Friday, April 12, 2019
Finally, brethren, pray for us,
that the word of the Lord may run swiftly and be glorified,
just as it is with you...
2 Thessalonians 3:1 (NKJV)
1. Myanmar – Pastor Thang has undergone surgery and will spend a few more weeks in the hospital in India before going back to Myanmar. He is eating and drinking on his own and gaining strength. Through the CLC Project Kinship, financial aid has been sent to assist with medical bills and other expenses involved. Pray that the Lord will continue to bless his recovery and that the Lord will continue to provide for all his and his family’s needs. And thank the Lord for moving hearts to provide financial gifts during this time of need.
2. Nepal – Rama Bhitrakoti (Raju’s mother) was recently admitted to the hospital and is now scheduled to undergo surgery to remove cysts on her ovaries. Pray that the surgery is successful and that she recovers quickly so she can return home to her husband and the orphan children that she cares for.
3. New Missionary to Begin work in Togo and West Africa – Missionary Evensen will be moving to Togo in early May. Missionary Ohlmann will accompany him to introduce him to the leaders, pastors, and work in Togo. Missionary Evensen will be primarily working with Pastor Kossi Blewu and the Mission Evangelique Lutherienne Church of Togo (MELC). Since Missionary Evensen is conversant in the French language, this will be a great blessing in working with the seven men who are currently studying to be evangelists and ordained pastors at the MELC Mt. Horeb Lutheran Bible Institute. He will also have several opportunities to preach and teach at the French speaking congregations and preaching stations of the MELC in Togo and Benin.
Missionary Evensen’s new call will also involve working with other French speaking pastors, churches, and contacts in D.R. Congo, Benin, Republic of Congo, and Senegal. Living in Lomé will also put him in close enough proximity to visit and help out in other countries in West Africa. Thank the Lord for the language gifts that He has given to our missionary and please pray for all that is necessary for such a transition.
4. Liberia – Pastor Joseph Kwiwalazu will be traveling to Bopolu with a few individuals from the congregation he serves in Monrovia. While in Bopolu they will spend a few days conducting classes and doctrinal discussions as they meet together to draft a church constitution as they work to establish a new church body in Liberia. Pray that the Lord will provide all that is necessary for this work to go forward and that He will bless this effort.
5. Kenya – Ownership of the property of St. David's Kinship Academy is still caught up in a family dispute. Local leaders are making sure that classes continue peacefully for the time being. Pray that all those involved will find a peaceful and God-pleasing resolution to the issue.
6. Uganda – Bulondani and Iganga have been hit by heavy rains again and many have been forced to rebuild. The church in Iganga needed extensive repairs and the Mission Board was able to provide a small grant through the MDF. Pray that the Lord will keep His children from discouragement during these trying times and grant them courage to continue to proclaim the truth.
7. Kenya/Uganda – Pastor Michael Gurath, who serves as our part-time visiting missionary to Kenya and Uganda, will be traveling to Kenya and Uganda the first two weeks of May to visit to the two schools that are being supported through Project Kinship along with several pastors, teachers, and contacts. Pray for Pastor Gurath, his wife and family, and for those he goes to work with, train, and encourage.
8. India (BELC) – Twenty men recently graduated from the Martin Lutheran Bible Institute of the BELC. These men were ordained and assigned to the congregation they will be serving. Classes began again with Twenty-Five new students on March 15th. Pray that the Lord will bless the ministry of these newly ordained pastors and that He will bless the studies of the new students as they spend the next two years training to be faithful preachers and teachers of God’s saving word.
9. India (CLCI) – Seventeen men from the Immanuel Lutheran Seminary of the CLC-India will graduate, be ordained, and assigned to their congregation in June. Thank the Lord for the training these men have received, for their dedication to their studies, and for the privilege being able to support this important work of training pastors.
10. India – National Elections are taking place in India over the next several weeks. For the past four years the Hindu nationalist political party (BJP) has held the majority in their government and has appointed a BJP Prime Minister. This has led to an increase in persecution of Christians in India. Continue to pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ of the CLC-India and the BELC as they carry on with the great privilege of making disciples of all nations as they baptize and teach all that God has commanded in His Word. Pray that the Lord will keep them strong in the faith and filled with confidence in His love and the privilege of suffering for the sake of Christ and His Kingdom.
11. Bangladesh – Following the March visit by Board of Mission Chairman Joel Krafft and Missionary Ohlmann, the official colloquy process (via email correspondence course) has begun with Pastor Monotosh and the leaders of the Bangladesh Lutheran Church Mission. Pray that the Lord will continue to bless this correspondence and that it will lead to a God-pleasing fellowship based upon a unity of doctrine.
12. The National Lutheran Church of Myanmar – During the annual week long Buddhist Water Festival in April, the NLC-Myanmar will be conducting a series of special outreach Bible studies during this national holiday. This outreach effort is being partially funded through an MDF grant. Thank the Lord for this opportunity to proclaim the Gospel and pray that those who hear the Good News through this effort will be led by the Holy Spirit to repent of their sins and rejoice in the forgiveness that Christ won for all on the cross.
