Preparing People for Christ's Return
Three of our missionary kids graduated this month. Andrea Maraat (pictured) lives in Thailand with her parents Genesis and Verna Maraat and brother Josiah. Andrea graduated from high school at Grace International School where she has attended since sixth grade. Andrea will enter Calvin College in August to study for a BS in Secondary Education-Biology. Keren and Kezia Improso lived in Kenya from 1996 until 2011 when they returned to the Philippines to get BS degrees in International Studies. They are now on a short trip to visit Kenya and look for jobs. Pray for our TCM missionary kids to do well in school and glorify God with their lives after school.
At the May 20th board meeting John Cook was accepted as a missionary candidate to Southeast Asia. John is passionate about reaching Chinese people with the gospel. John accepted Christ as Savior in the Altoona Bible Church in Pennsylvania. He earned a Bachelor’s degree from Grace Bible College and a Master’s degree from Grand Rapids Theological Seminary. After working with Pat and Michelle Kilgo for one month John felt called to partner with them. He is currently traveling on deputation in preparation for a December 2015 departure. Reaching the lost and teaching the Bible to church members and pastors will be John’s main ministry focus.
Sheba Padayhag writes, "Here are the memories from the successful Youth Camp 2015. With the theme: "Grace Gladiators" (Ephesians 6:10-20). Held last April 2-4 at Magalies Retreat Centre, Magaliesburg, South Africa. Comprised of 36 campers, 7 staff and 2 kids (Shedea & Shedesh). Praise GOD for the 16 youth who got saved while the rest confirmed their salvation. Thank you to the donors and to our volunteer staff. Thank you to the parents who entrusted us their children for the duration of the camp. Thank you to the churches of ABGMSA and everyone around the world who prayed along with us."
TCM is so grateful to the Lord for blessing her with 14 new churches planted from April 2014 to March 2015 in various places in the Philippine islands! From April 2012 to March 2015, God has blessed the TCM ministry in the Philippines with 59 new churches. This means that we are only short of 56 churches more to reach our five-year goal of 115 by 2017. Let’s continue praying, working, supporting, and believing that God will honor our prayers to reach the goal, or even overshoot the target before holding our thanksgiving conference in 2018! (Recent survey shows that TCM-Philippines has now a total of 497 churches spread out in the big islands of Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao. Indeed, God is so faithful and gracious!
Every year the Philippine TCM Grace Church hold their Grace National Annual Conference. This year the venue was in Zamboanga, a city in southwest Mindanao. In spite of the threat of rebels in the area, some 500 leaders and members attended the conference from around the Philippines. One hundred leaders started their Summit meeting on April 20 and the main conference was April 21-24. Seven men were ordained while 28 men and women graduates from the six Bible schools were accepted into the ministry. Missionary Gardner Improso attended the conference on behalf of TCM International and was a speaker during the Summit and also the opening night of the conference. Take a look at the Field Work presentation.
"What an incredible 12 weeks it has been!! So many churches, so many brothers & sisters, so many conferences and talks... and I'm still standing (and speaking!) by God's grace!! I have met so many wonderful people and had great opportunities to share what I will be doing in South East Asia for God's glory. It's so important to realise that what we do in faith comes out of a place of grace... NOT guilt! All that we do should be in LOVE because that it was reaches the heart of the broken and gives joy to those who are comforted by the Lord. 'Actions speak louder than words,' that is true, but there is great value and necessity in" More . . .
The Grace Gospel Churches of Myanmar celebrated their first anniversary on March 26-28. Pastor Kenneth Ling is the director of the churches and planned a weekend of activities. TCM-Cambodia missionary Ariel Mahilum is in Yangon to speak at the celebration, "Arrived in Yangon safe and sound and met Ptr. Kenneth and wife at the airport last night. Anniversary celebration will start tonight, one-full day seminar tomorrow and 2 more nights of sharing the Word. I will be speaking and teaching on 'Grow in Grace and in the Knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ'." The initial contact between TCM and Pastor Kenneth Ling came in 2011 through Henry & Lilly—a couple from Myanmar living in Indianapolis. Several ministry visits were conducted by Ben Anderson, Tim Heath, Nathan Killion and Genesis Maraat. Pray that the gospel of God's grace will continue to impact this diverse land which has only recently opened to the outside world. Pictured are Pastor Kenneth and Eunice praying for a church member.
