St Andrew’s United Reformed Church, Cheam
St Andrew’s Cheam
To know Christ and to make Christ known

Our missionary partners

St Andrew’s supports four 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 will be happy to hear from you.

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Bibi’s News

 September 2016

Dear friends,
Months pass by, and I can assure you they do not look alike! I am sure it’s the same for you as you are coming out of the summer and holiday season. I hope and pray that you were able to have a change of scenery for a little while. I also hope this letter will find you in good form, ready to face another year. 
Nateni project - some news!
In my last letter, I told you that the son of our village neighbours, Sabi, who spent a lot of time with Ursula and me in our house in Tayacou, was tragically killed in a motorcycle accident. For Ursula and Carl, the recent months have been very difficult. They have, besides this terrible loss, experienced one difficulty after another. The publication of the New Testament is drawing near, and with the end of such a project often come real challenges. Pray for the team of translators (Esaïe, Martin and Pascal) and their families, and for Carl and Ursula, especially for their health who seems to be a recurring problem. To state the obvious, being ill is very disabling when you have a tight schedule for a publication of this size. Ursula is also working with a neighbouring language project, the Biali project. As for Nateni, the New Testament is also close to publication. Both teams are undergoing text corrections. All this work is tedious and requires a lot of concentration! Pray for those two projects and for Carl and Ursula! 

Below: Tayacou mountains with Sabi in the foreground following me on his bike.
International Conference
SIL & Wycliffe
I was once again honored to participate in our conference as staff (English-French translation team). These two weeks have actually been the end result of 18 months of intense reflection on the part of all SIL entities worldwide. Given the speed at which changes are happening around us worldwide, given all the challenges we face, how should we, as an organization, position ourselves among other international organizations to keep a relevant place in the field of language development for smaller ethnic communities? This conference meant: a lot of preparations, a lot of work once there, a felt unity among 500 people - rare enough to be mentioned here. This conference gave a new impetus to our organization - a palpable hope was felt. We know we have a big task ahead of us, as always. The area of training has a big place in that future. Pray for my colleagues and me! 
The process used was a success in its very participatory approach. Organisers and participants were exhausted after those two intensive weeks.
We said goodbye to our former Executive Director Freddy Boswell - with a grateful heart for his years of faithful service - and we have welcomed our new leader, Dr. Michel Kenmogne, who is Cameroonian! We wish Michel and his family every blessing in this new adventure!
Many of you will be happy to see a picture of Carl and Ursula Williams again. They still live in Tanguieta, near Tayacou where Ursula and I started to work together, back in 1993. 





 
 
 
Sabi sitting in our cashew tree







 





 
An artist was drawing the content of various communications (”live”). What a gift! 


 
Amazing performance!

 
Very creative way to process ‘thoughts’, prioritize, analyse.... 

 
Long lists of ideas and thoughts were turned into short statements
 
The conference staff worked really hard between meetings. At the end our time,  we came away with a list of “directional statements” that will lead us in the future.
Contact
Bibi Nédellec
c/o SIL

BP. 1299
Yaounde
Cameroon
iDelta FB page
Training in French-speaking Africa
Do you remember the iDELTA* course I mentioned in my last letter? In addition to students who did the orientation course last year, we will welcome new students in October 2016. This series will be taught over three years for two months every year (Oct.-Nov.). Some of the students will specialise in Bible translation, others in literacy and Scripture Engagement (how to ensure that the Bible will be well used by the churches) Everything is in place to start the course, but I know that some of the students are still looking for funds to be able to come. They need our prayers!

*Institute for the Development of Languages and Translation in Africa

Otherwise, all kind of training is happening here and there, through one- or two-week workshops in many different domains. I hope to tell you more about that in one of my next letters. I’m rarely present during the training events that I help organize remotely, but I would like you to have an idea of the type of teaching we do. You will see that is not all about linguistics! 
Prolonged stay in France
Following a routine check-up, I had to undergo a minor procedure. All ended well, the results were good, I was relieved! Because of that, I had to extend my stay in Brittany in the house my sister and I share. It wasn’t a real hardship, I must say! I got the right kind of internet connection so I could work well per skype. 

I also decided to use this time to get to know people, especially from a church in Lannion. I usually do not stay long enough for that sort of thing.
I had a great time, particularly with Mark and Helen, and their daughter Charlotte (photo). Small world in that church: I met people from Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Madagascar, Senegal and even Benin!
Icing on the cake: I was given a car by close friends, and a car full of memories! Without that car, I could have never done all I was able to do.   Thank you Delphine, Olivier and Patrick!Icing on the ca

Please don’t forget to let me know how you are doing - now and again!

