I am primarily an evangelist and teacher who travels around the world in apostolic ministry as God leads and enables me. In addition to preaching and teaching the Bible, I mentor our key partners to be more strategic and impactful for the Gospel in their countries and cultures, just as they continue to mentor me. I am relationally focused rather than program or project focused in ministry relationships and partnerships.
“May God Himself…sanctify you entirely.
May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless
at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ."
(I Thessalonians 5:23)
Dr S. S. Rai and the staff of the Holy Palace Hospital.
Dear Ministry Partners,
The words above by the Apostle Paul could easily summarize the spiritual and medical philosophy of Dr. Suresh Rai and the “Holy Palace Hospital” he founded over 2 decades ago. It also represents our life-long commitment to holistic ministry and missions. That’s because God is concerned about the whole person – not just his spirit or soul.
Dr. Rai praying with a patient for God's total healing.
Unfortunately, most physicians, whether in America, Asia, Africa or any other country, only treat part of the person – not the whole person. The medical treatment only deals with the “fruit” of the problem rather than the “root” of the problem. That’s one of the reasons there is so much chronic sickness in people‘s lives. According to Paul’s words through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, we are all tripartite beings who are spirit, soul and body. Or to express it more correctly: “We are a spirit that has a soul that lives in a body.”
Because of that Biblical conviction, I have often summarized our ministry and mission philosophy this way: “We believe in the whole Gospel for the whole man by the whole church to the whole world.” And anything less than that is a truncated Gospel!
Properly understood, then, there is no division between the so-called “Spiritual Gospel” and the “Social Gospel.” They are two sides to the same theological coin. Like faith and works, they cannot be separated. One is our “right foot” and the other is our “left foot.” To try and walk on one without the other is to go nowhere fast, but when used in Biblical balance, there is forward and upward momentum.
I believe that one of the reasons God sovereignly connected me with Dr. Rai nearly two decades ago is because we share this holistic ministry philosophy. After his dramatic conversion to Christ, he left his successful and lucrative Medical practice in the larger cities of West Bengal and started to minister to the poorest of the poor. To do this more effectively, he sold his tea plantation and bought land to begin his “bush hospital” – where he has been ministering ever since – primarily to the thousands of Nepalis who work the tea plantations in the area.
The Holy Palace Hospital is on the outside of a small Indian town known as Naxalbari in Darjeeling, India. At the time he began his medical ministry in this area, it was a hotbed of radical Marxism, Communism and terrorism. The dominant religions were Hindu fundamentalism and tribal animism. In spite of the dangers and constant threats, Dr. Rai stuck it out. Across the years his compassionate holistic medical ministry has earned him great respect among the people – from the high caste … to the low caste … no caste … and outcaste.
The male and female inpatient wards at Holy Palace Hospital.
Dr Rai also trains nurses to work as health professionals in other
rural "bush clinics", where they go regularly to hold medical camps.
Dr. Rai is a Medical Doctor in the order of Doctor Luke in the New Testament. He has the heart of a doctor as well as that of an evangelist and church-planter. He is also ordained as a minister.
Dr Rai mentors his staff spiritually as well as medically, through
morning and evening devotions and daily chapel at the Hospital.
Through the years, God has allowed us to partner with Dr. Rai and help him upgrade and expand his hospital facility. We also have helped recruit short-term medical teams from America to go in and work alongside him.
Our latest project this past year was to help him build a new Out Patient Clinic. This enabled him to separate outpatients from those needing inpatient hospitalization.
It has also been a joy to see Dr. Rai, his wife Mary, their son, Johny and his wife, Angie, develop various income-generating ministries. Through their pharmacy, Christian Book Store and Craft Store, they are generating funds to help support their medical ministry.
Johny & Angie stand in their Christian Book Store. Johny also serves as
Administrator of the Hospital. At right is pictured the pharmacy that helps
with their self-support.
Angie in the new Craft Store that she is developing.
Once the Out Patient Clinic was completed and dedicated, we turned to refurbishing the current hospital – beginning with the badly rusted metal roofs. In the pictures below you can see the before and after pictures of the roofing project that has just been completed.
The new rust-proof-for-life metal we helped purchase. Dr. Rai prays
for himself and his workers as they begin to put on the new roof.
Because Dr. Rai's father was in the lumber business, he grew up
learning how to build. So he is a bi-vocational doctor-carpenter!
Doing all of the work themselves saved a lot of money on the
The completed Hospital roof in back of the new Out Patient Clinic.
It was a joy to see the completed roof on my visit this trip!
No more ugly rust or leaks!
After the Hospital Roof was completed, they turned their attention to the 6 Agape Homes we built a decade ago. They too were very rusted because of the long periods of rain and moisture during the annual monsoons.
The old and new roofs side by side.
The roofing project for the Hospital and 6 Agape Homes cost $8,000, generously
donated by a Family Foundation in Charlotte, NC.