Pat Kilgo is in the Philippines to speak at the graduations at IGBI-Ozamis and IGBI-Tagum. International Grace Bible Institute began operating in 1959 and has now grown to six campuses located throughout the Philippines. Pat is also speaking at the Grace Professionals of the Philippines organization. Pastor Cadelina is Pat's traveling companion and reports that 36 ministry students graduated from the two Bible schools. Although their vehicle was broken into and Pat lost all his clothes, they were able to maintain their busy schedule on the island of Mindanao until April 10.
From missionary Luz Gaddi: Thank you very much for your prayers and support on our mission to Uganda. Maureen and her daughter traveled with me from Kisumu and were able to reach out to the Ugandan youth. Praise God at least 10 youth will attend the Kisumu, Kenya conference in August 2015. The plan to have an inter-church youth conference between Uganda and Kenya will one day be a reality. To say the least the members were happy to meet us. We conducted Bible studies and visited homes. Often we went to the guest house past 10:00pm. Sunday Maureen taught SS and Pastor Philip asked me to deliver the message. The church was full. After the service we met the women for an hour. Read Luz's newsletter.
Philippine Grace Church leaders are planning a Grand Thanksgiving Celebration in 2016 for God’s blessing of 100 churches planted in Negros, including Panay Island. Latest reports confirmed that there are now 98 TCM churches in the Negros provinces, including Iloilo in Panay Island (Negros Oriental, 48; Negros Occidental, 48; and Iloilo, 2). Please continue praying for our co-workers from these two big islands as they work together in planting more churches to overshoot the target before the Grand Thanksgiving Celebration in 2016.
Missionary children receive their education in many different ways including homeschooling, day schools and missionary kid schools. These schools always have a need for teachers and administrators. Often these are volunteer positions although some schools provide housing for their teachers. If you are interested in teaching missionary kids overseas, please contact TCM as we have heard of several positions available including at Grace International School in Chiang Mai, Thailand. MK teachers not only have a lifetime impact on the MKs, but also have opportunities to minister to the people around the school.
TCM's newest missionary is from London, England and is on deputation in the US for four months. Julia writes, "It has only been 4 weeks and yet I feel as though I have been here for months! So far I have been to Mobile, Alabama; New Orleans; Florida- East and West coast; Indianapolis, Indiana and Olney, Illinois! Take a breath! I'm currently based in Indy at Things to Come Mission Head Quarters! I have begun an online theology course which I'm really enjoying and this week I have my Orientation too." Pray for Julia Liles as she prepares for serving in Southeast Asia. More . . .
Director Ben Anderson will be teaching an intensive class on the Theology of Mission at the Berean Bible Institute from January 12-15. Topics will include God’s overarching purpose of creating a people in his image, the purpose of mission in the life and teachings of Paul for the dispensation of grace and the saving gospel that the world needs to hear today. One of the foundational points Ben makes is that the Bible is primarily a theology of mission—God’s mission to the world. Why not take a few evenings to be challenged by the Word in this essential purpose of our Christian lives?
On a cold December day in 1955, TCM founder and former missionary Herbert Palmer incorporated Things to Come Mission in the state of Colorado, with its headquarters at his home in Craig. His vision was to send dispensational Bible study literature to anyone who requested, as well as to reach the mountain towns of Colorado with the gospel. Little did he know that after teaming up with a group of students from Milwaukee Bible Institute that the mission would be instrumental in sending missionaries with the gospel of God’s grace to over a dozen countries, resulting in tens of thousands of souls won for Christ, hundreds of churches plus radio programs, translation and printing ministries and numerous Bible schools and training programs. Although Pastor Palmer died in 1961, his life work is giving an ever greater return on investment. Join with us in celebrating our 60th year of proclaiming the wonderful grace of Jesus Christ to the ends of the earth! May you truly have a Happy New Year 2015 by making our Lord the center of your daily walk.
One of our veteran TCM missionaries is Miss Luz Gaddi of the Philippines. She graduated from TCM’s International Grace Bible Institute and served as a Bible Woman for many years before taking a graduate teaching job in Jakarta, Indonesia and working with TCM-Indonesia. After 22 years she asked to become a missionary in Africa, working first in Uganda and then Kenya. After a 3-month furlough in Philippines Luz moved to Kisumu on the shores of Lake Victoria two months ago. She writes, “Here in Kisumu the youth and women are active. We are gathering food to help a young widow who lost her husband, only 35 years old with four small kids.” Luz is also making plans to visit the churches in Eldoret and Kampala, Uganda.
Pastor Kenneth & Eunice Ling wrote about their Myanmar Grace Gospel Churches, "I would like to say thank you for your love and participation in the mission work here in Myanmar. We do very much appreciate for your Love and Concern for us and it is really great value for us and for the mission work here in Myanmar. As you pray for us, God has blessed and now Myanmar Grace Gospel has six mission fields, 11 Bible Students and 16 Orphan Children. MGGC also praying for you." Nathan Killion and Tim Heath recently visited Myanmar for one week of training leaders for the churches.
