2012 March 16
Dear family, friends, and team members,
Greetings from Chad! Life has been very busy, and I look forward to sharing a summary of the progress here. We are thick in the dry season and are experiencing quite a number of dust storms. The airplane took off this morning only to circle and return to land because the dust was so thick that visibility was reduced to instrument conditions. Several of our flights have been delayed because of the dust storms. Temperatures are now often above 100 degrees F in the daytime. We have been fighting various illnesses, especially malaria. Mangoes are coming on again and are becoming plentiful.
Before I go too much further, let me explain Africa Aviation Ministry
(AAM)'s three email publications for those of you who do not know:
AAM Newsletter -- If you receive this by email, you already are subscribed to AAM newsletter. This is where we post a project summary or updates every month or two.
AAM Blog -- We post little tidbits of information or stories here for the people who are interested to know more about daily life in Chad. http://africaaviationministry.blogspot.com/
AAM Prayer -- This is a list of prayer requests for those who would like to be praying for specific areas of our project. It is sent out once every week or every other week. [Original subscription information has been removed, as it was outdated. Current subscription information: Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org You will receive a confirmation email; follow the instructions in that email to complete the process of subscribing.]
It is sometimes challenging to stay updated, especially over a cellphone-usb-computer Internet connection. But we'll try our best. Now, on to project news.
Probably the biggest thing to happen over the past few months is the completion of the reinforcement phase of our hanger. Nearly every piece of the original hanger had to be reinforced due to an incompetent "engineer" we hired. At first, analysis showed that the structure was unsafe and must be pulled down. But after spending many many hours analyzing the situation, Kel designed an ingenious way to reinforce the structure to a safe standard. Kel faced many tough problems, but as a result of daily seeking wisdom from God, he was able to leave behind a solid structure ready for roof sheeting and walls! Thank you, Kel and Josie, for your many long days of unselfish labor for this project and for everything you did during your stay here.
Bronwyn, a short-term volunteer from United Kingdom, has decided to join our team as a long-term volunteer. She has been a great help during her time here and will probably end up working at the nutrition center.
Construction on the nutrition center is still moving forward. Interior plastering is finished on three buildings. For the first building, doors and windows are about done, leaving only floors and security bars on the porch before somebody can move in.
We have been very happy to observe a shift in our focus to more ministry. Yes, there is still a lot of construction to do, but we are choosing to spend more time as a team in active ministry. A Bible study group meets weekly at the villages of Kasire, Dabgue, and Bendele. A weekly branch Sabbath School meets weekly in the villages of Kasire, Dabgue, and Gisa. Monday evening, our team quits an hour early and visits our neighbors in an effort to become more acquainted with them. Each morning we have worship and prayer together. We have invitations to start work in over villages, but we do not have the capacity to fill these needs at this time. Pray the Lord of the harvest to send more laborers!
Sickness, a death, and other issues have delayed the obtaining of land for the Bendele church. But the paperwork is in progress and is currently at the mayor's office. Once the paperwork is finished, we plan to raise the church. Funding is already in place, so we are eager to this paperwork hassle to finish.
Plans are to incorporate our Bible research center with the church for now. This will allow us to start this project sooner without the hassle of land and construction at a separate location.
People really love to use our two French concordances. They are just amazed at how easy it is to study a topic in Scripture. Frederick is working on his first sermon to be presented this Sabbath. Franco is preparing a Bible study, probably to present next Thursday.
For almost a week, I flew a doctor/pastor team to visit health clinics in some more remote villages. It was a learning experience for me, and I really enjoyed the work. Read more about this on our blog.
Thank you to those who have sent some French Steps to Christ. People really appreciate these books. I often have people come asking for reading material, and I am happy when I have some of these to give out.
Please keep this project in your prayers continually. Please pray especially for those people we interact with that are close to making a full commitment to be Christians. Thank you for the donations that have been faithfully been coming in, enabling us to move forward!
Till next time,
In His service,
Jonathan and Melody