  All this, combined with the financial improvements realized through things like the electricity project, we feel quite optimistic about the future.  Thank you so much for your part in all this.  We continue to covet your prayers.

For the remaining months between now and our summer furlough (which will begin in July), we also ask that you continue to pray for our third semester classes (I will be teaching James, 1 Corinthians, 1 Timothy, and English), the students who will soon be returning to their various ministries, our weekends of village outreach, and our on-going health and protection.  Pray also that God would continue to keep us sharp, on track, and faithful in this calling.  During this Easter break, I have been re-reading Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire by Jim Cymbala and have been very strongly reminded of the importance of prayer and a desperate dependence on God in everything we do.  I strongly recommend this book for anyone who wants their life to count for eternity…even if they have read it before.

I am sorry to have to cut this short but our boat will be here shortly.  Thank you again for your love, prayers, and support.  Keep checking our blog for new pictures of our Easter break, the friend’s wedding I will be in on the 18th in Arusha…and my recently acquired motorcycle! J  Again, that address is

God continue to bless you all!

In Christian love,

Jesse Long

Mbulu, Tanzania

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Land Purchased for Church in Maringa


Jonathan Abel's have been in Maringa since end of 2004, with the purpose of planting a church. They started out by meeting in the garage of their home for  around  year.

The church was then offered the free use of an English school to meet on Sundays.  During the the week the church still met in their home for Bible Studies, and for Special Programs, like Good Friday (for communion) and Easter (for breakfast).

Since  we came to Maringa, the church have been saving money to buy  property to build a church.  With offerings, tithes and gifts they have saved just to buy this property. 

Jonathan says, "It is not as big as we hoped, but it is big enough for our purposes.  It is a corner lot on a nice avenue (not a busy one) in a pleasant neighborhood.  We looked at many properties, but nothing worked out until this one.  Best of all, we had everyone's blessing & approval! We Praise the Lord and now begin our faith journey to build.  Keep us in your prayers and thank you to those who have been praying with us during these four plus years!"

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Ingrid Giles - Mexico

Ingrid Please keep praying for Nena and Fernando and their family.  They definitely have some huge challenges and probably some hurts that only God can fix, but I believe God is working! 

Their oldest boy, Eric, is in my Sunday School class.  I think he’s 11 years old.  On Sunday we were talking about how God always supplies our needs when we need them, but sometimes He does ask us to wait.  I said some things can’t wait, for example if you are hungry God isn’t going to say, “Well, I’ll give you food next week some time, or maybe next month.”  But sometimes we think we need something right now, and God asks us to wait for it.  Eric said, “Like when I prayed for my dad to come home.  I never stopped praying, every day, but God made me wait three years.  It was worth the wait!”  I am so thankful to God for answering this boy’s heartfelt prayers.  Just in the few weeks since their dad came home, Eric and his brothers have changed so much -- for the better!  I often think God has big plans for those boys.

We also have a new family in our church.  Those of you who get the Schierkolks’ prayer letters will remember praying for a baby girl who was in grave condition because of a heart murmur.  God has healed her, and that has led her mom and grandparents to start coming to church.  Praise God!  I don’t remember their names; I know them as “Omar’s family.”  (Omar is a young man in our youth group and an uncle of the baby.)

I apologize for not updating my blog very often, but it does have a couple of updates now.  The address is

Here is my prayer list:

Please (requests):

  • Pray for my continued health.  (I am still completely well!)
  • Ask God to continue to provide Dan and Marcela’s financial needs and also mine.  
  • Please continue to pray for Claudia Gamboa and her kids, Abril and Cesar, and Oscar.
  • Pray for Nena and Fernando and their family.
  • Pray for Omar’s family; that they would come to accept Jesus as their Savior and Lord.
  • 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.
  • Ask God to guide me in small and large decisions, and to help me spend my time wisely.

Thank you (praise):

  • I have continued to be well!
  • Fernando is here and seems to be trying to follow God and to be a good dad and a good husband.
  • Eric, Samuel and Brayan -- Fernando and Nena’s boys -- are still absolutely glowing with pride and joy since their dad came back!
  • We have a new family (Omar’s family) in church! 
  • I have wonderful loving friends and family and I get to spend time with my nieces every day!
  • God is continuing to provide our needs.


Ingrid Giles