15 December 2006

Why We Celebrate

"And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified." 1 Corinthians 2:1-2

In other words, when Paul first went to Corinth he didn't use lofty words and brilliant ideas to tell God's message. He decided to concentrate only on Jesus Christ and His death on the cross. It is amazing today just how "difficult" people make coming to Christ. It is even more amazing to notice that God has been pushed almost completely out of the holiday we have to celebrate the birth of the Messiah!

Christmas for us means going to church and spending the first hour of the day in the Lord's house. We sing and praise God for His gift, the Lord Jesus Christ, and for the means whereby we can – and must – be saved. This has pretty much been the norm for most Christians in Zambia.

Ah, how things have changed! The store is now cluttered with toys from Zambia's "new best friend" – China. Stuffed teddy bears crowd out the checkout counter, plastic toy trucks clutter the floor space and baby dolls are stacked in almost every aisle. It is hard to believe, but nobody seems to notice that all the dolls have yellow skin.

We can now go through the local grocery store (the only one in Luanshya) and hear Bing Crosby crooning "I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas" over the PA system. When I asked the store clerk what a "white Christmas" was she said it was one "like you bazungu celebrate: a tree in the house, presents for family and eating too much." ("Bazungu" is the Bemba word for – you guessed it – white people!)

Still, even with all the new commercialism in Zambia we still see God working in the hearts and lives of His children. Brother Zulu has been praying about doing a concentrated Bible study with me. I asked him to complete a commitment sheet and he delivered it yesterday. We will begin later this week. This is why Christ came into the world. This is why we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Saviour. This is why we are in Zambia!

We appreciate the part you have in making it possible for us to remain here. Your prayers and support are more valuable than we can express in words.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

29 November 2006


"Therefore be careful how you walk not as unwise men, but as wise." (Eph.5:15)

The predominant theme over the last two weeks seems to have been "wisdom". As we review our diaries, it never ceases to amaze us that as the Lord prepares our hearts to teach one lesson; the material becomes accessible for others who may come into our lives seeking guidance.

The Sunday School has been studying a series of lessons dealing with various forms of expressing wisdom through their life choices and attitudes. Walking in wisdom is an element of the worthy walk that Paul was describing in Ephesians 4-5. He covers the traits of being humble, united, unique, loving, illuminated and wise. The point we were attempting to get across to is that Christians are different from the world. The world can't be humble because everyone is fighting for his rights. The world can't be united because it celebrates and exalts differences. The world can't be unique because it's trapped in its own self-destruction. The world can't love because it doesn't' have the life of God-the source of real love. The world can't know light because it lies in the system of darkness. And the world can't be wise because the wisdom of God is hidden from the mind of man. We want the children to realize that being different from the world is an asset and not a hindrance. When others see you obeying Scripture-when they see you walking in wisdom-they'll notice you're not like them. That difference can create opportunities to tell them about their faith. Pray that the children will walk in wisdom and let others be attracted to the light of Christ.

The High School youth group continues to study the lives of "The Not-so-Famous" in Scripture. Two weeks ago they looked at the testimony of "The Unknown Man of God" from 1 Kings 13:1-32. The import of this lesson was commitment to total obedience. This unnamed man was sent by God to deliver a message and then depart. Unfortunately, when someone else came along and had conflicting information, he heeded that instead of the message he, himself, was to obey. This, ultimately, led to his death. The young people learned how to act wisely when they hear something that does not match what God has told them in His Word. They were reminded that there are many who go around wearing sheep's clothing but are, in fact, wolves waiting to devour them. Cults and convincing life styles abound which are drawing our young people away from following the path of a more acceptable life. Please pray for the young people as they seek to make life choices.

The Christian Resource Centre has been well utilized lately by various young church leaders. One young man came in recently with a desire to look at "The Wisdom of God" and how that concept should be expressed through the life of His children. We were able to start him on his way and by the end of the day he had made copious notes on the subject. By the time he packed up, he stated that he was looking forward to the practical expression of the many lessons he had learned.

Many continue to apply themselves to the study of God's Word through the Source of Light correspondence lessons. We have now exceeded the 3,600 point with many young people expressing an interest in joining once the school holidays begin in a week's time. Pray for those who continue in their studies and for those considering enrollment.

Colin has completed his final year of school. He is now wrapping up his affairs and preparing for his eventual departure for the USA to begin his life and career with the US Air Force. Pray for him as he adjusts to a new life and personal responsibility.

Pray for the building work at Fellowship Chapel. The rainy season has begun so construction must come to a close only to resume in April or May. Pray for the building project out a Kafubu Block. We are ready to assist with the roof work. This will take place in the next week or two.

Thank you for pray for us and being a vital part of this ministry.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

08 November 2006


"For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin." (Hebrews 4:15)

Perhaps you have heard the joke, "I can resist anything but temptation!" Unfortunately, that is all too often true in our lives. Learning how to successfully resist temptation is vitally important, for we sin only when we yield to temptation.

The overriding theme of the past week has been issues of giving in to temptation. Whether it be a child at the orphanage succumbing to taking something not his own or a married man coming in to the Christian Resource Centre to express his remorse for actions he took against his wife and the feeling of desperation that he has walked outside God's sphere of influence and love, to the Bible teacher who has been working on his Sunday sermon suddenly convicted, realizing that before he asks the people to walk "in His light" he must deal with issues at hand in his own life and clear his conscience .all have one thing in common, at some point they yielded to temptation and gave in to sin. The solace that one and all can have is the fact that Jesus Christ provides us with the perfect example of how to defeat temptation.

In the situations mentioned above, we were able to encourage each that there is a way to successfully resist temptation as modelled by our Lord Jesus Christ. We must first understand our enemy's plan of attack and, secondly, make use of our spiritual resources. Satan made a three-pronged assault on Jesus Christ-the same three ways he tempts us. First, he tempted Jesus to doubt God's goodness by commanding the stones to become bread (Matthew 4:3). That implies that God did not care enough about Him to provide for His physical needs. Second, he tempted Jesus to doubt God's love, suggesting that He test that love by leaping from the pinnacle of the temple (Matthew
4:5-6). Finally, he tempted Jesus to compromise God's truth, promising Him the kingdom without the cross if Jesus would worship him (Matthew 4:8-9).

To each of Satan's temptations, Jesus replied, "It is written" (Matthew 4:4, 7, 10). He thereby showed us the resource for defeating temptation: the Word of God (Ephesians 6:17). Pray for each of those who sought our help this week. Pray that they will sincerely turn to the Word and gain the help and strength necessary to overcome the temptations that cross their paths. Pray for us as we, too, seek to do the right thing and take to heart what we share with those who seek our help from day to day.

The building program out at the Kafubu village church is progressing. The men of the church are doing all the labour and have asked me to come this Sunday to "inspect" the work and to provide a word from Scripture. The rains will soon be upon us and we need to get the roof phase completed as soon as possible. Pray that the work will continue until the job is finally done.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

01 November 2006


Natural: The giving to any one the name and place and privileges of a son who is not a son by birth.

Spiritual: An act of God's grace by which he brings men into the number of his redeemed family, and makes them partakers of all the blessings he has provided for them. Adoption represents the new relations into which the believer is introduced by justification, and the privileges connected therewith, viz., an interest in God's peculiar love. (John 17:23; Rom. 5:5-8)

To you and I the dual definitions for adoption may seem straightforward and clear. However, when a student in the Christian Resource Centre embarked on a study of the relationship one has with God when they accept Christ as Saviour, he just could not fathom the permanency of the relationship. You may ask, "Why on earth not?" Let us provide some background:

In Zambian culture family is community. Not only your immediate blood relatives but also extended family members and fellow villagers belong to that "family circle". Each, traditionally, took care of the other. For instance if a brother or sister passes away, their children become dependents of another family member or resident of the village. Nothing legal is documented. No one changes surnames. The children are simply passed on and integrated into the family unit. Unfortunately, that child never has a sense of "belonging" in most cases. Though the child has been integrated into the extended family, the same child is not afforded the rights and privileges of the birth child in the home to which they have been relegated. There is always that sense of separation, inequality, instability. A situation may arise whereby a family member in another part of the clan may need a servant or caregiver to younger children and frequently that same orphaned child will be sent to another home to serve as opposed to becoming a member of the family.

When we understand this concept of integration in the Zambian setting yet no permanency or sense of belonging, it helps us to realize that what you and I take for granted as understood, is an entirely foreign idea in this culture. We now know why so many of our Zambian believers think that their eternal life is conditional upon their behavior. To assist the student in his comprehension of adoption we are able to use the example of our son Colin and how he was made Sherry's son through adoption. She made the choice to make him a part of her life, relegating all the rights and privileges that would have been bestowed upon a child of birth, to him. He is loved, taught and disciplined as any other child would be that is loved by a parent.

Translating that into how God has chosen us, given us His name, His love, His gift of eternal life, a place with Him, blessings, an inheritance, discipline etc. the student was finally able to come to terms though he stated that it takes great faith to truly know that God will not "excommunicate" you or regret his decision and throw you back.

