St Andrew’s United Reformed Church, Cheam
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St Andrew’s • Cheam

Our missionary partners

St Andrew’s supports three missionary partners in prayer and through regular financial support through the Mission Fund. Please remember then in your own prayers, and if you would like to contribute to supporting their work, the treasurer|Treasurer will be happy to hear from you.

Our current partners are:


May 2018 Bibi's News

A new bird on my list!

But where did I take that picture ?... Quite unexpectedly, last March, I was invited to attend a team meeting in Thailand. This bird (Siberian rubythroat) was spotted on the hotel grounds, just outside of Chiang Mai.

Before I explain why I was there, I'd like to show you a few pictures. One very hot and humid afternoon, our little group visited beautiful gardens. The grounds were typically spacious, and of course for lack of time, we couldn't see all the various exhibitions, enormous statues, trees, plants & flowers (orchids in all sorts and colours). I just read this quote : "Thailand is thought to have almost as many plant species as Europe all crammed into a country the size of France". It was the first time I went into a temple. Such coolness, quietness, shine, cleanliness! If you remember my last newsletter from Ouagadougou where I was during the 'Harmattan' season (dust from the Sahara), you'll understand the contrast I have felt.
Royal Park Rajapruek
The King's Garden's Temple

So... Why did you go to Chiang Mai then?

A few days after I sent my last newsletter, I received an invitation to consider a new position within our organisation (SIL). After time for reflexion, I made the decision to accept the proposition. Since my new team was having their annual meeting in Thailand, we thought it would be a great opportunity for me to get to know everyone face to face. After having worked in Training for Francophone Africa, I am now Director of Training for SIL International. In other words, I have joined the international team. I am pretty well aware of what is happening in Africa, but I have many new things to learn as to what is being done in all other continents. My own team is small.
Our focus is 4-some right now:
  1. All SIL Academic Training Programs [North America, UK, Germany and others around the globe]
  2. Online Training Institute [New project to serve many]
  3. Consultant Development and Management [A team was just created to work on this big project]
  4. Training Material Archiving
I will also continue to work with a project in Africa, with the FATES Theological School in Chad where several colleagues and I started a brand new Bachelor's program. So for a while, I will continue to be connected with work in Africa!
I am taking over this position from Fraser Bennett (with me above). We took advantage of being face to face to work a full day non stop on transitioning!

You tell us Debbie is not back in Africa... and yet she shows up with you in your last two letters?

Indeed... We happened to be part of the same meetings outside of Cameroon! We also met old friends from Benin, Johannes and Sharon Merz (standing, photo top right), with whom we went birdwatching.
Debbie will come back in Cameroon at the end of May!

Connecting with Benin!

Ursula surprised me with a 'virtual' visitor the other day! She skyped me from Tanguiéta (Benin) so that I could talk to our 'maman Fatima', a Natemba friend! For those who have known me for many years, you will remember that Ursula and I had a car accident on our very first trip to Tayacou, back in March 1993. Maman Fatima was working in the Tanguieta hospital where we were transported then. So... these were our first Nateni lessons! She really looked after us so so well, making sure we had what we needed. Maman Fatima is one of those wonderful, kind, faithful, warm and grateful people! She kept giggling seeing me on that screen. I am pretty sure it was her first skype meeting! Imagine!
The Nateni New Testaments have arrived!
CELEBRATION on 23 June 2018
It has been 10 years since I last set foot in Tayacou! I will go to Benin to be at the celebration of the launching of the NATENI New Testament! It will be quite an intense time, to say the least.

Pray for Carl and Ursula who are coordinating the event, as well as the local committee.

Pray that I will be able to see all the people who will want to see me and vice versa!
This photo was taken in 2003, with Maman Fatima again!
Thank you, dear friends, for all your support and prayers!


Bibi Nédellec
c/o SIL
BP. 1299
Cheques payable to: Wycliffe UK Clare Charity Centre
Wycombe Road Saunderton High Wycombe HP14 4BF
(Please add a note specifying that the gift is for me.)

Copyright © 2018 Bibi Nédellec.

Bibi asks that you do not circulate this information without her permission,
which she has kindly given for publication on this website.


