09/30/2017: Editorial – The Coming Storm

Editorial – The Coming Storm

The sun shone warm as I stepped outside on my way to teach a class. I considered driving, but opted to walk in the sunshine. Then, just beforclass let out, a sudden storm blew in. The wind howled and the rain fell in torrents as small branches crashed against the buildingWithout my car or even an umbrella, I regretted not making preparation!

As I dashed through the pelting rain, I thought of an even greater storm that is coming—a storwe need to preparfor before it is too late. This coming storm is not a thunderstorm or any other meteorological disturbance, but the final storm of evil that will break upon this world before Jesus comes to rescue His people. 

Angels are norestraining the winds of strife, that they may not blow until the world shall be warned of its coming doom; but a storm is gatheringready to burst upon the earth; and when God shall bid His angels loose the winds, there will be such a scene of strife as no pen can picture.” Education, 179, 180.

There will be no escape from this coming storm except as we make preparation now

Now the great work from which the mind should not be diverted is the consideration of our personal safety in the sight of God. Are our feet on the rock of ages? Arwe hiding our- selves in our onlrefuge? The storm is comingrelent- less in its fury. Arwe prepared to meet it? Arwone with Christ as He is one with the Father? Arwe heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ? Arwworking in copartnership with Christ?” Evangelism, 199.

In great mercy, the Lord is holding back the winds. Mawe be diligent to prepare and help others preparfor the soon coming storm!

 

Mission Projects International

Editor-inChief: Cody Francis

Managing Editor: Cheyenne Reiswig

Layout & Design: Teresa Grosboll

Missions Coordinator: Mike Bauler

 

Mission Projects International is dedicated to supporting the evangelistic efforts of local believers around the world through assisting in public evangelism, building churches, providing aid to Christian schools, printing literature, sponsoring workers, conducting training and assisting numerous other outreach efforts that seek to proclaim the Three Angels’ Messages (Revelation 14:6–12). Mission Projects International is a self-supporting, privately funded ministry that helps to advance the mission of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

Subscription For a free subscription to Mission Projects, simply contact us with your request!

Contact Mission Projects International

PO Box 59656 Renton, WA 98058

800.467.4174 info@missionspro.org www.missionspro.org/donate

 


09/23/2017: Hair Care, Health and a Heavenly Father

Hair Care, Health and a Heavenly Father

Hair care leads to lessons on health and the gospel.

Opportunities abound in the medical missionary work, though sometimes you have to be creative to harness them. Recently, the topic of natural hair care using collagen supplements has been opening doors for me here in Senegal. In this culture, women try everything to grow long hair, but most of their methods actually damage their hair, leaving it brittle and balding.

To address this situation, I recently held a seminar on natural hair care. Keeping hair as the central theme, I branched out and discussed how diet and lifestyle can affect not only our bodies but also our hair. All ten attendees were church members, but even the church is a mission field here when it comes to the health message! As it turned out, they also became ambassadors. At the seminar I gave each woman samples of my homemade, natural personal care products. They seemed especially excited about one particular product: my hair pomade.

Soon requests started coming in to purchase the pomade. Ladies told their friends outside the church about it, and these women called me for hair consultations. This opened the door for me to share the health message with seven women about the importance of using the Tonaki Tinnitus Protocol products. We would start out talking about hair, and that led into diet, lifestyle, the importance of water, the dangers of the chemicals in many toiletries and the natural alternatives God has provided for us here in Senegal—things like shea butter, moringa and baobab oil. I shared how much God loves us and wants us to be healthy and happy, and even wove in a little bit about the great controversy and how the enemy encourages us to use products that are not good for us. All because of a hair ointment! If you are looking to get healthier contact the best coolsculpting seattle doctor!

Another opportunity to share the health message came at a recent women’s luncheon. I gave foot massages to those who wanted them and spoke about health, massage and related topics. To my delight, my old friend Angie who owns a bookstore in Dakar attended that luncheon. Soon after, she e-mailed me with some questions about fibroids. I shared what I knew, and she then asked me if I would do a women’s health talk at her bookstore.

