Saturday, February 27, 2010

A Plethora of Pennies: Penny Rollin' Partay!

We had a lot of fun today with the Penny Rolling. Today with the help of some friends, we counted and rolled $516.31 in coins. Combined with other donations that have come in for the Fawcett & Strout P.A.T.H. training we have received a grand total of $2,316.31 which puts us well on our way to our goal. Thank You all so very much for your contributions and gifts.

N.C.E.M. is offering us assistance with our training and travel expenses, both of our families will receive a subsidy of 25% for the costs of P.A.T.H. and we have been given assistance with some of our travel expenses as well. We saved significantly on tuition as well by selecting the most economical electives. All of this brings our total remaining cost to roughly $10,000.

A big pile o' pennies

A cozy fire and camp goodies.

Ricky & Emily came to lend a hand!

Lizzie cookin' up some right good Pizzas!

Cheryl helping with the pennies - a big thank you to Cumberland Bay Baptist Sunday School for their big jar of pennies!

Some of the yummy breakfast treats Lizzie baked up for everyone!

Marcia & Kevin getting their hands dirty (literally... pennies... kinda grubby)


Thursday, February 25, 2010

The People's Church in Truro, NS

We had the pleasure of being a part of the Wednesday night Bible Study and Prayer Meeting at People's Church last night. When we lived in Truro (1999 - 2003) we worshiped at Peoples, and for three years Liz taught kindergarten (K4) at the Colchester Christian Academy at the church. It was a great pleasure for us to be able to share our excitement in this ministry with our friends there.

The enthusiasm that they showed for the ministry and our beginning in this work was a huge encouragement to us. The missions committee arranged for a collection of kitchen materials for Arrowhead and the congregation responded generously with a big hamper full of wonderful things for the kitchen.

Thank you so very much to the kind folks at People's Church for this wonderful contribution to the ministry here at Arrowhead Native Bible Center.

As you can see in the picture, we also received some generous gifts of pennies for the Penny Rolling Partay this Saturday!

It is this kind of support that helps us to smoothly operate or summer camps and events at Arrowhead. Last summer via the "Grocery Grabber Coupon" program Arrowhead was saved nearly $5,000 in grocery costs. Because we operate below cost for our summer camps this ministry is richly blessed by the practical gifts of local churches.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Windsor Baptist Church

This past weekend we had the immense privilege of returning to our home church in Windsor, Nova Scotia to share with the congregation there a ministry update. We arrived on Saturday evening and were treated to a pot luck with our Carpenter's Hands Bible Study friends. They had been saving pennies, many of which were accumulated by Pastor Jeff over the years. We all gathered around in Jeff's living room and had a preliminary "Penny Rolling Party"Windor style. At the end of the evening the tally was $74 and change in pennies (or 7,400+ pennies) which will contribute to training expenses for us and the Strouts.

The ladies rolling some pennies.

The fellas' turn to do some counting...

Sunday morning I was given the opportunity to share for about half an hour about all of the exciting things the Lord has been doing in our lives and at Arrowhead. The encouragement and response from those in attendance was a real blessing to us. We enjoyed some fellowship following the service and then made our way back home to Cumberland Bay on Sunday night.

We are looking forward to quite a bit of travel over the next few weeks prior to leaving for P.A.T.H. training. Perhaps we'll see some of you on our journeys.

Friday, February 19, 2010

P.A.T.H. Book Report (vol. 3)

I've completed the third book that I selected to read for our upcoming P.A.T.H. training. There is certainly a recurrent theme among books dealing with Cross Cultural ministry. The need for understanding, the ability to learn and listen, the importance of building genuine and honest relationships with people as a base for sharing with them the Word of God. These are certainly Biblical Truths, and yet why is it that we are only focusing on them in a missions context? It seems to me we are all commanded to do these very things (Mark 12:28-31; Matthew 28:19-20) in our everyday lives.

Ministering Cross-Culturally
by Sherwood G. Lingenfelter
and Marvin K. Mayers

This is an excellent little book. If I were to hold a criticism of it, I would say only that it were too short. I found the practical examples of the Yapese culture to be a great aid in understanding the concepts being expressed in the book (and very interesting as well). I would certainly have enjoyed more narrative along those lines.

The idea of an incarnational model with respect to ministry is very practical, as well as biblical. The author does an excellent job of expressing just how to adequately go about this. Further to that, he cautions against being too sterile in our approach to non-Western cultures. Developing genuine relationships with people must never be second to our agenda. Worldview and understanding of culture are all vital parts to the incarnational model. The 'questionnaire' and charts are an excellent practical and visual assistance to understanding the thought behind the incarnational model. It would be an excellent idea for anyone working with others in a team to all take the time to complete this exercise and examine just how they will interact together. I would hazard to say it would be very enlightening and resolve a great deal of potential conflict.

