My intention was to put a newsletter together at the end of September; however we were to expect a long postal strike; also at this time residents of Wimbourne Court where I live were informed we were to have new kitchens and bathrooms. Work began on my kitchen on 24 th September, though I spent the week prior to that sorting through and reorganising my cupboards in order to accommodate some of my kitchenware, even so my small living room was packed out with fridge, microwave, etc. It took 15 working days, with six of them idle. Due to the drilling for new electrical fittings my living room was covered with fine brick dust that crept under the sheets I used to protect everything and into the curtains. It took a week to clean and put everything back in place. The bathroom was finally completed on 4 th December. There is still drilling and banging going on in the building. I now have my home to myself and I think I can find everything. Anyway, that’s my excuse for being behind with this letter!
Praise the Lord that the Ipili New Testament is at the printers. Pray that it will be printed and shipped in time for the August 2008 dedication. Pray also that Terry Borchard will be strong enough to attend the dedication. The Lord has wonderfully answered prayer for Terry’s health; for though continuing treatment, Terry and Janet have travelled and taken several meetings in the USA.
My friend Tai Yari who was a candidate in the recent PNG elections failed to be elected and is now back at work in the Store shipping department. I think this was a disappointment for him, as he spent all his savings on campaigning. In the last days of the campaign Tai was distracted by the illness and then death of his mother. Tai’s mother and family were the first Christian believers in the area when the people of the Highlands were discovered by gold mining surveyors and the Lutheran Mission in 1934/35.
In my February letter I mentioned the possibility of a drought due to the El Nino year. This did not eventuate, however, in the 2 nd week of November cyclonic rain (Cyclone Guba) hit the south eastern coast of PNG for five days, and caused flash floods resulting in terrible destruction. The entire province (Oro) has been hit by severe storms which have flooded rivers, washed away bridges (95%) and roadways and demolished whole villages. SIL have several teams working in the province, as well as a number of National Translation teams. [For more details and pictures, click here]
Please uphold Jim and Cindi Farr heading to their Kofafe village on the coast, in the Oro province (10th December). They write: “we have just heard from our Baruga village that everyone is OK and our house is fine in Erika, but one of the major Baruga villages where some of our translators come from was clobbered, with most houses, the school and the church being swept away or knocked over. Our Kofafe house is also OK (we should see it tomorrow) too, but people in both areas have lost gardens. The government and some aid agencies are helping. Pray for us that we’ll be sensitive, and sense when and where we can help.” Jim and Cindi will leave Kofafe for the Baruga village in the mountains on 20 th December. Travel to and from this area is never easy. I was Jim and Cindi’s support team during my last years in PNG.
Work permit renewal is happening right now in PNG; they have been submitted to the relevant Government department. Please pray that there will be a speedy approval; that those who are overseas and wanting to return early next year will get all the paper work in time.
I trust you will enjoy a blessed Christmas as we remember the miracle of God becoming human and living among us. And may He grant you His grace and strength to live to His glory in the coming year.