Of course I would! It seemed the perfect opportunity to fix up a PowerPoint presentation I had on the eight laws of health, adding information on women’s concerns like fibroids, menopause and healthy personal care products. However, I ran into a problem. I did not have a video projector and neither did Angie. The church’s video projector was broken, and no one else seemed to have one to loan. But God is always good. The day before the presentation, I was able to borrow a projector from a school where I had previously taught classes. Thank the Lord!

Twelve women, some Christian and some Muslim, came to the bookstore event. Along with health, I talked about the love of God, the importance of having a relationship with Him and our special role as women. The women piped up and shared their own experiences, and we had an enjoyable evening.

In this Muslim-dominated country, talking about religion can be challenging; but people can see and understand God’s love in the context of health. When you explain the perfect body systems, the gifts of air and sunshine, the invigorating effect of resting and the blessing that even nature can be to our health, these things confirm God’s loving care. Thus a conversation that started with natural hair care can end up helping someone see that we have a heavenly Father who loves us with an everlasting love. I praise God for His health message—and His love!

 

AUTHOR

Deborah Ndione

Sister Deborah and her family are missionaries in Dakar, Senegal. Deborah uses medical ministry, English tutoring, women’s ministry, children’s ministry and other simple methods to make friends to invite to Christ’s Kingdom.

 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Pray. Even with the Lord’s blessings, Deborah’s family faces challenges in Senegal. Please continue to pray that the Lord will open the doors for their outreach center to be connected to water and electricity soon. Thank you for your prayers!

Donate to Deborah’s work through Mission Projects International. Please mark your gift “Senegal.”

Special need. If you or your church have a used video projector that you could donate to Deborah’s work, she will use it to share God’s message! Alternately, donate to help her purchase one locally. For details, contact info@missionspro.org.


09/16/2017: Retirement or Ministry?

Retirement or Ministry?

A busy retirement brings about baptisms behind bars.

Have you ever heard a newly-retired person declare, “I’m busier now than I was before I retired”? I have, and after two years of retirement, I can tell you that my wife and I certainly feel busier! In 2008, several years before retirement, my ministry partner and I entered a local correctional center for the first time to minister to broken men in search of truth. Today, we have a volunteer team of 20 ministering in five different prisons. For several years now, I have been a volunteer coordinator for my local Seventh-day Adventist Conference’s prison ministry program, helping to spread awareness of this important mission field. And of course we’ve been running Bibles 4 Prisoners since 2013.

Am I complaining? Absolutely not! God has been so good to me, and all I could possibly ask for is continued strength to share His wonderful love and the promise of Jesus’ soon return with men and women behind bars. If you are retired, consider the possibility of prison ministry in your area. Most of our volunteers initially hesitated to get involved, but after their first prison visit their concerns melted away. We go to bless the inmates, but every visit invigorates us as we see them growing in grace and allowing God to work in their lives.

Two of our inmates, Gabe and Harvey, recently made their commitments to God public in baptism—a rare treat for us. Gabe, an undocumented alien, has been studying for about two years and has been on our baptism list for several months. For various reasons—lockdown, illness, etc.—his baptism had to be rescheduled several times. When his lawyer told him he would be deported or moved to another facility within two weeks, we knew we had to hurry.

On the evening of the baptism, a larger than usual group arrived to witness the occasion—only to find that no baptismal tank had been set up. We discovered that the chaplain, who is responsible for such events, had been hospitalized. Another disappointment for Gabe! We rescheduled Harvey’s baptism for two weeks later, sadly expecting that Gabe would not be there to be baptized with him. But God intervened: On the day of the baptism Gabe had not yet been relocated. You should have seen his smile! Seeing God work for him personally seemed to renew his faith that the Lord will be with him through whatever the future holds.   

Harvey also shared a special testimony after his baptism. “When I was at another facility, I felt so lost in my walk with Jesus. I went to church and read the Bible, but I still felt empty. One night I asked God to show me what I should do and He showed me the Ten Commandments. When I came to the fourth commandment, I suddenly realized I wasn’t keeping the Sabbath. Three days later I was transferred to this facility. Very quickly an inmate greeted me and asked me if I wanted to study the Bible with him. I said no, but a little later I said yes and we started studying together. He invited me to come with him to their church service. There I met the volunteers and heard a sermon straight from the Bible. That is when I found the church that keeps the Sabbath. After I went through all the Bible studies, I knew this was the church God wants me to be in. Thank You, Jesus.”