Now that these main buildings have been re-roofed, there are several other buildings that also need new roofs. We are praying for a gift of $3,500 to re-roof these buildings pictured below. Then the Hospital Campus will be completed.
On the left is the Hospital Canteen, and on the right is the Isolation Ward.
The Staff Dining Hall and Staff House.
SWEATING FOR JESUS
Because of the failed Tibet trip, I was able to have two extra workdays at Holy Palace. We primarily did some much-needed renovations on the Agape Homes that are used for foreign medical workers who come short-term, as well as for "well to do" patients who want more privacy - which also generates funds to help support the Hospital.
Closing in the eaves with wire mesh to keep out the pigeons, and making
screens to keep out flies and mosquitoes.
Painting and repairing doors, and tiling the bathrooms.
We bought some local baskets in the nearby market to use in decorating the Agape Homes. This is where I needed Patt to help out since she has great taste in decorating using local materials!
Buying and using these baskets was especially meaningful to me
since we built a church for these simple basket makers years ago.
They are considered some of the lowest caste people. We
appropriately called it the "Basket Church."
One of the other important areas of partnership with Dr. Rai and his son, Johny, is gardening. In order to help them grow nourishing fresh vegetables to eat and sell, we introduced the “Bucket Drip Irrigation” kits provided by our friends at Chapin Living Water. It has been exciting to see several gardens on the Hospital Compound developed as I have taught the staff this simple – but revolutionary – method of gardening.
FROM PHYSICAL GARDENING TO SPIRITUAL GARDENING
Because I had expected to be in Tibet on Sunday, I had the unexpected opportunity to worship with Dr. Rai and his staff at the Hospital Chapel. Since building this chapel was one of our early projects with Dr. Rai, it was a joy to preach there again – having had the privilege of doing so a number of times across the years. Dr. Rai presided, Johny led the praise and worship and I preached the Word.
The following morning we had just enough time to attend the morning chapel with the staff and nursing students before rushing to the airport for our flight to Kolkata.
Jack Franck, my traveling associate, shared his testimony with the nurses and staff.
We presented the nurses with new white hose,
generously given by a friend who produces hosiery in NC.
Dr Rai sent us off with the traditional Nepali "Shawl of Honor."
A final embrace before leaving for the airport - reminding us that
building covenant relationships is the essence of our
calling, because God is a relational God!
We covet your prayers and partnership for our on-going holistic co-ministry with Dr. Rai and Holy Palace Hospital. We need your continued financial help to make more renovations and additions to their Medical Campus.
Also, if you are a Medical Professional and would be interested in going to Holy Palace for short-term Medical Ministry, please contact us. We have nice, comfortable “Agape Homes” for you to stay in. Working alongside Dr. Rai, you would have the opportunity to give much-needed medical help in the love and compassion of the Lord Jesus. And as a result, neither you nor they will ever be the same!
In His Holistic Love,
“I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one
of the least of these … you did for Me.”
Dear Ministry Partners,
Children are near and dear to the heart of God! Jesus demonstrated that in His earthly ministry by His actions and teachings about the centrality of children:
Because of clear exhortations like these from the Lord Jesus, ministry to children has always been a high priority for Patt and me. Our first ministry together before we were married back in 1964 was in a children’s home in Versailles, Kentucky. We started ministering there on weekends while we were in college and seminary. We have not stopped ministering to children since then.
When I travel and minister abroad, children are always a high priority for me. That’s why I try to visit our children’s homes or children’s ministries in various countries. And as I visit the children, their ministry to me is greater than mine is to them! Staying close to children keeps you “young in spirit.”
Across the decades, God has graced us with the privilege of ministering to hundreds and hundreds of poor, orphaned and at-risk children. As a result of the support and sponsorship of our partners here in America, we have been able to build a number or orphanages or children’s homes in various countries as God has sovereignly directed. Through them we have been able to provide safety, shelter, nourishing food, clothing, education, medical care and vocational training – all in a strong Christian environment.
After decades of child sponsorship, scores of our “adopted children” have now completed the equivalent of primary school, high school, university or Bible College. Many have gone into full time ministry as evangelists, church planters, and pastors, while others have become nurses, teachers, and workers in many other honorable walks of life. Some have continued to work with other children who are still at risk, living where they once lived.
We could write volumes of wonderful stories of the changed lives of children who have been supported by our partners across the decades. To say the least, these children’s programs have been transformational and have changed the destinies of these children for time and eternity!
On my recent 3 weeks in Asia, I was able to visit the following Children’s Homes:
Each one of these Children’s Homes deserves a full report because of all that is taking place. At two of the homes, we are in the process of making major building additions. In another one we have made some important infrastructural additions.
In this report I wish we could also picture and profile each individual child in the various homes. But time and space do not permit me to do so. The average sponsorship for these children is $35 a month – which we send 100%. And we are currently in need of new sponsors due to an increase in the number of children!
