#PCCRegina Sponsors the Following Global and Local Workers

Matt & Ruth (Winnipeg, MB)

Serving with MB Mission to coordinate projects in Central Asia, support our global workers around the world, and develop new missional leaders in Central Canada.

 June at a Glance

July 2, 2017

What's up in Winnipeg

It has been a very full month here in the Central Canada office! TREK orientation wrapped up last week and we had a special commissioning service for each of the participants before they headed out on their assignments. We are looking forward to seeing what the next 7 months bring - in their lives and in the lives of those around them! We are now in the middle of ACTION orientation at Mennonite Collegiate Institute (MCI) in Gretna, MB. This is such a great week of community living, learning, growing, intercession, and a lot of laughter! We have a great group this year who are excited about serving God in new ways this summer. Ruth is in charge of the children's program this year and has enjoyed planning fun activities for the kids which allow their parents to more fully engage in the sessions and teaching times. 

On the Homefront

In our last update, we were in the middle of wedding preparations. We are so happy to say that the wedding went beautifully and it was a great day of celebration! We are excited for Andrew and Janelle as they begin their new life together!Last weekend, we became official members of Fort Garry MB Church here in Winnipeg. We were able to share our stories with the congregation and felt so warmly welcomed into our new church family. We are eager to invest in this amazing community, please join us in asking the Father how He wants us to be involved and what areas of ministry He is calling us to be a part of here!Last Tuesday, we attended Abbie's Grade 6 Farewell at Chancellor School. It was bittersweet to say good-bye to Abbie's fabulous teacher and the dear friends she has made there. Abbie and Caleb will both be attending Henry G. Izaat school next year, which teaches grades 5-9. How is it possible that our kids will both be in middle school next year?! We would appreciate your prayers for a smooth transition as they step into classrooms full of new faces once again.

Square Dancing with Asylum Seekers

One highlight of ACTION orientation is always the annual square dancing event. Ted and Betty Kernoski, a lovely 'caller' couple, join us and lead our large group in over two hours of promenades, allemandes, and do-si-do's. It is an absolute blast, and also a great team-building activity as we learn to work together, encourage each other, and celebrate our successes.

This year, we had some impromptu visitors at our square dancing event. The tiny boarder town of Gretna, MB, where ACTION orientation takes place, is also home to a new reception centre for asylum seekers crossing into Canada. After some of us paid a welcome visit to the centre, thirteen of these men and women came to join in our square dancing. Having just arrived in Canada within the last few days, it was one of their very first experiences in this country. Their hesitant smiles grew to large grins as they joined in and started understanding the steps. Laughter and music filled the room.

As we shared watermelon and iced tea together afterward, we were able to get to know these men and women more and hear some of the stories of their incredibly challenging journeys from places like Bangladesh, Kenya, and Somalia. We ended the evening by praying for our new friends as they continued on their journeys to find hope, healing, and belonging. It was a sacred moment for many of us and we felt humbled and honoured to be a small part of showing the love of Jesus to these men and women who have faced unbelievable difficulty. Not wanting the beautiful camaraderie to end, we invited them to join us for a soccer match the next day. 

It was another great experience with a lot of laughter. Building increased community and relationship on the soccer field allowed for us to extend an invitation to join our evening session where MB Mission’s general director, Randy Friesen, would be speaking. There was much anticipation as the evening neared. We knew that many of the asylum seekers had already been transferred to Winnipeg to complete their refugee process, so we were thrilled to see several of them walk into the session that evening. Not knowing how they would respond, it warmed my heart to see everyone intently listening to Randy’s gospel message and tears streaming down one woman’s cheeks as she clapped along to the worship songs. Afterward, we invited two men, both named Omar, to share more of their stories with our staff team. It was shocking and sobering to hear the hardships they had experienced in their home countries and the harsh treatment they had received on their pilgrimage to Canada. Their love for their families and their desire to live a peaceful life was so evident as they shared. Tears filled their eyes as they talked about the family members they had to leave behind. They commented that their first days in Canada had been a direct contrast to the rest of their journey so far. They have been welcomed and valued as human beings here and already feel that Canada has far exceeded their expectations. What a privilege to witness such a tangible example of what the world can look like when we love one another.