Adoption should not surprise God's people. Adoption in Christ is the way God chose to create His family even before He created the world (Eph. 1:4-5). Adoption as God's act is an eternal process of His gracious love, for He "fore-ordained us unto adoption as sons through Jesus Christ unto himself, according to the good pleasure of his will"

Pray for our Zambian friends as they come to grips with the concept of adoption. Pray for us as we make clear the mysteries of God's Word.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

11 October 2006

The Most Pressured Time of the Year

"When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word, what a glory He sheds on our way! While we do His good will He abides with us still, and with all who will trust and obey. Trust and obey, for there's no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey."

The order in which we pick up items on our grocery list really doesn't matter. But the order is important when it comes to our Christian faith. Our obedience will never save us, nor will it enable us to trust. Instead, our vain attempts at obedience will only bring frustration. But when trust comes first, obedience follows out of love.

Early this week one of the young people from the Friday afternoon youth meeting came in to the library with a look of concern. She had a question for Sherry about one of the lessons recently taught on "Facts About Christians." This young lady has been faithfully attending church, youth meetings and is a member of Scripture Union at school and yet something wasn't quite right. She was frustrated with her life. When questioned further, Sherry learned that though she has been active in Christian
programs much of her life, she had not put her trust in Christ and Him alone. She was desperately trying to fill her life but there was no vessel (herself) to fill. Obedience to the Word was empty because trust was missing. Knowing about God and His expectations of those who call Him Lord was insufficient because she realized that she did not belong to Him. She had the head knowledge but lacked the heart commitment. By the conclusion of the session, this young lady made a commitment for Christ and can now go forward in her life with trust leading the way, obedience following and good works providing the active ingredient to faithful Christian living. Pray that many more lives will be affected through this vital youth ministry.

One of the greatest joys I have is talking to church leaders in and around Luanshya. It is not that these men have no problems that is so encouraging, but that they are willing to bring their problems to me so we can pray together. One of these men is brother Katandula. In the last three months he has been in hospital twice and has buried one of his daughters. When asked, "How are you doing?" he responds, "God is blessing." The church in which he is involved is slowly building a permanent structure. In spite of his grief and health situation, he continues to go out and do what he can to be a part of this building project. Brother Katandula is 72 years old. He is an example, to those of us who are younger, that life does not end at
retirement. Please pray for brother Katandula and the Buntungwa church building project.

We have moved into the most pressured time of the year. Temperatures are soaring to well over 100 F every day and almost none of the homes have anything remotely resembling air conditioning. In fact, most of them have tin roofs which makes the inside of the house more like a solar oven. Add to that the fact that children in grade 7, 9 and 12 are preparing for end of the year exams which will determine whether they progress in their education or not. October is referred to as "suicide month" because of the high increase in self-inflicted deaths in our area. Please pray for our young people - including Colin - as they prepare for their final exams. Colin will be taking 13 hour long exams covering four subjects beginning next Monday and continuing through the end of November.

We appreciate, deeply, the fact that you are part of this ministry through your prayer and financial support.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

04 October 2006

a clean bill of health

Greetings from Luanshya!

"If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us." 1 John 1:10

Confession is the first step toward defeating sin. It is often true that the hardest part of dealing with a problem is admitting that you have one. Beginning with Adam and Eve (Gen. 3:11-13), people have denied responsibility for their sins, and our generation is no exception. To acknowledge that one is a sinner, guilty of breaking God's holy law, is not popular. People call sin by a myriad of other names, futilely hoping to define it out of existence. They do so, motivated by their innate awareness that there is a moral law and that there are consequences for violating it (Rom. 1:32). But God's people have always recognized the necessity of confession.

This past week, before, the Sunday communion service, a young man came into the church with a letter for the leadership. In it he had written his confession for sins committed against us and the need for forgiveness by not only the two of us but also by the local church. He knew that his penitent heart was understood and accepted by the Lord but he also knew that it was necessary to confront those whom he had wronged and he did so, humbly and tearfully just before the fellowship took part in the communion service. It was a time of healing for this young man as well as a time of renewal for others as they contemplate their standing before God and man. May we be mindful of the need to maintain a clean heart.

Today we celebrate the 11th birthday of one of the children at the Lighthouse Children's Home. Andrew has now been with us for more than half his life! He does not recall much of what happened before, but he does know where he is today and where he is headed tomorrow. While chatting with Sherry in the library this afternoon, he happened to mention some of the things he is learning at school on computers. Andrew is a gifted artist and now that he has access to a computer, it will be interesting to see how he develops this talent in another medium. This is a bright and talented little boy and we thank God for the privilege of bringing him up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. We your help and prayers he has a future. Thank you for remembering our children.

In other areas, the library has been relatively busy over the last week. More and more adults have been taking advantage of the computers that have been donated. We have numerous Bible study helps on each unit making it possible for people to do in-depth Bible study without spreading books all along the tables. Having various resources available at their finger tips has been a real joy and created new excitement in their study habits. Thank you to those who have been so kind as to donate their old pc's to this task.

Zambian elections have come and gone. President Levi Mwanawasa has retained his post as leader of the country. There was some unrest in the capitol and larger towns but overall, the political stability of the nation was maintained. Not only were citizens voting for their President, but also for Members of Parliament and local town councillors. Please continue to pray for the stability of Zambia as she continues to go through the growing stages of democracy.

On a personal note, I made a quick trip to South Africa for a medical check-up regarding my cancer surgery last year. The doctor gave me a "clean bill of health" and does not want to see me again until next March. He said that after the first 18 months the possibility of a recurrence "drops significantly." That is good news indeed! We appreciate your prayers on our behalf. Without your support we would not be able to remain...

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

30 September 2006

He does not sleep

Psalm 10:11 "he has said in his heart, 'God has forgotten, He hides His face, He will never see.'"

James 4:3 "You ask and do not received, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasure."

We have had a busy couple of weeks inclusive of power outages, internet network problems, political rallies, disciplinary issues at the orphanage, shortage of materials at the various building projects and squeezed in between all that... If we did not know that the Lord is in control, the last couple of weeks would have been much more difficult and hopeless.

One of the bright spots was news from one of the young people we assisted in the past. He is doing well in his nursing studies and can't imagine having ever thought about doing anything else. He looks forward to the time when he will be working full time in the profession and be able to provide more than physical medicine but spiritual medicine to those in need. Another young person came in on Monday to check on one of his assignments from the Bible College program. He is keen to continue to the next module once he sits for review of the last assignment.

The youth meeting on Friday afternoons is progressing well. Two weeks ago the lesson was on the subject: "God Must Be Asleep" and last weeks lesson covered "Give Me, Fix Me, Restore Me, Bless Me". Many of our young people are going through trying circumstances and while going through those valleys they frequently wonder whether the Lord hears them as they cry out for help. What they do not understand, and often we ourselves, is that God's purposes are at work in our lives even through those seemingly silent periods. God is not silent or busy or hiding His face. If they/we are experiencing the "cold shoulder" from God, and can't figure out why, we need to remember that God never changes (Mal. 3:6), we do. If God seems distant and impersonal, it's not because He has decided to ignore us; He hasn't gone anywhere. He doesn't go on vacation. He doesn't ignore us. He isn't busy somewhere cleaning His
heavenly garage and forgot about us. We are not a "to do" item in His Daytimer that he has not gotten to yet (Mt. 6:25-34). There may be times He CHOOSES to be silent, or we may have distanced ourselves from God by our own choices. Truth be known, If God seems to be somewhere else, it's frequently because we have wandered off from Him. The youth were reminded that if they desire to hear God and experience His presence, then they have to give up something for it (Rom. 12:1). You can't have it all. You can't have the world and its pleasures, and the full measure of God's presence (Mt. 6:24). Pray for our young people as they make some discoveries over the next few weeks.

The believers out at Kafubu Block Chapel came into town the other day to advise us of progress on their building and await our visit to see what they have done. They are so excited about finally having a permanent structure that will stand the test of time. Continue to pray for this small gathering of believers as they make the blocks and do the construction themselves and as they reach out to their neighbors with the words of Jesus Christ.

The construction work for Fellowship Chapel is slow, this being a town congregation and many more restrictions, regulations and that old paperwork needing to be filed. At every turn it's something else but at least we have made some progress. Not only that but the town council has demarcated some of the plots nearby for homes and we have noticed our new neighbors beginning to prepare their ground for digging foundations. Pray that when the church finally moves to the new location, these people will join us and come to a saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. Please continue to pray for this project.

Thank you for your continued support and prayers on our behalf.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

06 September 2006

"Little is much when God is in it"

Greetings from Luanshya!

This mornings Bible reading was from Hosea 14 where we are reminded that: Every man must do his own growing, no matter how tall his parents are. When it comes to growing a garden, there are usually two kinds of people: those with green thumbs who grow everything, and those who are all thumbs and grow nothing. To which group do you belong? It is not surprising that when Hosea searches for a suitable illustration to describe the potential of God's restored people, he finds it in a picture drawn from nature: "the lily... roots... branches... olive tree... corn... vine... green fir tree... fruit" (Hosea 14:5-8). Nature silently but eloquently testifies to the fact that God is in the business of transforming seeds into trees if you will but entrust them to His loving hands. A little talent... a little money... a little time—each can become something great in God's economy. "Little is much when God is in it."