It is also important to know that our policy in each home is to take only orphans, semi-orphans or high-risk children whose parents or relatives cannot care for them. Through these partnerships, we seek to care for the “poorest of the poor” that would have little or no hope without the long-term help of these homes.
Through the following pictures and captions, I will summarize a few highlights of each of our current homes in Asia that I visited on this trip. As you look through these pictures, I know your heart will be touched by their smiles and joy. And one day you will meet them in heaven where they will thank you personally for your love, prayers and support!
ANGURAH CHILDREN’S HOME
Tabitha Tamang, daughter of our long time partner, Pastor Bharat Tamang, established this Children’s Home. Tabitha and Pastor Tamang are both Nepalis working among the hundreds of thousands of Nepali Diaspora living in Delhi – mostly in horrible slums. Each of these children came from those deplorable slum conditions, where Pastor Bharat does evangelism and plants house churches.
Today, however, each child is growing and thriving physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually through the love and care of the home.
Three nutritious meals each day, and a safe place to live, play and learn.
Wearing the new socks we took to them, and reading the Word before church.
For the past 6 months, we have been working on an addition to the church building to give more room for the children – all made possible by a businessman friend here in America.
Delhi was my first stop in India before going on to Nepal, and we were able to spend the night in the Home and then dedicate this new two-story front addition – beautifully tiled inside and out. Because the following day was Sunday, we combined worship with the dedication program.
The beautifully tiled exterior, and interior remodeling.
Following the dedication we enjoyed a wonderful church service led by Pastor Bharat.
The youth group led the music and ministry, and the children participated in the service.
Pastor Bharat dedicated the tithes and offerings which were given,
as well as gifts of rice for the poor among them. We were blessed to take part
in the Lord's Supper with the congregation.
Jack Franck, my traveling associate, shared his testimony.
It was my privilege to preach as Sister Tabitha interpreted into Nepali.
The next morning before we flew from Delhi to Kathmandu, we climbed to the top of the Church and Home to survey the final phase of our renovation, where the baptismal has been relocated from the first floor. We are now in the process of closing in this roof area with a 4-foot brick wall to make it safe for the children to use.
Before leaving for the airport and our flight to Nepal, we walked the children to school and said goodbye until our next visit.
Patt and I thank God for the faithful monthly support from my sister Judy Baer’s “Closer Walk Bible Study Group” in Lawton, Oklahoma. Through their yearly garage sale, they are able to raise the funds needed to support this Angurah Children's Home.
HIMALI CHILDREN’S HOME
This Children’s Home is located on the outskirts of Kathmandu. It was founded and is still run by Laxmi Tamang, an incredible woman of God and entrepreneur for her 25 adopted children.
Because of the shift in emphasis at Feed The Hunger (formerly NDI), we have been asked to take back over the monthly support of this Home. After my visit on this past trip after several years of absence, I knew in my spirit that the Lord wanted us to resume the sponsorship of this Home for the immediate future. So we took a step of faith and gave them the money to cover the children’s school fees and books for the month of September ($1,500).
The current Himali Children's Home, needing to be relocated and enlarged.
At right, the children are pictured when they were younger.
Laxmi Tamang, matriarch of the Himali Children's Home.
Jack was presented with the traditional "Shawl of Honor"
after meeting Laxmi.
Because of the excellent manner in which Laxmi has operated this Home,
she has received a number of commendations from Goverment Officials.
The Himali Children's Home as been recognized as one of the best Children's
Homes in Nepal! At right are some of the many academic and athletic
awards achieved by the children.
Over tea, Pastor Hanok, Laxmi and I discuss the future of the Home. Pastor
Hanok with one of the "real trophies" of grace at the Home.
Meet Sashikala, who is 20 years old, and has been at the Home
since she was a small girl. She is now excelling in her studies
in Microbiology and assists Laxmi in running the Home.
One of the dorm rooms for the boys, now in need of paint
after over a decade of use.
The Himali Home Kitchen. Because there is no electrical power in Kathmandu
for 8-10 hours each day, we purchased a small solar power unit for the Home,
making it possible for the children to have light to study by at night.
Laxmi with the laptop computer we also purchased for the Home,
and for the students to use in their studies.
The children send their thanks for our support, and for the gift of the
Solar Power unit and the new laptop computer.
Patt and I are praying for a church, Sunday School Class, or individual
to help us with the monthly support of these wonderful children!
While each of our Children’s Homes is unique, this one is especially so because it is the only known indigenous Christian Home for Tibetan children in the world. The name “Champa Choeling” means “Place of Love” – descriptive of how the Home originally was started several decades ago when Pastor Nima “Pala” Tshering began adopting orphans and needy children of refugees escaping from the Chinese take over of Tibet.
The Tshering family. I am welcomed by Pala with the traditional
"Shawl of Honor". At 98 years old/young, he is still recognized as the
patriarch of Tibetan Christianity. We praise God for our more than
20 years of partnership and fellowship!