A recommended read!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Advanced Tech 2000 Inc.

Kevin and I paid a visit to Advanced Tech while we were doing camp business in Fredericton yesterday. Advanced Tech is the security and technology company that serviced and repaired our fire and safety alarms system in the main lodge.

The good folks there have very graciously donated all of their time and supplies to Arrowhead. The operations manager is a Christian man and wished to minister to the needs of Arrowhead in this very practical and helpful way. It is certainly a great peace of mind to know that we are protected sufficiently and supported locally in a practical way as we seek to be suitable stewards of the Lord's facility here at Arrowhead!

Praise the Lord for His wonderful provision!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Some Chores

Yesterday Liz and I spent the day doing some cleaning at the main lodge. Unfortunately our traps have, as yet, not captured the gray squirrel that managed to make it's way inside. But we've seen no further signs of the beast since Kevin put out the sound machine (it emits a tone that apparently drives the critters away), so perhaps he's moved on. We got quite a bit done in the cleaning department, but will need to go back and finish up the kitchen tomorrow. The pantry certainly looks bare, we'll be launching our Grocery Grabber program again in the next few weeks, so if your church would be interested in taking part with us in a practical non-perishable way, just let us know and we'll get a kit off to you!

We are still waiting for our new dumpster to arrive. We have been promised a new dumpster by Alternative Waste Management (our friendly neighbourhood garbage men), and it is supposed to be larger with more secure doors to keep out the wildlife. Kevin and I inquired about a new dumpster for camp a few weeks ago when we were in to pay our tipping fees. We were told that a larger dumpster is no additional cost and there is no increase in the tipping fee. We were very pleased to hear this and are eager to get the bigger unit to serve our needs.

Today Kev & I are off to Fredericton to do some camp business. Kevin recently had the fire alarm system inspected and put into operation, we will be stopping in to see the good folks there today. They have prepared a complete report for us on the status of our system. We also have some banking to do as well - I also hope to acquire a few more coin rollers for the upcoming Penny Rolling Party. The folks at the bank have been very helpful in getting us supplies for the event. I have a grocery bag full of coin rollers of all kinds as well as bank boxes for bulk pennies when we cash them in. It's going to be quite a day, so come on over, bring some pennies and help us roll...

Saturday, February 13, 2010

P.A.T.H. Book Report (vol. 2)

This was the second of the five books that are required for reading prior to going to P.A.T.H. training. There is a selection of eight books to choose from, the five posted here will be those we picked to read. This selection falls under the Missionary Family Relationships category and as such I think is intended to give us an idea of what it might be like on the field.

Letters Never Sent
by Ruth Van Reken
Throughout the latter portion of this book, the author brings some insightful truths. Her words are helpful and encouraging, I can certainly understand how this book is helpful in counseling applications.
Throughout this book, the author attempts to express some of her experiences, initially as a third culture child, and then as a cross cultural missionary herself. Although it can be infinitely helpful to read of the experiences and struggles of someone else, I believe it is also important to remember that no two people will struggle the same way or even respond similarly. I say this because I felt as though the "hindsight" of writing from the perspective of a child from the vantage point of mature healing left me as the reader feeling a bit daft for not having had that level of wisdom or composed expression when a child myself.
The relationship between Ministry and Family that is presented throughout this book gave me cause for pause as well. I am uncertain if I entirely agree with the presentation of this relationship in the book. If anything else it has prompted me to consider the topic more closely.
It is a simple read and would certainly be worth your while to read it. The author is transparent and practical and you will learn from her experiences. We can certainly all take something away from lessons shared!

 I have had the opportunity to hear this author speak at a recent conference. Referencing this book, she spoke about her experiences and the purpose in writing the book in the first place. Her personal epilogue to the book afforded some clarity for me that had not initially contributed to my reading of it.

I had felt that perhaps the concept of writing as an adult through the eyes of a child was disingenuous, when in fact this was not how the letters were written at all. Ruth explained to us that she was not trying to re-experience or re-imagine, she was, in the form of letter writing, experiencing these things for the first time. These letters are her dealing with her childhood experiences for the first time. This revelation certainly sheds an entirely different light on the subject matter.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

We Were Not The Savages

This book is not a requirement for our upcoming P.A.T.H. training, although perhaps it should be. I read it out of a desire to understand a little better the history of the Mi'kmaq people, it is a bleak history.

