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October 21, 2009

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,


From Hector Barrero:

We held a 3-day seminar October 9-12 at a private resort in Arbelaez, which is three hours by car from Bogota. On Saturday, four of our leaders spoke on the Trinitarian love of God. Sunday, we had workshops on inner healing. On Monday, four leaders spoke on how to take God´s love to the world. We closed the seminar with Communion.

We were visited by Raymond Olson, his wife Denise and daughter Roberta from Wisconsin. This was Raymond´s fourth trip to Colombia. Raymond presented a devotional every morning. The Harbor Missionary Church that Raymond pastors helped sponsor the attendance to the seminar of many people, and they sent some supplies for the Sunday school.

We also had members attending from our Barranquilla congregation, including pastor Sonia Orozco, and from other places in Colombia. A total of 114 people attended.

Appreciation for Videos

We receive comments about Speaking of Life and You’re Included from ministers, members, as well as viewers who are not in our church. Here are a couple of examples:

Since you started Speaking Of Life, I have been downloading them and showing them during our weekly worship service. A lot of members make positive remarks about these short talks. After the one entitled Reconciling the World I received a couple of requests for a copy. I asked why they were requesting it, and one explained that they found it comforting to understand that friends and relatives who had died were not lost. Another felt they understood what you said was true, but had kept it to themselves because it didn’t seem to fit with their perception of what is being taught. I can’t convey to you the comfort and excitement in their voices and eyes as they explained this to me. We are copying the Your Included interviews onto DVDs and distributing a few of them to some who cannot manage to attend worship services and do not have an Internet connection.

I just wanted to thank you for the wonderful series that you have put on the net. I live in Sydney, Australia, and have been following what has been happening in your church for a while now. I download each new Trinitarian speaker onto my iPod so I can listen daily, and in doing so my whole life has been turned around. Listening daily to your speakers allows the Holy Spirit to take me bit by bit out of my faulty thinking. I don’t know what I would do if I didn’t have this wonderful web site. I just can’t thank you enough.

United Kingdom

The third Life Activity weekend took place at Scammonden September 4-6 and was attended by 40 guests from all over the UK, including visitors from Northern Ireland and a contingent from Scotland.

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This year there were a wider selection of activities, including walking, wall climbing, sailing, table tennis, macramé, gilding, art and bread making, as well as our Life Club meeting, which included speeches and table topics.

The Luton Congregation hosted the fifth Luton Ladies Day September 26. Daria Fowler welcomed about 30 ladies to a packed program beginning with prayer and worship hymns led by Portia Braithwaite. This was followed by a very interesting and inspiring talk about the Street Angels in Watford. Irene Wilson is part of a team that walks the streets through the night at the weekends to pray over and render aid to young people who frequent the many pubs and clubs in Watford. They are highly trained in how to handle the various situations they encounter, hearing talks by the police, advice from counselors and courses in first aid. They never go out without their hour of prayer and worship to prepare their hearts to represent God in a hurting world.


The next speaker was Margaret Gibbon, who told her story of widowhood. She talked about the stages of grief, being held up by other people’s prayers, and leaning on scriptures, such as Hebrews 13:5 that assures us God will never leave nor forsake us. She very bravely spoke of the emotions and feelings you experience as you transition from being “half a person” to a whole person again. She gave us tips on how to treat someone newly widowed, how to prepare for the possibility, and how to cope through the journey, taking one day at a time.

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We also heard from dentist Sylvia Low. Her talk was entitled, “A Trip To Get My Teeth Into.” She told us that her lifelong dream to visit India was about to come true. The Hope Community Trust UK is an International Christian Ministry committed to supporting people from all walks of life. One of their projects is supporting a children’s home in Andhra Pradesh, India. Sylvia will be visiting this home to teach the children about dental hygiene and do what she can for their teeth, including extractions where necessary.

The Surprising God Blog

The Surprising God Blog (thesurprisinggodblog.wcg.org) was recently nominated for a Christian web and new media award. The blog was nominated in the best Christian leadership blog category. The awards, also known as the Christian Bloggies, are organized by Premier Christian Media, which runs Premier Radio and publishes several magazines, including YouthWork and Christianity. Full details of the winners of the web and new media awards can be found at: www.christianblogawards.com.

Prayer Requests and Updates

Charlotte Whitting let us know that Peter’s chest tube has now been removed and that his lung is improving. He has been transferred to a rehab facility for respiratory and physical therapy. The facility is:

Manor Care
509 E. Joppa Road
Towson, MD 21046

The Whittings want to thank everyone for their continued prayers for his recovery.

Marj Friddle thanks everyone for their prayers. She is now back home after nine painful days in rehab following four days in the hospital after knee replacement surgery. She wrote, “I have received a number of phone calls and many beautiful cards and e-mails. Thank you so much! And I thank you very much for your prayers! You have made me feel very loved, and I have had to cry when I receive the lovely cards, e-mails and phone calls. It means so much to have wonderful friends who really care, and you have been there for me. I deeply appreciate it.”

A prayer for our members in Binmaley, Pangasinan

Rex Dela Pena reported that Philippine members affected by the recent disastrous flooding expressed their gratitude for the relief goods and the opportunity to be visited by the team from the National Office. Life is returning back to normal in a lot of ways, but there is still much to do, as the extent of the damage and the high cost of rebuilding is daunting. As I write, there is another typhoon predicted to hit the northern end of the Philippines later this week.

Remember that prayer is the battleground where we fight the good fight of faith. Let’s encourage everyone to join together in prayer, for we belong to Christ, and by the Spirit it is in Christ that we pray. Prayer and other spiritual activities help keep our hearts in tune with God and remind us of who we are in Christ. He is our all in all, and in him we are eternally beloved of the Father and blessed to share his good news with others.

Love from my family to yours,
Joseph Tkach