When God sovereignly connected me with Pala, Amala, Yacob, Linda Tshering and the children, they were all staying in a small second story flat in Kathmandu. They desperately needed more space. So by faith, we began to look for a larger house we could purchase for them. In time we were not only able to buy one house outside Kathmandu, but a second also – which houses their Home and church to this day.
Having been “expelled from Tibet” on this past trip, we had several extra days we could spend at Champa Choeling fellowshipping and working with the children – most of whom are now teenagers or older. We have sponsored them since they were small children. Many others have already graduated and are gainfully employed in Nepal, India, Canada or America.
Champa Choeling had been without a vehicle for several years. Recently, we were able to purchase a good used Toyota Truck for them through the generosity of an American businessman partner. This trip gave me the personal opportunity to see and enjoy the new truck!
Prior to the purchase of the new, used truck, this 20-year old motorcycle was
the only means of transportation for the Home. Now, this strong 4-wheel drive
truck extends the ministry of the home.
Due to our failed trip to Tibet, we had several extra days when we got back to Kathmandu. To "redeem the time", I sponsored “work days” with the young people, buying the cleaning supplies, lumber, stain – whatever we needed to “clean up” and “fix-up.” We had a great time cleaning, repairing and working together in both of the Homes that are side-by-side.
Cleaning the kitchen from top to bottom!
Staining the front door and washing windows.
It was challenging to wash the windows on the third floor!
Cutting boards for our "pigeon war"! These are not "torture racks", but
boards we made to keep the pigeons from nesting on the windowsills!
Since the kids cooked for Jack and me, I brought in pizza and KFC one night for them – both rare treats for them and us! We ended our time together with cake and ice cream!
Preparing Tibetan Mo-Mos for us to enjoy.
Since my last trip, two Kentucky Fried Chicken Restaurants have opened
in Kathmandu. However, the chicken is much spicier than in America.
Like us, the Nepalis like their chicken "finger lick'in good"! And, because
KFC is now in Kathmandu, more American Christians will hear a
"culinary call" from the Lord to do mission work in Nepal!
In addition to KFC, Pizza Hut is now in Kathmandu, and each child had
their very own pizza. Amazingly, we take our"fast foods" around the world
far more quickly than we do the Gospel, which often spreads very slowly!
Yacob cuts the cake for the party, and by the time that I left, each
child had experienced a "chocolate high" and a "sugar rush"
from the sweets!
What fun to bring this kind of joy to these children!
We also brought new hose and socks, graciously donated
by a business friend and partner in North Carolina,
for the children to use for the upcoming cold winter weather in Nepal.
Because we were unexpectedly in Kathmandu on Sunday, we enjoyed the weekly Tibetan Church Service in the “Upper Room” of Champa Choeling.
At 98, Pala still preaches weekly at the Champa Choeling Church! He led
the music, worship and offering before I delivered the message.
Some of the graduates and alumni of Champa Choeling return each week for
the Sunday service, since this is the only indigienous Tibetan Church service
in the country.
After church, the children and young people enjoyed a time of fellowship
with their alumni friends. Jack paused for a picture with some of the
children before they left for school and before we flew to East Nepal
to continue our "Asian Kingdom Adventure", and visit with two
other Children's Homes.
BETHANY CHILDREN’S HOME
After our unexpected longer visit in Kathmandu, we took our flight on “Buddha Air” to East Nepal. There we crossed the border from Nepal into India, staying overnight in the “Agape Homes” on the compound of the Holy Palace Hospital (the focus of my next report), then driving to Jaigaon on the Bhutan border.
Just like Champa Choeling is exclusively dedicated to Tibetan children, the Bethany Children’s Home is dedicated to Bhutanese children. The founder and director, Sarita Thapa, is Bhutanese, as is her adopted son and Administrator of the home, Markus Mukhia. Originally all of the children were from Bhutan. However, in the last couple of years, they have taken in several abandoned children from Bihar, India.
Following our long drive from West Bengal to Jaigaon, Jack and I were met at the BCH with fresh, cold apple juice from Bhutan. We were then greeted with the traditional “Shawl of Honor”, in the royal gold color of Bhutan.
After our warm welcome, we focused on the new two-story dormitory that we are building for the children. It will replace the old, deteriorating “Bamboo Dorm” that they have been using for many years.
The old "Bamboo Dorm" was disassembled, then reassembled on the roof of
one of the existing buildings. It will be used temporarily while the new concrete
dorm is being built.
Pray with us that the new concrete dorm will be finished
soon so that the kids can move out of this temporary shelter.
The new large multi-story cement Dorm now taking shape …
Markus showed Jack the blueprints for the new dormitory.
