Posts Tagged ‘Bethesda Outreach’


Written by Abby Bickel on . Posted in

Gary, with ABWE teammates, recently made a survey trip into the South American country of Guyana. An English-speaking country, Guyana is considered, culturally, to be part of the Caribbean. It shares many things in common with Caribbean island countries including the immigration of many Hindu and Muslim people, making the Caribbean one of the areas of the world least reached by the gospel. Gary asked one Christian pastor how he was so successful in leading both Hindus and Muslims to Christ. Pastor J. replied, “I love them and I share the gospel of Jesus Christ with them.” Gary asks us to pray for Pastor J. and for the possibility of opening an ABWE work in that needy country. Trinidad is another such country with ABWE teammates already at work there. Pray also for Nicaragua where 24 ABWE workers are in a tenuous position as political protests and violence rock the country. Their lives and ministries are being affected, but they want to stand by their local ministry partners as long as possible.
Bethesda Outreach Ministries was established in 2000 to provide Christian homes and families for some of the millions of South African children orphaned by the HIV/AIDS crisis. The BOMI campus now houses 43 children, parented by eight trained Christian houseparents and educated through 7th grade at Jabulani Christian Academy. Since the retirement of founders John and Lois Mixon, the BOMI board has been praying God would direct them to a new permanent Director, preferably South African. It appears that Rudi van Jaarsveld and his wife, Michelle, may be the couple God has appointed. BOMI is also moving to a new model of sheltering and parenting orphans. Rather than keeping all the families on the Bethesda campus, the plan is to move the families to homes in the community nearby, using the campus facilities for training houseparents and staff. Pray for the transitions Bethesda is experiencing: a new Director, moving families into the community, expansion of Jabulani Christian Academy, and a transitions program for young people graduating from high school. Pray particularly for the salvation of the children who grow up at Bethesda and faithfulness in following the Lord.
Mark and Jill are praying for a new place to live. The reason is, they are part of Credo Baptist Church’s new church plant team and, although they don’t live far from the plant’s targeted neighborhood, their home will be the meeting place where the developing group gathers for worship and Bible study. Therefore, it needs to be larger than their present home. The obstacle is, inevitably, cost. Housing has tripled in price in the 17 years Billingtons have lived in Ste-Foy. They are asking us to pray with them for God’s guidance and His provision as they seek to begin a new ministry.



Written by Abby Bickel on . Posted in

The Bible Institute’s students have returned from their annual week-long internship helping four local churches in southern France with preaching, song leading, testimonies, Sunday School and evangelism outreaches. They also helped a Christian camp prepare for the summer season of hosting up to a thousand young people. Rich says, “These internships help our students put into practice what they learn in class and prepares them for full-time service when they graduate.” The 40th anniversary of the Institute’s founding is being planned and all former students and teachers, now scattered worldwide, have been invited to the celebrations. Vissers ask us to pray that Walter and Carol Loescher, who’ll be replacing Rich and Karyn in directing the Institute, will get visas in time to arrive in July to take over. Vissers will be visiting WBC in November, 2018. Pray for them as they begin the process of turning over the Institute to new directors and preparing for their retirement.
“Thank you for giving me the greatest gift of all–the knowledge of God and the gospel,” said Johannah, who was thanking her foster parents at Bethesda’s farewell to houseparents Jones and Lena Phago who are moving back into the community with three of the BOM children. Phagos have been with Bethesda almost from the beginning and are being replaced with a new couple, Joseph and Charmain Mathebula. Pray for these two couples in transition. The Mathebulas especially are new to the child care ministry. Another young couple, Tshepo and Katlego Mnisi, have come to Bethesda as a houseparent reliever couple. Tsepo is completing practical work for a Social Studies certification working under BOM’s social worker, Natasha Retief. They are growing in their knowledge and understanding of God’s Word and the staff are looking forward to, and praying for, God’s continuing to develop them as a family and as houseparents.
Director Jon Beight says Twin Lakes had a large number of volunteers this Spring helping the camp prepare for a busy summer season. He thanks God for continuing to provide resources and talents so that the outdoor Christian education ministry of the camp can develop. Some of the projects volunteers worked on include construction of the Elm/Walnut Cabin, a new centralized water system, a new staff home, the hiring of CITs, sending of prayer partner material to Summer staff and the writing of a Summer Program Guide. The camp has nearly 700 children and teens signed up for this summer season and is praying for another 500 before camp opens. Pray with them for a season of salvations, spiritual growth, service commitment and good relationships between campers and staff.