Some years ago we took on the care of a young, troubled boy named Chewe. We have mentioned him in prior newsletters but this time we have some additional, exciting news. After graduating from high school, with honors, he went to Lusaka, the capitol city of Zambia. He moved in with a distant relative while he sought a job and attended night school studying computer programming. Subsequently, he has graduated from that course of study, worked one year for a computer graphics company and is now setting up his own graphics company as of last month. Chewe’s next goal is to attend another course of study in the evenings and achieve a diploma in IT (Information Technology). Chewe visited us this week, sadly, to attend the funeral of his aunt. He stopped by the Christian Resource Centre to provide this update for our encouragement. His parting words this afternoon were, "Mama, thank you for believing in me and giving me a chance to succeed. Without your support, discipline, prayers and guidance, I do not know where I would be today. You've made a man out of me and I want to make you proud." We wish to thank those who have prayed with us about the many young people that have passed through our care over the last 8 years. Investing in this young particular life has made all the heartaches worth it! Chewe returns to Lusaka this evening and will resume his work and continue in the youth leadership program at his local church.

Speaking of young people, Colin returned to school over the weekend. He has begun his mock exams and will complete his final exams in two months time. Please pray for him as he winds up his education in Zambia and prepares for a future back in the USA. The kids at the Lighthouse Children's Home have also returned to school this week. We are back to paying school fees, picking up supplies, arranging for tutoring and the whole nine yards. Your prayers on behalf of our children is greatly valued. We will be making some tough decisions with regard to the education of our children in the next few months—some may be moved from the private school to the government schools come the new year.

The ministry at the Christian Resource Centre has been fruitful over the last couple of weeks. We were pleased to see one young man return... Happy Kafungwa. He brightly informed us that he was away for the last few weeks because he had "gotten married". Happy is a young itinerant preacher here in Luanshya and makes good use of one of the computers donated to us in the library. Pray for Happy and his wife, Doreen, as they set up a home and ministry based on the Lord Jesus Christ.

As always, we greatly appreciate your prayers on our behalf. Yes, there is much to do but your support makes it possible for us to remain...

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

30 August 2006

Pest Control

Greetings from Luanshya!

We are in the final few days of the government school break. After several weeks of being out of classes, most children are looking forward to getting back to the routine of regular school schedule. Over the weekend Sherry will be making the new school term purchases including notebooks, pens, pencils, and a few pairs of shoes. It is amazing how fast children can wear out a $50 pair of shoes. On Monday everybody will be back in class and taking their preliminary final exams. This final term of the year is the most pressured period. In November the final exams will take place and their entire years' grade rests on these few exams. Please pray for the children at the Lighthouse Children’s Home as they prepare.

A few weeks ago I began teaching the young men at the "Caddy Chapel" about baptism. Last week three young men completed the classes and asked to be baptized. Since there is no way they can be in church on Sunday, we are having a special baptism service this afternoon at 4 p.m. just before the regular midweek meeting. I have encouraged the young men to invite their friends and family as they testify to their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Yesterday afternoon two young men came into the Resource Centre and were looking at one of the books on Mormonism. Both of them were reading the same book and discussing their findings in Bemba, one of the vernacular languages. Earlier in the afternoon, a group of young Mormon missionaries walked by the display window and counted all the books that spoke out against the movement. Sherry heard them say "why us?" What they did not notice were the many books that dealt with other cults as well. We are simply providing a resource so people are well informed about the different groups that preach a doctrine contrary to the Word of God. Many people here in Zambia have the impression that any religion coming out of America is the same as any other religion. We are often asked, as Americans, about some of the new religious cults. We, too, need to be well informed in order to guide people to the Light.

One final prayer request. As the cold time passes, malaria season begins to make a headway. The mosquitoes are already out and the incidence of malaria has greatly increased. International organizations have designated a large amount of funds for insecticide treated mosquito nets and pesticides. The biggest problem we see is getting the nets and pesticides where they will do the most good: in the houses and out of the storage rooms. Pray that during the next few weeks, government will take advantage of the opportunity to get the nets into the hands of the people before the situation becomes much worse.

We are thankful that the election period has remained peaceful. All the political parties are stressing the fact that violence is not a solution. The police and military are being specially trained to handle large crowds without using brute force. People are talking about making informed choices for leaders. While we do not get involved in the political process of Zambia, we are encouraging Christians to make prayer a primary part of their voting experience. We would ask you to pray especially on the 28th of September as the Zambian population goes to the polls.

We appreciate the part you play in this ministry which allows us to remain…

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

16 August 2006

Happy Birthday, Sherry

Greetings from Luanshya!

Today is Sherry's birthday so I have given her the afternoon off and I am typing this letter myself. This means three four things:
  1. It will take longer to type
  2. My spell check will be working overtime
  3. I am four hours late typing it because I made supper for her tonight
  4. My spell check has already found four errors in the first six lines (fat fingers!)
I am so thankful to God for the blessing that Sherry has been to me. I have never doubted the sovereignty of God in His plan for my life. That does not mean that I have always understood it, but I know that He is in complete control. When Sherry came into my life I was so very unsure of what our life would become, but God has blessed beyond anything I could have ever imagined. (Now you know why I typed this – She would not have allowed this paragraph!)

Last Sunday was one of those days that started off rough and got better! In the morning I went out to the golf course for the weekly "Caddy Chapel" only to find that there was a tournament scheduled. By 8:00 all the caddies were either on the course or waiting for their golfers to tee off. One of the caddies apologised and said, "Will we see you next week?" Of course!

After missing that opportunity to teach I went back to the Chapel to prepare for the morning service. It seemed that half the congregation was either out of town, working or sick. However, we had a young man come as a visitor so I felt encouraged. That afternoon I went wto visit Sidney at his home. We had a good visit. When I asked Sidney why he came he said he "just happened to walk by and heard the music." We do not believe in coincidence. Sidney enjoyed the service, though it was unlike any he had every attended before last Sunday. He told me he had already shared his experience with his sister and mother about the church and they were planning to come next week. Please pray for Sidney and his family. Seeds have been planted. Now we seek a harvest for the Kingdom

On Sunday night I received a telephone call. Late night calls are almost never good news. Robert had fallen and badly hurt himself. He is an 83 year-old gentleman who came to Zambia (then Northern Rhodesia) in 1947 and stayed. He took Zambian citizenship in 1964 when Zambia became an independent nation. His wife died 13 years ago and his children have all moved away. Several years ago he gave me a set of his house keys "just in case" he ever needed some help. The call came and I went. Robert's left arm was broken and he has badly bruised his hip – which was broken two years ago in another fall. He has been in the hospital for three days and may be there for another three.

I have told you all of this because I want you to pray for Robert. He has seen a lot of missionaries over the past 59 years. Most have disappointed him because their lifestyles do not match their words. I have spoken to him on several occasions about his eternity, but he has put me off. Today as I visited him in the hospital he began to talk about God and the future. This is the first time he has brought up the subject. Please pray that God will give us the time and privacy to continue our conversation.

Thank you for being a part of our lives and ministry. You might want to send a note to Sherry wishing her a happy 21st birthday! Again!!

In His Service,

Patrick & Sherry

09 August 2006

Building Lives

Greetings from Luanshya!

School holidays have started. The children are enjoying their freedom. Very often the first week of the holiday shows a marked decrease in the library because the kids are just too tired to leave home. In the next few weeks we will see activity increase as children look for a place to read. This is also a time when many children travel to visit relatives in other parts of Zambia. There have already been incidents of overcrowded and overloaded vehicles being involved in accidents where several passengers have been killed. Please pray for the youngsters that occupy the Christian Resource Centre as they move from place to place.

We will continue the Friday afternoon Youth Meetings. Those who have been attending have specifically requested that we not go on break as well. It is encouraging to know that the young people desire to know more and to have fun in the Youth Centre. New faces crop up from week to week alerting us to the fact that those who have been attending regularly are inviting their friends.

Last Sunday I was in Buntungwa at one of the rural churches. The building program in this village continues to progress. They have made all the concrete blocks for their foundation while they meet in a temporary grass shelter. This fellowship has a full program of ministry through the week including two mid-week Bible studies and a separate ladies Bible study. Everything they do must be during daylight hours because there is absolutely no electricity in that region. The day starts at dawn and everything ends at sunset. Continue to pray for this group of believers as they reach their community for Christ.

The Water TruckThe building program at the English speaking chapel has reached slab level. Pictures are available on our website. We are meeting with the membership to determine the next step. There are several options open to us. There are two large ant hills on the property which can produce enough bricks to finish the building up to the roof level. Please pray as we make these decisions.Slab Level

Several of the young men from the Sunday morning Caddy Chapel are planning to come and chat with me about baptism. As you may recall, these young men work on Sunday as caddies at the local golf course and are unable to attend Sunday morning services. I began going to the golf course early Sunday mornings to have a Bible study. About 12 of these young men have made professions of faith and are concerned that they cannot come to church to be baptized. I am going to teach them about baptism so they fully understand what it means and then we will arrange for a baptism service during a weekday. Please pray for these young men. This is a big step in their lives.

Sherry's children's meeting has been studying various family issues. A few weeks ago they discussed "Obedience". This past week they focused on family problems and that all families have difficulty but work it out. Realizing that many of these children are orphans, they recognize all too well that families are different. Next weeks lesson will deal with the fact that there are problems in families and that we need to depend on the Lord to be our "very present help in trouble". (Ps. 46:1) Pray for the programs that involve children. Their lives are so very unstable from home situations to school to friendships.