13. CLC-TZ Outreach in Burundi – With the assistance of a Mission Development Fund Grant from the CLC Board of Missions, a representative from the CLC-Tanzania recently completed a three-week visitation to the newly established Mwanza District in the North-Western part of Tanzania. They also visited a few contacts in the country of Burundi that shares a border with Tanzania. Pastor Mshana Godson, vice president of the CLC-TZ, reports that the two weeks of meetings with these eight pastors in Burundi went very well. These are independent pastors who have either withdrawn from false teaching fellowships or have never been formally affiliated with a church body. Following the two weeks of daily seminars the men wrote and all signed a statement declaring their agreement with the teachings of the CLC-TZ. This statement will serve as a God-pleasing starting point as they continue to build upon this God-pleasing foundation of mutual agreement on Biblical doctrine. Pray that the Lord continues to bless and provide for this opportunity to train and develop pastors who are faithful and dedicated to proclaiming the saving truths of God’s saving word.
14. Wartburg Lutheran Theological Seminary of Tanzania – The newly established seminary was dedicated to the Lord and the first semester classes began with six students on February 25th! Praise the Lord for this opportunity to train more men to be faithful preachers and teachers of the Gospel. Pray that the Lord will continue to provide all that is needed and that He will grant wisdom, patience, knowledge, and commitment to all who are involved in this effort further God’s kingdom among the people of Tanzania.
15. Nepal – Our brothers and sisters in Christ are considering many opportunities to further the Gospel in this predominately Hindu and Buddhist nation. They would like to schedule more outreach trips to several districts throughout Nepal. They also continue to train twenty-one men to serve as pastors with an expected graduation/ordination date of early 2020. They are in need of a larger, more permanent facility for the Bible Institute classrooms, dormitory, offices, library, and residence. The cost of land and construction in the Kathmandu valley is very high. They are exploring different ideas and opportunities for such a building project. The HCLCN has also completed translation work on the Luther’s Large Catechism and need funding to send it to the printers. There are several other books and teaching materials that they are working to translate and print for use in Evangelism efforts and for use in the Bible Institute. Pray that the Lord will bless these efforts and provide the necessary funding for their proposed building project, outreach efforts, and translation/printing projects.
16. Zambia – The nation of Zambia is in the southern hemisphere and so they are deep into their summer months. They are experiencing extremely hot temperatures and a lack of rain. Please pray that the Lord will provide much needed precipitation for the nation and especially for the many families we are privileged to call brothers and sisters in Christ.
17. Zambia – Say a prayer of thanksgiving to the Lord for the opportunity that He has given to the CLC-Zambia to purchase a building for about one-third of the going cost. They have been looking for a building to purchase for the past few years but there was nothing available within a price-range that they could afford with a CLC-Mission Development Fund grant. Their patience paid off and the Lord has provided! With a grant from the CLC MDF they were able to make a down-payment on the property before it was sold to another buyer. They have taken possession of the building and with a special memorial gift they will begin making repairs and renovations soon.
18. Zambia – Plans are being developed for pastoral training seminars that will meet quarterly for one week in the newly acquired Mission Building in Livingstone. Pray that the Lord will bless this effort to provide necessary on-going training for the Gospel ministry and that He will provide the necessary resources to carry out this work in an efficient and God-pleasing way.
19. Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) –Through an MDF grant from the CLC, construction continues on three buildings that will serve as classrooms/chapel, dormitory, and a library/office for Trinity Lutheran Seminary. There is also plenty of room on the property for farming where the students will be responsible to grow their own food as a portion of their school fees. They will also be able sell some of the food they grow for their own financial support. Pray that the Lord will bless these men and those who are teaching them in their last year of classroom instruction and during their year-long internship. They are all scheduled to graduate and be ordained in October of 2020.
20. Nigeria – Our brothers and sisters in Christ of the Nigeria-CLC are facing a variety of challenges as they work together to proclaim the Gospel, care for the sheep of the flocks the serve, provide both spiritual and bodily care for orphaned children, and train men for the Gospel ministry at the NCLC Martin Luther Bible Institute. Please pray that the Lord will provide the pastors and leaders of the NCLC with wisdom, compassion, patience, commitment to the Lord and His word, love for one another, and all that is needed to carry out this important work.
21. CLC Online Theological Studies – continue to pray for individuals in the following countries around the world who are studying God’s word through email correspondence courses as they continue to train to be faithful preachers and teachers of God’s saving word:
1. Senegal, West Africa
2. D. R. Congo, Central Africa
3. Liberia, West Africa
4. Bangladesh, South East Asia
5. Zimbabwe, Africa
6. Myanmar, South East Asia
7. Tanzania, East Africa
8. Kenya, East Africa
9. Uganda, East Africa
10. Congo-Brazzaville, Central Africa