OPENED DOORS AND EXPANDED TEACHING MINISTRY
Paul and Susan Brown
The young man’s face was usually jovial and smiling, but that day it was solemn and earnest. “Thank you,” he said, “for coming to teach us. I have never heard the Bible taught so clearly like this.”
I was in Myanmar, holding a preachers’ training there. The men in Myanmar were having a difficult time getting to our PT in Thailand and some could not come. What a blessing that the Lord opened the doors for me to go teach them on the other side of the border. In the past month we were able to have two PTs in Myanmar. These two weeks were a great joy and blessing to me, and I believe, to the LaHu preachers there.
We were again filled to capacity at the PT in Thailand. It was a blessing that Brother Matt had a break from his Thai classes in Chiang Mai and was able to travel up and help teach the last day and a half. The men from Myanmar were not there, but we had eight new LiSu men. This makes ten LiSu preachers who are attending. They asked if it might be possible to have a training specifically for the LiSu. Some of them are proficient in LaHu, but some only get a portion of what is being taught. Someone has to sit by them and clarify what they don’t understand.
The training will be much easier when our ministry building is finished. We will have more space and a building conducive to learning rather than the open-air carport. The builder has projected that it should be finished around the end of May or the first part of June. We do thank all of you who have sacrificially given for this great need. Susan and I will live on the top floor with the two girls we are raising. The lower floor will house the preachers’ training and a learning center for hill tribe teenagers.
We have had an open door in a new village recently. Mae Hang has more than 100 families, and there is only one Christian man among them. There is a church building, apparently built by a missionary who came there many years ago. They have not had anyone to preach there for three years.
Though most of the people in the village are animists (spirit worshippers), the leaders allowed us to come and have a Bible/ English camp for their children. The first week we had about 100 children with some adults inside and a few outside listening. This was somewhat like a VBS. It was a blessing to have a couple of my college mates from 50 years ago visit with us and help at the camp.
Thank you, Dan and Eloise Stinchcomb. The Villandrys, all our teenagers, and our two college guys were a great help, too. It was quite an undertaking, but the Lord blessed. You can check Susan’s blog at gracetothailand.com for pictures and more about Mae Hang. We had services there the next two Sundays after the camp, but we need a preacher to go there on a regular basis. Please pray for the Lord to call a man to this task. The opportunities we have here are more than we can fill.
Thank you again for your prayers and your faithful, sacrificial support. May the Lord bless you!
(Update, April 2020)
Clean air and clean water – who thinks about them? We didn’t, until we no longer had them. Now the sun beats down through a brown sky and a smoky haze hides the mountains around us. The air chokes us and is at a hazardous pollution level. Normal is 50 or below on the air quality index. It has been 450 or higher lately. Here in Southeast Asia the farmers use slashandburn agricultural methods. At this time of year, they burn off their old crops to clear the land, burn the undergrowth of the forest to aid in hunting and in finding mushrooms, and burn jungle to have more land to plant. We are breathing the killer smoke from those fires. This year is the worst we have seen yet. The persistent sore throat and cough from the bad air are annoying, especially since both are the initial symptoms of Covid-19.
The virus is here, as well as in the rest of the world. So far, our area has not had any cases that we know of. Of course, they don’t have the means to do widespread testing, so we don’t know for sure. We have a nightly national curfew and groups of more than 10 are forbidden to gather. Some shops are shut down but, so far, the authorities here don’t seem to be too strict about enforcing the shutdown of non-essential businesses. They are strict about travel, though, and it looks like more travel bans will be in place soon.
For Christ count everything but loss, Brother Paul
Central Baptist Church
PO Box 876
Grenada, MS 38902