We Were Not The Savages
by Daniel N. Paul

This book is a must read. It is well researched, well sourced and referenced and very well presented. I'm ashamed at how very little I actually knew of the history of the Mi'kmaq people.

It became clear, reading this book, how very important Worldview is and how it has impacted non-native poeples perceptions of Native people today. All of our current prejudices, and worldviews are infected by the propaganda of centuries of misdirection and abuses. History is written by the conquerors, and the histories I've read avoid some of the ugly truths exposed in this book.

It is no wonder the United Nations Condemned Canada for gross indecency among our Native population. In 2001 Canada was rated by the U.N. 63rd in the world for health and social conditions, below Mexico and Thailand.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Calvary Baptist Church Miramichi

Last night, Kevin and I had the great pleasure of sharing with the missionary prayer group of Calvary Baptist Church in Miramichi. We met with about a dozen others in the home of Dana and Sherry Waye. It was a great blessing to be able to share in song and prayer for missionaries at home and abroad.

We had the opportunity to share with the group about the ministry at Arrowhead and what the Lord has been doing at A.N.B.C. and in the lives of both of our families. It was certainly a great encouragement to share in their enthusiasm for the ministry. We are looking forward to ministering with some of them this coming summer!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Fire Alarms, Finances and Furry Friends

Today was a busy day at Arrowhead! Kevin had a service technician in to inspect and make operational our fire alarm system. We actually have a fairly robust system installed, it however has not been overly functional historically. It is now in good order, up and running!

Liz and I spent a few hours tidying up a bit in the lodge... it was quite clear that we have a bit of a problem with a squirrel. We saw the wily varmint during our Christmas gathering with the Eastern Field in December, he was observing our meetings from the tree in the yard. Since then he has made himself quite at home in the lodge. So Liz and I went to the Home Hardware in Chipman and procured some items necessary for the ... ahem ... removal of the Squirrel. Hopefully we can come to a peaceful resolution, I however doubt very much that he will go quietly.

We met with another gentleman today with respect to the impending office for ANBC, but I will fill you in on that when I have more details to share! It's going to be very exciting though, I can tell you that!!

Kevin and Marcia went to finalize some banking details this afternoon. At the request of the executive, ANBC has begun to do business with the same banking institution as NCEM. This will have several benefits for us and should hopefully streamline some of our banking issues. Primarily, by having our account at the same branch as NCEM headquarters, it allows them to send money to us directly and immediately, keeping us from having to wait for Canada Post to deliver a cheque. Currently the branch closest to us is in Fredericton, but with the electronic funds transfers we should be able to manage with just one or two trips to the bank monthly for any deposits that we may need to make.

If you haven't already, you should be receiving the latest edition of the Just Mind The Gap newsletter in the next day or two. I put our most recent mailing out last Friday. If you haven't been receiving our prayer letter and would like to, we'd be more than happy to add you to our mailing! Just drop us a line and let us know!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Men for God Conference: N.B.B.I.

This past weekend, I had the privilege to attend the Men's conference held at New Brunswick Bible Institute. The conference featured guest speaker Dr. Michael Loftis, President of ABWE and special music by High Meadow, a men's quartet from Maine.

The theme of the conference was 'Firemen', and was carried through the weekend. We enjoyed demonstrations by several local fire departments as well as messages encouraging us to be 'battle ready' as Christian men in a fallen world.

The conference was a great encouragement and offered opportunity for fellowship and reconnecting with old friends. I took the opportunity to introduce myself to a man working as a missionary in Northern Quebec. It happens that he is working in a community where a friend of mine lives. I haven't seen my friend in many years, we spent a couple of years in high school together, which is when we last saw one another. After completing school, my friend returned to his home community where he now lives and works. I asked the missionary if he knew my friend, and he did indeed know of him. I felt burdened that day to take the opportunity to send a devotion book to my friend and his wife, so I asked the missionary if he would take it to them when he returned. He willingly agreed so I picked up a one year devotional book at the N.B.B.I. bookstore and sent it along. Just today, to my great delight my friend sent me an eMail telling me that just 2 weeks ago he accepted Jesus as his personal saviour, and that his wife too had accepted the Lord!

Praise the Lord! And please keep them in prayer as they seek a new life in Christ.

As part of the Hartland Fire Dept. demonstration, this car was disassembled using the jaws of life and removed from the gym in pieces in only 15 minutes.

There was a large crowd that came from as far as Saskatchewan and Massachusetts.

It was a refreshing weekend! (and a bit exhausting)

P.S. - special thanks to the N.B.B.I. Facebook page for the pictures :0)