We have another full week in the offing. I will be making a trip to Kafubu Block to assess the progress on that particular building project. We appreciate your partnership in this ministry.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

02 August 2006


Yesterday was a landmark day for the Colemans. Twenty-one years ago - 1 August 1985 - I first set foot on African soil when our family stepped off the plane in Kinshasa, Zaire. A lot has occurred since that day. I still remember the excitement and fear as someone grabbed my passport and disappeared into a crowd. Someone else grabbed our luggage and ran a different direction. There I was, with a wife and two small children, stumbling through high school French - a language spoken only in American
high schools. Somehow "Bonjour Paul. Comment va tu" did not come in very handy when running after complete strangers in a totally foreign atmosphere. Over two decades later I am a little more adept at handling foreign airports but the excitement still remains when I realize why we are here and what we are doing.

In addition, yesterday was the 9th anniversary of the day when Sherry and I were married. A lot has happened since that day, as well. There have been a lot of interesting events and situations and God has blessed tremendously. We are currently in the midst of two building programs and numbers of people are utilizing the Christian Resource Centre. When we look back at what we were doing nine years ago and compare with what we are doing today, it is both amazing and thrilling to see what the Lord has done in our lives. I was told many years ago that God may not give us everything we envision, but He would never give us more. That has been proven to be false because God has given us more than we ever dreamed possible.

The Source of Light Bible Correspondence School continues to grow steadily with twenty-three new students enrolling in the last few weeks. Two hundred and fifty four lessons were distributed, one hundred and ninety seven were corrected and twenty-three certificates of completion were awarded. One of our young men in the English speaking church, was transferred to Chipata (13 hours away by road) and was unable to complete his discipleship series with me so I sent him the last three books and he will send them back to me one at a time for correction and comments.

The "Equal Yet Different" class has concluded. Questions still arise from the lessons and we are continuing to meet with those who are interested. One young pastor came in specifically asking questions on "pride, envy and jealousy" for use in his weekly small group Bible studies. We have an outreach into congregations where we have not personally visited yet because of the scope of our ministry; we are having an influence.

This coming Sunday I will be preaching in Buntungwa Compound. This is another one of the young fellowships I helped to start with Zambian leaders. They are in the process of rebuilding on their property. Two years ago they build a mud-brick structure and now they are using burnt bricks which were made onsite by members of the church. This is another example of churches in rural Zambia that are able to do things on their own with minimal missionary help.

Thank you for praying for Colin's surgery. This past weekend the steel plate was removed from his leg and he is healing well and walking without the aid of crutches. He should be back in action in another five weeks.

Please pray for our students in the various areas of ministry. Many are preparing for final exams later this year. Quite a few of them are spending as much time in private tutoring as they are in formal classes. Still, the Friday afternoon youth classes are growing and the children are asking a multitude of questions about Heaven. We are able to be here because you make it possible through your prayers and support.

Thank you for being a part of this ministry.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

19 July 2006

transportation and communication

Greetings from Luanshya!

Several years ago I was asked what are the two most frustrating aspects about living in a 3rd world country. My answer was two-fold, transportation and communication. God has blessed us with reliable vehicles that allow us to travel on the less than perfect rural paths with only minor problems like a muffler falling off or a tire being torn to shreds by the sharp edges of a pothole. We have learned to take these things in stride and simply prepare for the repairs.

Communication is another issue altogether. The situation is greatly improved since 21 years ago when I first set foot on the African continent. Back in those days it was not unusual for a First Class Airmail letter to take six to eight weeks to arrive at its final destination. Answers were also six to eight weeks in arriving. Telephone calls in and out of Zaire were incredibly expensive (US$10 per minute) when the phones worked. Back in those days, we often traveled the four hours into Zambia to make a phone call for "only US$6 per minute". We have slowly become more accustomed to faster mail service, working telephones and more recently e-mail. It is probably a sign of the times that we are now frustrated when an e-mail letter takes two hours to upload but we are happy to announce that Zamnet has worked with us
to improve service. For the first time in six months Sherry is actually typing this letter on her own computer since she can now send it via e-mail from the office. We're catching up!

The work continues.

We are very pleased that we have been able to have an outreach to the youth. Not only are they attending the youth meeting on Friday, but they are coming into the Resource Centre to read and
study the things of the Lord. Their questions are often very pointed as they live situations that would frighten the average American teen. Please remember to pray for the various ministries that include our younger members of society in Zambia.

We have begun the next phase of the building of the sanctuary for the English speaking work. Sand, stone and cement has been delivered. Workers will begin the forming of the concrete slab next week. At the Kafubu Block chapel, the pillars are being reinforced to support the new metal roof which will be completed, Lord willing, by the end of August. We will take pictures of the two projects and they will be posted on our website for viewing. We will keep you updated on the building progress.

God has been good to us and has blessed us in many ways. This includes, of course, the many friends and partners that we have who join us in prayer over this ministry.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

12 July 2006


Greetings from Luanshya!

For some time we have been working with the Kafubu Block believers. A few years ago this local gathering faded almost into oblivion. Brother Katandula began encouraging them and I was invited to spend some time teaching the church leadership. Today they have an active Sunday School program, ladies ministry and outreach into the rural farming community. They built a permanent structure with burnt brick as opposed to the mud brick structure in which they had been meeting for some time. The roof project has started. This includes making sure that the pillars line up and that there is a strong enough ring band around the structure to support a steel roof. Members of the congregation have been bringing sand and stone for the last month, one bucket at a time to the work site. They had a special offering and managed to purchase cement. Every Wednesday there is a church-wide workday. The men are making more bricks and the women come and fix lunch and do whatever they can do to help out. It is exciting to watch this small group of believers take the initiative to build their own building. It will be even more exciting as we help them put the metal roof on the building in the next few weeks. Please pray as they continue in their labors as a testimony in their community.

The small group study on "Equal Yet Different-gender issues from a biblical perspective" continues. This evening we talked about the responsibility of husbands and wives as taught by Peter and Paul in the New Testament. The whole concept of submission has a negative connotation in today's society. Yet when it is explained, biblically, it makes such perfect sense. The Bible commands a man to understand his wife and give himself for her as Christ gave Himself for the Church. The woman is told to submit and be the helper that God created Eve to be to Adam. So very often, in society here, men feel that they have the right to beat their wives into submission. This, of course, is ludicrous and the Bible in no terms condones this kind of activity. Part of the problem that we have is the extremism... if a little is good; a lot is better... so I will make my wife obey. Countermanding generations of tradition with biblical principles is not always an easy task, but we are seeing a break through in the lives of some.

Over the last year we have had a Canadian Youth Exchange student in Luanshya. She has stayed with several families in our community. Sherry and I have been her counsellors while during her stay. For the last six weeks she has lived in our home and lived as our "daughter". Colin has actually enjoyed having a sister around for the last week. Yesterday morning we took her to the airport and said goodbye. She put the Bible we gave her 11 months ago into her back pack and said she would be reading it during the long voyage home. Please pray that our lives and the lives of our young people has had a positive impact on Courtney's life.

The youth meeting on Friday afternoons continues to be exciting. The children are showing up early and staying through the Bible study at the end. They are asking questions and responding to the lessons. Some of them are coming into the Christian Resource Centre through and reading various materials for themselves. We are thrilled to see the interest and to make ourselves available to answer their questions. The Youth Centre is getting good use as the teens invite their friends to participate in the various activities prior to each week's Bible lesson. Interesting enough, we have more boys coming to the meeting than girls. Please pray as this ministry continues to grow.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

07 June 2006

A week of challenges and blessings

Greetings from Luanshya!

A week of challenges and blessings. We have been struggling for the past several weeks with chaotic water supply. Fortunately, this has been rectified. There are a few problems that remain, but that should be solved by the weekend. On Sunday the entire country of Zambia was without electrical power for two hours and our Province was dark for nearly four. This, too, has been rectified. However, we have received word from the electric company that there will be power outages from time to time over the next week while they run some maintenance checks and try to solve the problem that they discovered last weekend. With these problems we still had blessings.

Last Thursday four high school students stepped into the Resource Centre after reading some of the public notices we have displayed. The question asked is: Do you know you will go to heaven when you die? They came in and told Sherry that they did not know if Heaven even existed. They said that there are a lot of young people who have the same question. Instead of giving the answer to one or two people at a time, we suggested a youth bible study on the subject. So...on Friday afternoon, at 2 p.m., we will open the Youth Centre for those who want to come to play some games then we will delve into what the Word of God says about Heaven (where it is and how to get there). One young man came to the Resource Centre this afternoon to confirm that the meeting was still on. I assured him that it was and he is looking forward to being here. Please pray for these young people. Death is very real to them because they see it every day. To know the answer to the question "What happens after death?" will help them prepare for eternity.

This past Sunday the Sunday School completed their lessons "Living the Christian Life" and will commence with their Memory Verse Competition this coming weekend. The young people are keen to recite the last 13 weeks worth of scripture not only because this helps them to "hide God's Word in their heart" but also the incentive of receiving a bookmark and the accolades of their peers upon successfully completing the series. Pray for the young children as they grow through Sunday School.

