PRAYER CONNECTION > ASIA


PrayerNet 88: Across the Pond Again -- Our Top 7 Goals
Mike & Katie

Katie and I leave tomorrow for a trip to BigC in Asia. We'll visit the earthquake zone (3-8 Sept) and the capital (8-17 Sept).

This will be an important fact-gathering trip laying the groundwork for launching J-Mentors (Jesus-in-Context: Multiplying Jesus Mentors).

Here are OUR TOP SEVEN GOALS & PRAYER REQUESTS:

  1. Meet with Trainers: I hope to meet with both nationals and expats who are training leaders in BigC. I hope to do several things: (a) SWOT analysis* on J-Mentors, (b) SWOT analysis on digital vs. paper-based training, (c) critique & feedback on J-Mentors, (d) network for future cooperation.
  2. "Taste & See" Event for Potential J-Mentors: I'd like to meet with several potential participants** and let them experience a taste of J-Mentors. Feedback from their perspective is vital.
  3. Double-check the Budget for J-Mentors: I need to research the in-country costs for J-Mentors, plus what kinds of fees are realistic and reproducible in that setting.
  4. Identify a Visa Sponsor: this includes identifying the right kind of visa, as well as building a good relationship and understanding with the people who might sponsor it.
  5. Budget our Personal Living Costs: we plan to move to BigC in 2010 and spend 3~5 years launching J-Mentors. We need to know the best place to start, and the living costs.
  6. Security Guidelines: we need to better understand the security situation and how we can best serve in that context.
  7. Safety & Health: we will visit both the disaster zone and the capital city. Pray for safety and health in both areas.

* SWOT = Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats
** I'm looking for people who are: (a) 25~35 years old, (b) university-educated, (c) fluent in English, (d) called and gifted as teachers / disciplers / small-group leaders, (e) who have led small groups with at least 10 or more people. Thanks again for being part of our lives through your love, prayers & support Mike & Katie Crow

Thomas' Travels October 2008
View the newsletter


AFC -- Ambassadors for Christ, Inc.
www.afcinc.org
Reaching Chinese Intellectuals for Christ in This Generation
October 2008 prayer calendar


All Asia Conference
October 4 – 10 Pray for the gathering of CrossWorld’s Asia-based missionaries.

From the Islamic World (during Ramadan) in a letter from a missionary, titled: Your Prayers are not in Vain
Testimonies from last night’s prayer meeting:

  • One of the leaders of the big mosque requested a Bible. He said “Make sure you bring it secretly…” The Bible was wrapped in a plastic bag and handed to him.
  • Another leader said, “There is a big difference between you and us.” He added “You have love.”
  • My wife had mentioned at the prayer meeting that she is not seeing much fruit from her prayers, so she is sometimes discouraged. At the close of the prayer meeting, one of brothers walked by and said to her “Your prayers are not in vain. Your prayers brought us here and are sustaining sister A, brother B and myself.” (These three were Muslims who have now become followers of our Lord.) Then he added, “Many more will come…”

CENTRAL ASIA

Focus on Central Asia -- Culture Immersion Weekend, Philadelphia
October 17-19 Pray for CrossWorld as this weekend provides an emphasis on and exploration of Central Asia 3, a huge area which they have not yet entered. First team members are looking towards entering in Summer, 2009.

Central Asia – Accepting the Call to Go
We both really feel that God would have us accept His challenge to go there. We hope to either be in heaven or there by August 2009. We have many questions and feel inadequate, but we don’t have any doubt that He wants us to go in this direction. Since being back from our exploratory trip there, we have been able to talk to our kids, family, and pastor, and everyone has peace about it. Yes, we have read about the bombings in the target city on Saturday night. It’s nice that we weren’t there then—just shows the need to share the Good News.

CHINA

China Clippings
The monthly newsletter on happenings in China
Anthony Bollback, Editor
Retired China C&MA Missionary Sharing the Good News of the Miraculous Moving of God in China

THE AMAZING OLYMPICS
The world was dazzled by the military precision of 2008 drummers on the opening night in Beijing of the Olympic Games on the eighth month and the 8th day August 8, 2008 at exactly 8:08 Beijing time. This auspicious moment will go down in history of a nation obsessed with making a world impression of its superiority, yet relying on auspicious dates centered in the Chinese superstitions of fortune tellers and mythology.