One of Pastor Jun Cadelina's ministries is evangelism among the Manobo trible of Mindanao in the Philippines. This is a rugged trip of many hours on dirt and rock roads. Often Pastor Jun's 4WD van breaks down and he completes the journey by motorcycle--six people on one--or even barefoot to cross the rivers. Pastor Jun explains, "Incantation or dancing to evil spirits during rituals are still common in that place as a pastor told us. Communist rebels are still many in the area armed with high-powered guns. We were warned not to take pictures." Praise the Lord that on his last trip, 80 people trusted in Jesus Christ as their Savior.
Joel McGarvey, director of Bible Doctrines to Live By, also serves as the president of the TCM board. He and his wife Susan have been invited to speak at the Annual Conference of the Grace churches in South Africa on Dec. 5-7 in Johannesburg. Besides the conference, the McGarveys are meeting with the national leaders Steve Thobela, Kennedy Mandaza and William Mdluli and speaking at several of the Grace churches, including Tshepisong which has an ongoing building project. Dean & Sheba Padayhag, who just arrived back in South Africa themselves, are hosting Joel & Susan for their two weeks.
Joe & Michelle Campos moved to Recife in northeast Brazil to resume their missionary ministry. The past three years they have lived in Grand Rapids where Joe was the director of Prison Mission Association. Their three younger children, Jessica, Nathan and Bella, have returned with them while Elly has started her first year at Grace Bible Church in Grand Rapids, MI. Joe will be working with the established Grace churches while also training church planters. Michelle will continue with the Project ABBA and Awana ministries while assisting their children with home schooling. The Camposes join veteran missionaries Doug & Vicki LeFeber.
Director Ben & Joyce Anderson returned from three weeks of ministry in Brazil on November 4. The main invitation came from the Grace churches in southern Brazil to speak at their annual conference in Indaial. Besides meeting with TCM missionaries Gomer & Nene Indino and Doug & Vicki LeFeber, the Andersons were able to meet with pastors and speak in churches in Parana, Santa Catarina, Aracaju and Recife. A highlight of the journey was the Grace Summit held in Shangri-la on the southern coast. Representatives of all th Grace organizations met for a time of fellowship, teaching and vision casting. To cement their desire for cooperation, the Summit formed a committee of five to plan for future meetings and cooperative ministries.
Dean & Sheba together with Shedea and Shedesh have returned to South Africa on October 29. During their four months of deputation in the United States they traveled 23,000 miles and visited churches and believers in 30 states. Their trip was not uneventful, with a car accident in California and a robbery upon returning to Johannesburg. The Padayhags express their appreciation for the many people who hosted and encouraged them during the journey. Dean & Sheba are busy with the Bible school, opening a new church and preparing for the annual conference in early December.
Pastor Phillip Walendo of Kampala, Uganda traveled to Kenya in October to participate in a training seminar conducted by leaders of the Grace Bible Churches of Kenya. He was joined by Pastor John Ekaliban of the Turkana for an intensive week of training on doctrinal and practical topics for pastors. Teachers were Pastor Stanley Mwangi, missionary Gardner Improso and Kenya Director Titus Kivilu. Pastor Phillip summarized his training, “With all the above topics we covered I am greatly transformed and I got a lot of courage because all my questions about Grace Ministry were answered by the facilitators. My major ambition after the training is teaching other people and opening a new church in Uganda.” Read Pastor Phillip's report.
Praise the Lord for the 501 people who professed to receiving Jesus Christ as Savior and thousands more were exposed to the Gospel in the Philippines. This is the result of eight days of evangelistic meetings conducted by Pastors Jun Cadelina, Pete Alip and PonPon Ayop, Jr. where they visited the remote, mountainous areas of South Cotabato and Sultan Kudarat where Pastor Jun and Corah Maglasang work. A letter and pictures from Pastor Cadelina...
Missionary Pat Kilgo has written an article for the Berean Searchlight about the disagreement between Apostle Paul and Barnabas about John Mark before their second missionary journey. The article explains how their different perspectives came about and then shows how God used each individual to accomplish his mission. Pat closes with a challenge, “Are you like Paul—driven, results-oriented, industrious, resilient, always forging ahead? Or are you like Barnabas—reflective, nurturing, sympathetic, forward-thinking, patient, willing to be hurt for someone you love? Either way, that’s great! You are who God made you to be, and He will work out His purpose through you even if others oppose your methods.”