In the afternoon I visited with Mr. and Mrs. Mwanza. They are new residents in Luanshya and have been visiting our services for the last several weeks. They come from a mixed religious background. They came to know the Lord just a few months before moving to our small town. Mrs. Mwanza was baptized but Mr. Mwanza was recuperating from an automobile accident and could not be baptized at the same time as his wife. Therefore, this coming Sunday I will be baptizing Mr. Mwanza and both of them will join the fellowship at Fellowship Chapel.

This afternoon we are beginning a discussion series on "Equal Yet Different" utilizing the book by Alexander Strauch. There has been a lot of debate in Zambia about gender roles and issues. The government has sponsored various seminars; the press has published numerous articles. We thought it was our turn to present God's perspective on gender roles. We will let you know how this unique presentation was received next week.

The Source of Light Bible Correspondence School has been quite active of late. Just yesterday Sherry enrolled a number of new students from various schools. We are pleased to see the continued interest in our material and praise the Lord for the many opportunities afforded to us. One young church leader in the Roan area requested if it was possible for him to send his leadership to us for enrolment. He has seen that their knowledge of the Word is limited. He is new to that local gathering and wishes to build God's Church.

It has been a very full week. We appreciate your prayers on our behalf.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

31 May 2006

Very Unusual Experiences

Greetings from Luanshya!

One of the young men we have been working with over the years, Augustine, came back to visit us this week. Two years ago he moved to Livingstone, hoping to find work. He has had some small success at that, but he misses being with us. He mentioned that if there was any possibility of finding work in Luanshya he would immediately move back. Unfortunately, that is not the situation we find ourselves in this small town. It was an encouragement to, specifically, as he sat in her office for 30 minutes sharing his desires and dreams. He returns to Livingstone next Wednesday. We will be providing him with a number of books for his growing personal library. Please continue to pray for Augustine as he continues preparing for his life and ministry.

Last Saturday we had a very unusual experience. We were about to show the film, "The Bible vs. The Book of Mormon". We had advertised it at the Christian Resource Centre and a couple of schools in town. Three young people came in to the chapel and sat in the back row just about the time the film was to start. One of the young people has come into the library to ask questions about what the Mormon church really teaches. Suddenly one of the young people that the Mormon church is grooming for leadership walked into the room and forcefully tried to drag these young people out. When I confronted him he said, "we are leaving". I escorted him to the door and said, "you are quite welcome to leave but you are not going to force anyone else to do what they do not want to do." Unfortunately, the young people he came to retrieve were embarrassed and left with him. There were still 30 people in the room who remained to watch the film. Some of them were amazed at the obvious fabrications of Joseph Smith's imagination. A couple of the visitors asked if we were going to show it again so they can bring their friends. We will, of course, at a later date and we will advertise it as the film the Mormon's do not want you to watch. Please continue to pray for the young people of Zambia. They are drawn to anything new and especially those things that come from America, even the cults.

Last Sunday was fantastic. I was out at the Kafubu Block church. They had their "harvest offering" at the conclusion of the service. Families were bringing in bags of corn, peanuts, sweet potatoes, beans and one man even brought in a bag of charcoal. All these things will be sold to help with their building program. As a special gift to me, they gave me some of the sweet potatoes, peanuts and the bag of charcoal as a form of thank you for coming out to them to preach the Word of God. It is very humbling when people who have so little generously give. We will use this gift to help others in our community.

There are so many facets to this ministry. We feel blessed to be used of God in this manner. The Christian Resource Centre will be hosting a series on "Equal Yet Different - The Biblical Perspective on Gender Issues". We would appreciate your prayers as we embark on this politically sensitive discussion.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

25 May 2006

Consider the Alternative!

Greetings from Luanshya!

Sometimes God just sends somebody along to encourage us. This week I met Henry. He is a Zambian who teaches in a university in Texas. He married an American girl a few years ago and brought her to Luanshya to meet his family. They were walking by the front of the Christian Resource Centre and saw the window display. It says: Things You Will Not Find in Hell. In the window I have placed a number of items. There will be no light - it is called "outer darkness" in Matthew 8:12. There will be no water - even Lazarus could not dip his finger to comfort the rich man in Luke 16:24. There will be no clock - it is everlasting punishment according to Matthew 25:46. There are another dozen items in the window that portray the emptiness of hell. We were closed that evening so Henry came by to see us the next day. He told me that he went to the United States to go to university and was hired to teach after he completed his masters degree. Henry and his wife attend a small Baptist church in College Station, Texas, and he wanted to come in and see just what we were doing. It was an encouragement to see this young Zambian Christian come in and visit with me for over an hour. God has been using him both in his church and in his profession. He thanked me for sharing the Gospel with his countrymen and we prayed together that God would bless him in his life and ministry in the States. He did mention the fact that his wife had fallen in love with Zambia after only an few short weeks here on her first visit, so who knows what God has in store for this young couple. Please pray for Henry and his wife (I cannot recall her name) as they continue to grow together in Christ.

This week we will be showing the documentary film: "The Bible Versus The Book of Mormon" at the Chapel. The film goes step-by-step through the proofs that the Bible is historically and archaeologically true while the Book of Mormon has not one shred of evidence that it is anything but a collection of fabricated stories. It is amazing that a book like this can be presented as "the most correct book on earth" (according to Joseph Smith) when it is literally filled with errors and unsubstantiated fiction. One example in the book of Mormon is that Joseph Smith says Jesus was born in Jerusalem instead of Bethlehem. The film is one-hour long and should help to initiate questions from the community about the fact that the Mormon church is simply a man-made cult. Please pray with us that people will come with open minds so we can show them the truth of the Bible and the one and only Word of God.

This coming Sunday I'll be returning to the Kafubu Block church 20 miles from Luanshya. The rains have stopped (though we did have a surprise shower on Monday) so we can remove the grass roof of the chapel there and put on the metal roof that has been so generously provided by a church in Southern California. I'll take pictures of the progress and send them in the weeks ahead. The congregation made their own bricks and built the chapel using their own resources, but the roof is out of their reach financially so we are going to help. This church had all but died a few years ago, but Bro Katandula has been working with them over the past year and a half and they have found a new energy and purpose in this rural community. Pray for the
service on Sunday and for the labour as we begin this work.

It has been a great week and God has blessed in so many ways. We certainly appreciate your prayers on our behalf as we remain...

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

PS: I celebrated my 52nd birthday last Sunday. Thank you to all who sent cards. My father says getting old isn't too tough when you consider the alternative! - PC

24 May 2006

Simple Encouragement

Greetings from Luanshya!

Sometimes God just sends somebody along to encourage us. This week I met Henry. He is a Zambian who teaches in a university in Texas. He married an American girl a few years ago and brought her to Luanshya to meet his family. They were walking by the front of the Christian Resource Centre and saw the window display. It says: Things You Will Not Find in Hell. In the window I have placed a number of items. There will be no light - it is called "outer darkness" in Matthew 8:12. There will be no water - even Lazarus could not dip his finger to comfort the rich man in Luke 16:24. There will be no clock - it is everlasting punishment according to Matthew 25:46. There are another dozen items in the window that portray the emptiness of hell. We were closed that evening so Henry came by to see us the next day. He told me that he went to the United States to go to university and was hired to teach after he completed his masters degree. Henry and his wife attend a small Baptist church in College Station, Texas, and he wanted to come in and see just what we were doing. It was an encouragement to see this young Zambian Christian come in and visit with me for over an hour. God has been using him both in his church and in his profession. He thanked me for sharing the Gospel with his countrymen and we prayed together that God would bless him in his life and ministry in the States. He did mention the fact that his wife had fallen in love with Zambia after only an few short weeks here on her first visit, so who knows what God has in store for this young couple. Lease pray for Henry and his wife (I cannot recall her name) as they continue to grow together in Christ.

This week we will be showing the documentary film: "The Bible Versus The Book of Mormon" at the Chapel. The film goes step-by-step through the proofs that the Bible is historically and archaeologically true while the Book of Mormon has not one shred of evidence that it is anything but a collection of fabricated stories. It is amazing that a book like this can be presented as "the most correct book on earth" (according to Joseph Smith) when it is literally filled with errors and unsubstantiated fiction. One example in the book of Mormon is that Joseph Smith says Jesus was born in Jerusalem instead of Bethlehem. The film is one-hour long and should help to initiate questions from the community about the fact that the Mormon church is simply a man-made cult. Please pray with us that people will come with open minds so we can show them the truth of the Bible and the one and only Word of God.

This coming Sunday I'll be returning to the Kafubu Block church 20 miles from Luanshya. The rains have stopped (though we did have a surprise shower on Monday) so we can remove the grass roof of the chapel there and put on the metal roof that has been so generously provided by a church in Southern California. I'll take pictures of the progress and send them in the weeks ahead. The congregation made their own bricks and built the chapel using their own resources, but the roof is out of their reach financially so we are going to help. This church had all but died a few years ago, but Bro Katandula has been working with them over the past year and a half and they have found a new energy and purpose in this rural community. Pray for the service on Sunday and for the labour as we begin this work.

It has been a great week and God has blessed in so many ways. We certainly appreciate your prayers on our behalf as we remain...

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

17 May 2006

A Good Report

The Zambian summer is officially past and temperatures are dropping into the 60's at night. We know it is cold when we have to break out the sweaters to go out in the evenings. This may not sound like cold to many of our friends North America, but after two decades in Africa anything below 70 degrees is considered cold.