All who watched the perfect synchronization of the 2,008 drummers were mesmerized by their perfection, and perhaps felt a little creepy wondering what else can this awakening dragon do to achieve world domination. This fantastic demonstration revealed the total conquest of the masses over individuality.

THE COST OF WINNING
This truly amazing country showed the world what ruthless discipline can do. The drummers spent long, weary hours in practice that did not tolerate rest breaks regardless of the consequences. So obsessed were they with perfection and impressions that they even swapped the adorable little girl who performed “Ode to the Motherland” for the real singer. The girl we saw mimed the song because the one with the real voice had chubby cheeks and crooked teeth and therefore was “not suitable” for display,” officials said. Most of their athletes are separated from parents at three or four years of age and taught to perform like machines. Many see their parents only once a year.

AN UNFORGETTABLE IMPRESSION
Watching the closing ceremony featuring hundreds of dancers moving in perfect synchronization and forming the Olympic circles, left everyone with the impression that this nation can accomplish anything they set out to do, but at tremendous personal cost. One could not help think of the Church of China that has withstood horrible persecution for decades and yet survived with glorious triumph to become a church that will have the largest missionary in the world willing to sacrifice everything for Jesus. Personal cost will be set aside for the one purpose of bringing glory to Jesus.

GANSU BIBLE COLLEGE A GOOD EXAMPLE
A worker visited the Gansu Bible College and sent the following report. The group I was leading wanted to see where the teacher’s lived at Gansu Bible College , but the teachers did not want the overseas guests to go inside. Since I had been there before, I knew that each room was 12 x 15 feet in size with 2 cots, 2 desks, 2 study chairs and a small wooden closet all sitting on a dirt floor! The average salary of a teach is US $100,00 a month. When these seminary graduates were asked why they served here rather than in a more comfortable and better salary school they replied, “We want to serve God in a place that is in need. We believe God will work a miracle here and establish a new Bible School that will meet the need of the church in Gansu . We don’t mind the sacrifice as long as we see God at work!” Remember the Olympic athletes? Now you may be able to understand the heart of these dedicated teachers. GBI needs assistance for student scholarships, teacher salaries, and a new building. Pray that all of these needs will be met. Perhaps God is speaking to you about your part in bringing this to pass for these committed teachers and students. At the end of this letter, there will be a place to get involved financially and in prayer.

FOLLOW UP ON THE SICHUAN EARTHQUAKE
Several churches were destroyed in the Sichuan earthquake. One church where 200 normally worship was demolished, but the following Sunday, 500 people gathered in the church yard and worshipped among the rubble. Today, a new church is being planned to rise out of the rubble and seat 1,000 people. Many people have contributes to the earthquake relief and those funds are hard at work bring hope and encouragement to the destroyed villages and cities. You can have a part in providing a new church in these stricken areas by your earnest prayers and sacrificial giving. Sichuan used to be the Province that was least responsive to the Gospel. Today there is a new spirit in the communities of tent dwellers.

AFTERMATH OF THE OLYMPICS
Strange as it may seem, the Chinese government seems to be planning further crackdowns on the house churches proliferating throughout the country. There is evidence of funds being allocated to pursue house church closings and the imprisonment of leaders. The activity seems to have started, but committed believers are standing firm. And the congregations are growing. History proves that no king or government has ever been able to wipe out Christianity. Persecution only fans the flames of the fire and it sweeps across the land.

SONG OF THE WANDERER
Ambassadors for Christ, Inc. report an amazing response to a booklet written by Dr. Li Cheng, Ph D who struggled with the idea of accepting Christ. He takes the reader step-by-step through the evidence for Christianity and relates it to his own journey of faith. Yulan Tong was invited by a friend to a New Year’s gathering where she received a copy of the book. She was still reading at 3 a.m. and exclaimed to Christian friends, “It’s so wonderful!” More than 870,000 copies have been distributed. Another 500,000 is planned. Pray for this great project.

CHINA OUTREACH MINISTRIES
COM held a Chinese scholars’ Retreat in Pennsylvania over the Labor Day weekend. Last year over 300 top scholars joined this gathering. At this writing, no report has been received of the response to Rev. Daniel Su’s emphasis on “Pressing on Toward the Goal.” Although the conference has ended, many are struggling with the claims of Christ. You can set them free with your prayers of deliverance. Pray for the coming New Year conference that is already in the planning stage.

