October 16-25, 2004, is the tentative date for the next medical missions trip to Honduras. Donna Hollopeter will lead it. During this trip, the team will focus on village medical work outside of La Ceiba, Honduras. The group will travel each day to villages to do medical evaluations, examinations, and referrals for further treatment. We are looking for 18 persons–doctors, nurses, physical therapists, translators, and support personnel. The support personnel will take care of keeping medical records, registering prescriptions written, and setup and tear down work. You must be at least 21 years old. Cost will be $1200 per person.

If you are interested in participating, please contact Donna at Global Ministries at 1-888-622-3019. A packet of information can be sent to you.

Rick and Ann Runyan and family are investigating whether God is calling them to fulltime mission service. They are now in Honduras and will be there for the entire month of February, spending time with US work teams and getting acquainted with ministry in Honduras Conference. The Runyans are from the Idaville UB church (Idaville, Pa.), and their pastor is Dirk Small. Please pray for them this month as they take this step of faith.

A UB work group from Canada traveled to Haiti on January 30, and will be there until February 10. There was initially a great deal of concern, because both the United States and Canadian governments had travel advisories out for Haiti. In recent weeks, there has been a great deal of unrest in Haiti. However, the group decided to go, and thus far, they have not had any troubles. You can be in prayer for them,though. They are working with construction, medical, children’s, and medical ministries.

Karis Vong, pastor of Living Water Church, is due with her first baby on February 26. Please pray for a safe delivery and for a smooth transition to parenthood for her and her husband, Lawrence. Pray also for the church members of Living Water as they take more leadership during this time.

Pastor H.M. Lee, who heads up the UB work in Thailand, organized a special Christmas celebration gathering and invited many non-Christians to lunch and games. An evangelistic gathering was held in the evening and it was attended by 500 people.

Here are several items from Hong Kong Conference:

  • Arek and Donna Delik, UB missionaries serving in Poland, are currently in Hong Kong for a month. They arrived January 21, and will return to Poland on February 16. Donna is originally from Hong Kong. While there, they will share their mission work in several Hong Kong UB churches.
  • Ms M.F. Ngai, a member of St. Luke’s UB church in Hong Kong, has been accepted by the conference missions committee as a missionary to Macau. Pray that God will help her raise the required expenses and financial support.
  • Bridget Ho, an endorsed UB missionary from Hong Kong Conference, began serving in Sri Lanka last year. She has now transferred to Nepal, and is still working with Operation Mobilization. Please pray for her adaptation as she is moving from a hot country to a cold one.

Kent and Carol Maxwell are currently in their second year at the Caribbean Graduate School of Theology in Jamaica. Kent was previously pastor of New Hope UB church in Huntington, Ind. On December 21, Kent wrote the following:

“We are again faced with making another decision in regard to continuing at the Caribbean Graduate School of Theology for a third year. When we went to CGST in the summer of 2002, it was for only one year when a national was to return to the Graduate School after completing her doctoral studies in California. However, that did not happen. She expects to complete the degree in the summer of 2004; however, she desires to remain in California to complete the internship required to be licensed in the State of California as a psychologist and to get certification from the American Psychological Association.

“Hence, the Graduate School has asked us to return in the fall for another year and longer if we would be available. After next year, it would be to direct the Master of Divinity program. Please be in prayer for us as we struggle with this decision. There certainly is a strong pull to remain and complete the task I began and possibly to help strengthen the M .Div. program later. There is an equally strong pull to return to our home in Huntington where we would be nearer to our children, visit family and friends, and opt for a slower lifestyle. Carol much prefers to remain in the States. We are really serious in requesting your prayers for us in this very great decision.”

Lamar and Karen Crumbley, who had been helping with the Macau English Language Program since September, returned to the States on December 27. Russ and Nellie Birdsall arrived on January 10, and will serve as volunteers in Macau through May. This is their 6th time to Macau.

The ELP hired a new secretary, Tommas, who started working on January 2. His first two months will be on a trial basis.

Paul Coy, former UB missionary in Macau, has finished his third semester at Asia-Pacific Nazarene Theological Seminary (APNTS) in the Philippines, putting him halfway through his Masters of Divinity degree. He hopes to graduate in April 2005. Paul writes of a great opportunity which recently came his way.

“Halfway through the semester, I had an amazing surprise. It shocked me when Dr. Brent Cobb, Regional Director of the Asia-Pacific Region for the Church of the Nazarene, called me to ask me if I would accept a part-time job working 20 hours a week. This would not have been a surprise if it meant working with teens in one church, but he asked me to accept the position Youth Coordinator for the Asia-Pacific Region. This means I am responsible for facilitating the youth work in 29 countries in the Asia-Pacific Region. Cool part-time job with huge responsibilities, huh?

“The Nazarene church calls its ministry to youth NYI (Nazarene Youth International). I am one of seven regional NYI coordinators in the world for the Church of the Nazarene. I very humbly accepted the position in September, as I felt God’s calling to serve in this position. I now enjoy working at Asia-Pacific Regional office on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.”

Jennifer Blandin, a fulltime UB missionary in Macau, sent the following on November 23.

This year marked the 50th year of car racing in Macau. Where do they race cars in such a small place like Macau? That would be on the streets of Macau! While it brings a lot of visitors from around the world to watch the Formula One motorcycles and Formula Three racing cars, it creates havoc for the locals! Macau’s traffic jams get more jammed in November, but I guess that is part of the tradition!

Jana, her sister Cindy, and I took the opportunity to go to one of the time trials. It was exciting to see the cars speed by and we took lots of digital pictures. But after one hour, my ears said it was time to go! I think I ‘heard’ that experience for the rest of the day!

7-Year Stretch! In baseball, the seventh inning stretch is when you stand up and stretch because you’ve been sitting in those hard seats for so long that you no longer feel your toes. It’s a tradition, but also a warm welcome because you’ve been a faithful fan to sit for that long and cheer on your team.

After a person has lived in Macau for seven years, a foreigner goes from being a “temporary” resident to a “permanent” resident. Somehow the time has snuck up on me–I just received my permanent residency card. Amazing how the time flies! I remember when I first agreed to come to Macau, I thought it would be for just three years. Guess God knew better to bait me and then hook me into seeing that His timeframe for me in Macau was longer than three years. Once again God’s plan are far greater than ours, and for that I’m grateful!

Victories. For the past few months a teenage guy, Ziv (don’t know where he got that English name), has been attending Living Word Church with his friends Edwin and Michael. At the beginning of this month there was an evangelistic meeting that Ziv and Edwin attended. During that meeting, Ziv accepted Christ into his life! We’ve got a new brother in Christ!

Today at Living Water Church was a baptismal service. Ken and Gloria, Maggie, and Fong Fong (a woman) took the public profession of faith. During the service, they each shared their testimony and how God had been working in their lives. Some of their non-Christian friends and family were in attendance and heard what they were saying. What a witness! Each shared about ways that life’s difficulties haven√¢t disappeared, but that now they know that they are not alone! God is right their with them. It was an amazing service!

This Christmas we will hold a Christmas party at the Taipa English Center. We are making final plans and hope it will be a special time with the people we know from our English classes and Bible studies.

Please continue to lift both Jana and I up in your prayers. We are still seeking God√¢s direction as to what direction to take the work here in Macau. There have been additional pressures that have come up as well. I have appreciated the words of encouragement that have been received. They have been a true blessing.