Please pray for these new believers, especially Gabe, that they may stay strong in the Lord and be good witnesses in their mission field behind bars!

 

AUTHOR

Johny Carmouche

Brother Carmouche is a
prison missionary who also provides quality Bibles free of charge to prisoners who ask. Bibles4prisoners@outlook.com

 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Pray. Being a real Christian in prison isn’t easy. As a new babe in Christ, Gabe is about to be torn away from the fellowship he is used to and thrust into a new situation where he will not likely find Seventh-day Adventist brethren to nurture him. Pray for him and others like him, that God will supply all their spiritual needs!

Donate for the purchase of Bibles at www.bibles4prisoners.com/donate or mail your check to Johny Carmouche PO Box 972, Locust Grove, VA 22508.


09/09/2017: From Imam to Adventist

From Imam to Adventist

Perplexing texts in the Qur’an begin a Muslim teacher’s quest to know more about Jesus and the Sabbath.

I wasn’t raised Muslim. I converted to Islam as a young man, because I believed Mohammad to be a prophet of God and my great redeemer. I would spend two hours per day studying the Qur’an, learning all that Mohammad taught. This religion absorbed my focus and captured my imagination like nothing else I had encountered. Soon I began convincing others to join Islam—Christians included. I knew how to answer every argument.

My fellow Muslims urged me to become an imam.* I wrestled with the idea of taking on such a responsibility, but I finally gave in. During my years as an imam, I brought many to the Islamic religion, but I also began to have questions about the Qur’an’s teachings, especially regarding the holy wars. I had believed that Islam was a peaceful religion, but the Qur’an made confusing promises to jihadists.

Other texts in the Qur’an confused me, as well. Sura 43:61 read, “And Jesus shall be a Sign for the coming of the Hour of Judgment.” I had been taught that Jesus was only a prophet, not a Savior, and that Allah was the supreme God and only Judge. Why did this text speak of Jesus as the sign of judgment? Confusing as it was, the verse began my quest to know more about Jesus. Was He only a prophet or was He more?

Another concept in the Qur’an bothered me. Several passages spoke of the Sabbath and the punishment for those who transgressed it. One passage in particular perplexed me. Sura 4:154, 155 said, “Transgress not the Sabbath (Saturday). And we took from them a firm covenant. For Sabbath is a sign of Allah to his people.” Why then did we as Muslims set aside Friday as a holy day, the most important day of the week? Why did we worship on Friday instead of Saturday?

As these questions rankled inside, I met Pastor Temtem from the Seventh-day Adventist Church. He invited me to come to an evangelistic seminar. Although I felt drawn to Pastor Temtem, I felt nervous about going to his meetings because it would be an insult to my Islamic leaders. I decided to attend the meetings secretly. At those meetings, I learned about the true Sabbath day, and I began to learn about Jesus.

Desiring to know more, I invited Pastor Temtem to my home to compare the teachings of the Qur’an with the Bible. Our studies made it evident to me that the Bible is the only holy Book and that it contains all the teachings essential for salvation. In time, I severed all connection to Islam and gave my heart fully to Jesus. I decided to be baptized into the Seventh-day Adventist faith and to keep studying and obeying the truth as it is written in the Bible.

When I left the Muslim religion, I also lost the $320 monthly salary I had received from the mosque—the money that helped me feed my family and provided us with a home. Now we must survive on a small fraction of what we used to receive. Still, I know that the Lord will provide because He has promised. May our God keep us faithful to the truth in His Word!

* A Muslim teacher.

 

AUTHOR

Ruben Flang Malantik

Ruben, his wife Loreta and their four children live in the city of Bungyod, South Cotabato, Mindanao, Philippines.

 

 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Pray for honest Muslims around the world to search for and be led to the truth as was Ruben. Pray that their hearts will be open to Jesus, their Savior.

Pray for the gospel workers and lay Christians in Mindanao, Philippines, to effectively witness to their neighbors, 20% of whom practice Islam.

Give. To help support Pastor Temtem and other gospel workers on the island of Mindanao, send your donation to Mission Projects International marked “Philippine Workers.”