NORMAN MOY MEMORIAL BOOK PROJECT
Teyet, his son, has lived and worked in Taiwan for many years, and frequently has the opportunity to visit Bible Seminary graduates in Taiwan and the mainland. Norman was an outstanding, committed layman from Orlando who was called home to glory several months ago. The Moy family has developed a challenging ministry of providing reference books to 25-30 seminary graduates who have little or no study books as a memorial to Norman. Many students have already received their books, and as we know, books are preachers' tools. You are invited to look at the possibility of helping this worthy project and commit yourself to helping. See below.

WAYS TO ASSIST CHINESE CHRISTIANS REACH THE WORLD
Many friends responded to the earthquake appeal. You are invited to help with any of the following projects as the Lord impresses them on your heart.

GIFTS MAY BE DESIGNATED

  • SICHUAN EARTHQUAKE RELIEF - $800.00 already sent.
  • OPERATION OUTREACH - $600.00 received for this urgent need.
  • NORMAN MOY MEMORIAL BOOK FUND
  • CHURCH CONSTRUCTION I, SICHUAN OR WHERE NEEDED. - #200.00 SENT
  • GANSU BIBLE COLLEGE FUND
  • CHINESE LITERATURE FUND

HERE'S HOW TO PARTICIPATE

  • Pray for these many projects and workers.
  • Make your check out to First Alliance Church Orlando who handles funds for Church In China, Inc for thepresent.
  • Send the check to 1622 Calvin Circle, Kissimmee, FL 34746
  • Receive a tax-deductible receipt for your records.

Thank you for participating in reaching China for Christ.

WOULD YOU PLEASE PRAY FOR THE EDITOR
[The editor] will have a surgical procedure to reattach his pacemaker wires on Monday, September 8th. A speedy recovery is anticipated, but your prayers will be a great blessing. Anthony Bollback 1622 Calvin Circle, Kissimmee, FL 34746 E-mail: AGBollback@cfl.rr.com Web site: www.ChurchInChina.com


EAST ASIA

East Asia 2 Consult at CrossWorld’s Bala Campus
This past Monday we hosted an East Asia 2 Consult at our headquarters in which we brought together 30+ church leaders, both from East Asia and American, who are involved in East Asia through our missionaries or their own ministries. We praise the Lord for a great time of learning and interaction in which we gained a greater picture of the gospel’s advance and its challenges. Pray with us that the connections made would continue and result in increased synergy and collaboration for the enormous challenges in reaching East Asia 2. –John Spadafora, Director of Church Relations

Note:
We had a wonderful movie party with some friends and there are two that will be starting to read the Bible this month, so please pray for one young man and one young lady. Ask that He will move mightily on their hearts and minds, and that as we read they will understand His Word and His love for them. –S.

East Asia 3 – Imprisoned Evangelists
Recently, almost half of the imprisoned 40 evangelists were released. A missionary was himself a prisoner not long ago and with his wife has recently returned to an adjacent nation in East Asia. He writes:

These prisoners are having huge influences in prison and beyond. Other prisoners have been so touched that they’ve told their families outside about these remarkable men and women. Now people are coming at visiting hours just to be prayed for and to meet these evangelist inmates! Officials at the women’s prison recently held a banquet for the female evangelists in appreciation for all they have done serving the other inmates. Some of the evangelists have said, “We want to go to even harder places when we get out.” [ed. note: Readers are reminded that despite the positive information here, prison conditions in this place are difficult, unhealthy, etc.]

Anthony Bollback

E-mail: AGBollback@cfl.rr.com Web site:
www.ChurchInChina.com

INDONESIA

In Papua, Indonesia
Pray for the BibleSchool, that the Lord will continue to use it to train faithful pastors and church leaders. Pray for the AWANA program in several churches, that many children will receive Christ and grow in their walk with Him. –The Larkins

