Summary: Join me as I interview missionaries and let them share about their ministries. Allow them to encourage you to serve the Lord wherever He calls you.
Brent and his wife are missionaries in Romania. God had been leading Brent towards Romania since he was in high school, though he did not know it at the time. Besides church planting, Bro. George and his family are involved in camp ministries in Romania. Bro. George tells about the Gypsies in Romania as well as encourages Christians to be involved in missions. This involvement can come by way of being a missionary or through gaining a greater burden to pray for missionaries through a short term mission trip.
Missionary Jodi Harrison will primarily be working with university students when she moves to Salamanca, Spain. She will do this by enrolling as a student and organizing Bible study groups within the school. Jodi will help church planters in their efforts on the field by working with children and teens. The country of Spain is the least evangelized Spanish speaking country. Jodi will be taking the Gospel to the younger generation as she studies more Spanish and possibly Arabic. Visit Jodi's website to read her prayer letters and ministry updates.
Josiah Ritchie describes himself as a technology missionary. He seeks to connect missionaries and church people through the wonders of technology. Much of his ministry is helping to facilitate communications between the two groups. Join Josiah and me as we talk about how he works out his goals and how God led him to where he is in ministry today. Bro. Josiah also shares a couple of stories illustrating the power of technology to change people's lives. One of the things he mentions is programs which teach discipleship lessons through cell phones. This is like the project missionary Brad Rhoads mentioned in his first interview on Missionary Talks episode 43. Bro. Ritchie has a website where you can learn more about him and his ministry. You can also follow his ministry on Facebook.
Mike Pettengill works in Honduras in a church planting ministry. Unlike many missionaries he works in a team with other missionary couples and individuals. In this episode of Missionary Talks Mike talks about some of the blessings and struggles of having a team on the field. Each team member brings his or her own abilities and skills so that the team can accomplish much more than each person individually. Another thing that Bro. Pettengill shares with the listeners is his experience of going to language school and taking his kids to the mission field at an older age than most missionaries. He and his wife worked in professional fields before being called to Honduras. We also talk a little about recreation and staying healthy on the field. You can visit the website that talks about the team of missionaries Mike works with. The Pettengill family also have their own personal website so that you can learn more about Mike and his family. You can also follow Mike on Twitter.
Katie Folden, who was interviewed in Missionary Talks episode 63, gives us an update from some of the events following the March 2011 earthquake that has devastated the country of Japan. After the destructive earthquake there was a tsunami that destroyed lives and cities in the northern part of the country. Fortunately for Katie she lives in a mountain city far from the coast, but she is affected spiritually and emotionally for the people of Japan with whom she works. Katie shares with the listeners how they can specifically pray for the people of Japan and the rescue and relief efforts that are taking place. She also mentioned a couple of agencies that she recommends that could use contributions. CRASH Japan is a relief organization that Katie and other missionaries are working with to physically help the people of Japan while sharing the love of Christ in word and deed. By visiting the donation page at the CRASH website you can see various options for properly donating to the needs in Japan. She also mentioned that the church she works with in Japan is putting together care packages and helping to prepare housing and shelters for refugees. Those donations can be sent through Central Missionary Clearinghouse. Checks need to say "Japanese Emergency Fund" on them. CENTRAL MISSIONARY CLEARINGHOUSEJapanese Emergency FundP.O. Box 219228Houston, Texas 77218-9228You can leave a comment or email me if you have any questions for Katie on how you can help.
Bro. Gene Sharp is a media technician who serves missionaries by setting up broadcasting opportunities. While the vast majority of his work is in the field of audio, he also works with video and print media. Bro. Sharp goes on location, either to churches in the US or on the foreign field, to physically put together all the equipment that is needed to make a radio or TV station operate. Bro. Gene shares with the listeners how that God has given him a special desire and ability in the field of technology. He went to Bible college to train as a missionary, and while he preaches quite a bit in his ministry, he has allowed God to lead him into the specific field where he should be serving. Bro. Sharp encourages listeners to be sensitive to how the Lord is leading in their life and to be aware of the special skills and talents the Lord has gifted them with. Bro. Gene Sharp's ministry is called Independent Baptist Media. At their website you can read Bro. Sharp's prayer letter and see about upcoming ministry opportunities.
Bro. George Zarris is a missionary working to help pastors and other missionaries share the Gospel by means of mass media and broadcasting. Primarily his work is with radio stations, but any opportunity to help a spread the Gospel by way of TV, satellite or radio is his passion. In some cases this ministry has him talking with people inside government agencies trying to work through the legal paperwork to get a station on the air. At other times he is raising funds and physically constructing radio stations in foreign countries. Bro. George was a pastor for many years and was led into radio ministry by seeing how effective radio and TV can be in spreading any message. God led him to resign the church he started so that he could begin bringing people to the Lord through the power of radio. During the first years he learned the programing side of radio and has been using that information to help other Christian radio stations be more effective in their ministry. Listen as Bro. Zarris shares some amazing stories of what God is doing around the world through radio.