Last Friday representatives from the Ministry of Community Affairs (Social Welfare) came to visit the Lighthouse Children's Home for an official inspection. They examined every room, every bed and every kitchen appliance to make sure all was in order. They were very pleased that each of the children had a comfortable bed but also an insecticide treated mosquito net to cover each sleeping child. The fact that there was running water, 24 hours a day 7 days a week and that electricity was available on demand was an "added bonus" to the report. When they left the facility, they were "very happy" with what they had seen. We strive to maintain "model status" for the Lighthouse Children's Home. We appreciate those who have designated gifts to this ministry.

On Sunday I travelled to the village of Kasongo, about 25 km. from Luanshya. This was my first time to speak in this rural church on a Sunday morning. I have been to the village several times and have met with church leaders and members, but conflicting schedules have prohibited me from being there on a Sunday morning. Witchcraft plays a big part in Kasongo village life so I stressed the fact that believers are not bound by witchcraft and have been delivered from the power of Satan by knowing Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour. After the meeting, I spoke to several of the men who asked me to come back and speak again. I will be going out there in the next few days with my calendar to set up future meetings. Please pray for this small rural congregation as they share the Light with their neighbours.

This morning Mr. Kamanga came to see me. He has been a long time student in the Source of Light Bible Correspondence program. He has completed nearly every book printed. We will be starting a series of comprehensive studies to equip this brother so his ministry (borders) can be expanded. Please pray for brother Kamanga as he begins this series.

We were shocked early this week when fuel prices jumped drastically around the country. We were paying over US$5 a gallon. Now we are paying US$6.90 per gallon. This means that it costs US$93 to fill my fuel tank. We pray for two things, that the dollar will grow in strength again the Kwacha and that the price of oil goes down. Neither seems likely in the near future. This is a major concern for us as rising travel costs determine the extent of ministry in remote areas.

Thank you for your prayers as we continue...

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

10 May 2006

Impacting Lives

Greetings from Luanshya!

It has been a few weeks since we had an opportunity to sit and jot our notes. This is due, in part, to the fact that our internet service has been absolutely awful and also to the fact that Sherry a few days away from home and drove down to visit friends in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

The work has continued to be challenging. During the school holidays there was an increase in the number of school children who attended the programs at the Christian Resource Centre. One young man stopped me today and apologized for not coming into the library to continue reading the book called "The Godmakers" (an exposé of Latter Day Saints). He has recently found a job and does not get off work until 5 p.m. I suggested that he talk to his boss about either taking early or late lunch so he can continue reading the book. He thought that was a great idea and promised to try. It is encouraging to know that we are having an impact on the lives of not only children but young adults in Luanshya.

One of our young men, Moyo, has recently moved to Chipata. Chipata on the eastern border of Zambia which is 12 1/2 hours away from us over some very poorly paved roads. He phones me once a week just to see how we are doing. He is continuing his discipleship course "by extension" because the distance is too far to sit with me on a regular basis. He is just about to finish the third book of seven and phoned last night to let me know that he is preparing to send it back for correction. While we are happy that he has found a vocation in which he can be of service, it is a loss to the local church to have this vibrant young man move so far away. Please pray for Moyo as he prepares for his life and service to the Lord.

Sarah Bwalya is expecting her second child any day now. Her husband, John, came in to tell us that she had just spent three days in hospital with a serious case of malaria. As we have mentioned before, malaria is the number one killer of children and pregnant women in Zambia. She is feeling better but is currently staying with her parents, here in town, until after the baby is born since the nearest health clinic near their village, where they teach, is 45 minutes away by bicycle. Not the best mode of transport for a woman in labor. Please pray for Sarah and John as they prepare for this newest member of the family. Also pray that John will have his request for a transfer back to Luanshya honored by the Ministry of Education. He really wants to be back with us in the English speaking work.

This coming Sunday I will have the opportunity to go to the village of Kasongo, about 16 miles from Luanshya through the bush (jungle). I have been looking forward to this meeting for two months. Witchcraft is prevalent in this village and we have been informed by reliable sources that it has even crept into the church. Please pray that God will give me wisdom and the right words to say and that the members of the church will be honest when confronted with the problem. I have personally dealt with witchdoctors in the past and if necessary will do so again.

Your prayers are always appreciated.

Together in His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

05 April 2006

On a More Personal Note

Greetings from Luanshya!

A couple weeks ago I was asked why we seldom mention our health and personal items in our weekly updates. To be honest, there is usually so much going on that we trim a lot of the personal issues out in deference to speaking about ministry items. Having said that, let me give you a brief update on my medical review for cancer in South Africa last week. The surgeon was very pleased with the progress and said that there does not appear to be any recurrence "at this time". He did, however, double my prescription for one of the medications but said it was a precautionary action and that I should not be overly concerned. Well, the phrase "overly concerned" always causes some concern, but the surgeon did not appear to be worried and said I did not need to see him for another six months. The biggest bother I have right now is the fact that I broke my foot seven weeks ago so I am hobbling around Luanshya (with a "moonboot) or being chauffeured by Sherry. My visits have been curtailed to outlying villages because of I cannot drive. This annoyance will last for another three weeks. I appreciate your prayers. Sherry and Colin are doing well. Colin may have his steel plate removed from his leg some time in August.

Rains are coming to a close for the season. The storms are fewer but very fierce when they do pass through the area. Church leaders from outlying villages are able to visit and we are now setting up a number of meetings beginning in May. Please pray for us during this upcoming dry season. There are a number of projects and meetings we wish to hold and the leaders of the churches are eager to have extra training "on site".

We recently learned of the home going of a very dear friend of Sherry. This senior has been a supporter of the ministry for over 16 years. She left Sherry a legacy for the work of the Lord which we will be directing towards the correspondence ministry as both she and her late husband were instrumental in guiding Sherry towards this ministry 20 years ago. We thank the Lord for those who consider leaving behind something that will last for eternity!

At the request of several people in town, we will be re-showing "The Passion of the Christ" during the Passion Week. This coming Sunday I will be talking about Christ's triumphant entry into Jerusalem on what we call Palm Sunday and the lessons he taught over the next few days leading up to his crucifixion and resurrection. Traditionally this is the time of year when people who never come to church will make a special effort. Please pray that the services in all the churches where we serve will be "fruitful".

Your part in our ministry is deeply appreciated.

Together in His Service,

Patrick & Sherry

22 March 2006


Malaria is the biggest killer in Africa! Almost everyone who lives here will, at some point in his or her life, get it. Treatment is simple, take the medication and go to bed. On Monday, one of our wards at the Lighthouse, turned 14. He also came down with an acute case of malaria. We had him tested by our family physician who determined that he had stage 3 malaria. The doctor was concerned that it would move to his brain and cause cerebral malaria which is usually fatal and if not can cause brain damage.

We took Dickson to the hospital and the doctor there started him on an i.v. of quinine. Nothing is quite so heart rending as seeing an active child brought to his knees by such a debilitating disease. This afternoon when we went to visit our boy, we found that the i.v. tube had twisted and pinched close in three places meaning that the medicine was not moving into his blood stream. We alerted the nurse on duty who corrected the situation. Sadly, she should have noticed this much earlier in the day and we would have seen a marked improvement by the time of our visit. Please pray for Dickson and for those caring for him at the hospital.

This morning we received four boxes of books for inclusion in the Christian Resource Centre. It is always exciting when these kinds of surprises arrive. We have begun sorting through the books to determine what goes where. A very special thank you to Judy in Florida for her gift of love.

This weekend I am traveling to South Africa for a review of my cancer surgery back in August 2005. There has been no noticeable change or additional growths, but the surgeon wants to take a look every few months just to make sure that there is a progressive recovery. We would appreciate your prayers for a safe trip down and back and an "all clear" from the oncologist.

Sherry has been keeping busy in the Resource Centre. A number of young people have been paying her visits, asking questions about various life issues as well as enrolling in the Source of Light correspondence program. Pray for the young people as they seek answers to issues that affect them in their daily walk. Pray also for the many temptations that face today's youth. Whether in the United States or Zambia, peer pressure and temptation is all the same. May we be able to provide a safe harbor for those who wish to keep on the straight and narrow.

We wish to thank you for your continued prayers. We greatly value your partnership.

In His Service,

Patrick & Sherry

15 March 2006

Spreading Grace

Only two books in the Bible are named after a woman. One does not specifically mention the name of God, but both exemplify His redemptive grace. In Esther the existence of the people of Israel is preserved because of the courage of a young woman found in the right place at the right time with doing the right thing. In Ruth we see the courage of another woman who chose to leave her comfort and customs of her pagan nation to follow the ways of the Lord God and take His nation as Her nation.

The village of Kasongo is one that continues to be steeped in the practice and fear of witchcraft. Unfortunately, this transcends even to those in the Church. I have received an invitation to go to Kasongo in a couple of weeks to teach and preach in one of the small fellowships. It is their hope that my presence and testimony might be a means of strength to the believers. Please pray that hearts and minds might be prepared for my visit and that the people might turn from idols to the One True God.