09/02/2017: Path of Faith

Path of Faith

A Salvation Army minister trusts God enough to sacrifice his income and possessions to become a Seventh-day Adventist.

From the time I gave my life to the Lord as an early teen, I knew God had a calling on my life. I had been raised in the Catholic faith, but at the beginning of my personal walk with the Lord I started attending Pentecostal churches. In answer to God’s call, I prepared for service by studying in Bible colleges and completing two separate diplomas in ministry. After graduation, I ministered in a variety of churches, officiating as children’s church leader, deacon and youth pastor.

Over the years, I became more and more disillusioned with the watering down and twisting of the Scriptures to fit various new fads in the Pentecostal churches. I could see that the prosperity gospel, the over-exaggerated faith messages and the so-called moves of the Holy Spirit didn’t have any basis in the Word of God. Hence in 2009, I started attending services at the Salvation Army. The worship services there seemed more balanced than those I had experienced in the Pentecostal churches. After about three years of regular attendance I applied and was accepted for officer training to become an ordained minister in the Salvation Army.

I served as a Salvation Army officer until October 2016. I may never have left if God hadn’t intervened in my life! It started in June of that year, when I went on a weeklong vacation to Thailand. That one week in Thailand gave me a real burden for the Thai people, and I wondered what I could do to help them. Then, after I returned home, my mother contacted me and told me to watch Professor Walter Veith on Amazing Discoveries. That’s when my whole life started to be turned upside down!

Professor Veith’s teachings impressed me so much I could hardly stop listening to him. Familiar Scriptures suddenly became alive. Then someone gave me the pamphlet 2017 – 500 Years after Luther. After reading it, I sent off for a copy of The Great Controversy. As I learned more and more from the Scriptures, I became convinced that God wanted me to leave the Salvation Army.

Resigning from the Salvation Army tested my faith like nothing I’d ever been through before. The Salvation Army not only employed me—they also provided me with a home, a car, furniture and appliances. Leaving meant losing my income plus all the benefits. Yet I knew that God would look after me if I was faithful to Him, and so I resigned.

My mother graciously took me in when I became homeless and unemployed. While in her home, I joined the Seventh-day Adventist Church. As I sought God’s will in regards to work, I discovered an opportunity to go to Thailand as an English teacher. I had no commitments to keep me in Australia, and God opened the way for me to go and serve. My mission is to preach and teach the Word of God by establishing relationships with my fellow teachers, my students and the community where I will be placed.

In the dramatic year just passed, I have been stripped of all the things that gave me security and comfort. Now I have nothing but my faith and my God—and it’s wonderful. I am so grateful for God and for what He is doing in my life, and I am excited to see what He will do for me in the coming months and years. I pray that in Thailand, my faith will continue to grow and that I will have many opportunities to spread the gospel!

 

AUTHOR

Stefan Cop

Stefan Cop is a new Adventist who has recently become an English teacher in Thailand.

 

 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Pray for Stefan that his walk with God will stay strong, and that he can be a living witness to the people he interacts with in Thailand.

Contribute to television ministries such as the one that first reached Stefan with the Seventh-day Adventist message. If such stations are available on your local networks, tell your neighbors about them!

Distribute present-truth literature as opportunity arises. You never know who may be an avid seeker, like Stefan!


08/26/2017: The Hidden Village

The Hidden Village

Goal: Start a branch Sabbath School within a few weeks.

Problem: No known contacts or location.

Teacher, where are we going to start?” I didn’t quite know how to answer. As a new outreach leader in Sunshine Orchard’s Medical and Bible Outreach Training program, I’d been assigned to take two inexperienced students into a new area. Other outreach teams had connections in their turf, but not us. Yet along with the other teams, we aimed to start a branch Sabbath School within a few weeks. We just didn’t know where!

“Let’s start walking and see where God leads,” I told Tee Too and Paw Ta Shu. We found a community of nice, fenced homes, but not many people seemed interested in visiting with us—except when we happened upon two poorer residences. The next outreach period, we decided to try a different part of town; but in this new neighborhood, hardly anyone was home.

