Friday, June 24, 2011

The Schwindlings and VBS project

Meet Tommy and Joy Schwindling! They will be moving to Jacmel, Haiti on July 19th to help Samuel with the children and be the host for countless mission teams. They have been working hard getting their belongings in storage, placing their house for sale, and learning about Haiti.
Plus a zillion other details that need to be addressed before making such a drastic move. They need our prayers both now and when they begin God's work in Haiti. We are so humbled by their willingness to serve in this capacity and be willing to sacrifice so much. Our partnership with the AL Baptist ST. Bd. of Missions continues to be such a blessing to Children's Hope, and we appreciate their willingness to provide The Alabama House where the Schwindlings will be housed for the next year or two. This is God's mission, and what a privilege it is that He allows us to be involved. This time last year, we didn't even know Samuel and the children. Yet, God has orchestrated just the right people, ministries, and resources to come together at just the right time and allow us to move forward in ways we never could have imagined!

Our VBS partnered with Lifeway this year in a project called Kits for Kids. There are so many children around the world who do not have school supplies. The lack of these supplies often prevent them from enrolling in school, and without education children have very little opportunity to overcome their negative circumstances. The kids that came to VBS last week brought quarters, dimes, nickels, and pennies that added up to over $2100!!! This offering was divided between Kits for Kids and the tornado victims. Kids met last Wednesday night to pack kits and get them ready to be shipped. $1,050 buys a lot of school supplies, and it is exciting to think about how these kits can change the lives of children around the world. A big Children's Hope thank you to Glen Leathers (Children's Minister), his interns, and all the children who brought change. God can use our "change" to make "change!"

Monday, June 6, 2011

An Alabama Couple!!!

As you know one of our biggest prayer requests has been for the Lord to call a couple or family to Jacmel to help Samuel with the kids. Also, in our last post I explained about the Alabama House and how the couple would have a dual role in Jacmel as the host for mission teams and helping Samuel. Well, the Lord has called a couple from FBC, so I am so excited to announce that Tommy and Joy Schwindling will be moving to Jacmel around July 15th. They have sensed the Lord's call to be in mission work for some time now. Joy and Tommy initially thought it would be in Africa until this opportunity arose. If you attend FBC, you know that they are dedicated servants who work hard and want no recognition. They have served tirelessly in helping prepare countless meals on Wednesday nights, MIC, and many, many other occasions!
They have also headed up Raceway Ministries and been vital members of our SS class. Their service goes far beyond this as they quietly reach out to others on a daily basis sharing God's love and building relationships. Please begin praying for them daily as they prepare to make this transition.

The plan is for the Schwindlings to live in the Alabama House until a permanent "missions" house is built on the same land as a home for the children. We are still awaiting word from Jerry O'Leary (Canadian who owns land in Jacmel). From most recent conversations, it doesn't appear that he will turn over the land to us at no cost. However, we are hopeful that he will provide terms and amounts that are reasonable. We will keep you posted, but please keep praying about this land. In the meantime, Charley Elgin (Pathfinder Mission) is working on lining up a team of professionals to assess the piece of land and provide a design concept congruent with what we want for the children. We know if the Lord doesn't provide this land He will provide land. Sometimes it just takes waiting on His best! This is His mission; not ours. He just lets us be a part of it.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Alabama House

As many of you know, Andy and Jay made a trip to Jacmel, Haiti last week. They were accompanied by Mel Johnson (AL Baptist St. Bd. of Missions - ALSBOM) and Charley Elgin (Pathfinder Missions). A major goal of this trip was to locate a house that ALSBOM could rent for future mission teams going down. There are churches throughout AL who are sending medical, construction, and evangelistic teams to Jacmel. ALSBOM located an eight bedroom home that will become the Alabama House where mission teams can be housed. This is a huge plus for Children's Hope. We will be able to house an Alabama couple there who will assist Samuel with the children and be host to all the mission teams coming down. Charley Elgin will also work out of this home, and he will coordinate the construction of a permanent home for the children. We hope to have the AL House occupied by mid July. The piece of the puzzle that hasn't materialized yet is land. Our hope was that Jerry O'leary (businessman from Canada) would turn over the land (donate) to us. It doesn't appear that will happen. He has a passion for the lost in the Ivory Coast area and wants to recoup his money from the orphanage site in Jacmel to be used for evangelism efforts in the Ivory Coast. Andy and Jay both feel that Mr. O'Leary is a very sincere follower of the Lord and is listening to His guidance. Please pray that he would feel led to offer us a price that would be considerably below the price he stated previously.

Please continue to pray for Mike and Kerri Moore as they seek the Lord's will regarding adopting through DHR. The brothers that they met last weekend turned out not to be a match.
This is a difficult road and they need your prayers. Also, pray that the brothers would find a home well suited for them.

We want to seek and follow the Lord's guidance with every step we take through this ministry not only in Jacmel but in reaching out to families in our church. Therefore, we will begin gathering for prayer the first Tuesday of each month at noon to pray for specific needs and families such as the Moores. We will meet in the room just across from Carolyn Bryan's office.
Enter through the Scott Str. entrance, go up the stairs to your right and the room is on the left.
Our first prayer time will be this coming Tuesday, June 7th.