Thank you SO much for all your support,  

May the Lord bless you richly,  

Bibi

Left: sticker on ‘my’ car: Some of you francophiles and Brittany fans will understand.
Support
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.)
Please do not publish or forward any parts of this newsletter without my permission.

Copyright © 2016 Bibi Nédellec. All rights reserved.


 

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


News from Martin and Marion Cooper - October 2015

Martin and Marion Cooper

As we both look forward to our 70th birthdays in 2016, we have found our thoughts turning to the subject of retirement! Should we retire?...If so, when?…What does the Bible have to say? And, as we have pondered, an Old Testament passage has been very helpful for us personally. In Numbers 8 v 23-26 God gives instructions about the retirement of the Levites. He tells them that at the age of fifty(!) “they must retire from their regular service and work no longer” …and we can just imagine some of their reactions to this; ‘I’m not ready to retire!…I’m still really motivated and fulfiilled in my work!…I’ve got so much more still to offer!’. Nevertheless, God says to them, “they must not do the work”! But that’s not all he says: he goes on, “They may assist their brothers in performing their duties”.

So, God is commissioning them to different tasks, rather than denying them the sense of personal fulfilment that comes from making an ongoing contribution to the work of His Kingdom. The time has come for them to lay aside leadership responsibilities, but not to relinquish ministry, especially in helping those whose turn it is to lead.

As we have meditated on these words, God has made it very clear that the milestone of seventy years (rather than fifty, in the case of the Levites) should signal a similar transition for us. Leadership is to cease, but ministry is to continue, in new ways, but with the same commitment.

At this stage, we are only just beginning to apply our minds to what this should mean for us, but we would especially value your prayers as we do so…and, we will write again some time next Spring, with news of developments, decisions and future plans, as God leads us.

Current Ministry

Right now, there is so much to occupy us fruitfully:

  • new doors are opening for our Second Half Living workshops, with churches in Surrey, Kent, Essex and Bucks, as well as here in Southampton, considering us visiting them for ministry in the New Year.
  • Martin’s mentoring links with five ministers in the south are especially energizing. Mostly he meets with them on a 1-2-1 basis, but earlier this year he was able to bring them together for a day, and will be doing so again soon.
  • internationally, The Navigators’ Church Ministries’ initiatives are progressing encouragingly. Martin continues to lead a small team comprised of those who oversee this work in Africa, Asia, Europe and N. America. Through their monthly conference calls and occasional meetings together, they are able to explore and develop ways in which these varied ministries can be better networked and resourced.
  • related to this, he has also been able, specifically, to meet several times with three European staff colleagues, to see how these kinds of ministry can be strengthened and developed by The Navigators in Europe
  • last, but by no means least, God has recently opened up some unexpected opportunities to re-connect with old school friends from fifty years ago, most of whom do not know the Lord. Again, please pray with us for open doors to the the gospel, especially at a reunion dinner at the beginning of next month.

We are constantly amazed at all that God is doing! Thank you so much once again for partnering with us in it.

Martin and Marion


News from Cathy and Charles Asiki - June 2012

Cathy and Charles Asiki

Cathy Finn (as she then was) attended St Andrew’s until she graduated as a maths teacher in 1987. After university, she went to Uganda with the Church Missionary Society. There she met and married Charles Asiki and they have four children. Since 1997, they have been involved in establishing and teaching in the Ushindi Christian primary and secondary schools where they live in Arua in North West Uganda. Substantial contributions from members of St Andrew’s in the last couple of years have helped towards the purchase of land and setting up of a sixth form at the school.

News from the schools is mixed. The Primary School, as you may remember, was involved in a court case with some members of the family from whom we bought the land. After many delays, we recently received a judgment which was a great shock to us as the judge said the sale should be set aside and the land should revert back to the original owners. If the school wishes to be refunded the money that we paid, then it is up to the school to seek its repayment in another case. The judge made no provision for the return of our money. In addition, he ordered the school to pay costs and compensation to the family. This really shocked us and the whole community as we felt that we had not done anything against the law and had brought the land through lawyers from the person who had the letter of administration from the whole family.

Our lawyer feels that the judge has misinterpreted the law and so we are advised to appeal. The case is now in the appeal court but, if the judgment is upheld, we could lose the current land, all the money that we paid for it (most of which was a bank loan we are still paying back) and even have to pay more in costs and compensation. We held a day of prayer at the school where the Board, teachers, parents, neighbours and other concerned Christians came together to pray for the appeal. It is very hard to know how long an appeal may take and the judgment is ‘on hold’ until the appeal judges give their verdict. We have begun looking for alternative places for the school in case we have to move out, maybe at very short notice.