After spending time going over the new Dorm, we took a quick visit outside of town to their new garden area. Sister Sarita and the children are wonderful gardeners and raise a lot of the food they eat. However, the new Dorm will take up most of the small space they had for gardening inside their compound. So the new larger garden area that we helped them fence in will provide many more vegetables.
Unfortunately, elephants recently assaulted their new garden, going through the cement poles and barbed wire like they were sewing thread! It was an expensive lesson, so the next crops will contain only small vegetables that do not attract elephants like the corn and sugarcane did!
OUR PARTING PARTY
Back at the BCH Compound, we had a party for the children as I always do when I visit them. We had special Indian somosos, chips, and sodas, followed by ice cream and cake.
We also shared warm hose and socks for the children to wear in the coming
cold weather. The passion of these children in praise and worship is
always such a blessing and challenge!
Sister Sarita, founder, director, and matriarch of
Bethany Children's Home, with her adopted son,
Markus, administrator of the Home.
After Sarita’s dramatic conversion to Christ, she became one of the pioneer evangelists and church planters inside Bhutan. Since her mother was a renowned witch doctor with strong demonic powers, the news of Sarita’s conversion spread rapidly – opening many wide doors of ministry for her. After this, she started “adopting” orphans and needy children. To this day she has had no regular support. We are praying that the Lord will lay it on the heart of one of our female partners in America to start supporting Sarita for $100 a month.
Markus, our administrator, who is also a Bhutanese
Evangelist and church planter.
Pray for Markus as he continues to supervise the building of the new Dorm under the watchful help of EMI (Engineering Ministry International), who are helping us with the design and construction. Pray also for Markus as he continues to go into Bhutan to do evangelism and mentoring of new believers in house churches. Each trip costs an average of $100. Since he hopes to get married sometime in 2015, we are praying for a sponsor for him for $100 a month so he can continue his vital leadership at the BCH.
Pray with us for the completion of this new Dorm that has been funded by one of our partner churches in NC for $25,000. We are anxious to get the children moved in with the boys on the first floor and the girls on the second floor.
CALCUTTA HAPPY HOME
The last ministry stop for me on this 3-week “Asian Kingdom Adventure” was Calcutta, India – now known as Kolkata. This historic city was the focal point of the Modern Missionary Movement through the passion of William Carey. Sadly, it has also become known as the “graveyard of missions” because of the little impact Christianity has had in this teaming city of nearly 5 million people!
Our involvement in Kolkata goes back more than two decades through our partnership with Bishop Ezra Sargunam and the Evangelical Church of India (ECI). He first invited us there to help with the establishment of the Calcutta Bible College and “Happy Home.” I have continued to return to Kolkata regularly since then for ministry.
This year, I was invited back to the “All India Conference” (AIC) of ECI that was held in Kolkata. Over 500 ECI pastors and delegates converged there from all across India. This historic Conference will be the subject of my last report in this series. It was a special joy to meet for the first time Pastor Samu Singh, who is the new Director of the “Calcutta Happy Home.”
After the conclusions of the AIC, I made a visit to the “Calcutta Happy Home.” Just as was the case with several other Children’s Homes, this one was no longer going to be supported by NDI/FTH due to their shift in emphasis to feeding programs. So I was asked if we would bring it back under the umbrella of JLPF for a transition time. After this visit and update, Patt and I are thankful for this new opportunity to help out.
Since my last visit to this “Happy Home” several years ago, almost all new children have come in to take the place of those who have graduated and aged out of the program. It was special to meet our new “adopted children” before flying home to the States. My visit there and party for them was a wonderful way to conclude these 3 weeks of travel and ministry in Asia.
These three beautiful children welcomed
us with fragrant garlands of flowers.
We met this wonderful new couple, Pastor Samu Singh
and his wife, Rita, who live at the Home, and
are the adoptive parents for the children.
Both Samu and Rita are from a Bengali background that is especially appropriate since Kolkata is in West Bengal. Samu was raised in an orphanage himself, so knows personally the life-changing difference a children’s home can make. He and his wife are both graduates of Calcutta Bible Seminary (CBS) that originally started in this same facility many years ago.
Seminary students from CBS assist the Happy Home weekly in their ministry to the children. This partnership with CBS is especially appropriate since the Happy Home is the original home of CBS before they moved to their current campus.
Three of the seminary students who assist at the Happy Home.
The children prayed, sang, danced and recited Bible verses for us.
After they entertained us, I hosted a party for them, just like I did at the other Children’s Homes I visited on this trip. It is always a delight to my spirit to watch these children enjoy a drink, cake, and ice cream – many for the first time in their lives.
After the children enjoyed every crumb of their cake and licked their fingers clean, we took a quick tour of the Home. As you can see, it is over 40 years old and aging – like me! We would like to relocate in a bigger and better place, but due to the cost of land and building in Kolkata, that is impossible. So, for the foreseeable future, we will have to make the best of our current situation. We hope to do some painting and renovation soon as the Lord provides the resources through our partners here. This would be a great “Christmas Project” for a church, Sunday School Class, Bible Study or business entrepreneur.