LAOS

Jeff and Coiya September 2008 Update
Have you ever gotten a song – or one line of a song – stuck in your head and just couldn’t get it out? At odd times and unplanned moments you kept finding yourself singing (talented or not!) whatever refrain it might be that had lodged itself in your brain. In my stage of life, that song is as likely to be a Veggie Tales song as it is anything else, much to Coiya’s annoyance. :) But for the past few months, the line going through my head isn’t from a song at all – although if I were a songwriter, it would be. It’s simply this: We serve a good God! It’s like the soundtrack to my life lately. Maybe in part it’s because His goodness stands in such contrast to what surrounds us here. As I sit on my front porch in the morning, reading Psalms that rejoice in the power and faithfulness of our God, I can smell the morning incense my neighbors are burning as they try to placate evil spirits, honor their ancestors, and attract good luck. As I drive into town, I pass people kneeling on the ground, hands together, offering food to processions of saffron-robed monks. All of the players in this tragedy are seeking the same thing: good karma. None of them has tasted the peace, the joy, or the security of being held in the hands of a God who truly loves them. It’s no wonder that I’ve never seen a smile on anyone’s face during such rituals. Our God, however, actually loves us! He is our Shepherd, and we will lack no good thing.

Speaking of God’s goodness, He has rather miraculously provided the money we needed to purchase tickets for a visit home. We
should arrive in our beloved Portland on the 19th of September. We’ll be in the States and Mexico through the end of December, and we are eagerly anticipating seeing you all. Please let us know if you want to connect – we will be working out a rough itinerary soon and want to see you! We don’t want to be a bother either, however, so please let us know if you’d like to see us while we’re home.

[truncated]

As always, we continue to be so grateful for your prayers. If you have been or are interested in praying regularly for us, please let us know by email or in person when we come home. This fall, we want to organize a prayer team to whom we can send prayer requests directly. It is more encouraging than we can express to know that we are not over here on our own! We would greatly appreciate your prayers these next six weeks as we wrap up almost innumerable loose ends before we go home. Jeff, for example, has been juggling the jobs of English teacher, language centre team leader, computer network administrator and repairman, and math tutor! All those jobs need covered while we’re gone, so as you can imagine there’s plenty to do before we go! Pray also for our children, as for the next few months their lives will be quite full - and very unpredictable from their point of view. Thank you all for your prayer and financial support these past two years, and
we look forward to giving you thanks – and hugs – in person next month. God bless you!


PHILIPPINES

SPECIAL REPORT ON THE PHILIPPINES
Gulf Air is a relatively inexpensive airline, but it isn't the best one for maintaining its flight schedules. I made my connection in Manila to Iloilo with only eleven minutes before we pulled away from the gate! (Originally, I was to have a four-hour wait in Manila.) Had I missed the flight, I would have had to wait another three hours before the next one.

You have read about typhoon Frank which struck the islands a few weeks ago. It wrought much devastation to many parts of the island of Iloilo. Central Philippine University lost a lot of property, including books and file records. They were still cleaning up when I arrived. This university has a campus with 12,000 students. Actually, the name 'university' can be misleading because the student body ranges from elementary school through university. I was not the only speaker invited for the Christian Emphasis Week. Thirty-two Americans from Tennessee and North Carolina also came for other meetings throughout the week.

My first meeting was for the two hundred members of the faculty and staff. It was a joy to see the enthusiasm on their part. At the time of the invitation, many of them stood for prayer and recommitment. On Sunday morning I spoke at the second worship service; again the service went very well, though I thought that the preaching time (only thirty minutes) was very short. On Monday morning, two thousand university students packed the auditorium, but it was too full to admit more who wanted to get in. I asked the chaplain how many counselors had been prepared, and she told me there were only fifteen or twenty. My heart sank on hearing that. Eighty or ninety people responded to the call for salvation, and it was one of those frustrating moments without enough counselors. On Tuesday, about one thousand high-schoolers came to the same auditorium, and between forty and fifty responded to the invitation. Had it not been for the American visitors, the counseling would have been chaotic.

On Tuesday afternoon, I was driven down to Filamer Christian College, about two and a half hours' drive away. Their student body also ranged from elementary school through university. They have an enrolment of five thousand. Some nine hundred 14 to 16 year-olds came to my first meeting there. The previous day, I met with about seven counselors, and asked the leader how many there were altogether. They told me there were forty. I asked them there should be at least one hundred. At the first meeting with the students, about one hundred people ran forward, but I did not see one counselor. Later on, when I enquired about this, I was told that they forgot to come. So all I could do was to lead them in a prayer with a few instructions and let them go. I began to wonder if I should make an appeal at the last two meetings. My next meeting was with the faculty and staff again, about two hundred and fifty came. About thirty or so stood for prayer at the end of the meeting. Some were in tears. At the last meeting for the students, about fifteen hundred showed up. And this time there were about fifteen counselors. Seventy or eighty came forward in answer to the invitation. My point in relating this counseling situation is that although both Central Philippine University and Filamer Christian College have Christian Emphasis Week twice a year, in February and July, - and this has been happening for several years running- the biggest weakness in relation to these meetings remains a lack of follow-up and discipleship. I was amazed that after so many years, there was not more emphasis put on teaching new Christians. Some of the leaders told me that in the area of discipleship, they have no training manuals, and no-one to teach them how to disciple new believers. This lack of training materials for discipling is endemic throughout much of the Philippines, as I have found on previous trips.

