Archive for February, 2012

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

March 4: Mike & Bonita Ullrich, Kittredge, CO

Kittredge is in the beautiful foothills of the Rocky Mountains at 7000 ft., west of Denver. Once a summer cabin area, it’s now a bedroom community as many commute to work in the Denver area. It’s near Evergreen, CO, a mountain town with many artists, writers, and famous people, including a former presidential candidate. Elk, deer, mountain lions, bears, and other wildlife are common in our yard and around the church. This area full of “up & outers” presents a challenge, as mountain living mentality often includes the desire to be left alone. Our church is still the only one in town; due to the growth of the Denver and Evergreen area, there are now many other churches within easy driving distance, but none reach the town of Kittredge. Pray for wisdom in reaching a very closed culture. Pray for the impact of our annual outreach programs around Valentine’s Day and Easter, and preparation for summer VBS. Pray for many folks in our congregation facing health, age, and other big life challenges.


Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

As You Pray This Week

Dear Praying Friends,

Our Cannon Beach mini-conference that today! Please pray for safe travel for our Northwest missionaries as they come to this conference and for spiritual blessing as they attend. Two of our missionaries, Mark Canady and John Adams, will be speaking and Brian Wechsler will be providing an update on Village Missions. Pray that our missionaries will leave the conference renewed and refreshed. We have long connections with Cannon Beach Christian Conference Center, as the conference center is one of several Christian ministries founded by the Duff family.

Please pray for Brian and Carole Wechsler as they begin several days of travel. Following Cannon Beach, Brian and Carole go to Colby, Kansas for the Christian Workers Conference 2012, sponsored by Shepherd’s Staff, Inc. Brian is the main speaker for this one day conference.

Brian will then be speaking at our field, Country Chapel in Oakley, KS, and then at our field, Mingo Bible Church, in Mingo, Kansas.

Following Kansas, Brian and Carole will go to Arizona where they will be visiting donors and speaking Sunday, March 11 at Venture Out. Venture Out is located at 5001 East Main Street in Mesa. The worship service is at 9:00 am.

Thank you for praying!


Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

February 26: Eddie & Sarah Vesser, Kendrick, CO

Kendrick Bible Church is out on the eastern plains of Colorado, about 50 miles east of Colorado Springs. While many commute to jobs in the surrounding areas, this is still an agricultural area grounded in generational ranches and farms. We are very blessed to have a diversity of ages in the church, including a few remaining founding members. Please pray for moisture, as we are in a very dry area, and the last several years have been in drought conditions. Also, pray that we will reach out better into our surrounding community, to be able to meet needs and build relationships with the unchurched and unsaved.


Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

As You Pray This Week

Dear Praying Friends,

Please pray for the Cannon Beach mini-conference that starts next week on February 28. Mini-conferences are a special time for our missionaries to “come away” for fellowship and renewal. In contrast to the staff conferences that we used to have, mini-conferences are smaller, more regional, shorter, and more informal. The Cannon Beach mini-conference is one of the first ones this season – several others will occur throughout the country. Pray that the Lord will refresh and renew our missionaries.

Pray for great wisdom for our Pension Committee as it meets this week. Village Missionaries receive a pension of $12 per month per year of service. Although this is a small amount, with the decline in earnings from investments, Village Missions has to pay about $250,000 into the pension fund each year to fund the plan.

Please continue to pray for our finances. For July-January we are $120,408 in deficit in operations and $125,196 in deficit in our self-funded health plan. Pray that people would realize that when they give to Village Missions they give to Village Missionaries! 85% of our operating cost goes directly to missionaries, retirement apartments for missionaries, or the District Representative ministry. Our 12% administrative cost goes toward serving missionaries and our 3% fundraising cost benefits our missionaries as well! We have seen God move mightily in the past and He is leading several couples our way, so pray that God will move people to give!

Recently Brian and Carole Wechsler had the privilege of attending a Valentine’s Party at our nearby field in Blodgett, OR. If you would like to see pictures of this party please click here.

Thank you for praying!


Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

February 19: Ken & Charlotte Schmidt, Morton, WA

Nestled in the Cascade Mountains of Washington not far from White Pass, we are on a junction of Hwy 12, Hwy 508, and Hwy 7. Morton is a small logging/retirement community, which is far enough from “civilization” that much of what people need can be found right here in town. In a community of about 1100, there is a car dealership, two grocery stores, a theatre, several banks, and a hospital, along with various other amenities.

There are several other churches in town, but only one other full-time pastor. We’ve been in our new building since August 2010, and it is wonderful! We now have AWANA, Sunday school, and several other church ministries. Pray that the Lord will continue to add to HIS church, and strengthen us as we continue to serve in faith.


Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

As You Pray This Week

Dear Praying Friends,

Praise the Lord that He is providing new missionaries!

We have three couples who are seeking to get their support raised so they can go to the field. Please pray for the right placement for those three couples.

Please also pray for a good fit as we seek to place an intern couple with one of our veteran missionaries.

Please pray for the health of our Village Missionaries. Some have extremely serious health issues. Lately it seems that many of our children have broken bones. Pray for good healing of these injuries. Pray that our missionaries would live healthy lifestyles with exercise, diet, rest, and days off from ministry. Pray for great wisdom for our Benefit Board as they direct our self-funded health insurance in the face of increasingly complex and costly requirements handed down from the Federal government.

