Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of His saints. Ps. 116:15
Some of you may not know that Anthony’s brother, Lynn, went home to be with the Lord on November 11, 2011, after a three-year battle with ALS-Lou Gerhig’s disease. We are thankful for the many people who prayed for Lynn and helped sustain him and Amy through this time. He is not suffering anymore. We made a trip to Pennsylvania for the funeral and were truly blessed by the many people who were touched by Lynn’s life. There were more than 600 people who came for the viewing and close to the same for the funeral. There were people from all over who attended including Shawna’s brother and family from Ontario, as well as coworkers and family from Thailand. On the way home to Florida, we stopped in Atlanta for Thanksgiving to visit some friends and former team members. We had a wonderful time and appreciate their hospitality.
We were home for a few weeks then returned to Pennsylvania for Christmas. As we shared together on Christmas Day and reflected on what the Lord had done this year, there was obviously a void with Lynn being gone. Lynn’s birthday was December 31 so we were able to be together as a family to share Christmas, birthday and New Years together. Lynn was someone who liked to joke around and challenged us to be our best for the Lord. He was a good father and we will all miss him. Continue to pray for Amy and their five children (ages 1-10) as they seek the Lord for their future and rest in Him. We are excited about Amy and three of the children being involved on Teen Missions teams this coming summer!
While in PA we were able to share at a few churches and made many contacts with supporters and friends. What a busy time it was, but it was good. The kids enjoyed playing with their cousins, having sleep overs, and we were all able to go snow tubing (17 of us!). Brandon and Jessie spent New Year’s Eve with the youth from the church playing games, bowling and eating until 7 AM! We butchered a 420 pound pig after Christmas. Puddings, pon haus (scrapple) and sausage were some of the end results of the day. Anthony was more excited about the day than the kids were. It was their educational day of the trip! We headed back to Florida on January 2, so the kids could be back to school the 4th.
This Spring finds us busy again with Darin playing flag football and baseball and Brandon is working on getting his driver’s license and trying out for tennis at school! Can you believe we have a child old enough to drive (and another one right behind him)?! Brandon and Jessie are both in Honors classes and are doing well. Darin’s teacher said he is the calm in her day! We are blessed by our children and continue to pray for the Lord to guide them and protect them as they seek Him for what He has for them.
This summer we are scheduled to go to Hope School in Beit Jala, Israel, just outside of Jerusalem. We will be doing some renovations and painting at the school. It is one of the few Christian schools in this Arab country. We are looking forward to returning to Israel. Darin will be going with us. At this time, Brandon and Jessie are planning to go to Pennsylvania to be with Grandpa and Grandma. They are looking forward to spending more time with their family and friends in PA, in a time other than winter. Darin will also be doing his own team called the Nehemiah Trusses Team. It is a Peanut team (ages 6-9) and will be June 18-25. They will make trusses for covered sidewalks here at the base. His cousin, Micah, is going on the team so they are looking forward to being together. We will need to raise support to take Darin with us to Israel and for his Peanut team, which will be a total of $2100. If you would like to help in this way, please let us know by sending in the coupon with your donation marked for Darin’s summer.
With getting the brochure out early this year, we already have over 500 registrations for the 2011 teams so we are busy processing the regis- trations and getting things ready. We have four adult teams that will be overseas during January and February helping at our bases in Malawi, Zimbabwe, Uganda and Cameroon.
We have two other ministries that were started out of the ministry of Teen Missions. One of them is AIDS Orphans and Street Children (AOSC). We are in essence bringing the orphanages to the children in their villages rather than taking children out of their culture and village to an orphanage. It is a 8’x12’ portable housing unit staffed with two national missionaries. These units provide emergency medical help, general first aid, seeds and drip irrigation and help in planing gardens, school fees and uniforms, counseling, advocates, security, basic knowledge of salvation and spiritual growth, orphan camps, and basic needs—clothing, hygiene, etc. We have 35 Rescue Units placed in Zambia, Malawi, Uganda and Zimbabwe and Cameroon. We would like to share one of the stories of what the Lord is doing through the ministry at our base in Zambia and at the Rescue Units there. “Queen Monze (staff) had a patient with this big raw fleshy wound outside of the man’s ribs. She said it looked like fresh meat. This man was told by clinics and the hospital that there was nothing anyone could do. He came and said that he “knew” they could help at the Rescue Unit. Queen didn’t know what to do but washed it and put on the “pink” ointment that had come from the States. She said it began to dry up. He kept coming and she kept up with the same thing–putting on the pink ointment. It was continuing to dry up and the clinic was amazed at how much better it looked. They asked who is helping you and he told them Teen Missions. Many people are coming to the Rescue Unit to get help as word keeps spreading of the success. Queen always prays for them and tells them it is God who is doing the healing. Praise the Lord for what He is doing to help people who are hurting.” More stories like this can be found at www.teenmissions.org under Overseas Base Updates.
We look forward to having Shawna’s twin brother Steve and his family visit us the last week of March. It has been a few years since we were able to be together. We know that a lot of people travel south during this time of year so if you are ever this way, please be sure to drop in and see us.
Anthony will be coming to Harrisburg in May with a crew to put up the life-size replica of the Old Testament Tabernacle. Let us know if you are interested in helping us to set it up. More information will be available closer to the time.
We are thankful for all those who have been faithful to pray for us and to financially support us over the last year. We are still short the amount we can receive each month and receive only what comes in for us. If you feel the Lord speaking to you about supporting us or would like more information please contact us at [email protected]
Anthony, Shawna, Brandon, Jessica and Darin