Ancestor’s Day is a week long religious festival where families visit the temples to offer food and gifts to their dead relatives. Reincarnation is an important part of Buddhism and this ritual is meant to create good karma for a better next life. Team Cambodia offered an alternative to the children in Takeo Province by holding Vacation Bible School with the theme “Building Up the Church.” While many children went to the temple, fourteen children attended the three-day Bible school classes and learned about Jesus Christ who is the light of the World. Myra Omictin writes, “We are so thankful for the volunteers (missionaries and locals) for their support.” There are still 11,000 Cambodian villages without a church. Pictures . . .
This year Pastor Kenneth and his Myanmar team have established four grace churches and with this growth comes a need for training Bible teachers and developing leaders to reach this predominately Buddhist country with the good news of Jesus Christ. Tim Heath and Nathan Killion are responding to this need by traveling October 7-13 to the major city of Yangon to teach leaders of the newly established Grace Gospel Churches of Myanmar. Please pray for this trip and the growth of this field.
After a 3-month furlough in the Philippines, missionary Luz Gaddi is returning again to serve in Kenya, but this time to the Lake Victoria city of Kisumu in western Kenya. Last term Luz served in Mombasa on the Indian Ocean and Nakuru in the Great Rift Valley. In Kisumu, Luz will be training Sunday School teachers, organizing the women’s ministry and assisting the pastors in Kisumu and the surrounding area. The Kenya National Conference will be held in Kisumu in August 2015 and there is much work to done in preparation. Please keep Luz in your prayers for safety as she travels and hearts open to will of God.
One of the services that TCM provides for our missionaries is a vehicle to use on deputation. When the missionaries arrive in Indianapolis from the field, they have a clean, insured and fueled car ready to go. Some missionaries virtually live in the car while they travel across the country visiting supporters and speaking in churches. The 1998 Buck LeSabre which Padayhags were using had just 86,000 miles on it when donated by a friend in Portland, Oregon. It now has 218,000 miles and has crossed the country several times. Because of its mileage and the severity of the damage, we will not repair the Buick--which leaves TCM one missionary car short. If this is an area where you can help out the missionaries, please contact the TCM office or send a gift designated “Missionary Car.”
We praise the Lord that Dean & Sheba Padayhag together with Shedea and Shedesh are safe after they were sideswiped by a box truck on I-215 in Riverside, California. Shedesh has some minor glass cuts but the family is doing well. Missionaries often drive over 5000 each month while on deputation which exposes them to all the dangers of long distance driving. We are thankful that the body of Christ in Riverside and San Diego helped the Padayhags during this time of need. They have rented a car and are continuing their journey up the west coast to Grants Pass where they will begin a month of missionary conferences.
The EXITE team of 23 Americans, mostly young people, served the Lord in the Philippines on June 30 - July 14, 2014. They were able to help 4 churches on the island of Leyte rebuild from the destruction of Typhoon Haiyan. They also ministered to the Filipinos through Kids Clubs and Evangelistic Crusades. The team is thankful for all the prayers and support while they were in the Philippines. They were able to raise over $10,000 to assist the damaged areas. Field Director Jun Pielago writes, "Thank you, U.S. EXITE Team, for your hard work in helping rebuild four of our typhoon-damaged church buildings in Leyte! "Your labor is not in vain in the Lord!" Team member Ben Lange has posted a video.
Although all believers are ambassadors of Christ, not all are called to be cross-cultural missionaries. TCM is excited to introduce Julia Liles from London, England as our newest missionary. Julia's parents taught her the grace message at a young age at their home in London. While Julia was completing her bachelor's degree she trusted in Christ and began seeking God's will for her life. During Africa Safari 2009 in Kenya Julia received the call to be a missionary and graduated in May from the two-year missionary training program at All Nations College near London. After several short trips to India and Southeast Asia Julia is confident that God is guiding her to serve in Southeast Asia. In January 2015 she will travel to the United States for four months of deputation before
going to the field.
At our recently concluded board meeting Pauline Watkins was assigned as a missionary to the TCM home office. Pauline is one of the founders of TCM together with her late husband Joe Watkins. After 29 years of missionary work in the Philippines, in 1987 she and Joe moved back to the office which was then in Cope, Colorado. Currently, Pauline picks up the mail, enters donations and addresses, communicates with missionaries, keeps the missionary apartment ready and helps with the banking. Her coworkers are Ben & Joyce Anderson, Cindy LaVier and Darlene Anderson. The whole TCM team is blessed to have this faithful woman of God standing with us.