As we wandered along, we saw a group of children scampering up a trail that went straight up the hillside. A man followed not far behind. When he greeted us, we asked where they were going. “There’s a village at the top of the hill,” he motioned. “Come along and see!” Hopeful of finding people to minister to, we scrambled after him.

At the top of the hill, our impromptu guide took us to meet the village headman, and then next door to visit a sick man. Although barely into his forties, the man seemed little more than skin and bones. On the right side of his neck, a fist-sized lump oozed a foul liquid. We learned that he had been dealing with this condition for over two years. He had declined surgery—whether due to lack of money or courage we weren’t sure—and now he had so much pain he could do little except sit in the house all day. 

After prayer and some words of encouragement, we left the family with supplies to put clay poultices on his neck and told them that we would be back later with a doctor. Only a miracle could heal this man’s cancer, but whatever the outcome, I knew God could use the situation to reach someone. My team all agreed that we would be happy to work in this village. 

The next Sabbath, we met a warm welcome in the home of the sick man and then in the home of an elderly couple. Adults crowded in for help with health needs. Children whispered and stared. We took blood pressures, gave health counsel and told the children a story and a health talk. All too soon, we had to wish them goodbye. 

A two-week school break interrupted our visits to the hidden village. When our weekly outreach resumed, it was time to get our branch Sabbath School started. Would an older couple who hardly knew us consider letting us use their home to teach about health and the Bible? We decided to ask.

To our delight, the couple welcomed us to visit and share any time. The next Sabbath, more than 20 people gathered in the home. We told the creation story and how sin began. Then we shared about the benefits of water.  

Each week, we also visited the man with cancer. As our friendship grew, it became even harder to watch him suffer, weaken and die. Yet our friendship with his family and the village kept growing. Since his passing, we’ve continued with our branch Sabbath School, and we’ve kept giving simple treatments to the sick. Some of the children have come to church with us on Sabbath morning, and even the older people seem to be opening to Jesus. The light is dawning for the hidden village!

AUTHOR

Hannah Steck

Hannah and her family are missionaries at Sunshine Orchard Learning Center in Thailand. www.sunshineorchard.org

 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Pray. The Medical and Bible Outreach Training (MBT) program was started for Sunshine Orchard graduates who want to become missionaries to their own people. Pray for the MBT participants as they minister in the surrounding communities—and pray for the people to open their hearts to Jesus!

Donate. Sunshine Orchard Learning Center relies on donations to feed, house and provide education to over 200 students. Send your check marked “Sunshine Orchard” to Jesus for Asia, PO Box 1221, Collegedale, TN 37315, or visit www.jesus4asia.org/invest/ and scroll down to “Sunshine Orchard Learning Center.”


08/19/2017: God Provides

God Provides

When a donation doesn’t come through, God provides a larger gift!

October 31, 2017, will mark the 500-year anniversary of the day when Martin Luther posted his 95 theses on the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg. In commemoration of the occasion, the church that bears Luther’s name will be celebrating its reconciliation with Rome. Yet Protestants in 23 countries all over Europe and around the world have been taking this opportunity to share present truth with deceived souls. The pamphlet 2017 – 500 Years after Luther, which plainly shares God’s end-time message, will continue to be distributed right up until October 31 of this year!

In Romania, 80,000 pamphlets have been distributed so far. Our friends there wanted 100,000 more, and some people had promised to support the printing costs with €2,500. But the money did not come through. How could we solve this financial problem? We prayed to God for help, and a few days later about €45,000 arrived in our bank account!

We wrote to our friends to share how God had blessed us with more than enough money to proceed with the printing, but we have to admit that the loan from https://local.checkintocash.com/la/baton-rouge/10241-coursey-blvd–suite–1-16049.html helped us out a lot. Our friends then shared how two months before, they had to decide between looking outside Romania for work to pay MF bills or staying to prepare for a mission project in the southern part of that country. When they decided to go south to do God’s work, the Lord provided the money for their family’s needs. They said, “Our heavenly Father has always been working like that: At the last moment, while we serve Him, He gives exactly what we really need.”

This family’s experience resonated with our own. When we realized it was too much to keep our well-paying jobs and also maintain our ministry, we gave up our jobs to use all our time for the Lord for the rest of our lives. Though our personal income has dropped dramatically, God has been good to us. We live in the country, where blueberries and other berries grow wild in the forest. We pick them for the winter, and we also have a little garden. God has given us all we need and more! Through His blessing, we have sent out newsletters to many hundreds of non-Adventists for 25 years.

