God is so good! We want to congratulate Pastor Hackathorn for becoming the new pastor of Salem Baptist Church in Cincinnati, Ohio. We have had a long relationship with Salem Baptist and are definitely praying for the church family at Salem and their new pastor.
We had our first father-son overnight outing at the end of September and were able to have Brother Rijn Abrell and Anchor Baptist Church, along with Brother Peter Popovic and his sons from Bairnsdale, Victoria. Brother Popovic is a national pastor who has been pastoring for over two decades. We didn’t know exactly how many would show up. We were praying for 40, and the Lord gave us 21. We got to have some really good fellowship, and it was a very special time for us to be able to spend with our sons. Bubba was able to get his clippers out, now that he is a fully qualified barber here in Australia, and give free haircuts to anyone who wanted one. (Laura and I have a hard time believing our little man is going to be 22 next month—it’s amazing how fast the time has flown by!)
At the men’s outing, I was able to give the evening devotion, and Brother Abrell gave the morning devotion. So many of the men expressed how refreshing it was to be able to spend time with their sons in godly fellowship. I reminded the men about their commitment and how it should be to God first, then to their wife, and then to their children. So often the people here get caught up with life, just like in America, and it is years before they devote time to their children. One of the hardest things about the Christian life is to have a good balance between God, ministry, and family.
We also are praising the Lord because we had a baptismal service in September as well. We have a family that has been attending with us for over a year now, and their three oldest children—Jacob, Tayla, and Isaac—wanted to follow the Lord in believer’s baptism. It was so precious to be able to baptize Tayla. She was very apprehensive about being baptized because she has a lot of ties in the Salvation Army, which does not baptize. We didn’t know if she would go ahead until just a few minutes before we started. Praise the Lord! Her two brothers requested church membership, so the church grew by two. We are still praying that the rest of their family will join the church this year.
My family and I were deeply saddened when we learned about Charles Wesco, a missionary to Cameroon, who was targeted and killed just a few weeks after he arrived in country. His wife and one of his children witnessed it. His wife is from Believers Baptist Church in Winona Lake, Indiana. Her father still pastors there, and we are asking everyone to pray for Mrs. Wesco, the children, and Believers Baptist Church in their great loss.
Please pray for a little boy named Jack and his twin sister Dakota and their big sisters Jacinta and Tanya-Maria. Their mother is going through an extremely rough time with drugs and their grandparents are raising them. We are trying to encourage and love on the family as much as possible. The grandparents have custody and are saved. Their “Pops” grandpa, brings them to church faithfully. They truly need the Holy Spirit to guide and protect them. Jack loves me almost like he was my son. Please pray for souls saved and the church to continue to grow.
Missionary in Australia