Tony and Laura Macias contacted me a couple of months ago and asked if I would interview Brad Rhoads again to get an update on his ministry. They were intrigued by the original interview because God had used Brad to show them that not all missionaries were church planters and that they could use their skills on the mission field. They are now raising their support preparing for full time missionary service. Tony will be working with Bro. Brad Rhoads in MAF's Learning Technologies. As an educator he will help the men who are learning from the Bible training tools that are created by Learning Technologies to know how best to use these tools. He will also be working with the curriculum creators to help them to understand what is needed in the field to help the students learn well. Laura will work as an Orality Specialist. She will help train missionaries and nationals on how to teach the Bible in oral societies. These could be either non-literate people groups or people whose culture is more of an oral one---relying on verbal stories as opposed to written word to transmit information. She will be using the God Story's program called Simply the Story as the basis for what she will be teaching. Please visit their website to keep up to date on their mission journey.
Bro. Jim Belisle is a missionary evangelist. He travels to different fields helping missionaries conduct evangelistic crusades as well as teaches in Bible Institutes around the world. Bro. Jim shares with us some of the different ways he helps missionaries. He also encourages listeners to do their part is assisting missionaries in two specific ways. First he encourages the listeners to pray for their missionaries. The second thing he encourages friends and supporters back home to do is realize that missionaries have taken a financial cut recently because the US dollar is not as strong now as it had been. Without losing any support missionaries are taking a financial cut because of the weakened dollar. Continue to support and consider raising your financial commitment to your missionaries. Please take time to visit Bro. Jim's website and pray for him and his family as he travels.
Tanzania is a country in East Africa where Rodney Myers and his family serve as missionaries. They work with the Datooga tribe as church planters. Bro. Rodney shares a bit about the Datooga tribe and the recent publication of the Datooga Bible. One of the things we talked at length about was linguistic training and how it can be a benefit to the missionary. This is true if a missionary is going into a tribal setting where there might not be a formal language school, but also for missionaries going to minister in a language that is not their native tongue. Bro. Rodney mentioned the linguistics program that he attended and later gave me some resources of linguistic interest. Linguistic Resources: Baptist Bible Translators Institute L.A.M.P. (order form) SIL International Be sure to visit Bro. Myers' blog for stories of life in Tanzania.
I spoke with Justin Long about the information he provides to readers about missionary news and trends. He has a resource of links and information as well as commentary that is useful for missionaries and those who pray for mission works around the world. You can go to his site to find out how to access the resources. You can also find Justin's information on Facebook. Justin also mentioned specific resources where he gets some of his missions news (not all would be considered conservative religious news). Doug Nichols Tall Skinny Kiwi Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) World Vision Assist News Compassion International Ed Stetzer Baptist Press Mission Network News Google Reader Common Craft's excellent video: RSS in Plain English If you have questions for Justin you can write to me or leave a comment. You can also go to Justin's site and get his contact information. I would like to have Justin back for future Chats episodes. Your questions will help direct the topic of our conversation.
I first talked with Brad in February 2008. He talked about the computer projects that he would be working on for MAF in their Learning Technologies department. But all of that was tentative since he wasn't actively working with MAF at the time. If you have not heard the original interview, then you may want to go back and listen to that one. Now that Brad has been working with MAF for almost 2 years it was good to find out what has taken place with those projects and to see what he is currently working on. Brad is a computer programmer who has been called to missions and is using the skills that God has allowed him to learn in the ministry. In the interview Brad encourages the listeners to find out what God has gifted them with and seek to serve the Lord in however they are called to serve. The websites Brad mentioned were: Mission Aviation Fellowship Mission Aviation Fellowship Learning Technologies Brad's information at MAF Brad's blog where you can find his recent prayer letters
I was introduced to Missionary Jeff Bush just a few weeks before we arrived in Argentina. Bro. Jeff has been used by the Lord to start a church that has already started another church and is looking to begin two more in the coming year. Enjoy the conversation as Bro. Bush talks about how the Lord led him to the field and some of the details of his preparation for the ministry he is doing today. He also shares information about language school that many missionaries will need to attend as they prepare for ministry on a foreign field. If you are considering missionary work, or just want to know more about life as a missionary, be sure to visit Bro. Jeff's website. Along with having his prayer letters and ministry information, he has good resources to help a missionary on deputation and to avoid some common mistakes of the ministry. He also has a website for his ministry in Argentina that is written in Spanish.
This is a continuation of the Missionary Chats 03: Culture Shock (Part 1) interview with LaMoin Cunningham. Please take time to listen to that episode to get a background of where this conversation came from. LaMoin and I ended the last episode talking about what friends back home could do to help the missionary as he deals with culture shock, or culture fatigue. This episode continues with other ideas of what friends can do by suggesting certain types of things they can send and how to send them. Show Links: Life With LaMoin 10 Great Mission Trip Ideas Journey to Everest Missionary Talks 43: Brad Rhoads
I talked with LaMoin Cunningham about culture shock. In this first part of the conversation we define how culture shock can effect a missionary and how friends back home can communicate with missionaries to help them through their time of culture shock, or culture fatigue. I interviewed LaMoin and her husband in a previous episode of Missionary Talks. The reason I wanted to talk with LaMoin about this is she gave a lecture to missionaries last year that I was privileged to hear. In it she talked about many of the same things we cover in this conversation. Her focus then was on the missionary and what he could do to help overcome culture shock. In this conversation we tried to focus on the friends back home and explain to them how they can be a help to the missionary on the field. You can get more information about LaMoin at her website. Please be back next week for the conclusion of the interview.