First, I want to thank you for taking the time to read our letter. We hope and pray that it will be a blessing to you and will motivate many to pray for our ministry and for the souls of the people in Ireland.
As I often look at my planner, it is a constant reminder of baptisms, picnics, and all the other times of fellowship our church people missed this year. I had many things planned, but like many of you in the U.S., I disappointingly had to put it all aside. During this time, we have also had news of friends and people we know of who contracted COVID-19. At times, I have questioned its existence, but these cases were personal reminders of its reality. In May, the Irish government began easing the lockdowns with Phase 1 of its new reopening procedure. Immediately after it was implemented, I met with our new and former landlords. I had mentioned in the last letter that all of our things were thrown away. In this May 20 meeting, I was under the impression that many of our things would be returned. I was shocked to discover that 98% was actually thrown away and that we would not be returning to the building. So, I began searching and contacting rental agencies in the city to find a new meeting place. Also this month, we ended up purchasing three Soay (sow-ay) sheep to do work in our field for us, along with our chickens.
The sheep we purchased ended up getting loose in the hundreds of acres of woods behind our house after we’d had them only two weeks. It took a week and a lot of searching for us to find them and get them back; but, thankfully, that hasn’t happened again. As the sheep run when you chase them, but follow when you lead them, they have taught me a bit about pastoring. The Irish government implemented Phases 2 and 3 of the reopening during the month of June. They are now allowing people to drive farther than 10 miles from their homes. Previously, churches were not supposed to be opened until July 20, but due to pressure, they moved the opening back to June 29. This was unfortunate for us because, although I was looking, we didn’t have a building or chairs yet. As I began to narrow down a new location where we could meet, we continued our online services and our preparations for an online Missions Conference in July. Please pray that the Lord would continue to lead in this area. At the beginning of the month was Kelly’s birthday, and in the middle of the month, she took a trip to the local hospital to get testing for her medical condition. What we thought would be a quick visit ended up being a week of testing, during which I had the privilege of homeschooling the boys while she was away. Once she was released, we were thankful to discover that Kelly’s condition does not stem from anything life-threatening, like cancer or a stroke. Despite this fact, though, it can be extreme at times and very disrupting for her and the rest of the family. Please pray for the Lord’s help concerning her health.
For soul winning, we have been using the Internet, social media, and websites to get the Gospel to people, and we are looking forward to purchasing more tracts and getting out on the streets talking to people about the Gospel.
Please pray for these needs:
1. New building
2. Co-laborers in Limerick
3. Protection over the ministry
4. Wisdom in dealing with church situation
5. Kelly’s health
Last, I would like to thank everyone who sent encouraging cards and for your faithful prayers and support. May the Lord bless all of you for your sacrifices to hold the ropes.
In the campaign for Irish souls,