Mission Aviation Fellowship - December 2018

Hans and Melissa Cools in Mareeba

View of coast from plane


A lot has happened since we last wrote you.
Here is a little update from the last few months here in Mareeba.


Cooktown Interior of church

In July Hans spent the first week doing a Check and Training course, which might open up some opportunities for him to do some training of the pilots out in the programs (such as Arnhem Land or Timor Leste) while serving in Mareeba. Not long after that he left for 8 days for a safari where he flew 2 ladies around the most Northern tip of Eastern Australia and the Torres Straight Islands. The 2 ladies that were being flown around shared some very powerful messages in remote communities that Hans was able to fly them to. It was an eye opening experience to see how isolated some of these people are living, and the need of fellowship that these churches have.

Not long after Hans got back we moved into a more suitable accommodation for the time we will be staying here. We are now in a 2 bedroom house with a nice garden, whereas before we were living in a smaller 2 bedroom unit with only a small garden. A bit later in August, the whole flight training centre went out to an outback town about 4 hour drive away. We helped out with some renovation work at the local church, did some sports in the park, held a BBQ for the local community where we showed some bible stories on a big screen for the kids, and led the Sunday morning service. It was great to be able to help out with a remote church that usually only has around 3 people in the congregation.

Map of route to Mareeba

Students training Children watching presentation

Immediately after this weekend we had a new intake of 2 students starting their training. Hans has been working hard to get them through their training. They both will be starting their navigation part of the basic training in the next few weeks. Both of them have a desire to be missionary pilots with MAF in the future and they are working very diligently to get themselves up to the right standard to get there. In October we had Melissa's parents visiting for around 2 weeks in total. It was good to take some time off and reconnect with family and have a break to relax.

Children playing Family group

Melissa has been working very hard on her degree and will be finishing another unit before taking a break over Christmas. She has had some really good results on the units she has done so far and is making good progress even though sometimes it is difficult to self-study some of the academical sides of the degree. She has been doing wonderful.

Olivia will be starting at the local school here next year in January. We still can't believe that she will be old enough now to go to school. It seems like yesterday that she was learning to walk. Both of the girls have been settled pretty well and absolutely loved their time with the grandparents and her auntie and uncle (who also came up from Brisbane for a visit.) We have also been given a little kitten, who Olivia named Tom (We think after Tom kitten from Beatrix Potters books.) He is a very loved addition to our family.

Children playing Family group

Hans is trying to work out a way to go and visit one of the communities he flew to on the safari to go and help out at the local church and bring some encouragement to them. It is now looking that this will probably not happen until early next year, but he remains hopeful to find a way to go and help them out. The community he is trying to visit has a church that has only 7 people in the congregation and the people who have been leading the church for years are fairly burned out. The hope is to bring a small team as well to help out with whatever they need help with.

Prayer Request:
1. That Melissa will keep finding the time to do her studies without getting over worked.
2. For this trip that Hans is trying to organise, that there will be a good opportunity to encourage the small local church in this town.
3. Pray for the 2 students that are finishing up their Private Pilot Licence (PPL) in the next few months as they sit exams and flight tests
4. Pray for the girls who are struggling a bit more with the heat at this time of year.

For giving in the UK press here

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Sutton Schoolswork


Sutton Schoolswork (SSW) is a Christian charity that is passionate about supporting students in Sutton to understand and explore Christianity and to develop spiritually, morally and socially.

Within the London Borough of Sutton there are 45 primary schools and 15 secondary schools and SSW aims to support all those schools in a variety of ways.

The Director of SSW since August 2018 is Simon Ellingham, who has already visited us. Simon has previously acted in the SSW Easter Experience at North Cheam Baptist Church where he played Jesus, and is retired from the Metropolitan Police.



SSW has two full-time schools workers—Sarah Skinner who works with primary schools, and Kate Travers who joined in January 2019 and covers secondaries. The schools workers work with the support of volunteers and of Children’s, Youth and Family Workers from the many churches which support SSW.

SSW workers reach 27,000 children and include leading school assemblies, teaching in RE and PSHE classes, running Christian Unions in schools and organising parent prayer groups. SSW also puts on two dramatised presentations, Discover Christmas and Easter Experience, seen by hundreds of children every year.

The latest news and prayer requests from SSW is usually on the Our news page.

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