The Headteachers of both schools have also been sick. Rose, the Headmistress of the Primary School, suffered a minor stroke in May but has recovered very well and is already back in school. She has no lasting effects from the stroke but needs to be careful not to get stressed or overworked. Isaac, the Head of the Secondary School, had back surgery recently to try to correct damage to his spine which he got in a motorbike accident some years ago. He is also recovering and back at work but cannot sit for long and gets a lot of pain in his back which may not improve.

The schools continue to get good results in the national exams and demand is still high for the places.

Thank you for the continued support. We were happy to hear of the new Minister.

With our thanks to you all,

Cathy

Arua Secondary School
The main building, staff offices and entrance. Flags flying from the flag poles are the country of Uganda and the school’s own flag


News from Pedro and Luz Stella Arias - November 2013

Pedro Arias
Pedro, Jeremy, Sammy, Paula and Luz Stella Arias

Pedro is a journalist and broadcaster with Reach Beyond - formerly known as HCJB Global, the Christian radio station which broadcasts to the world from Quito, Ecuador. Pedro has particular concerns for providing support for persecuted Christians, especially in his home country of Colombia which is now one of the worst places in the world for the disappearance and killing of Christians. We pray for his safety and well-being when he visits Colombia.

Pedro and his wife Luz Stella are also the Pastors of the Spanish-speaking Iglesia Cristiana de Newham (Newham Christian Church) in east London which worships in the premises of the River Christian Centre in Canning Town and ministers to the Latin American community across a wide area of London. Recently they have opened and pastor to a further church, Iglesia Cristiana Maranatha in the Elephant and Castle area of south-east London.

Dear friends,

So much has happened in connection with our ministry and with our activities here in UK and abroad, that again, the time has flown.

HCJB Global....Sporting events around the world from a Christian perspective

We are preparing our trip to Brazil for next year. It’s a big responsibility as a journalist, missionary and pastor to report from one of the world’s biggest media sporting events. Already a team went to Rio last month to arrange accommodation and other logistic ahead of the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Pedro is going to be part of a team of reporters and programme producers, based in Rio, will report on the World Cup and its surrounding issues. Pedro has been the Spanish producer for the Olympic Games in Barcelona (1992), Sydney (2000), Athens (2004) and Beijing (2008). In 2010 he reported for over 1000 Spanish-speaking stations at the FIFA World Cup in South Africa, all thorough the Latin American countries, Spain and the latinos in USA. Last year, for the Olympic Summer Games in London he was invited to be part of the host broadcasting organization, Olympic Broadcasting Services London as a commentator.

As you may know sport dominates the media. It’s a religion for millions, reason why it dominates lives. God has given us the knowledge and experience to do something different in media in order to impact lives with the message of salvation of our Lord Jesus. In Luke, chapter 5 we can read: “…and the Pharisees and their scribes began grumbling at His disciples saying, ‘Why do You eat and drink with the tax gatherers and sinners?’ And Jesus answered and said to them, ‘It is not those who are well who need a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

The Christian faith is for sinners and sport is a great tool to bring people to the knowledge of Jesus. Across the world millions tune their radios and TV because they love sport. We report from major sporting events with news and comment reflecting a belief in Jesus Christ. We aim to show that following Jesus Christ is relevant for the sports fan in the 21st century and that living according to Jesus’ teaching offers the best lifestyle around.

Once freed from slavery, God’s people didn’t know how to live in freedom

The Great Commission of Christianity is the instruction of the resurrected Jesus Christ to his disciples that they spread his teachings to all the nations of the world. In radio and in our churches we preached that it’s important we obey Jesus’s instructions. Our life is always busy especially that now we are pastors of two growing Spanish speaking congregations in London. This year we’ve been twice in South America (Chile, Peru, Colombia and Ecuador) preaching in churches and giving seminars to professionals there. Also we went to help some pastors as we’ve discovered that many of today’s pastors are privately hurting and desperately need help.

As part of our pastoral work the Lord has opened doors also in Spain. Luz Stella is helping some pastors and his churches and like here, she has the School of Christian Counseling in two Spanish regions: Santander and La Rioja.

This week we have a special Congress “Flying Like Eagles”. More than thirty people are coming from outside of UK and we’re expecting in our meetings around three hundred people.

Our children Paula, Sammy and Jeremy

They are well, working, studying and all three helping us in our ministry. Sammy (with spina bifida and hydrocephalus), as usual plenty of support is needed with his daily life.

Once again, thank you for all your love and support!

Pedro & Luz Stella