Believe it or not, the second quarter of 2022 is already underway! And in celebration of all that God is already doing at Harvest Christian Church and beyond this year, we wanted to highlight one of the key elements of ministry we are blessed to be a part of … our missionaries.
We also wanted to bring your attention to one of our newest features at church … our brand new missions board, literally (see the picture above). Make sure to check out this fun feature on your way into the church service Sunday! It highlights all the missionaries we support and where they are located in the world. Check it out if you have not already, and make sure to lift our missionaries up in prayer as you think about them. (And do not worry, while Antarctica is not on our map, we do indeed love that continent as well, along with all its resident penguins and other “locals” who call it home).
On top of the normal support we are able to give to our missionaries, we have been blessed to contribute to in recent months to other projects and mission opportunities. One of these projects includes helping one of our former youths, Senny Scherler, who is a student at California Baptist University, serve in South Asia through the school’s International Service Projects program later this spring. Through a connection from Marty McMahon, one of our elders here at Harvest, we were also able to help provide some much-needed supplies for a vocational school in Africa through ERM Rwanda.
Here are some of the latest updates from our missionaries:
After over two years, Harry was finally able to return to Cuba for the 51st time! He spent his time down on his beloved island reconnecting with coworkers in person and checking in on all the people he has so desperately missed while he has been away. Harry stays in regular contact with his people down in Cuba. He is constantly praying for the needs of the workers down there as well as for more leaders to join Team Expansion in its efforts
to plant more churches and share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with all who will listen. While down in Cuba, he was also able to start making plans for a leadership training that will take place in May.
Like so many other countries throughout the world, Cuba’s economy and its people are struggling. So on top of planting more churches, this means Harry and Team Expansion are doing their part to shore up funds for food, medicine, and microbusiness loans. All these aspects are part of what makes it possible to gain momentum with what they are accomplishing for God’s Kingdom.
Since returning from Cuba, outside of the normal duties Harry has to his people in Cuba, he has also been making the rounds locally. Recently, he has visited a couple of joint services that involve some of the local Spanish-speaking congregations in the area. They are praying for a church to be planted here in the far reaches of East County.
Bev Meyer / South Sudan African Mission
After three years of the US not being able to send a team to South Sudan, Bev and her team were finally able to return to the country they love so much back in January. During their visit, they visited five remote villages—four of which Bev had never been before (and all of which she was the first white lady to ever come).
In each of those villages, the team was not only able to distribute food and medicine while they were there but could share the Gospel and worship with them too. In Juba, particularly, the team was able to see the property SSAM purchased where they plan on building a church building.
Bev and the team also got a chance to assist Dr. John while they were there. Dr. John helps lead the team on the ground in South Sudan. He spends his time at the mobile medical clinics treating patients with the medicine SSAM helps provide. Dr. John was born in one of these remote villages and has come to be known as a believer in Jesus that treats everyone with compassion and care … just like Jesus himself would have had He been in those villages doing the same thing Dr. John does.
Testimony from Mary Awut Achuil from Uyoon Church of Christ: “This food is of great help. It will take me seven to 10 days before I resume eating the tree leaves. It is very hard getting food this time around, and it must be purchased of which I am unable to buy it. … I thank SSAM and their friends … for providing me with this food.”
Cash, Lisa, and GNI continue to serve those experiencing homelessness and battling related addictions in Central Oregon. In one of their latest reports, they talked about their Mobile Showers program that they take to different areas of need, and welcoming all people in need to enjoy a warm shower and a clean change of clothes.
At a recent community cleanup day, a young man named Korey, who oversees the shower truck and was part of GCI nine years ago himself, encountered a woman named Amber who had three small children and a 7-year-old little boy. Upon Korey approaching her after seeing her hesitantly come out from behind some trees filthy and in need of some help, he was able to find out about her situation, get her the help she needed, and eventually help land her family back in a stable living situation. They are all now in a home with extended family and continue to checkin with Korey and the team from GCI.
Outside of this encouraging story from GCI, Cash and Lisa have been busy serving a large influx of folks in need of warm shelter during a recent cold snap that has seen temperatures dip clear down into single digits. At the Bend shelter, the numbers have jumped to 110+ individuals during this stretch. They are in the process of opening a year-round 24/7 shelter in Bend beginning this summer.
Jonathan & Fawn Turner / Key Communications
As war rages on in Ukraine and the surrounding region, Jonathan and Fawn continue to do their part to reach the people of Pakistan and beyond with the good news of Jesus Christ. While not directly in the crossfire of war between Ukraine and Russia, they continue to experience the restless impact of all those on edge of what Jonathan’s father, Lee Turner, calls the “war drums beating loudly far to the north of Israel.” Key Communications is doing their part to prepare their listeners and inform as many people as possible what is to come, and how God is sovereign over all of it.
As part of their mission to reach people with the Gospel in the Urdu language, one of the most significant accomplishments in recent months has been the completion of a program series called “Khuda Ki Talash.” This is a series focused on the attributes of God and was written specifically for ex-Muslims. Other programs they have put together recently include an expository series focused on Luke-Acts to go along with a couple of new commentaries on 1 John and Mark.
Harvest supports eight full-time missionary families—all of which our missions board keeps in touch with regularly. And over the last couple of years, while many of them have had to adjust plans because of the COVID-19 pandemic, separate health-related challenges, or other unforeseen circumstances, all our missionaries continue to do God’s Kingdom work.
So, as we start the second quarter of 2022—and on behalf of all our missionaries—thank you, once again, for being an ongoing part of God’s Kingdom work all over the world. Without your support, Harvest would not be able to make cross-cultural missions one of the cornerstones of our Church. Harvest gives 12% of all general tithes and offerings to support cross cultural missions. Your donations are making a world-wide impact!
Please continue to give to missions and our church at large during these trying times: https://www.harvestworld.com/give/.