While the current building looks rather bad, it is still structurally sound. If you had grown up on the streets of Kolkata – or in the train station, like some of these children – this building would be “heaven on earth!” By God’s grace and your help, we will give it a major “face-life” inside and out in the immediate months ahead. Together we can make a BIG difference in this facility – starting this Christmas!
Pray for Pastor Singh, his wife Rita and their wonderful helpers from CBS as they continue to run this “Happy Home” for the glory of God and for the good of these precious children.
Rescued from living on the platforms at the train station.
Patt and I are SO THANKFUL for the doctor friend from Eastern North Carolina who has been supporting this “Calcutta Happy Home” from his practice from the very earliest days until now. We thank God for entrepreneurs like him and his wife who are so faithful and generous in their financial support of needy children like these. We pray that others of our partners will catch their mission vision and spirit of generosity.
Thanks for taking the time to take this trip with me through the 5 Children’s Homes we visited on this trip. As you have looked into these beautiful faces, know in your heart that you are making a BIG difference in these children’s lives. The 3 little girls I am holding above were rescued from living at the railway station in Kolkata. Now they have a heavenly life by comparison – physically and spiritually – because of this Happy Home.
So my friends, just for the cost of a cup of coffee a day at Starbucks, or a Big Mac at McDonalds, you can provide shelter, food, clothing, medical attention and education for children like these. And remember: 100% of what you give goes directly to the child through JLPF. We do not take out a penny for our administrative costs – which is made possible in part through the support of a Family Foundation in NC. And as you help us support children like these, remember again the words of the Lord Jesus I started this report with: “Whatever you did for one of the least of these … you did for Me” (Matt. 25:40). And because you did it for them unto Him, Christ assures you: “I tell you the truth, you will certainly not lose your reward” (Matt. 10:42).
In His Love for them,
JL & Patt
PS: In my previous emails I asked you NOT to share the contents on any social media. But this one I encourage you to forward to as many of your friends as possible!
YEAR END GIVING
As the year comes to a close, it is not too early to prayerfully plan for your year end giving, whether through monetary donations, items for our partners, or Stock Transfers. Please contact us at JL, Patt & Friends, PO Box 4066, Glen Raven, NC 27215 or email@example.com. for additional information, or click on www.jlwilliams.org/donate to give via PayPal. God bless you!
Dear Friends and Partners,
As you can see, I’m here in Calcutta, standing outside the venue for a one-day conference on evangelism and mission. Our long time partner and friend, Bishop Ezra Sargunam, and the Evangelical Church of India (ECI), sponsored the event. It was such an honor to be among so many Christians who have a heart for evangelism and missions in India, and beyond her borders as well.
We were all inspired by the passionate and moving testimony of this converted Muslim, who had been a radical jihadist before he came to the Lord. Now he is a radical for Jesus, leading many Muslims to faith in Christ – including Mullahs (Muslim clergy) – and serving as an evangelist for ECI! His wife is a converted Hindu Brahmin (upper class) who is being used mightily of the Lord to bring high caste Hindus to faith. They are a unique couple from very diverse backgrounds that the Lord is using in amazing ways here in India.
When you receive this brief report, Jack and I will be in the midst of one more conference for our final days of ministry in Calcutta. Interestingly, we begin our flight home on October 31st, Halloween Day. So, Satan is getting the worship he diabolically craves, whether through Halloween in America, or through Hinduism and Islam in India. To that end, I hope that you have already read my article on Halloween and shared it with others. If not, you may click here to read Duck Dynasty: A Halloween Decoy.
I’m looking forward to next week’s blast when I can give you a detailed report on all that the Lord did on this 3 week trip through His will and your prayers!
For Him in India,
After a day of outreach in central Nepal.
Dear Friends and Family,
J.L. has had a busy and exciting 10 days in Asia! The highlight was getting to share the Gospel with an almost totally unreached people group, who were very receptive to hearing the Good News, and eager to discuss the messages. I’m sorry that you will have to wait until he gets back home to learn more of the details, as some security issues are still involved.
Both he and Jack Franck are thankful for your prayers as they travel and minister for the next 12 days: for fruitful times with our partners in Nepal and India, and for good health and a quick recovery from a stomach bug!
With Halloween just around the corner, J.L. wanted us to post his writings on the subject again. Excuse the fact that we are using the one from last year, but the truth about unmasking Halloween is true every year. Please click on the picture of the pumpkin to read Duck Dynasty: A Halloween Decoy, and feel free to download it, reprint it and/or share with friends and family.
With blessings and gratitude for your love and support,
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; His mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.”
Dear Friends & Partners,
When you open this email I will be on the long flights to India and Nepal –16 hours direct. I will first land in Delhi for a night and day to visit the Anugurah Children’s Home. After that I will fly on to Kathmandu for a couple of days of meeting with as many partners as possible. Then we will begin our long, arduous drive into Tibet – the subject of my next email. But until then, be praying for this strategic time with my very first national partner in Nepal, Hanok Tamang.