Between the Kenya ministry in the highlands and the churches on the Coast there is a stretch of 300 kilometers where Grace Bible Church does not work. Recently the Coast pastors under the leadership of Pastor Peter Kagwi met to discuss how to reach Voi, the largest town in that area with a population of 45,843. They decided to form the Voi mission consisting of five leaders from Mombasa. They will conduct a survey trip on Oct. 31 to Nov. 2, 2014. The plan is for Pastor Patrick Kilei, who is currently studying at the Bible school, to move to Voi with his wife and two children in 2015 to start a “Grace Preaching Point.”
Please remember in prayer the TCM board that meets today through tomorrow, that wise decisions will be made that will have eternal benefits. Among the items on the agenda is an interview with a new missionary candidate, and a report from the Padayhags, missionaries to South Africa. Ben Anderson and Don Sommer will be joined by four board members who are coming from out-of-state: Doug Cox, Joel McGarvey, Dick Ware, and Tim Board. Jesse Vaught will be unable to attend because of the recent birth of his son, Judah Luke.
Director Ben & Joyce Anderson drove to a farm in South Dakota on September 4-7 at the invitation of Pastor Joel Finck. TCM board member Tim Board and Ben were speakers at the conference together with Joel and others. Joyce writes, “We had a wonderful time at the Grace Family Conference and met up with Tim and Lori Board and family, and William and Donna Lange and Ben from AL. Ben Lange was on the EXITE trip to the Philippines and gave a good report of their assistance for the Typhoon Haiyan victims. Tim and son Timmy Board manned the TCM display. We were able to talk to several people about mission and their response.”
Applying for visas can be a long and complicated process which missionaries must deal with throughout their years of ministry. We praise the Lord for this news from Pat & Michelle Kilgo, “It took years of planning, 7 trips to the immigration office, 70+ man-hours, overcoming numerous clerical errors and system failures, and more headaches than we care to remember, but ... today we received the last of our visa passes to stay here! We know that many of you have been praying for this day, some of you for more than two years. THANK YOU! We thank The Lord for His faithfulness to our family. It is certainly a great big weight off of our shoulders.”
Field Director Jun Pielago writes, “Our six TCM Bible schools (including two Bible training centers in Negros) have a total enrollment of 203 students for this school year. Breakdown of enrollment is as follows: NGBTC, Tambo, Ayungon, Neg. Oriental – 8; NGBTC, Kabankalan City – 14; IGBI-Cauayan City Campus – 16; IGBI-Bataan Campus – 27; IGBI-Ozamiz City Campus – 54; IGBI-Tagum City Campus – 84. Out of the 203 enrollees, 37 are graduating in March 2015. Please pray for the faculty members of these schools that God would give them wisdom as they train the students for the ministry. Pray also for the students’ need of finances.” These are the students who will in the future care for the many new Grace churches being planted.
Apostle Paul writes, “Out of the most severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity” (2 Cor. 8:2). What a blessing, then, to hear from Kenya Director Titus Kivilu. “Dear Brother Ben, After hearing and reading about the devastating destruction caused by the deadly typhoon in Philippines in November including TCM churches and believers, we requested believers from Grace Bible Church-Kenya to give a voluntary donation to share the grief and hurt with our fellow brethren in Philippines. We were deeply touched by what our fellow brethren went through during that time. The Kenya churches have contributed a small donation of Ksh 20,000 ($250) to assist them in mending the damages caused by the typhoon especially in the churches in the affected areas.”
Pastor Peter Kagwi heads up the Grace ministry along the Kenya coast. He writes, “At the main school in Mikindani I have three different classes which meet on different days weekly. The total hours per main class is 9. At the 4 distance training centers, I only train on Saturdays except the Tana Delta where I go for one week because it is so far. Praise the Lord that this week we launched a new training center at West-Coast of Mombasa. On Sat. 23rd Aug., six students enrolled and the intake is in progress until 6th Sep. when the official classes will begin. Pastor Jackson Tsuma from Kaloleni will be the coordinator of the new center. He is a graduate of BGSM and a very active pastor.”
Pastor Kenneth Ling has had a busy summer conducting salvation camps in three diffferent area of Myanmar. He writes, “Pastor Mawia, Peter and I are very busy visiting our new church. The past Water Festival we held Salvation Camps at three places with 40 campers at each. Seven people confessed that they accept Jesus Christ as their own personal Lord and Savior. We praise God for His wonderful guidance and blessings through the camp. All these are the answers of your prayer and the fruits of your hard-work. God hears our prayer. Please continue to pray for Myanmar. I send you some pictures of Church Dedication and our Salvation Camp.”