Council of Missions Updates

Calvary Baptist Church supports missionaries all over the world. Below is a recent report of their activities, challenges, burdens, encouragements, etc. Please remember to lift these individuals up in your prayers.


ASIA

R & M (Thailand/Myanmar) January 19, 2022

We left for Thailand on January 12, 2022. We finished a 7-night hotel quarantine, which gave us time to recover from jet lag and sort/shred/scan the boxes of papers we did not get to take care of before we left in 2020. We were released on Jan. 21st, a great way to celebrate M’s 75th birthday!

Lord willing, we will connect with our Bangkok people and spend time with Rev. A and family. If possible (depending on regulations), we hope to visit some of our people in various other locations. We also tentatively will have a service and bury the ashes of our dear Mr. Z at a Christian cemetery near the border.

Please do pray for all the travel details, for health and safety, and that we can complete our important unfinished business during this trip. We also pray for the Lord to use us in any way possible to bring the Good News to those who are hungry for answers, as well as to bring comfort and appropriate aid to those who are hurting and in need.

Our planned return date is Feb.10, but we are allowed to add 15 more days without a visa if it seems good to do so.

T & J (Bangladesh, NYC) January 2022

Our mission trip to Bangladesh had five purposes, 1) to go village to village to assess the ministries in order to develop a spiritual strategy for their increase and victory over the Enemy, 2) to minister the gospel and Word to the lost and the saints, 3) to comfort and spur on our pastors, 4) to work on organizational needs, 5) to encourage and support our persecuted brethren. God blessed in all of these.

We encountered persecution first hand when our Christian members in regions of S_i and N_o came out to a secret location to meet with us for a planned worship service and preaching prepared by us. There are persecution troubles for us entering their villages. All was arranged and ready, but there was a long delay in their arrival. Word had gotten out that the church members were going out of the village for a special meeting. Rumors flew that they were going to get a Christian seal branded on them. So Muslim leaders went out and blocked the paths leading to the busses to prevent them from going while people mocked and threatened them. The believers had to scramble to take other routes. At the same time the wife of B, on whose property is the church meeting place for Hindu background believers, called for help because their enemies locked B in his home so he could not leave for our worship service. In the end not all were able to make it to us while others did with much distress. But their yearning for the fellowship of Christ and to be encouraged overcame all the costs they were suffering. Is that not excellent? In the end, everyone left with joy and gratefulness as they returned secretly in the night to their homes.

Other vital works were preaching and teaching in R_l to adults and children. We traveled to S_r to assess the area and conditions for ministry while meeting with the core church-planting

members. In D_a we met to encourage some Muslim background believers and worked on organizational and visa matters for our future works in Bangladesh.

Back here in NYC we find reaching Bengalis in NYC more difficult than reaching them in Bangladesh. Though there is more freedom here to seek spiritually, we encounter a harder wall. Through our ministry center we are spreading the gospel among Bengalis in NYC. But how do you reach people so utterly hardened like Pharaoh and who don’t want your Jesus?

As 2022 begins, we are going to them as a love battering ram of Christ. Pray God blesses our services to them and anoints our lips with heart penetrating, saving truth. Pray for the breaking up of the ground of their hearts and the dropping of the veil that covers them.


AFRICA

R (MOROCCO) January 13, 2022

I serve as the Chairman of the Board of The Moroccan Living Water Service. I also serve at a Moroccan local church. Despite all the constraints and challenges, The Living Water Service conducts discipleship, leadership training, evangelism, prayer meetings, baptisms, and other church activities in 10 Moroccan cities: Agadir, Tetouan, Nabil, Fez, Casablanca, Dakhla, Zagora, Marrakesh, Tan-Tan, Nador, and Jaddah.

We work in teams consisting of brothers and sisters. We try to stay in touch by coordinating and organizing Zoom meetings. Living Water also offers programs and activities on social networking sites in all its colors, including Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and Tik Tok. I supervise and present illustrated programs in the Moroccan dialect and Berber language. Through these programs we can reach a large number of people to learn about Christ. We also distribute books that teach the basics of the Christian faith, accompanied by the Gospel of the New Testament, and follow up on the recipients.

Living Water is also active in the countryside and villages, where there is a group of people who do not know how to read and write. We try to rely on oral evangelization by telling biblical stories about Christ and his miracles, as well as praying with them. We believe that wherever the servants of the Lord settle, the blessing comes through their sharing the gospel truth (Romans 10:15).

In the end, I would like to thank the Lord for bringing Pastor A back to Morocco. I thank all the believers in the Jordanian Church who are responsible for it and everyone who prays for the expanding the kingdom of God in this land.