Thank you for praying!


Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

Promoted to Glory

The Good Shepherd of Bliss

Bill Devena, Village Missionary to Bliss, Idaho died at home on Wednesday, February 8th.

Two years ago, Bill was diagnosed with Melanoma and only given a few months to live. He lasted much longer, and his last years were a testimony to the grace and sufficiency of God.

At his funeral service on Feb. 11 at the church, I heard repeated testimonies of how he had loved the people of his community. One person called him the “good shepherd of Bliss.” He was on the fire department, taught hunter safety, was a chaplain with the Idaho State Police, visited in the nursing homes and prison, and helped farmers with their chores.

In one of his last reports he wrote, “Although this past year has been unlike any other we have had, we want to give thanks and praise to God for His sustaining love and grace. His blessings are abundant and His mercies are new every morning. We have a wonderfully supportive church family, and we are amazed at God’s goodness in bringing us to this place where the love of His people surrounds us.”

Please be in prayer for Vicki Devena, her four daughters, and the rest of the family as they mourn the passing of Bill. Bill and Vicki have served with Village Missions since 1980. They have served in Bliss, ID, in between Twin Falls and Mountain Home on I-84, since 2002. I thanked the Lord for the opportunity to attend his service and hear how he had ministered in Bliss. If you would like to see pictures of the service and the Bliss Community Church please click here.


Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

February 12: Ryan & Jenneke Schnee, Middle Lake, SK

The past six months have brought a lot of new things. We are new to the Mission (Spring Candidate School 2011), new to full-time ministry (graduated from seminary April 2011), new to this little town, and new to the province of Saskatchewan. Our small town seems to revolve around agriculture, our senior’s home, and Lucien Lake Regional Park that provides swimming, fishing, and camping for the summer months.

We are grateful for: a positive start to relationships within the church family and a strong leadership team at the church; our two oldest children doing well at fitting into a new school; open doors and opportunities to minister in the large seniors’ complex (approx 100 residents) located in town; being able to walk and ride my bike to many of the things that we have been involved in (Around 200 miles on my bike last summer); seeing great things happening in our men’s and ladies’ Bible studies.

Please pray for: opportunities for our church to have a larger role in the school and to be able to establish a good relationship with the staff at the school; provision and patience for ongoing work on the parsonage (a lot has been accomplished already, funds have continued to come in to continue the work, and there is still a lot of work to do to make our family comfortable here); wisdom – there are always more opportunities to be involved in people’s lives and ministry than there is time and energy. Pray that we will be wise, exercise restraint when we need to, and be led to invest ourselves in work that will yield a harvest for the kingdom.


Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

As You Pray This Week

Dear Praying Friends,

We have placed several new missionaries in the last few months. Most are serving on fields that are new to Village Missions. These first few months on any field, but especially on a new field, are critical times in the ministry. We encourage our missionaries to visit extensively in the area and learn the culture. We strongly urge them not to change anything for the first year and instead learn, learn, learn and build relationships with people. Sometimes this approach runs counter to what they have been taught in school, their natural disposition to want to “make an impact” right away, and the normal adjustment they experience in the time it takes to write sermons. However, getting out with the people will be critical to the establishment of their ministry.

Besides all this, in many cases, Satan does not like to give up control over an area where he has held the dominance. So please pray this week for the new fields and our new missionaries! Pray that they would have great starts to their ministries. Pray that the Holy Spirit would move over the community, breaking down resistance from the flesh, the world, and Satan. Pray also that Village Missions would have the finances necessary to provide the salary for these new missionaries.

Please pray for Mike and Judie Jones as they travel to North Carolina next week to visit several Bible colleges and a missionary candidate. Please pray that God will open doors for recruiting.

FROM THE DIRECTOR
Thank you for praying for our trip to Arizona. God protected us in our journeys all the way from our new field in Mayer, AZ, to our field in Double Adobe, and several places in between.

I spoke at Mayer Community Church, Grace Bible Church, and Palm West Community Church.

Please pray for Associates Jim and Jeannie Knight as they serve the new field in Mayer and for wisdom as we seek just the right couple to begin serving there full time. If you would like to see pictures of our visit to Mayer, please click here. Also, please pray that the folks who learned about Village Missions for the first time would want to become partners with us in sending and supporting Village Missionaries in country communities.


Wednesday, February 1st, 2012

As You Pray This Week

Dear Praying Friends,

Please continue to pray for wisdom as we move toward our spring candidate school.

Please pray for wisdom for the District Representatives as they schedule and conduct in home interviews with the candidates.

As we read stories like Dave and Cindy’s (see Stories from the Fields), we’re reminded to pray for travel mercies for our Village Missionaries. Many minister in places where travel is dangerous during this time of the year. Please ask God to protect them as they drive on slippery roads, walk on icy patches, make late-night trips to the hospital, and the many other activities that are prompted by their calling to “love the people,” even in the dead of winter. In addition, many of our missionaries are on local volunteer fire departments, which can be dangerous. We also ask you to pray that the Spirit of God would go before them, drawing needy souls to the Savior.

Please pray for Brian and Carole, as they are in the middle of their Arizona trip.

Thank you for praying!


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