The three-week trip that my father-in-law, Bill Moran, and I took was most productive. By God’s grace we were able to win souls each week, and God gave our church dozens of souls saved, with 4 men who followed the Lord in baptism in the month of September. Having Bill with me proved to be an excellent encouragement to our entire church and especially to the men. We felt like a construction company much of the time. Bill’s heart was knit with the men of our church as he dug ditches, poured concrete, installed electric and audio wires, and helped in several areas of planning for the development of the land and future buildings. Please be in prayer for Bill, as he has a strong desire to return and help in ministry but needs a few doors to open and close Stateside in order to free his schedule before he can do so.
The Lord Has Sent Reinforcements
Our dear friends and encouragers, Bro. Darrell and Mrs. Joanie Bolton of MVP missions, arrived in a timely fashion in September. Just as Bill’s and my trip was coming to a close, theirs began. We had three days to facilitate the transfer of leadership and cover as many pertinent details as were necessary for all ministries to continue properly. The Boltons were able to teach, preach, win souls, visit orphans, visit prisoners and simply encourage a church in great need. In addition to this, they also facilitated and helped administrate the ongoing building project. We communicated nearly every morning, and sometimes evening, via video conference calls, working through a variety of projects. They even made time to help our church plant with some saturation projects. Lord willing, they will be back to oversee the ministry in January for even longer. How fitting that the Lord in His kindness would send such a tremendous couple our way, a retired major in the Air Force and his wife, who have both been through plenty of serious health problems and trials themselves.
Harvest Baptist Church Starts Second Church
Our assistant pastor, Bro. Jesse Leones, did a good job overseeing and keeping the ministry going forward from the time of our emergency departure in June until September. He sacrificed by putting his June church-plant plans temporarily on hold, while we had to drop everything to get Jonathan back to the States. We are ever so grateful to him for staying and helping the church through a most difficult and heartbreaking time. We held a special send-off service for him when I was back, and with our church’s blessing and support, he moved an hour south of our main church to start the Harvest Baptist Church South Point. He is already busy winning souls and holding Bible studies there. We were sad to see him go and certainly needed him, but we greatly respect his faith in leaving a quite comfortable ministry position to go out and do the will of God for his life. Please pray for his Grand Opening on November 20. My next trip to the Philippines is scheduled for November 7-23, and I hope to be able to assist in Brother Jesse’s Grand Opening.
Ongoing Building Project—New Support Needed
Now that we have been Stateside for four months, it is clear that we are in need of about 15 new churches to take us on for monthly support. We are still paying rent and utilities on our house in the Philippines. We have sold one of our family vehicles in the Philippines for $7,000 and are using that to keep the construction of our church auditorium going. That money is being spent fast. The walls, roof, doors, floor, and windows are up; we currently have enough funds to paint and insulate the roof. We are in need of 6 air conditioning units at $600 each, totaling $3,000. We also need to lay tile, which will cost about $5,000, including labor. If the Lord lays it on your heart to invest in any of these needs, please make your check payable to FBMI, and in the memo, place “Goodpaster building.” We also have plans to build a two-story, six-classroom building next. If any reading this prayer letter have experience and are interested in coming to help with construction, we would welcome your assistance. Airline tickets are at an all-time low; I just purchased round-trip tickets on EVA Air from Chicago to Manila for only $487!! Please pray about joining me for one of my trips.
Jonathan—Our Blessed Trial
By God’s grace we continue to follow Him through the trial that He has gifted us with. Though there are many ups and downs watching our two-year-old battle cancer as he goes through chemotherapy, we have so very much to be thankful for. It may sound cliché, but we really have too many blessings to begin counting. Jonathan has just completed his third cycle of induction chemo. The induction cycles are the toughest, and in spite of going through a lot, our little man is a resilient and brave warrior. He just completed his follow-up MRI and lumbar puncture, and we thank the Lord for overall good results on those.
Our oncologist, who is the head pediatric oncologist at Cincinnati Children’s, recently attended a conference all about the rare subtype of medulloblastoma that Jonathan has, and after discussing his case with other oncologists from across the U.S., decided it will be okay to cancel the planned final 2 induction-chemo cycles and move him directly into the maintenance cycles. These cycles run for 49 days, each with 8 total needed. This is definitely good news! In short, the maintenance cycles hopefully will be a bit easier on his body, and this will cut down his chemo by nearly two months.
You can find more frequent updates and prayer requests about Jonathan on our Facebook pages. Though all of our hearts long to be home again in the Philippines, we find ourselves in a position to just “Let go and let God.” Really it’s a blessed position to be in, as we just stand still and see how HE REALLY DOES work all things together for good, especially when we are in a seemingly weakened state.
Ephesians 6:23-24, “Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen.”
To God be the glory,