03/13 Yuan Lin He Ping Pres. Church (Update)

Today we opened the Directions book to start the study.  Four prior Directions participants were there to help watch kids, help participants, and give their testimonies.

I always like the first lesson, zeroing in on the Gospel and making sure people understand the decision they may or may not have made.

We follow a 3-3rds format and include a lot of time building relationships, and sharing experiences as we come through the study.  I like to take time to understand their point of view when it comes to Chinese Christian culture in Taiwan.

Pray for this group, two new people came.  Pray for clarity of thought and a willingness to change the way we think based in the Word of God.  Pray for continued relationship building as we cement our relationships based in God’s Word.    

03/07 Yuan Lin He Ping Pres. Church (New Connection)

From the original group that started Directions back in 2012, we continue to offer small group participation for members of this local church.

Teacher Yang, currently has a Wednesday Small group consisting of about ten people.  They are almost half way through the study.

Tuesday night this week we started another group above Doctors Office.  The original group consisted of about 15 people and it was a great time for fellowship.  I introduced the Directions study and asked for commitment.  Mr. and Mrs. Chao set up this introduction. 

Doctor Pan is providing the leadership and the place to meet.  All of them have been instrumental in starting groups in their area.

Continue to pray for these opportunities.  More and more people are being empowered to start these groups. 

03/07-08 Gao Xiong/Ping Dong Directions plants (New Opportunity)

Pastor Zhong and I will travel South to start two new Directions groups.  Details are not clear right now, but, it is time to further the ministry outside of the Central part of Taiwan into the South.

Dale Noland will connect with us, and attend one of the groups.

Pray for the initial meetings, that they build interests and commitment.  Open the hearts and minds of those in attendance. 

03/02 Kee Long Shan Hai Church (Update)

I will visit this church tomorrow, to encourage and follow-up on their progress through the Directions study.  I could not visit last month because of the Cambodia trip, so I am making a special trip this weekend.  I will not be preaching, just being part of their local church.

Pray for them as they continue the study, that basic Bible doctrines become clearer.  Pray for the leadership, as they prepare their church to receive new believers and have the ability to mentor them. 


02/27 Taiwan Wednesday Gideon Organization Office Small Group (Update)

Though today is Tuesday, we had a Gideon Office Small Group get together for a New Years Lunch.  Five of these individuals are about to finish the Directions study.  I think they are ready to start lesson 17.  Three of them I continue to meet with and lead through Lesson 6.

The original group wants to move on to the Compass (Chinese D2) study after finishing Directions.  Right now, the second lady on the right Wendy continues to lead the original group.  She has already come through Directions and Compass at Taichung Holiness Church.  So, they are a third generation Disciple.

In a couple of months, we will start the Compass study together and Joseph has OKed finding another time for the three I am currently leading to be lead by members of the existing group.  This will give them a chance to practice and know they can do the same.

Joseph, center, is the Asian Director of Gideon.  He allowed me to introduce Directions to his church up North in Kee Long.  That work is going well, and I visit once a month to answer any questions they have and encourage them.  The original group consisted of over 20 individuals.  i will be there this coming weekend.

Pray for this group as they come through the Compass study.  That their Spiritual eyes be widened and that they realize the depth of God’s Word.  Pray for opportunities for them to promote Directions groups in the churches they visit.



02/25 Cambodia Directions (Directions Ministry Conference-Update)

We had a successful introduction of the Directions Ministry to almost 60 Pastors from five different cities most coming from provinces outside of Phnom Penh.  We also received the first full version of the Cambodian Directions material.

US TEAM:    Elisha Katamura, Steve Calmes and I, were the Directions facilitators from the United States and Taiwan.

Cambodian TEAM: Prak Kunthy, who is a coworker with Jason Powers, planned and coordinated along with our driver Sona Thoern (John), and two translators Phen Phon (Matthew) and Sitha Gneom, both are Prak’s college friends.  Phen Phon (Matthew) was the man tasked with the translation of the Directions book into the Cambodian language.

 Trip Overview:  Feb. 19th-20 were preparation days.  Feb. 21-22 we held the conference, which consisted of Day 1: stage 1-philosophy, stage 2-goals, and Day 2: stage 3-Methods.  See Conference plan.  Friday Feb 23rd was a rest day.  Feb 24th, the US TEAM left.