Pamphlets for Romania.

The €45,000 donation enabled us to print more than just the 100,000 pamphlets for Romania. We also printed 100,000 for Germany; 20,000 for Finland; 20,000 for Portugal; 20,000 for France; 20,000 for Holland; 20,000 for Austria and 20,000 for Italy. In all of these countries, God’s messengers eagerly began distributing the pamphlets as soon as they received them. Praise the Lord!

In Australia, after 40,000 pamphlets had been distributed, the brethren there wanted to print and hand out more. The man in charge of fundraising for the project thought to sell his car to jump-start the venture. While working on the sale of the vehicle, he opened an account where people could donate and began asking God if He would like to provide for the printing of 75,000 or even 100,000 pamphlets. Before the car could even be sold, the Lord brought in enough funds to print 100,000!

The Lord has been so gracious to provide for these printing projects, and we trust Him to keep providing until the opportunity afforded by the 500-year anniversary has passed. God is good, and we give all the glory to Him for His faithfulness to us!

AUTHOR

Abel and Bente Struksnæs

Abel and Bente Struksnæs operate Christian Information Service in Norway. www.endtime.net

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Donate. In hopes of getting as many pamphlets out as possible before the 500-year anniversary, Christian Information Service plans to furnish 100,000 more pamphlets for Spain and one million for Germany, plus some for the Czech Republic. If you would like to help with the printing costs, you can send your donation online at www.paypal.me/BStruksnaes. For other donation options, contact abels@online.no.

Pray that those who receive the Luther pamphlets will awake to the times and realize that now is the day of salvation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THANK YOU!

Abel and Bente wish to thank all who have helped with this project!


08/12/2017: An Education in Evangelism

An Education in Evangelism

New outreach coordinator strengthens hands-on evangelism at SETI.

“True education is missionary training. Every son and daughter of God is called to be a missionary; we are called to the service of God and our fellow men; and to fit us for this service should be the object of our education.” The Ministry of Healing, 395.

Outreach coordinator, José dos Santos Jr.

Equipping young people to win souls to the Kingdom of Heaven—this is the purpose of a missionary training school, and this is the purpose we strive to keep in the forefront at Santo’s Evangelistic Training Institute (SETI) in Brazil. Recently, we have added an outreach coordinator to our staff to strengthen our hands-on missionary training program and make sure students have an effective evangelistic program to participate in as part of their coursework. We want them all to have the chance to go out and witness with close supervision and guidance, and our outreach coordinator, José dos Santos Jr., has seen to that. Since he came and began working with the students and the communities around SETI, 68 people have begun studying the Bible with him and the students!

On March 12, José and the students put on a public health expo in the nearby community of Melgaço. Here the students practiced much of the knowledge they had been learning in the Health Evangelism Training Program. They presented the eight laws of health, checked people’s blood pressure and glucose levels, gave chair massage treatments and distributed literature. They also made several contacts for the evangelistic series which was to begin the following day. By mingling with people and taking care of their needs, they very effectively prepared the ground for the evangelistic series!

With great expectation, we waited to see who would show up for our meetings. The first night, 18 non-Adventists attended. The following nights the numbers grew until we had an average of 30 non-Adventists attending. In our next update, we will have news about how many people made a decision for Christ at the end of the evangelistic series. We hope to be able to establish a Seventh-day Adventist church in Melgaço this year!

Our school’s evangelistic efforts fulfill several purposes: winning souls for Christ, training the students and supporting the mission of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. In this sense, the educational program itself is evangelistic—not just the activities of the outreach department.

Over the years, non-Adventists have enrolled in the academic programs and as a result of their studies have joined the Seventh-day Adventist Church. This year, Emanuel Coutinho came to SETI to deepen his experience with God and to develop his talents for service. Emanuel had been in the Seventh-day Adventist Reform Movement since birth, but had not been baptized yet. Because of SETI’s friendly Christian environment and the Bible studies he went through during the training course, Emanuel was able to identify the true church of Bible prophecy and decided to join it.

