On August 18, we returned to the field to begin our 18th year as FBMI missionaries in Nigeria. For the first time as a family, we endured four flights, but everyone adjusted well, and God has kept us healthy. Missionaries Graham and Olivia Young were waiting for us in our home, having arrived about five days before; they quickly found a vehicle and a place to stay, yet we were glad to have them around for a few weeks of good fellowship prior to their move into an apartment.
Before our departure from Louisiana, several milestones were recognized. Birthdays for Brian (15) and Ladonna (8) were celebrated; and, upon our arrival, Aaron counted down the days until his 4th birthday on September 10. In July, Sabrina and I with our three teens traveled to the church where I was ordained 19 years ago for their 50th Annual Youth Conference; I was honored to give two “Missions Moment” testimonies at the same meeting where God had called me to preach 28 years before. FBMI held its Missions University during the week of Youth Conference, and I had the privilege (for the 6th time) of teaching multiple classes, while Sabrina had her first opportunity to address the missionary ladies in a split session.
With contributions from our sending church and five other meetings where I reported during our last two months of furlough in July and August, the need I presented concerning the roof of our dormitory has been more than fulfilled, and we are moving forward with plastering the walls on the second floor. Once the roof is actually attached, I will give more details on what it will take to add windows, doors, electrical, plumbing, ceiling, and tiles in the next phase of work. Thank you for partnering with us in this project.
A new semester of Providence Baptist College & Seminary, with 5 new students, started the day before our arrival to Abuja. The next week, our 11th Student Missions Institute for Training in Evangelism was held at Truth Baptist Church. At the beginning of August, the 5th Annual SMITE in Ogbomoso was organized successfully in my absence. Between the 2 Youth Camps, there were 234 campers from 54 churches; they conducted 48 Bible Clubs, with 2,293 children enrolled and 1,370 who professed salvation.
Mark Holmes, written 26 September 2022