In the English speaking work at Luanshya the Sunday School will be studying The Book That Last Forever. They will focus beyond the inspiration aspect to the preservation, translation and interpretation of God’s Word through the centuries. We hope to see the children come to a broader realization that God's Word will never fade away (Mark 13:31). Pray for the Sunday School and for Sherry as she teaches them the truths of the Word.

Sherry received a phone call from a former student and user of the Christian Resource Centre. He lived in Luanshya several years ago until he was employed one of the international banks and was moved to Lusaka. He now manages one of the banking departments. Kayula simply wanted us to know that he missed his time in the Resource Centre and asked if he could visit us on one of the trips he makes to the Copperbelt Province. We are, of course, always to see one of our young people and to hear of their success and forward march in the Lord's service. We always find it interesting to note where our students go when they leave Luanshya. We have them scattered all over Zambia serving as lights to their local communities. Your support of the ministry makes this possible so your light shines further still.

We appreciate the part you have in our lives and ministry.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

01 March 2006

Marching Orders

Joshua 1:18; 3 teaches us that God leads us to no waters He cannot part, no brink He cannot cross, no pain He cannot bear. Joshua was given very specific orders: "be strong," "go view," "cross over," "remember," and circumcise when he received his commendation to lead God's people into the Promised Land. This brought to mind a statement someone once made-"God specializes in dry sandals." He loves to start with an impossible situation in our lives...and then do the impossible.

When the nation of Israel approached the Jordan, God demanded a step of obedience before they could cross. The priests, like drum majors leading a three-million-member marching band, had to hike to the brink of the flood-swollen Jordan and take that first step into the water. Then-and only then-would God perform a miracle, roll back the waters, dry up the puddles, and send the people across kicking up dust at every step! Dry sandals followed trusting obedience. Where in your life is God waiting for you to take that first step of faith?

It was 8 years ago this month that we took our own leap of faith, ministry wise, by initiating a new Bible correspondence work. Having been involved with the distribution of Emmaus Bible courses for 14 years and serving as a Director, both in the USA and Zambia, we chose to try a new format and simpler yet more extensive curriculum by linking with the "Mailbox Club" also known as Source of Light Ministries based in Georgia, USA. Courses are distributed free of charge to young and old alike and we, ourselves, cover the cost as part of the agreement with Source of Light Ministries. Each student is met in person, interviewed and a relationship developed as every lesson is distributed to and collected by the student from the Christian Resource Centre which we opened also 8 years ago as a venue for the community of Christians for the purpose of personal Bible study and a venue for periodic Bible conferences and seminars.

We began the correspondence work with 25 copies of each title, not knowing how the new material would be received. To our utter amazement the stock ran out in two months time and we've never looked back! Today we have over 3,500 enrolled students in Luanshya alone, place quarterly orders for replacement and new lessons and grant Certificates of Completion on a monthly basis. Granted, some of our students have graduated, others have moved away and others have been promoted to Glory but the fact remains, in taking that step of faith, God has richly blessed His work and we have had a sense of fulfillment ever since. Many souls have either come to know Christ as their personal Saviour or grown in their faith through studying the lessons and making use of the materials in the Resource Centre. Eight years ago we began with with 95 separate lesson books. Today we offer more than 146 and expect to increase the curriculum in the next year, Lord willing, by another 12 books.

Praise the Lord with us, as we continue to "be strong" and courageous, as we "go view" where he asks us in preparation to, "cross over" to the next promise, as we "remember" all he has brought us through in order to rejoice in His goodness.

Thank you for your continued prayers on our behalf as we reach the lost, lift up the downhearted, train new leaders and serve the King.

In His service,
Patrick & Sherry

22 February 2006

Little by Little

After reading Deuteronomy 5-7 this week, we were reminded of the fairy tale about the goose that laid the golden egg. The story goes this way: A farmer, upon discovering a most remarkable golden-egg-laying goose got impatient about having to wait for the daily quota of eggs. He chopped off the goose's head to find the source of the eggs...and in a fit of impatience destroyed the very source of his prosperity.

"I want it all-and I want it now!" is the cry of the day, even among many Christians. But God is not limited by our impatient timetables. He gave the Israelites a principle for conquest which still applies today: "little by little" (Dt. 7:22). God's methods often take time. He could have given the land to Israel in a day, but instead He instructed them to move step by step, trusting Him each step of the way. God's way is not rush, rush, rush but little by little. Let us look for a small but significant step of growth to take today whether it is a verse to memorize, a command to obey, a promise to treasure.

Even as missionaries, we occasionally put the cart before the horse in our exuberance to expand a ministry, grow a church or train a new believer. Pray for us as we balance our personal lives, ministry and community outreach through the year. Impatience is a characteristic many of us lay claim to. May God deliver us from the "rush" and into his loving embrace.

Over the past month we have been sharing news about one of our wards from the Lighthouse Children's Home. Andrew continues to spend his afternoons in the Resource Centre learning new things on the computer, creating documents for school and utilizing his new found knowledge. Last week Sherry walked by him and heard strange words coming out of his mouth and was taken aback when she noted that he was trying to listen to and imitate greetings from other languages using Encarta. He would listen to a statement four times and then repeat it as if it was his own tongue. It is amazing what children pickup! Just the other day he went through some Bible stories and prepared a brief devotional for his friends back at school. We must admit that it brought tears to our eyes that he would think of the eternal destiny of his classmates and take time out of his own schedule to present a message of
hope and redemption to them. Praise the Lord with us for Andrew's current activities and interests. He is only 10 years old.

The Children's Church program has just begun a series on "The Word of God". This past Sunday Sherry taught a lesson on inspiration, the time frame involved in the writing and compilation of the scriptures, the uniformity of scripture and languages of the original scriptures. The children played that old game of "telephone" where one child starts off with a statement and it passes from one child to the next. By the time you get to the final person, the story resembles nothing of the actual initial statement. This exercise was to show the boys and girls why God wished to have His Word in written form as opposed to an oral format. Pray for the children as they learn more about how we came to possess the scriptures as we know them today and how God's Word has remained unchanged through thousands of years.

Thank you for your prayers on our behalf and those whom we serve. May you know God's richest blessing in the week ahead.

In His service,
Patrick & Sherry

08 February 2006

Discovery of Joy

Greetings from Luanshya!

This mornings reading was from Psalm 145. We were reminded there is no such thing as the pursuit of happiness, there is only the discovery of joy. Let Psalm 145 serve as your prayer of celebration, honoring the God who gives you life and joy as you serve Him from day to the next.

We have had a busy week in the Resource Centre. A number of people have enrolled in the Source of Light correspondence series while others have come to either retrieve their lessons or utilize the resources in the library. One young man has been dealing with marital problems. He is working through one of Dr. James Dobson's books in an effort to understand his wife and how he can support her through some trying circumstances. Please pray for M as he searches for answers to strengthen his relationship with his spouse.

The Sunday School has completed their series on "Beginnings". This Sunday will be the quarterly memory verse competition where the children recite all 13 verses for games and prizes. It astounds us to see the participation rate in this exercise. Not a child misses the opportunity to share what they have learned and show they have hidden God's Word in their heart or at least their minds. Let us pray that as the children go about their daily lives, God's Word will return prompt them during tempting occasions and they refrain from ungodly activities.

One of the children from the Lighthouse Children's Home has been visiting with Sherry over the last week. He has been learning about computers and has been going through the Bible programs for children that have been placed on a computer donated to us last year for use in the Resource Centre. Yesterday he was using the Baker's Bible Dictionary for Children. "Aunty, I want to know more about Noah. Is there anything here that can help me?" So they embarked on a world of discovery. Please continue to remember our children as we bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

A young couple visited the church last Sunday for the second time. After the service they asked some questions about the church background and doctrinal statement. We were pleased to be able to discuss these things with them and provide a pamphlet full of scripture concerning faith and practice at Fellowship Chapel. Later this week the couple will be coming to the Resource Centre to enroll in the correspondence series. Please pray for those passing through the local fellowship, that their hearts may be touched by the Word of God and convicted to make decision that will change their lives forever.

Thank you for your prayers on our behalf. We rejoice in your fellowship and labor of love.

In His service,
Patrick & Sherry

01 February 2006

Willing Sacrifice

Greetings from Luanshya!

Today we read about three Old Testament sacrifices prescribed for each Israelite (Lev. 1-3). But did you know that the New Testament describes at least three "sacrifices" prescribed for each believer-three ways for us to offer a sacrifice to God today?

Instead of a whole burnt offering, we can offer our body as "a living sacrifice... unto God" (Rom. 12:1). In place of a meal offering, we might offer from our material possessions "an acceptable sacrifice" by helping someone in financial need (like the Philippians did for Paul; Phil. 4:18). Instead of the peace offering, we could offer the "sacrifice of praise" to God (Heb. 13:15), a verbal expression of thanksgiving for His care and provision in our lives.

We were touched this past week by some of the children at the Lighthouse Children's Home when they arrived at the church, Sunday morning, holding plastic bags of shoes and clothing that no longer fit. Each felt compelled to offer to God something that could be used by another in need instead of hoarding the items "just in case". Often children from similar backgrounds tend to keep all and sundry for fear of having nothing. We are pleased with the children's spiritual maturity and desire to serve the Lord in practical ways. Thank you for remembering our wards in your prayers.

