Africa Inland Mission

Dear Friends and Family,

How good it is to sit down and write to you to share what the Lord has been doing in Rendilleland. We hope you all are finding rest in the Lord during these strange days.

God has been so good to us and we have been reminiscing on all the ways we have seen Him work and felt His care. When we came back from our rest in Nanyuki we were greeted by cooler weather in Korr! Highs of 94 (inside the house) and lows of 80 degrees in the mornings. It is “winter” time here and there is a strong wind that picks up in the afternoon and stays all night long. We have been so grateful for a break from the heat.

Our home has been a wonderful place to host families and share a meal with our neighbors. Jon and I have made it more of a priority to have families over for tea or a meal and listen to them and pray for them. We have had the privilege of loving on several pastors and their wives and some young men who are eager to learn from God’s word. We have been blessed by getting to know the pastors more and hearing from them.

There is a lot of noise on our plot just now as men are busy building the new AIM short-term/guesthouse. This new building will allow short-term missionaries to come and serve the church and also can be used as a guesthouse for visitors. We hope many of you will come visit us one day! We are also building a new “choo” or drop potty for our personal use. I (Kathryn) am especially thankful to God for providing this new 12′ hole in the ground. The kids enjoyed watching the process and I am looking forward to less insect experiences.

One of the most powerful ways we have seen God work is in healing a woman with postpartum depression. About a week ago one of our friends named Chulayo said his sister, Ringison, was going crazy and wanted to kill her newborn baby. I quickly gathered some milk and sugar (Rendille staples), some juice, one of my dresses, and some baby clothes. I boxed all this up and Jon and I borrowed a truck and drove out to her village. Ringison was in her small round house surrounded by her mother and mother-in-law and immediately grabbed my hand and pulled me towards her. I prayed over her and told her mother and mother-in-law about my experience with postpartum depression and shared with her how the Lord sees us and we can trust Him. We made plans for the following day to bring Ringison to the dispensary to check her hemoglobin levels. I was able to get the young mother to drink some juice and eat some bread before I left– her mother said they haven’t been able to get her to eat for days and jokingly mentioned building me a home near them.

The next morning we took Ringison and her baby to the dispensary. She was weak but she had slept the whole night peacefully for the first time in a week. I knew God was already working. Thankfully her tests came back normal and we took her back to her village the next day along with a jar of Nutella. I kept praying for God to become real to her so she would not attempt to go to a Rendille traditional doctor and I knew a little chocolate could always help. A couple days later I received word that she was doing very well and was feeding and taking care of her baby. Before, she wouldn’t touch or nurse her baby–her mother had to sit behind her and bring the baby to her breast to nurse. We continue to praise God for healing this young mother. This experience opened my eyes to how the Rendille deal with depression–immediately label someone as going crazy and so they do act crazy. I pray God uses this story in this village to reveal Himself as the God who sees and cares for every Rendille. I am eager to visit Ringison and share the gospel with her again. Thank you to all of you who lifted this mother up to the Lord.

We are now in cold Nanyuki for “quarantine” after purchasing our very own truck in Nairobi. We ran many errands, especially Jon, trying to gather tools and supplies for projects in Korr. The kids have enjoyed taking baths in a real bathtub, playing on a tire swing on the compound in Nairobi while I browsed for materials in the homeschool library. As much as this is a welcome break from desert life, we are eager to get back to Korr and to our teammates and friends as soon as possible.

And that’s another praise—we love Korr. We really do, so much that Korr feels like home to all of us now. We love the desert and are so thankful for how the Lord has worked in our hearts to love living there.

Siberia Ministry

Although the IMC has not sent additional financial support to our Russian partners these past few months, Christina wanted to share their appreciation for FBC’s ongoing and translated the attached Thank You letter. I do not have any photos to include but thought the message is worth communicating with our church as you deem appropriate.

Pastor Slava did not mention that he and the Dalmatovo leadership decided to give the July $400 from FBC to one of their church members whose house recently burned down due to an electrical fire. Tatiana and her husband had no insurance, which is very common in Russia, and they used the funds to purchase materials to rebuild the roof. Tatiana speaks English and served as a translator during our January trip.

Jungle Master Ministries

Terry Taylor shared these photos from Jungle Master Ministries that we have recently supported with disaster relief and matched funds for the steel boat. As you know, Terry traveled with Bubba Stahl to the Peruvian Amazon Headwaters for pastors’ training a few years ago and returned with heart-stopping stories. (Is there any other kind when serving in mission?!)

As with other partners’ reports, these pictures speak volumes and testify how God multiples our “fishes and loaves” as we walk alongside indigenous believers! Hallelujah!

My missionary friends sent this link on some of the areas where we were two years ago. It explains why Peru is so devastated by the virus. Joel of Jungle Master Ministry sent these pictures of the use of our medical aid plus the boat we helped buy for the Amazon pastors.

Serve Trust Ministries

Updated information on the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on India, ServeTrust and Leena and her family.

On Friday, July 17, Leena’s town of Narasaraopet went back into complete lockdown. There is no stated end, although media reports estimate that it will last a week to 10 days. The lockdown means that only necessary business can be transacted in the early mornings. Leena and her team had been anticipating this announcement as the number of new cases had risen rapidly in the previous 10 days. They worked very hard to get monthly food supplies to villages and children to last them through the lockdown. In my last conversation with Leena on the 17th, she sounded very weary and exhausted.

When I asked Leena what we should tell her friends, she said, “Tell them I don’t like lockdown!” It keeps her from the people, creates too much joblessness and hunger, and causes loss. During the first lockdown, 7 of the 26 lambs that ServeTrust was raising for investment died because feed supplies were limited.

And in her typical enthusiastic way, she told us that “our gracious father has shown us his amazing grace.”. She is so thankful that God has protected everyone that is associated with ServeTrust. No family member, staff member, teacher, child, villager, pastor, etc has contracted coronavirus that she is aware of. She is so thankful to all of you for your prayers.

In the weeks between the lockdowns, Leena and her niece Aashika spent their days out among the people checking on them and providing hunger relief. Photos attached show teenagers in the after school program in Vijayawada in a socially distanced line to receive food, Aashika giving bananas to the children lined up in the Temple village, and a pastor giving a mask to a church member.

Leena’s 21 year old niece Aashika is taking a much more active role in the ministry. She is working as Leena’s assistant during this summer, learning on the job. She is helping to distribute food, ministering to people, and helping Leena with technology needs. Please pray for Aashika that she will discern God’s call on her within ServeTrust. At the same time, Aashika is completing her university classes so that she can take exams and graduate. She goes out with Leena during the day and returns at night to her studies, staying up until the wee hours of the morning.

Recently Leena has been very concerned for Aashika and for Jagan, Leena’s brother-in-law, both who have been suffering occasional fevers, cold symptoms and body aches. She asks for prayers for both. They do not suspect coronavirus. Most recently she reported that they are doing better, but are often working when they don’t feel well. A likely contributing factor is the intense Indian heat during this time of year.

And finally, Leena asks for prayers for one of her long time pastors, Subbarao and his wife, both who are suffering from heart difficulties. He has been the pastor of ServeTrust’s largest church, Eeti Baptist Church for 23 years. He is shown in the attached photo screening a church member for a fever.

We thank you greatly for your continued financial support in these unprecedented times and for your prayers which give Leena such comfort and energy.