2/13/2018 Prayer Requests
Pray for the Bethel Series classes in TJ and in Xn going on now. Pray for both teachers and students.
Pray for Lin's communication with local leaders overseas because of safety and security reasons. Sometimes it's hard to express oneself directly because of the political situation. He's still planning his next trip, but he needs to make sure it's safe.
Please pray for our Stateside office and finance staff, Yanbin and Rosa, that our Father will bless their work, and bless them with joy and the ability to communicate with their families in Ch’n’ during the Ch’n’se New Year.
- It is Spring Festival Time in Ch’n’ — The Year of the Dog. Ch’n’se New Year’s Eve is Feb. 15th.
- The Mei Wen staff will begin their two-week vacation break this week. Pray that this is a renewing time for each of them and that they resume their work in “the new year” with renewed enthusiasm and hope.
- Praise for a successful “Bo Ai” reunion party held last week. These are rural poor students who received scholarships from our organization to attend high school and who qualified for college. We are very proud of these young men and women who have seized an opportunity to excel and to make a difference in their lives for the sake of others. These students tend to be others focused and committed to serve those in need out of gratitude for the grace they themselves have received. Many of them become counselors for our Stay Behind Program in the Middle Schools serving as big brother or big sister mentors for rural poor “left behind” children. The “Bo Ai” (boundless love) program has great potential to make significant impact in the lives of rural students. We are grateful for our donors who give toward this vision of changing a life.
From Jeff and Mim
- Our small delegation of Paul, Ida, and Charlotte accompanied Jeff to the signing ceremony with the Registry Office of Henan’s Public Security Bureau in Z. We already received our registration documents, but this was important to solidify our relationship with government officials. It was a blessing for them to meet especially two Norwegian “Henan People” who were born in Ch’n’. This is a fascination for them and that all three of them could converse in Ch’n’se was especially rewarding. The mood with the officials was warm and welcoming — very significant.
- Paul, Ida, and Charlotte were also able to meet with the returning Bo Ai students from College and converse with them in Ch’n’se and to share the hope that we have in Chr’st. They explained the vision of our organization and Mei Wen. This, too, was very significant and the delight in the eyes of the students was evident.
- Yang Guang and Jeff were able to begin the process of registering with the local Tax Commission in X and to open domestic and foreign currency exchange accounts with the bank. The agencies, however, were unable to complete the process, since their software did not allow for a foreign NGO classification. They will call their superiors who will need to call state agencies to figure out how to complete the process.
- We discovered that our organization is the only foreign NGO to register a representative office in Henan. There are two other agencies who have registered temporary activities through a Ch’n’se Partner, but our organization is the only one to register a more permanent office. This is very significant and represents a unique, singular activity. We also discovered that four foreign NGO’s were rejected. This just confirms that our organization’s registration is truly a miracle.
- Pray for recovery from jet lag for all trip participants. While the Ch’n’ office is on break, this is a good time for the US office to review and revamp its communication documents, policies and procedures to integrate more fully with the Ch’n’se office. There is a lot to do in the near future.
Thank you for your continued prayers and support for our organization. We have a unique opportunity to serve in Ch’n’, a door that the Lord has opened. We want to be faithful.
2/6/2018 Prayer Requests
We thank our Father that Lin has received positive feedback from two more places, confirming Lin's plans to visit them on his upcoming trip.
Pray for our Father's protection, guidance, and wisdom for him. The government's new religious policy, which came into effect February 1, is more tight and makes a lot of uncertainties for him in connection with his trip.
Jeff sent the following requests:
For the USA side of our work:
- Charlotte Gronseth, Paul & Ida Martinson, and Jeff Nellermoe travel together to Zh'zh', H'n'n for the official signing ceremony with the Registry Office of H'n'n’s Public Security Bureau to celebrate our organization's registered representative office. They fly out today/Tuesday, Feb. 6th. The Signing Ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 8th, in the afternoon. They will be in X., H'n'n on Friday, Feb. 9th, to open Bank Accounts and visit with the Mei Wen Team. They also will be meeting with Bo Ai students.
- Please pray for travel mercies! The connections are very tight. They fly into B. at 8:00 p.m. and go directly to the train station to take a midnight train to Zh'zh'. We arrive early in the morning (3:30 a.m.) and will go to a hotel to sleep and rest before the meeting with government officials. After the meeting we board the train again to travel to X.. It is a fast-paced trip just before Spring Festival (Ch'n'se New Year). Lots of people are traveling. So much that Yang Guang is not able to accompany us back to B. (he cannot buy a train ticket back home). So, we will be on our own in B.
- While meeting with the officials we need to clarify our authorized scope of activities. Please pray for opportunity to discuss this with the officials and to reach a mutual understanding between all parties. This clarification will become the vision for our ministry this next year and will help us to recruit volunteers and communicate our needs.
- Pray for our lawyer Yang Qin (Christine). She returned early from her vacation in Vietnam in order to assist us with our meeting with government officials in Zh'zh'. We need to secure her services for another year as we seek to meet all the legal requirements of a representative office in Ch'n'. This next year will be interesting and there are a lot of tax laws, employee laws, and accounting procedures and reporting that we need to navigate.
- Mostly, we are very excited about this opportunity. Though there is a lot of work ahead of us, this is an unprecedented opportunity for us. We are one of a handful of foreign NGO’s registered in H'n'n and we now number among the less than 270 foreign NGOs who have registered in the whole country. The future looks bright for us. Now we need wisdom and discernment as we consider hiring more professional part-time personnel (accountant and bookkeeper) over there.
- Pray for wisdom as we get to reconnect face-to-face with our Mei Wen team. This will be an opportunity for us to encourage them just before their two-week break during Spring Festival (Ch'n'se New Year).
- We are thankful that Mim and Jeff’s black labrador, Santo, now has a home! Jessie (Mei Wen Staff) has been staying in our organization's apartment and watching Santo. She will take Santo home with her to her parent’s house. They will watch and care for the dog during these next years until Jessie is established and can claim him again. They live in a rural village. Mim and Jeff are sad to see Santo go, but are also thankful for a good home. Santo has been used with great effect as a service dog with autistic children.
- The Mei Wen team is most concerned about all the logistics for our organization's visiting delegation. They request prayers for all the bus and train connections. The exact time of the signing ceremony still has not be set, but it will be on Feb. 8th in the afternoon. They are also concerned about the age of the group — most are the age of their grandparents. So, they have a special concern for our group.
- Pray for the Bo Ai student annual gathering. Some of the students are traveling to X. from Hu'b'ng. Several of these students have never left the vicinities of their own home and farms. A trip to the county seat, X., is a big deal for them. This is also our opportunity to share the hope of the gospel. So pray for open hearts and opportunity to express the love of Chr'st. Many Bo Ai students attending college return for this event. It is really a celebration of our Father’s mercy that these young people were given the hope of a future through the caring generosity of foreign donor angels.
- Yang Guang’s mother, XU Hui, fell and severely injured her back. She has gone to the hospital. Huang Rui (Nancy’s) mother is also in the hospital. So, the team is concerned about their families. The Spring Festival will be a good two-week break for them to focus on family.
Stay tuned next week in our prayer requests for the debrief of our meeting with government officials and our Mei Wen team in our prayer requests. Thanks for your prayers.