Every time I come across this picture of Hanok and me in our archives, I rejoice over God’s incredible faithfulness! This picture was taken in 1990 in the very earliest days of our ministry partnership. Before that time, I hardly knew where Kathmandu, Nepal was! Could not have spelled the word correctly – much less pointed it out on a world map! As an old song said, Kathmandu was just one of those “ ... far away places with a strange sounding name.” Now it has become one of my “homes away from home” that I dearly love!
When this picture was taken, we were on location in a remote Nepali village where we had dedicated a new church and Agape Home. Our partnership has not ceased since then. And I am leaving this weekend for another time of ministry with Hanok in Nepal, as well as ministry with partners in India on each side of my time in Nepal – Delhi going in, and Kolkata coming out. I will also be making a historic trip into Tibet for a week – which I will write about in a future email.
As I wrote in a previous email, marriage and ministry are parallel callings from the Lord. In reality, one is the foundation for the other. In other words, your ministry can be no better than your marriage. Since they are both sovereignly orchestrated, we must take those primary relationships as seriously as God takes them. To neglect one is to undermine the other. That’s because relationships are eternal. God is not into divorce – whether in marriage or ministry, because it seeks to separate what God has sovereignly joined together. From the Biblical perspective, death is the only thing that can sever human partnerships – whether in marriage or in ministry. So until death, we are to do everything in our power to nurture relationships and partnerships. And when there has been a breach due to sin or immaturity, reconciliation is the order of the day until the relationships are restored.
Therefore, because of God's faithfulness, our relationships with others should be as “eternally secure” as our relationship with Him is through Christ. Sadly, this is not often the case. As a result, we start and stop relationships in both marriage and ministry for the most carnal and immature reasons. Sadly, relationships in the church are as fickle and as flippant as in the world.
Relationships then are the only thing we will take out of this life. We leave everything else behind – most of which will ultimately be reduced to ashes (First Corinthians 3:13-15). Only the Kingdom of God will remain – and the relationships it is based upon through Christ and His indwelling Holy Spirit.
Like any dynamic relationship – especially between “Type A” personalities, my relationship and partnership with Hanok has never been static. Neither has my relationship with Patt! Both are imperfect – but both are still growing, productive and fulfilling through God’s grace, love and forgiveness. And on this next trip to Nepal, another chapter will be written in our ongoing relationship for the Kingdom.
Below are some pictures from past and present projects we have partnered together on. And these few pictures represent only the "tip of the iceberg" in our 3 decades of partnership. But I hope they will be a source of blessing and encouragement to you because it has been the prayers and support of partners like you that have made all of these many years of co-ministry possible.
Hanok at a radio interview about the
growth of the church in Nepal.
The Aradhana Church in Kathmandu has always been Hanok’s platform of ministry throughout the country. Several weeks ago, there was a special Thanksgiving Service celebrating over 30 years of ministry through Aradhana (meaning “worship”). Dr. Niicanor Tamang, who was the first pastor of Aradhana, returned for this special event.
Hanok, the honored guest of the day, with Dr. Niicanor Tamang
and his wife, Elizabeth Tamang.
As Dr. Tamang was honored, he also honored Hanok for being an unselfish leader who has spent his life raising up and mentoring other young leaders.
Dr. Tamang and Elizabeth received an appreciation letter in the form of
a metallic plaque by Durgasing, a leper who is one of the founding
members and leaders at Aradhana.
Because of Hanok's heart for children, they have always been a priority at Aradhana. Since Hanok and his deceased wife, Jamuna, were never able to have children, they “adopted” many needy chldren and partnered with us in building several Children’s Homes in Nepal. The following pictures are from a recent Sunday School children’s program.
The children read the Scripture and led in worship.
In addition to being the senior pastor at Aradhana for over three decades, Hanok has also played a key role in NCFN (National Church Fellowship of Nepal) serving three terms as President, which is longer than anyone else has held this position. It was through out partnership with Hanok and NCFN that we have sponsored many pastors, leaders and women’s conferences throughout the country.
Hanok teaches church leaders from across Nepal. The 3 former
Presidents of NCFN: Pastor Hanok, Dr. Simon Pandey,
and Dr. Mangal Maharajan.
Hanok giving an address to the Pastors and leaders at NCFN's annual conference.
Hanok continues to encourage and mentor the new young leaders of NCFN.
At right, Hanok is teaching at NCFN Theological Training on the
subject of Discipling and Mentoring process for leadership development
and sustainable growth.
Participants listen attentively as Hanok teaches.
Hanok intreprets for Pastor Nima Tshering, the patriarch of Tibetan Christianity.