When I told the chaplains about Next Generation Alliance (a ministry of the Luis Palau Team), and our emphasis on training and discipleship, many of them urged me to come back to the Philippines to help them. This would be a great challenge.

I rejoice that so many students were open and responsive to the gospel, and pray for their growth in the Christian life. One young nursing student who was there said to me, "I felt very moved when I responded to the invitation, but I don't know who is going to help me carry on." I had the impression that she had voiced what many of the students were thinking.

Thank you for your prayers and support.

Bill Thomas Evangelistic Association
P.O. Box 2240 Orange, California 92859 U.S.A.

RUSSIA

“PRAYER & PRAISE"
For the Yakut (Sakha) people, an indigenous people group in northern Russia

PRAISE GOD

  1. for Misha and Olga Trubchek’s long and effective spiritual ministry with Russian and Yakut people throughout the Republic of Yakutia. Pray for the Trubcheks and their 5 children as they just moved to Krasnoyarsk in south-central Russia. He is truly a spiritual giant and will be greatly missed in Yakutia. (Misha was a single missionary serving in Yakutia, when we moved here 15 years ago. We have visited most of the outlying evangelical churches with Misha.) Olya’s prayer is that Misha and their children will be used to reach her father and family for the Lord.
  2. that Josh McDowell’s book More Than A Carpenter in the Yakut language should have arrived in Yakutia. Pray for the distribution of these 5,000 copies. Pray that Yakut people will read it and receive the Lord. Yes, Jesus was way more than just a carpenter, He was and is the living God and Savior for those Yakut people who will turn to Him.
  3. that the Yakut Translation Team working on the children’s book, Right Choices, has completed the first draft. Pray for further checking of the text in preparation for printing.
  4. that the Christian Printing House is making real progress toward the printing of the new Yakut Hymnal Praise to God! They received our layout for the cover and have sent a layout of the hymns to our Yakut editor to correct and verify.

PRAY

  1. for the conflict in Georgia along Russia’s border. Pray that the Christians there will stand strong for the Lord. Pray that the hostilities will cease and life can go on without unnecessary fear.
  2. for changed lives as an ongoing result of the Christian Youth Camp in Oktyomtsi. It is crucial that more Yakut and Russian Christian Youth grow stronger in their faith. These also represent the future Christian leaders in the Republic of Yakutia. The Youth Camp ended during the second week of August. The majority of the youth were Yakut.
  3. for the Christian Printing House to really move ahead with a quality printing of the new Yakut Hymnal Praise to God! There have been unnecessary delays concerning the cover design and preparation for printing.
  4. for those working on further checking of the translation of The Lamb. This project is on the back burner, while the Hymnal is on the front one.

><> Pray that the Yakut Christians (and others as well) will evaluate everything they hear by the Word of God, as they "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." 1 Thessalonians 5:21

Dave & Kay Henry <'}}}><

WEST ASIA

Becoming Part of the Business Community
A new semester of our English school starts on Sept 30th. Pray for all the students that will be coming through our doors and as we interact with them, that we will be the light that they need to see. Pray for the school coordinator (our missionary), logistics, a new office, and increasing enrollment. This work is putting our team in the middle of many relationships and opportunities to share Christ. In addition they will be opening a coffee house business this fall. Recent political events have impacted the start of this business.

Preparing to Enter West Asia
The CrossWorld team is together this week. Passports and documents are being put in order in preparation for the early 2009 entry of our first couple. Here is a prayer request from them: Please continue to pray for the protection of the nine Muslim-background believers on our field who are in prison and for their families who are left behind. These nine have been in prison now for fourteen weeks and counting. Pray that God will sustain them and even grow them during this time