If you are interested in hearing more, CBC News did a feature on Omar and Omar’s journey that you can view here. You will even see a brief glimpse of our soccer game! Please join us in praying for all of the new refugees as they reach their final destinations across Canada and seek to make a new home for themselves and their families. Pray that God would reveal Himself in new ways to these men, Omar and Omar, and that their hearts would be open to a new understanding of who God is.

Our square dancing group including Ted and Betty, our ACTION participants, the MBM Central Canada staff, and our newly arrived friends to Canada.

 BEFORE THE THRONE

  • Praise God for what He is doing in the lives of our short term program participants!
  • Please pray for health and safety for Matt and his team as they travel and minister the next few weeks.
  • ACTION orientation is over and our participants have all arrived safely in their various countries and are doing well. Thank you so much for your prayers!

UPCOMING EVENTS

  • ACTION Debrief:  August 7-11

 

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Phil & Carol Bergen (Burkina Faso)  

 Serving with MB Missions among our adopted people group, the Nanerige; team leadership, church planting. 

 

Greetings from Salinas, CA where we are currently at the breakfast table with our daughter Maria and baby Zeke.  As you guess from our newsletter, the last couple months since leaving Burkina have been very full for us!  And after our son’s John-Mark’s wedding, I started a class called Biblical Interpretation II at FPU seminary; all our reading and papers are due in week, so I’m in the midst of “crunch time”!  Meanwhile, Phil has got some weeks set aside for doing some writing, so we’re both doing our best to keep our noses to the grindstone.

We are sending this newsletter large enough for you to zoom in on the pictures and get a better look.  We’ve tried up to 300% and it worked ok.  Enjoy.  We sure did! 

May you be encouraged by Phil’s stories in this month’s Blip! 

July Blip

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Joel Braun (Regina)

Serving with Healing Hearts Ministries; operates True Wheels, a bike repair shop, as a means to reach community youth.

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Richard & Hazel Funk (Austria)

Serving with MB Mission, Member Care facilitators to missionaries in Europe and Central Asia; mentoring, teaching, and discipling Austrian church leaders.

Dear Friends!!

“Which church did you say you work with?  A Free Church?  Never heard of it.  I am not religious and will admit that I have had some very disappointing experiences in life.  I left the state church when I was 18 years old.  I am unsure if there is a God or not.  What did you say about peace in your lives because of Jesus?” 

This is just a short part of a conversation that we had with a real estate agent, while viewing a town house for some of our new workers.  Our hearts ached for this young man as he shared of his life, hurts and confusion.  He said he had a Bible and we encouraged him to start reading.  He was a man who was searching for peace in his life.

Thank you for praying:

-          The families moving here from Turkey and Berlin, have found homes and are settling in! Thank you for your prayers. Please continue to pray for the schooling for the children and a good start in their work here in Linz and beyond.  Pray for all the details that still need to fall into place for work permits and visas for these two families.

-          It is so good to see the progress being made in the renovations at the church here in Linz.  Tomorrow the floor will be poured and after that Richard will be joining others to do the mudding and the painting on the main floor.  Pray that all will go well as the elevator is put in.  Our older generation at church will be so thankful when they do not have to walk the stairs to the sanctuary.

-          We praise God for the new faces that we see in church each Sunday.  People are searching for an anchor.  May they experience the “sweet fragrance” of believers around them.

-          Richard and I and taking a mini holiday, 4 days, in this week ahead.  Pray that we would find rest for our minds, bodies and spirits.

-          At the end of August, we hope to start writing our churches and planning our MINA (Ministry in NA) for Jan.-May 2018.  We need guidance as we plan these months back in Canada

 

As I write this, the rain is falling and the grass is again so green!!  We are thankful.

 

Serving together with you!!

Hazel & Richard

 

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Nick & Vivian Helliwell (Regina)

Serving with Healing Hearts Ministries. Nick is Director of Men’s Ministry, chaplain at the Provincial Corrections Centre, and undertakes various speaking engagement

And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.     Romans 5:5

Eva has experienced some setbacks in her recovery.  She is back in the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) because she is having trouble getting enough oxygen on her own.  Further, she is frustrated, angry and very tired and so because she keeps pulling off the mask, they had to reinsert the breathing tube.

She never left the hospital.  She has been in the hospital since May 28th.  In my last update on June 28th, her life was miraculously spared when she recovered enough to be taken off life support and moved out of the MICU.  In the past two weeks Eva was making progress, even to the point of being able to, with assistance, get herself to the bathroom. 