Dr. Ron Nikkel of Prison Fellowship honors Hanok at their recent 25th anniversary
for his service as one of their founding Board Members in Nepal.
Hanok translates for Patt at a National Women's Conference
in Kathmandu several years ago that was sponsored by NCFN.
Like all senior pastors, Hanok performs many marriages in Nepal at Aradhana church and her daughter churches around the country. Christian marriages are a great contrast to traditional Hindu or Buddhist ones, so a great opportunity to witness of the Gospel and the church as the Bride of Christ.
Another privilege and responsibility for Hanok is ordaining people into the ministry and praying for the sick. Miraculous healings are one of the ways God manifests His love and advances the church among unbelievers.
A crucial part of the Great Commission is “ … baptizing in the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.” And these many baptisms that take place each year are public opportunities to witness for Christ. But when I first started going to Nepal, it was a one-year prison sentence to convert to Christianity, a three-year prison sentence to seek to convert someone, and a six-year prison sentence to baptize someone! As a result, most of the Christian leaders in Nepal have been arrested and imprisoned for their faith and obedience. Fortunately, today there is a measure of religious freedom as a result of Nepal’s move from a monarchy toward democracy.
As a result of the explosive growth of the church throughout Nepal, we have partnered with Hanok in building literally several hundred church buildings like this rural one below.
A supportive ministry to building church buildings was to build Agape Homes for pastors and other needy Christians who either had no homes or lived in substandard conditions. These Agape Homes below were build some 19 years ago and are still meeting the needs of people and helping the churches to grow locally.
The Bible says: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings of good things” (Rom. 10:15). Because of that admonition, we have often had the opportunity of putting the “Gospel feet” of some of our national partners on bicycles, motorcycles, tractors, cars and trucks. Due to the growing ministry of Pastor Hanok, Aradhana Church and the NCFN, there was a great need for a strong vehicle to transport himself, people and supplies throughout Nepal. So, nineteen years ago we bought this used Toyota truck. It has been used to deploy evangelism teams, Jesus Film teams, relief teams, and to transport wedding parties and dead bodies by the dozens. I have ridden the length and breadth of Nepal in it for years. And as a result of its constant use as a “donkey for Jesus,” it has had to be in the repair shop often.
We have now repaired the “Red Truck” for the last time, as spare parts for it are no longer available. Additionally, the government has passed a new law that disallows any vehicle over fifteen years old operating on the roads. So this old warhorse for the Kingdom will soon have to go to the stable and be sold for junk parts.
However, through the generous donation of one of our ministry partners, we were able to recently purchase this newer Toyota 4-Wheel Drive truck for the ministry. It has already been put into use to pick up where the old red truck had to stop.
Pastor Hanok and some of the church elders from Aradhana dedicated
the new truck for service. The new "donkey for Jesus"
on a typical mountainous road in Nepal.
After recent storms and mudslides in Nepal,
Hanok used both trucks to carry relief supplies
to victims who had lost everything.
Hanok speaks with an elderly lady who lost her sons, daughters-in-law,
and a dozen grandchildren in the landslide. The people leave the
distribution with both physical and spiritual relief.
Seizing every opportunity through word and deed to share the message of Christ.
Hanok and Elder Deepak praying with new Christians, as they have
accepted Christ as their personal Savior. Hanok with a dear elderly man,
now in his 80's, whom he led to Christ and baptized over 20 years ago.
One of the daughter churches of Aradhana is the Khokona Leper Church. Through partnership with Hanok and Aradhana, we were able to build them a beautiful church building almost 20 years ago. Hanok continues his mentoring relationship with this dear leper pastor.
Pastor Hanok with his elderly mother who is in her 80's.
His father was a very influential Buddhist priest who
never came to faith in Christ that Hanok is aware of.
However, his mother is a strong believer, and comes
from her rural village in Kathmandu to visit Hanok
several times a year.
Thanks for your prayers and partnership with me in Nepal through Hanok. While he is not our only partner there, he is the very first national partner God sovereignly networked me with in 1989 on my pioneer trip to Nepal. Our relationship and partnership has grown since that time. And through him, God has networked us with scores of other young leaders we have sought to “encourage, equip and empower” for ministry. By God’s grace, our partnership will continue until the Lord returns or until he calls me home – maybe from some remote village in Nepal! My only desire until then is to be faithful as God is faithful. Or to echo the words of Paul: “I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me – the task of testifying to the Gospel of God’s grace” (Act 20:24).
Because of my increased mission travel this fall, I need your help in replenishing my special “Mission Travel Fund.” The current trip to India, Nepal and Tibet has depleted my travel account. In November I have a trip to Zimbabwe followed by a trip to Kenya in December – my last major trip for 2014. So I encourage any of you who can to make a special gift to “ … assist me on my journey,” to quote the Apostle Paul (Rom. 15:24). I will be most appreciative for your financial help in sending out this “donkey for Jesus!”
For His Kingdom & Glory in Nepal,