Written by Abby Bickel on . Posted in

South Africa
Bethesda Outreach will be making some changes in the family homes this month. Two long-serving couples, the Shikwambanes and the Phagos, will be retiring and returning to live in the community near BOMI. Both couples have been with the orphanage as house parents since the beginning of the ministry. Both husbands, Fritz Shikwambane and Jones Phago, will continue working some days at Bethesda while Masello Shikwambane begins ministry at a local nursing home. Lena Phagos will continue caring for some of the children from Bethesda as these kids have known no other parents or home. Pray for these two couples as they transition into the community. Ask God to make their witness strong. Pray for the new house parents Bethesda has trained to take their place. Ask God to help the children in these homes adjust.
Kelly and Sherri are praying for more missionaries to join those already serving in Central Asia. More missionaries would enable ABWE to expand ministries in those countries. Some of the countries are largely Muslim and foreign Christian workers can’t get residency permits, so they make ministry trips into the region to teach at a seminary and help local pastors plant churches. In Kyiv (Kiev, Ukraine), Kelly is encouraging the opportunity to upgrade and expand the space that the Church Ministries Institute (CMI) uses on the campus of the Kyiv Theological Seminary. The CMI will occupy a dedicated wing and will be able to expand its programs, including online courses, which offer short-term biblical education to church members. Kelly led this ministry during his first term as a missionary. Pray for the funding needed to facilitate this project.
Craigs shared highlights in the ministries of missionaries under their supervision in the regions of Asia Pacific and East Asia. Asians are taking more and more responsibility for sharing the gospel. Four hundred graduates of the Asia Biblical Theological Seminary are serving across Asia with 300 students from more than a dozen countries preparing for service. Sixteen graduates from Goroka Baptist Bible College in Papua New Guinea have dispersed throughout their country to pastor and plant churches and lead in congregations. A Chinese couple saved in a Bible study 10 years ago are pastoring a church in a capital city. A Cambodian who became a Christian in a US jail and was deported from the US back to his home country where he married a Christian woman. They are now in training to reach other deportees and to plant a church for them. Praise God for His work in the lives of these national Christians and for the ministry they bring in their own language and culture to their countrymen.


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Two of our missionaries, Doug Boisvert of Tri-M and Kent Craig of ABWE, are working on getting theological training and materials to pastors in what we call East Asia. Doug has taken on the challenge of this vast region for Tri-M in conjunction with his work in Mongolia, but new regulations in the country mean creative thinking on the part of him and his local co-workers to hold training modules. Kent Craig says the East Asian church is experiencing “explosive growth with more than one million new believers annually”. A free Bible Study Toolbox has been put together to provide pastors and ministry leaders with crucial resources like Bible translations, Hebrew and Greek concordances, sample sermon outlines for every Bible passage and commentaries, all translated into local languages and available online. Kent is helping raise money to design and develop a mobile Bible commentary app for East Asians with access to the internet. Pray that these efforts to teach Christians and train pastors in a country hostile to Christians will be effective and open God’s Word to believers who want to study and grow.

God continues to show His goodness and faithfulness by bringing more and more folks from the neighborhood to Nueva Vida Church, Hornbrooks write. Because of that, the church needs a bigger auditorium and is hoping that construction can begin in the next couple of weeks. The expanded auditorium will have a total of 250 seats. “We are very ready to have a nice roof and four walls,” they say. The church’s Christmas outreach brought in 180 people to enjoy the musical drama called “The Mystery of Christmas”. In April, Nueva Vida will help host the Regional Counseling Conference, a Biblical counseling organization Sam is involved with, teaching at its seminars throughout Latin America. Pray with Hornbrooks for continued growth as the church’s programs reach into the community. Pray also for a trouble-free construction project.
The staff of Bethesda are praising God for enabling their program with new equipment and facilities in 2017. Two new boreholes (wells) were add to ease the tight water situation on the campus. A new computer lab, re-outfitted music room and expanded pre-school playground were added to the Jabulani Christian Academy facility. They are presently raising money to enlarge the school auditorium to fit in the whole student body of 200 plus. New staff included a Child Care Administrator, trained houseparents, and a board member. BOMI held its first Orphan Care Seminar, reaching and impacting many people and churches interested in orphan care. The staff hosted many short-term teams from universities and churches and interns who worked with them for several months. And, most important, new children were added to the seven families on and off campus. Thank God for blessing all aspects of the work of the orphan village and for the spiritual growth seen in children’s lives.





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1521 S County Road 75 W
Danville, IN  46122