EUROPE

Dimitri & Ioanna (Greece) January 14, 2022

Last October we had a team of 13 American doctors, dentists and nurses who worked at the village of Glafki. This American team came under AMG suggestion. The doctors/dentists prayed for their patients after every examination, and all Muslims accepted this!

We had a good time with our grandchildren during the Christmas and New Year holidays.
In January 2022 we went to the Muslim Pomak area again with 700 Covid19 self-tests, a gift from a Texan couple. We deliver these tests to four different villages in the Pomak area.


WESTERN ASIA/MIDDLE EAST

ELAM (Iran) January 27, 2022

In December, we were able to minister to hundreds as we hosted multiple conferences for Iranian church leaders. Afterwards, as they went back to their churches and ministries, many reached out to report that they were experiencing a renewed passion for the work God has called them to.

  • ●  Nearly 9,000 people attended Christmas services in the Iran region where they engaged in worship, prayer and fellowship;

  • ●  Over 2,000 Afghan refugees attended Christmas events and outreaches at local churches;

  • ●  In one city, 18 people gave their lives to Christ at an event on Christmas Day.

Iranian church leaders are excited and hopeful about this next year of ministry and are expecting great things.

A & E (Turkey) January 25, 2022
Despite all of the well-wishing and prayers for a happy, blessed new year, the year has not

begun quite as “happily” as we would have preferred. Thank you, God.

The M’s --natives of Spain--spent the past 36 years building the Kingdom and pastoring our church in Istanbul. Two weekends ago was their last Sunday with us--a very sad and teary farewell. The authorities continue a secret campaign against many foreign church leaders by either denying them visas or banning their entry into the country.

F, a gifted and accomplished young engineer who prayed with A earlier this month to turn over the keys of his life and allow Jesus to take control. F and A have met several times each week over the past three weeks. F’s eyes are opening to the reality of God in the midst of this often confusing, ruthless, dark world, and as we study God’s word together God’s light is working in us both to heal, comfort, strengthen and give us hope.

Yep, all four of us tested positive for covid the week before Christmas. We lost our senses of taste, smell and time, but we were so very blessed and encouraged by the incredible love and support we received from our church and friends. We are also so thankful to have gotten through it with relatively mild symptoms.

Our kids finished the first semester of the school year last week (W 6th, M 2nd grade) and both brought home report cards that made us proud. As we’ve previously written, both have had struggles with friends and kids at school this year, and we are so pleased with their growth through these challenges—especially that they are gaining the desire to pray through their struggles.

E has also had countless opportunities through her partnership with T.I.I. to share her faith with non-believing students—including many top H.R. professionals who work for large, successful corporations. Continue to pray with us for two of E’s friends (who both also happened to be named E!) who are spiritually open—and one of which, we have just discovered, had attended a church Bible study earlier in her life!

Earlier this month our national team leader D passed on his role to Er—a godly Turkish brother we have known for many, many years. Please pray with us for this transition, for God’s strength and wisdom for Er, and for Er’s wife, U, who also started chemotherapy this month to treat an aggressive form of cancer.


MIDDLE EAST

H (Jordan) January 12, 2022

H and the Marka Church which he leads minister to Iraqi and Syrian refugees in the name of Jesus Christ. H’s vision is to restore the refugees’ dignity and self-respect, which had been stripped away from them by the ravages of war. Their refugee ministry includes providing jobs and training to these refugees who are not legally allowed to work in Jordan so that they are able to earn a living and experience a sense of purpose they otherwise would not be able to. Their ministry has now grown to three different locations.

His wife is involved in a prenatal ministry to Syrian pregnant refugees in the hardest time in their lives. Since 2016, this ministry has helped and shared the good news with 935 pregnant refugee women. In November, 2021 they started a pre-postnatal clinic with the German midwives working along with a family medicine doctor(Dr. Gordon). About 40% of the pregnant Syrian refugees who attend the sessions are anemic, in comparison to 6% and 18% anemia rate found in North American and Mexican women, respectively. The higher rate of anemia in the Syrian refugee population likely stems from malnutrition. In most cases, they are also low on iron. Therefore, a good number of these women must have blood transfusions or iron IV infusions. Apart from receiving medical treatment, these women have many other needs. The team tries to minister to their physical and spiritual needs.

B (Syria) January 12, 2022

God is opening huge doors before us to reach the Druze in Syria. The Druze people live in the mountains and in al Sweida province in southern Syria. They were heavily persecuted by ISIS. In turn, Durzis leaders closed the church there and threatened the Christian leader. Durzis have very little understanding of churches in general. They have their own religion, and they live separated from other cultures. Some of them despise Christians and don’t want any relationship with a church. Likewise, the church in Syria has no faith nor trust in them. We believe God is leading us there to bless them and to show the love of God to them, especially after ISIS left the area.