Late Wednesday night, however, she started having serious trouble catching her breath and was moved to MICU.  As mentioned, Eva is frustrated, angry and very tired.  It has been a very long road for all of us.  Eva's 5 kids are still living with Vivian and I, as are Kienan, Keesha, Kristian, and Vivian's sister Lisa.
Vivian's sister Lisa has been a huge support to us and has hardly left Eva's side in the past two weeks.

We ask that you continue to hold Eva up in your prayers.  While she is a very strong person we are praying that she seeks God personally in her heart daily for strength, and hope and perseverance.  That this would be a time of seeking the Lord, His favor, and moving into a living relationship with him.

Again, thank you for being there for us and for your prayer support.  It makes a huge difference.

God richly bless you all.
Sincerely,
Nick & Vivian Helliwell
With Thanksgiving and the Love of Christ,
In Whom All Our Hope is Fixed
 

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Pastor Madou Traore (Burkina Faso)

Serving alongside the Bergens among the Nanerige people; pastoring, discipling, and leadership development.

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Spurgeon & Gina Marie Root (Regina)

Serving with Healing Hearts Ministries. Surgeon is Director of Outreach Ministries. Gina Marie leads worship and abuse recovery groups.

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Adam & Angela Sapelak (Spain)

Serving with SEND International; discipleship, logistics, and support.

Summer in Full Swing

Our summer ministries are in full swing! This means a lot of travelling, spending time with lots of people, late nights, early mornings, translating for groups from North America who have come to serve and making great connections with people in the community. We would appreciate prayers for lasting connections with those we meet, for energy, unity among the teams and that the people would see God's love in us! 

SHORT STORY: 
Two weeks ago I (Ang) went for a walk with Ben when a lady stopped me. She said, "My son and I have seen you and your husband walking with your son many times and we noticed how kind your faces are. You always smile at us and there is just something about your faces that is filled with love." She gave me a kiss on each cheek and went on her way. I was shocked and humbled. God miraculously works through us when we don't realize it or even when we feel weak...it's amazing! This lady's words were a huge encouragement and reminder to us that God is at work here even when we simply go for a walk. 

SUMMER SCHEDULE: 

July 3-7: English and art camp at our local church. 

July 13-23:  English and art camp in Asturias.

August 4-8:  Adam preaches (for the first time in Spanish) in Asturias. We will be meeting with the leaders of the church to pray and encourage one another. 

August 19-22:  Angela will be in Germany while Adam and Ben will be visiting our SEND workers in the south of Spain.
 

Adam teaching the adult sunday school class at our church. 
Angela PASSED her driving exam and got her Spanish licence! She is loving the freedom! 
Ben is two years old and he loves to paint, swim and jump off anything we allow him to! He really enjoys interacting with the kids at the camps we are involved in. 

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Arlene Schroeder (Regina)

Serving with Healing Hearts Ministries; Office Administration, mentorship, and women’s ministries.

How did watermelon come to Arlene's rescue?  Read the August news letter to find out...

August 2017 News Letter

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Walter & Cindy Selke (Regina)

Serving with Healing Hearts Ministries. Walter is Executive Director, administering and encouraging staff. Cindy is involved in music and counselling.

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Kerry & Kathy Varcoe (Indonesia)

                                                                                 

  

Serving with Wycliffe. Literacy-based community development and scripture translation in the Babar Islands.

 

Wow!  Thanks for your prayers as we completed the Tela Oral Bible Story set, celebrated it and then moved out of Babar.  Whew!  We have been in Ambon for a couple of weeks now with our Wycliffe colleagues and are working on transitioning out of Indonesia and back to Canada.  In case you get eye strain before you get to the end of the attached letter (!?*) we will be arriving in Vancouver on Tuesday, August 1, and then will work our way to Saskatchewan from there and are looking forward to the Welcome Back Weekend at PCC in September.  Meanwhile, we wish we could send some of this non-stop Ambon rain your way...
See you soon!
Love,
Kerry and Kathy 

 

What are these pictures about? 

 

     

Read here....

Varcoe Vignette July 2017

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Rick & Cheryl Ashton (Latin America & Caribbean)

Serving with Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada; short-term deployments supporting and encouraging missionaries and projects.