Greetings Dear Friends From Your Missionaries In Madagascar,
It has been very very hot in Mahajanga since October, maybe around 94 degrees F. We are looking forward for the rains to come. Along with that, the mango trees are full of ripening fruit and they just fall on the ground and whoever wants them just picks them up. We make fruit salad with it or mango juice—it is delicious.
Bible Missionary and Work training (BMW)
We have 12 BMW students right now in Mahajanga (North part of Madagascar) and another 12 in Vangaindrano (south part of Madagascar). Our daily schedule is like this: We start class at 5 AM and end at 7AM, then breakfast, followed by personal devotions and chapel. We always go to a work project after chapel. As far as work right now, we are getting sand from the creek bed, which is on our property, for a two-story building which will house missionaries coming from abroad and for visitors. Another project is laying bricks on the wall fences. We also water our plants in our garden, clean up around the campus, etc. At noon, we have lunch and then have classes from 1PM – 2:30 PM.
After our afternoon classes, we go back to work because there are many projects that need to be completed. They include jobs such as welding, repairing and all kinds of maintenance projects on the property. Dinner is at 5PM, then free time for two hours. We have evening chapel again at 7PM followed by the students personal study time, then lights are out at 9:30PM. I(Nomena) am teaching Church History and EV outreach this term and Liva teaches Music and Synthesis. We only have three girls on staff besides the two us in Mahajanga, so it is very busy every day. We praise the Lord that we are able to run this program and it is fun because we do everything for our Lord and Savior (I Corinthians 10:31 ). Please pray that our BMW students stay strong in faith, grow and mature and have good health every day.
This school operates right now at TMI Mahajanga with 1000 students and 35 teachers. It is busier than you can imagine here every day. The spiritual education of our students is a top priority. We teach the kids Bible every day. We minister to them using the lessons for the Sunday School Missions, then we pass it on to the teachers so that they can continue using it throughout the week with their students. As we are in contact with many parents each day, we give them Christian counseling because of their challenging family situations, etc. As a result, we see parents starting to go to church, students not wearing short dresses or skirts or the boys who cut their hair short in order to honor our God. It is the same way as in the Bible: “The harvest is plenty but the workers are few”, so please pray for more Christian personnel for the school in order to operate it correctly as God wants it to be. Another prayer request for the school is that we are building another two story building and funds are needed to complete it. We also need books for our library. We will celebrate OR CELEBRATED the 10th anniversary of the school the 23rd of December, so please remember to pray for all the planned activities that God’s will will be done. Pray for protection for each student as they are at the school or outside the school.
Our children are getting bigger and bigger every day. Our first boy, Fanilo, will turn 10 in January. Fiderana, our 2nd boy, will be 7 in July. Next year, our little girl, Fifaliana, will be 5 in March. They are precious gifts God has given to us. They go to a different school in town, though we really want to have them in the French school. It is very expensive for us. Please pray that someone will be willing to help with their fees at the French school which is $500 per month for all three of them.
In the family, we teach our children Bible stories, and they get to watch a cartoon or film, or we pray with them and read them stories. Otherwise, we send them to Sunday school at church each Sunday. Please pray for quality time in the family, it seems like we are rushing around all the time. We have to wake up at 4 AM in order to do our own devotions or even earlier than that for our teaching preparation.
We have a Peace Corp volunteer here working at the Nirina School with us. She takes two weekly meals with us in the family so that we have fellowship. In September, my husband lost his younger sister as she gave birth, so both the baby and the mother died. We had to go to Tana, the capital of Madagascar, for the funeral. It was very sad. Then a week after that, Liva’s mother came here in Mahajanga for a relief. She was with us for about three weeks with her granddaughter.
Our daily schedule, as you can see, is very tight, but thankfully we have relatives where our children can go for lunch after school. We pick them up at 5:30 PM everyday, then usually the kids go to bed right when we get home because they are tired. That is the only time for us to go to the market and do our shopping; otherwise when Liva has something to do in town, he purchases our supplies, if he remembers to stop at the market :). It is tough sometimes because we have to find time for our children. They need to be pushed in their schooling and everything, so please pray for us so that we can manage well our time because there are only 24 hours in a day.
Boot Camp finished in September. Everything went well. We had more than enough teenagers that came. Many parents have reported that after the camp, their children got new habits like reading the Bible every day and helped working in the house.
As far as our BMW outreach, we rehearsed our puppet presentation, kids games, dramas and choreography last week. On Saturday, we plan to go for EV outreach with a church in the bush, so please pray that God will give us wisdom and that God will open the people’s hearts as we minister to them. Usually, at the end of our presentation, we show the Jesus Film, so pray as well that many people will come to know Christ and decide to give their lives to Him.
So to close our newsletter, I would like to thank you for being part of the Ministry here – prayer, letters and finances. Thank you again for your generosity, may God continue to bless you richly.
In His name,
Nomena and Liva