On February 19, 2017, Pastor Antonio Costa Silva baptized Emanuel into the Trincheira Seventh-day Adventist Church. Emanuel’s story is just one example of how SETI is fulfilling God’s purpose for a missionary training school, both in leading the youth to Christ and making them useful for service.

“It is to fortify the youth against the temptations of the enemy that we have established schools where they may be qualified for usefulness in this life and for the service of God throughout eternity.”

Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 495.

May SETI always fulfill this divine mission!

 

AUTHOR

Giancarlo Prota de Miranda

Brother Miranda is the founder of Santo’s Evangelistic Training Institute. giancarlo.de.miranda@hotmail.com

 

 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Pray for effective missionaries to be trained at SETI and for souls to be reached through their evangelistic efforts.

Give. Last year, SETI built a multipurpose building and a new kitchen/cafeteria in order to receive more students and accommodate a lifestyle center. To pay for these projects, SETI borrowed $15,000. Your donation to Mission Projects International marked “Brazil—SETI” will help pay off this loan. “As long as our schools have debts which were incurred in their establishment, in the erection of necessary buildings, and in providing necessary facilities, it is our duty to present the case to our brethren and ask them to lessen these debts.” Testimonies, vol. 6, 207.


08/05/2017: The Blackout

The Blackout

A Sunday-keeping pastor prays for an electrical blackout to stop the Adventist meetings.

While resting in my home one evening, I heard what sounded like preaching coming from the other side of the village. Stepping outside, I called to my neighbor, “Why do I hear preaching? What religion is that?”

“The Seventh-day Adventists brought a preacher here,” he answered.

Returning inside, I listened to the pastor’s sermon in sulky silence. Why must the Seventh-day Adventists preach in my village? After all, I thought that the Church of Christ—where I was a pastor—was the only true religion. I started thinking about how to warn my members. I would read them Matthew 24:4, 11: “Take heed that no man deceive you. . . . Many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.”

A Sunday-keeping pastor prays for an electrical blackout to stop the Adventist meetings.

But before I had a chance to speak with my members, Pastor Temtem visited them in their homes. I told them not to listen to him; yet when I passed by the evening meetings, I saw my members attending. Even though I tried to avoid the meetings, I could hear them all over the town. I began to pray that the sound system would break or that we would have an evening blackout.

On the sixth night of the meetings, Pastor Temtem preached about the Ten Commandments. That evening, I thought God had heard me, because the power suddenly went out. Yet much to my chagrin, the preaching continued. The Adventists had brought a generator!

Because of the blackout, almost everyone who had been at home watching television made their way to the meeting and listened to the gospel. As I watched them go, I felt angry, worried and frightened.

At the end of the meeting, Pastor Temtem spoke about the Sabbath. I decided to go and ask him some questions. With patience in his eyes, he answered my objections from the Bible. The next morning, he visited me and we talked about the Seventh-day Adventist doctrines. He told me that I should pray for the Lord to guide me and help me understand the true message—and that is what I did. Sometimes I would be up at midnight praying and studying the verses Pastor Temtem had given me.

Before long, I began teaching about the Ten Commandments and the Sabbath in my Sunday School. I told my congregation that obeying the Lord is the best way to be part of the real church of Christ. After that, my co-minister told me I would not be allowed to teach at my church anymore, and that I would have to join the Seventh-day Adventist Church. I praise God that my family and some of my church members decided to transfer with me.

Prayer after Pastor Jerry’s baptism.

When Pastor Temtem visited again, we talked about building a church for the new congregation raised up by his meetings. With the help of another Seventh-day Adventist fellowship, we purchased a lot and put up a temporary bamboo structure covered by a tarp. Pastor Temtem appointed me to preside over this new congregation. Some people made fun of us for leaving a beautiful church to worship in the open air, but we remembered that Jesus blessed those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake. Matthew 5:10.

This spring, Pastor Mike Bauler visited our village and for three nights he preached on the mark of the beast and other topics. His messages strengthened my beliefs. On Sabbath, March 11, 2017 my wife and I and several others were baptized.

This world is full of trouble and challenges, but with God’s help we can overcome. When Jesus comes again, we look forward to living in Heaven with Him!