We have been reaching out to them with the gospel of salvation and by giving a food basket to each family. We have seen an openness among the Druze women, the younger generation, and the children after the war with ISIS ended. We have trained Durzi leaders as faithful servants to help us reach the entire community.

Damascus and Sweyda are two cities where a large number of Durzis live. In 2017, we started with home visits and then a few people formed a small group. After we found a pastor living in Syria. He follows up the home visits and with home groups. The number of home groups has now reached twelve, with about eight people in each group. Since 2019 we have been running women’s meetings, men’s meetings, Sunday schools, youth groups, and online bible studies. Currently, nearly one hundred and fifty people participate in these ministries.

Pastor H (CBC Missionary from Jordan) and his team visited the Durzis three or four times to train leaders how to study the Bible and how to share it with other people. More than fifty people attended the meetings. Now these leaders are applying what they learned in their Bible study groups. They send us a full report, with stories and photos, each week on WhatsApp. Forty people got baptized during the last few years.

Today the capital city Damascus is decimated. The destruction from bombings is obvious on schools, universities, hotels, factories and all infrastructure. Many people use bicycles to move from one place to another. Those who drive cars move without order or respect for traffic signs. The people left in Damascus are poor, with only their daily food; they live in darkness due to permanent power outages.

O (UAE) January 12, 2022

This past year, we distributed gospel booklets and portions of the Bible to over 130,000 homes, reaching over 86,000 people via our online programs. We set up a number of home groups and several evangelistic revivals in some churches in the Emirates. We also provided humanitarian assistance to a number of needy families and some special children services.

We have partnered with a few churches to recruit volunteers to help us distribute booklets and the Bible and share the Gospel message. We look forward to working with more churches and reaching more homes in the UAE.

J & S (Bierut, Lebanon) January 1, 2022

Recently, I(J) had the privilege of coming alongside a family whose unwavering faith is remarkable. Twelve-year-old S made a decision to follow Jesus, along with his sister and parents. They were fully aware of the potential risk their faith could cause them in their Muslim majority neighborhood. In the past few months S has faced intense persecution from peers because of his Christian faith. He was forced into a room by 3 older boys who beat him with a stick leaving severe wounds on his front and backside. Initially this caused him to waver in his faith out of fear. At the age of twelve, facing physical harm and threats is not what most young Christians will ever experience. As he began to read verses on persecution, he started to realize the blessing in being persecuted for Christ. What a noble and brave young man. He exemplifies "Be strong and courageous" (Joshua 1:9), and “rejoice in as much as you participate in the sufferings of Christ,” (1 Peter 4:13-14).

More recently S encountered another physical attack. This time his finger was broken. He was treated at Al-Shafy clinic. While I sat with him and listened to his story, I couldn't help but think how the Holy Spirit is molding his life and preparing him for great things. He was not discouraged. Together, we read about God's promises and prayed together, while encouraging him to persevere.

Thank you for your continued prayers for our clinic. This has been a markedly difficult year for Lebanon due to the declining economic crisis, with no hope in sight, except Jesus Christ, our eternal hope! Our Syrian friends suffer at a greater rate. Despite this, we see people coming to the Lord and growing stronger in their faith. I(S) am continually humbled and awed by their unwavering trust in our God.

Please, continue to pray for Lebanon as forty percent of doctors and sixty percent of nurses have emigrated. There is a lack of medication in the country. Medications that are available are priced beyond affordability.

Recently, I(S) along with our clinic staff did a home visit to an elderly couple. The wife had been the victim of a hit and run, while recovering she is caring for her husband. He is unable to walk after a botched surgery. Your giving makes it possible for us to serve those in need. We serve everyone...with a healthy dose of Jesus Christ.

H and C (J & S’s daughter and son) celebrated their tenth and seventh birthdays in November. We are grateful for their continued health. They continue to adjust to life here. The Lord has provided them with good friends. They also have the opportunity to see how refugee children live when we do home visits. We feel this is the best learning experience for them.

R & R (Jerusalem, Israel) December 24, 2021

Yesterday I completed my forty days of praying and fasting. The result was still the same. I am still determined to go back to Israel, but the timing was not right. Soon after our delay, Israel was plagued with the Omicron and entered a major lock down. God in his sovereignty allowed us to stay behind. Our heart's desire still is to fulfill the Great Commission in Jerusalem. Moreover, the people we won and baptized and taught there are shocked and are asking me to come back. Our hearts are there! We shall wait for the winter and snow season to pass, and R (his wife) now renews her passport; then we will be on our way back to Jerusalem.


