Missionary Stories

Goosebumps and Theology

Indonesia_-_john_campbell_nelson_pic1.jpgAs I write to you, we are in between semesters at Artha Wacana Christian University, but unfortunately that doesn’t mean we have a break.  I still have 75 sermons to read from last semester in order to turn in my grades, and thesis supervision for those who are rushing to make deadlines for graduation later this month.  I am also acutely aware that this next semester will be my last before retirement.  The University has a mandatory retirement age of 65, and I will reach that golden age in June.  I will continue teaching in the graduate program for at least another year, because they still need my doctorate to help fulfill accreditation standards.  By that time we hope one or two faculty members currently doing doctoral study will return and I can well and truly retire.

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Ashes to ashes and dust to dust...

India_-_Anil___Teresa_Henry_Spring_2015_pic1.jpgAshes to ashes and dust to dust…..on February 13 this year, the Christian community of Bishrampur  (our neighboring village which was one of the oldest missionary setups  in the state of Chattisgarh) laid to rest the ashes of their beloved “missionary kid.”  William Keith Whitcomb, or “Billy Baba” as they loved to call him, came back as a missionary to the same place in which he grew up. Bill Whitcomb was an agriculturist, whose calling was to feed the hungry, leading him to establish the Rural Life Program for the people of this area.  In this program, farmers were taught about the best practices and development in agriculture. The memorial service was a day of fond memories and thankfulness for a life lived so well.

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Death Penalties

Karen Campbell-Nelson serves with the Evangelical Church of West Timor as a Professor. Her appointment is supported by your gifts to One Great Hour of Sharing, Disciple's Mission Fund, Our Church's Wider Mission and your special gifts.

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Christmas Greetings from Mungeli

India_-_Anil_Xmas_2014_pic1.pngAs we come to the close of the year and prepare for this special time of Christmas, there is so much that we are thankful for in our community at Mungeli. The hospital has been a beacon of hope for many, and the staff has successfully taken on the in-creasing patient load.

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Life's Lessons

Rachel_Beck1.jpgThere is a magical place called “Family Village Farm.” Why is this place magical? There are many reasons. It might be the feeling of happiness you get when surrounded by the cutest, loving children.  Or it could be the inspiration received from the amazing women who work there.  Or maybe it is magical because of the lessons you learn from the grandmothers.  No matter which one of these it may be, if you come and visit “Family Village Farm,” you will forever be changed through the experiences.

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She Visited Me Again in a Dream—Luke 12:34

She visited me again in a dream.  It was before I knew exactly when I would be able to travel to Thailand and begin working with the Church of Christ in Thailand (CCT).

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The Beginning of my time in Thailand

Thailand_-_Anne_Gregory_Xmas_2014_pic1.jpgDecember 20, 2014

My first two work days have been a blast.

I got to work by 7 a.m. on Thursday (my first day).  Yes, I slept for one day, and then went to the office.  It was necessary so that I could meet everyone before Christmas.  My housemate and boss, the Rev. Dr. Sharon Bryant, and I took a cab.  Usually she takes the elevated train, but she had Christmas presents to take.

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Celebrating Founders Day at the Family Village Farm!

Soon after I arrived at the Family Village Farm from Chennai, many of the volunteers came together for some nice hot chai (spicy tea). There were six of us, with one young man, who was celebrating his 19th birthday and five women, age range probably from 22 to 75.  There are a couple of other young volunteers who had gone away for the day. Their time as volunteers here ranged from five days to over six months. One of the volunteers, Rachel Beck, was the first baby adopted from this home founded by Pauline King, MD. She was adopted by a couple in the USA and comes back here every couple of years to volunteer as a way of showing her gratitude for this home and the woman that saved her life.

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Finding Peace at Pravaham

Pravaham.jpgToday I visited the other half of my Global Ministries assignment.  From the beginning I had been unclear as to what the "girls college" was and what I might be able to do to be helpful.  I had read about Pravaham on their website and was hoping this was the place as one of the greatest passions in my life is working for peace and justice and the oneness of us all.

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Sweet December

With a new year brings new energy to life in the village of Huay Ma Lai and Saha Christian Suka School in rural southwest Thailand.   For Christian Karen people, December was an exciting time of the year preparing for the birth of Christ.  Similar to Advent, Sweet December is celebrated throughout December as a time of harvest, family, and the joy and hope found in Christmas.  On November 30 people stay awake all night singing songs, worshipping, playing games, and dancing to welcome in the month of December.  Then, throughout December different groups from churches, villages, children's homes, and the refugee camps came door-to-door, singing Christmas carols. Often around ten or eleven in the evening, they were heard at the front of our house, flashlights and candles in hand, singing beautiful Karen Christmas songs. Throughout the year Thai people often go to bed early and arise early. So, with groups coming to sing late into the night, our village was radiating with extra energy and cheer. 

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