A young Bible teacher has been frequenting the Resource Centre lately in search of answers to many of life's questions. Last week he was asking questions and researching the topic of "commitment". This week he is concerned about believers and the need for setting goals in the realm of ones daily physical life and spiritual life. He has noted that many of the local Christians fail to take into consideration the need to set goals for their life and ministry simply living from day to day without a plan for success. We provided some resources for review as well as took the
opportunity to sit and look at what God's Word has to say about such a subject. Please pray for this brother as he seeks to meet the spiritual needs of his brothers and sisters in Christ.

The Sunday early morning "Caddy Chapel" has been suspended until the rains have cleared a bit. We have experienced such torrential rains the last few weeks that driving out to the golf course during the early morning hours and finding few of the young men present becomes a bit frustrating but when we sit back and realize "we drive...they walk...in the rain," well you come to understand their situation. A couple of the men came to see us the other day and expressed their appreciation for the time and effort put into preparing specialized lessons for the group and look forward to the resumption of the program once the rains have calmed down a bit in a couple months time. Please continue to pray for the caddies as they seek God's truth.

The children's bell choir at the chapel is going well. Sherry just introduced the children to two-part harmony. They were having such a chuckle out of trying to time two different bells at once that you could hardly tell what was supposed to be played. We are glad to see the children learning a new skill and giving praise to the Lord through song, even when it's off key. Thank you for praying for the bell choir. They hope to have a small "concert" within the next month or so, depending on whether they get the harmony down or not. (smile).

Thank you for remembering us in your prayers.

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

25 January 2006

Being diligent

"Being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of
peace." (Eph. 4:3)

This Scripture spells out the goal of the worthy walk: the unity of the Spirit. Jesus prayed for Christian's "that they may all be one; even as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in thee, that they also may be in Us; that the world may believe that Thou didst send Me" (Jn. 17:21). Our witness to the world depends on our unity as believers.

This weekend we had the opportunity to officiate at the burial of the wife of one of our deacons. She had been sick for some time and the doctors were unable to find the cause of her illness. It is particularly striking, since her husband is a surgical nurse and familiar with and has access to many of the test procedures and yet, nothing had been identified. In keeping with the verse of the week, we saw believers from all over the Luanshya District and beyond come for the funeral and to mourn with the family. The unity of the Body of Christ for the purpose of being with a brother and his family in loss was comforting. Not a moment went by over the last 6 days when our friend wasn't accompanied and supported by a brother or sister in Christ. At the graveside he reminded everyone that his wife is in a far better place and well now, worshipping and praising the Lord. Please pray for those who attended
the services, that they may have seen the love of Christ and the unity of the brethren as they gathered around the family. Please pray, also, for the Chinoya family as they go through this period of loss, pick up the pieces of their lives and continue to witness of Christ and His love.

Early in the week Sherry met with one of the people who frequents the Christian Resource Centre. The friend had many questions about the role of the believer after one comes to a saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus. "If the lifestyle does not change rapidly, is there a problem?" "How about if some years have passed and that person is still unfamiliar with faith and works?" "What about the role of the Holy Spirit in that persons life?" "When should the church step in and discipline the
believer?" Many of the questions tended to focus on the fact that the local churches are failing in the area of discipleship and a consistent mentoring program. People go out and evangelize, introduce the new convert to the church and abandon them. Sherry stated that there is much more to the Great Commission than "preaching the gospel". We are also commanded to teach, baptize and send these people out to fulfill the great commission as well. She went on to introduced the friend to some of the material we use at Fellowship Chapel and invited the friend to participate in some of the training seminars we run on Christian Growth. The plethora of study books in the library plus exposure to the bible correspondence aspect of the ministry should greatly help this searching soul. Please pray for those who seek to know the truth and grow in their faith.

Please pray for the unity of the brethren in each of the local churches. This being the rainy season, we find it difficult to get out to some of the more remote areas. Those church leaders who have been seeking advice and guidance are left to deal with some of their problems in seclusion. Pray that they make godly decisions as they lead their flocks.

Please pray for those coming in to the Resource Centre. Many children are still returning from the Christmas holiday. Grade 9 and grade 12 exam results are due out in the next week or two so we expect activity to pick up once the children know what lies ahead.

Thank you for remembering us in your daily prayers. You are an invaluable member of this ministry team and we appreciate the time you spend upon your knees. May God bless!

In His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

18 January 2006

How To Live The Victorious Life

18th January 2006

Greetings from Luanshya! There is no way of knowing if this message will be going out tonight or any time this week. Zambia Telecommunications (ZAMTEL) cables in Luanshya are wet and the rains have been coming down consistently day in and day out. Internet access is intermittent at best and completely non-existent most of the day.

Last Sunday I preached the first half of a message on "How To Live The Victorious Life." I had not planned to preach only the first half but as I began to speak I began to illustrate some of the points. The response from the congregation allowed me to go deeper into the illustrations. We love storytelling and there was a lot of that in this message. Next week will be the conclusion with the "Seven Steps for a Victorious Life." Please pray for hearts to be prepared and lives changed in service to the King.

Sunday afternoon we made a number of visits to members of the church and their families who had been very, very ill. When somebody here has "a long illness" it generally refers to HIV-AIDS. While very few people will openly admit that they have this malady, there are those who have realized that the first step in treating the illness is to admit that they have it. Part of the problem is the stigma attached to the disease. Since 99.9% of those infected in Zambia have either been promiscuous or
is married to someone who is, the tendency is to judge an infected individual. That is not our job nor our right: and it is certainly not our responsibility. As we visited with our friends, we were able to encourage them to follow doctor's orders, eat well, rest and remember that we love them as brothers and sisters in Christ. This disease always ends with a funeral. We know it. We have realized it. We plan for it. But, we do not have to fear it. Please pray for our Christian brothers
and sisters as they deal with the ultimate consequence of their actions. God has forgiven them and He loves them. We do, too.

Mr. Phiri has spent several days in the Resource Centre over the last week. He saw the books in the front window concerning Mormonism. He is not a Mormon but he has had them come to his home. He knew there was "something wrong" with what they were saying but did not know exactly what it was. We visited for several minutes one afternoon and he has been coming in almost every day to read the book "Mormonism Unmasked." He said today that he felt more prepared to answer their false teachings
even though he has not yet finished the book. He thanked us for making the information available and said he was sharing it with some of his friends in church. It is difficult to understand how a religion that is so openly racist can make any kind of advance in a country where they claim the entire population is "cursed by God." Please pray for Mr. Phiri and for the others who are seeking the truth about this deadly cult.

Tomorrow, Thursday, is election day in the mining townships of Luanshya. There are nine candidates running for Member of Parliament, which is one seat. All week long there have been political rallies, bullhorns, banners and occasional altercations with the police. So far no one has been seriously hurt but the next 24 hours will be "interesting". In our English speaking church there are four parties represented, that we know of, and everyone is getting along just fine. In the rural areas that is
not always the case. Please pray for peace during the election process.

God has been very good to us. We appreciate your prayers on our behalf.

Together in His Service,
Patrick & Sherry

11 January 2006


Greetings from Luanshya!

As we write this week's letter, there is a monstrous storm heading our way. Wind has blown dust from the street higher than the buildings down town and people have run for cover. The raindrops have just now started beating on our metal roof. It looks like we may have a long, dark night. We rest in the assurance that there is no night so dark that the Master cannot see us.

Last Friday was the end of SCUBA-the Super Cool Undersea Bible Adventure. In spite of the rain we had about 30 children registered for that days program. At the conclusion of the lesson, all the children received prizes based on memory work, friends brought, attendance and carrying their Bible each day to SCUBA. Colin and John did very well in their participation in the program. Colin led the music and acted out the hand motions. John followed the lesson plan and taught every week. Sherry directed the program including games and crafts and our few volunteers filled in here and there. The children had a good time and said they learned a lot. Some have even attended our Sunday morning Sunday School. We also learned a few things as well, mainly conducting this kind of program during the rainy season greatly affects attendance. One of the questions asked by a child was "when are we doing it again?"
Thank you for your prayers.

School began Monday! The children from the Lighthouse all came into the Resource Centre to cover their exercise books (jotters) as prescribed by their teachers. This gave Sherry an opportunity to ask them about their first couple of days and how they were liking their new teachers. Sherry spent several hours with the children both at the Resource Centre and the Home to check on their wardrobe and school materials. It is quite a challenge when there are six of them. There is always the "bits and pieces" to collect or purchase at the last minute. They are all in class and are all doing well... so far. We will keep you apprised of their progress during the year. Thank you for praying for these youngsters.

We have received a number of boxes of books from Ireland that will be integrated into the Library and Reading section of the Resource Centre. These are welcome additions to an already extensive collection of materials. Some of the books we gave to a few church leaders who will make good use of them.

Tonight we continue with the Creation to Christ lessons. This is, of course, if anyone can make it in with the impending storm. This evening's lesson covers "The Arrival of Eve." The young men in the small group Bible study laugh when they thought about having a woman created just for them. We are enjoying our Bible study.

During the heaviest part of the rainy season it is very difficult for us to travel into the rural regions of Luanshya. Please pray for those church leaders who are living and working in these village areas as they continue to shepherd the flocks. These are dedicated men who have committed their lives to the Lord's service. Still, they face the same pressures and struggles that all leaders experience. We appreciate your remembering them.

Together in His Service,
Patrick & Sherry