LATIN AMERICA

Susan & Abner (Latin America, USA) January, 2022

During this special time of year it’s wonderful to focus on how our awesome God miraculously sent the most indescribably good and perfect gift to save us and, by receiving that gift, we can daily enjoy good and perfect gifts from HIM! You are definitely one of those gifts. Thank you so much for your prayers and support - largely responsible for unleashing the many gifts that help this Good News get to boys and girls in all Latin America! Lord willing the twice-postponed Leadership Training Institute will begin on January 16!


NORTH AMERICA

Dominic & Gladys (Canada) December, 2021

Christmas is a great opportunity to reach out to our unsaved neighbors. December 4, 2021 was our Children’s Christmas Celebration with the children in our neighborhood. On the day of
the celebration, after we welcomed them, we let them decorate our Christmas tree. It is always a joy to see them decorate the Christmas tree enthusiastically. Then we served snacks. As they enjoy eating their snacks Dominic told them the Christmas Story in a child friendly manner, focusing on the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ and His death on the cross. Muslim Children as early as six years old are being educated about their Muslim faith in Madrisa schools (Madrisa is a compulsory school for Muslim children starting age 6). They are taught that Issa Al Masih (the Lord Jesus Christ) was not crucified and did not die on the cross.

G & E (UN, USA) December 30, 2021

The most amazing thing happened yesterday. One nation, whose leadership we have been especially burdened for, formed a new Government. We were overwhelmed to discover that three of the twelve Cabinet Ministers are old friends that we have been pouring into for years. We have already reached out to all three in an effort to ensure they understand that common bond. Furthermore, we are eager for them together to form a critical mass in developing their nation as our Lord would desire. It is our prayer that they would support each other in their faith in the imperfect political environment in which they all must function. The captain of their ship, the Prime Minister, is a newcomer and we are reaching out to him as well, hoping he will welcome our ministry in his life.

Thank you for your partnership that allows us to have so much hope for the work of the Holy Spirit among the decision-makers of our nations, including our own. Thank you for all you do to help us with this ministry that has such a far-reaching impact.

Nadine (Memphis, TN) January 19, 2022

After a nice Christmas break it was good to be back teaching the Good News Club students. Many of the parents and students were happy the clubs were resuming. One parent texted me, “Thank you, my child will be so happy. She loves the Good News Club. Thank you for all you do.” One of my Chinese clubs has gone from in-person to online. It has been interesting teaching over zoom. Only two students have been attending the Sunday morning class at Grace Chinese. I look forward to being back in-person, but I look at this as a good opportunity for me to learn how to teach online.

This month we had our annual Christian Youth In Action (CYIA) recruitment party. We enjoyed eating, visiting and playing games with the twelve youth that attended. Of course I was excited to see several Chinese youth attendees from the one of the churches where I teach. We shared with the youth about the training they would receive at CYIA and what they would be teaching the children during the summer in the 5-Day Clubs. Pray for God’s leading as these youth decide to participate in CYIA this summer.

Dorothy (USA) January, 2022

From a listener in Cuban: Thank God that He uses Trans World Radio (TWR) to bless Cuba and other nations. This is the only Christian station signal that reaches the Island, for which I thank the Lord. May I continue to give you words of encouragement and faith during this time. The

Lord bless all your families that you leave in order to serve Jesus in COVID-19 times. Applause to God!

From a listener in Venezuela: I thank God for your program. Despite the difficult situation here (in this city) as in the rest of Venezuela, every night when there is electric power, my husband and I listen to the Word of our beloved God with great pleasure and obedience! How wonderful He is Who shows His faithfulness by enabling His powerful Word to continue to come into our home amid so much suffering!!!"

Gregory, FOCUS (NYC) January 13, 2022

In the Summer, we were able to take over fifty students from NYC to our programs on Martha's Vineyard. The beginning of the Fall we were able to resume in person meetings with students during the school year. It has been such a joy to meet in person again. We have been grateful for the opportunity to witness God moving in students' lives in new and exciting ways. The last few weeks have been a challenge as we've navigated the difficulties of the Omicron variant, which has caused us to delay the start of our meetings for the Spring semester.

My wife and I are loving being parents and thank God every day for the blessing that our daughter is to us and to others. We are always praying that we may be good stewards of her life and faith.

A major update is that I will be leaving FOCUS at the end of January. I have been serving in this role for four and a half years and together my wife and I have discerned that God is calling us to a new season. I remain thankful to CBC for the ways that you all have supported me personally, and FOCUS' ministry. I still believe in the mission of FOCUS so deeply and hope that the partnership between our ministries may continue as it has for well over 20 years now. I will ask for your continued prayers for FOCUS' ministry in a season of transition and in our search for a new Area Director.


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