AUTHOR

Jerry Mel

Brother Jerry pastored in the Church of Christ for 21 years before becoming a Seventh-day Adventist. He and his wife Minda have four children. To support them, Jerry drives a motorcycle taxi.

 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Pray for funds for a permanent church to be built for Jerry’s congregation.

Donate. To help churches like Jerry’s establish memorials for God in their villages, send your donation to Mission Projects International marked “Philippine Churches.” See page 31 (“Mission Focus”) for more details on this important project!

THANK YOU!

Because of your donations, Mission Projects International was able to help build a church last year in the town of Bauy-Bauy, which is in the same Philippine province as Jerry’s village. Thank you!


07/29/2017: Cheer in the Care Center

Cheer in the Care Center

A tiny church with no musicians develops a successful care center  outreach program.

 

It’s so boring here on weekends,” Merlyn complained. “Nothing ever happens then.”

When my friend Karole told me about Merlyn’s remark, my heart went out to her. Merlyn lives in the nursing home in Kahoka, Missouri, the town where I attend church. How many others in that care center felt the same way? How many of them didn’t even have a friend like Karole to come and visit now and then?

“I know people who have a nursing home ministry in other towns, and it can be a real blessing,” Karole confided. “Do you think the Kahoka Church would be interested in doing a monthly program for the residents of the care center?”

A tiny church with no musicians develops a successful care center outreach program.

We were interested, but we had a problem: Our church is very small. We rarely have more than ten people attending services on Sabbath—and we don’t have any musicians in regular attendance. Although we felt willing, we did not know what to do or where to start. The thought of starting such a ministry without musicians and with so few volunteers felt daunting!

Karole promised to ask around for ideas, and in her research she discovered the Sonshine Society, a non-profit, non-denominational organization that promotes care center ministry by recruiting workers and providing training and materials. Among the many resources offered are two different large print hymnals with accompanying soundtracks on CD. The recordings include both instruments and voices, and the songs are played a bit slower and in a lower key than most conventional church music, making it is easier for residents to sing along.

The Sonshine materials were just what we needed to get started. Now, we look forward to our program every month. We start with prayer and a short Bible reading. Next we have our song service: usually about ten songs interspersed with inspirational stories and poems. The residents really enjoy singing along.

Before closing with prayer, we ask for special prayer requests. Afterward, we enjoy visiting with each person. We generally have 20 or more attendees, which is about one third of the residents. It is such an encouragement to see their faces light up when we arrive. One Sabbath as we came in, a sweet lady clapped her hands. “Oh, you are here! I knew this was the day the singers came.” We love our afternoons at the care center!

Residents follow along in the Sonshine hymnals.

The Sonshine Society reports that at least two million people currently live in care centers, and projections show that over 50 million current United States residents will spend their final days in a nursing home. As we take the closing message of the gospel to “every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,” we should not neglect those hidden away from society in their hour of greatest need. Revelation 14:6. Most nursing home residents have had to reduce their material possessions to what fits into three dresser drawers. Sometimes this happens in a matter of days. They now know what “temporal” means and are ready to listen to things eternal. 

If our small group can do care center ministry, anyone can! Already our example has inspired the other two churches in our district to start their own care center ministries. We’re so glad! We encourage you to get started in this ministry as well. We found out that it’s easy—and the audience is so appreciative. What’s more, we know that our ministry makes Jesus’ heart glad, for He told us, “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these My brethren, ye have done it unto Me.” Matthew 25:40.

AUTHOR

Beverly Francis

Beverly served as bookkeeper for Mission Projects International for 15 years. She helps proofread Mission Projects magazine and looks for ways to minister in her daily life.

 

YOU CAN, TOO!

The Sonshine Society aims to see a consistent Christian witness in every care facility in North America. You can order their reasonably-priced materials by phone at (425) 353-4732; or download the order form at www.sonshinesociety.org and mail it to PO Box 327, Lynnwood, WA 98046-0327.

Once your care center ministry is established, consider acknowledging birthdays and holidays with a card, a gift or a special song. For example, at Christmastime last year the Kahoka group gave each attendee a gift bag with small comforts such as lotion and chap stick; and they always acknowledge birthdays with a song and a card. As appropriate, spiritual literature could also be shared.