Brief Trip Narrative:

Feb. 19th:  Steve and I arrived Monday and were greeted by Prak and taken to our hotel.  Elisha came the following day.





Feb. 20th:  Elisha arrived and we all went to get him at the airport.  Sona joined us and became our taxi guy for the rest of the trip.  We met as a TEAM and talked through the coming days.

Feb. 21th:  We were picked up by Sona at 8:00 Am and transported to the venue, in Phnom Penh across the river.  We arrived before 9:00 where we saw the orphanage and school facilities, which included the church where we met. We were greeted with over 50 Pastors and leaders.  A simple Philosophy and Goals presentation was given by Elisha and me.  In the afternoon, we presented how to use the book and got them started on Lesson Day 1.  After, the first day’s lesson, we gave them an assignment to complete Day 2 and 3 for the following day.  We finished at 5:30 PM and stayed to meet with Prak.  We returned to the Hotel across the river.

Feb.  22nd:   Again, we were picked up at 8:00 AM and were transported to the venue.  The attendees were ready to go.  We reviewed Day 2 and spent the rest of the day allowing them to lead different sized small groups on their own.  Later in the afternoon, we had a visit from the Under Secretary of State for Religious activities.  He came with a representative of a large church alliance of over 6000 Christian Pastors.  Apparently, Prak works with these individuals and they wanted to see what we were presenting.  Perhaps a future connection.  We ended the conference with their commitment to complete the first 9 lessons.  Once they completed their lessons, we would follow-up with the complete book, delivered to their churches.

Feb. 23rd:  We spent the day shopping for small gifts for our families.  We also visited the most visited killing field location and followed with the most notorious Prison S21 in Phnom Penh.  These were testimonies of the 1975-79 Khmer Rouge regime.

Future:  Prak will followup with the Pastors who attended in April and May.  Once they have finished the first half, we will deliver version 2, the full revised version for them to complete.  Next October, we would like to visit again.  At that time, we will provide one day workshop in their location, invited other Pastors in their area.

Pray for the Pastors in Cambodia, that they invest the time in the study with others in their local churches.  Pray for their desire to grow and to promote this ministry to their areas of influence.  Pray for the leadership team, that they followup on those Pastors, while at the same time, invest in the ministry in their ministries.

01/15 SYME Monday ESL Meeting (New Connection)

This one simply passed by the spot light.  Last Summer, I took over a Bible study being led at SYME on Monday night.  Tish was leading this group for almost two years, faithfully.  I talked her into allowing me to introduce the Directions study.  Three people showed interest.  Well, over the past few months, others have joined.  Though they are there to study English and are not believers, I know God is working in their hearts, as they participate in the mentoring process in those believers who are present.

Pray for this group, that the lost accept Christ, and the saved are built up.

01/14 Nan Tou Presbyterian Church (Update D2/New Directions)

This church has had its ups and downs.  But the Lord has been working behind the scenes preparing hearts and minds.  Currently, the original Directions group and another led by the Pastor continue to meet to study through Compass (D2).  Our progress has been great.  We have a great time, talking through, never heard doctrine, the Pastor weighing in quite often.  I always look forward to joining them each week.

Last month I encouraged the members of this group to begin the process of mentoring in their own lives.  Before, none of them felt they could do it, but now, they are empowered to engage in the Ministry of reconciliation.  So, they announced Directions small groups will be held Sundays after church.  Over 25 people signed up, and they divided them into three smaller groups.

Today, I had the opportunity to introduce the study to the church, with the Pastors blessing, answered prayer.

Six of the D2 group members have paired up to lead the three smaller groups.  The study, for the most part, was received positively.

Pray for the leaders, as they begin the process of injecting God’s word into peoples lives.  Pray for their encouragement, as they begin to meet with less mature believers.  Pray for the 25 who signed up.  That they will be inspired by the study, and to apply what they learn in their lives.

01/09 He Ping Presbyterian Church-Yuan Lin (Update)

Over the years, I have had a relationship with Mr. and Mrs Chao and their church.  Many years ago, there was an introduction made church wide, but it fizzled out.  From this initial start, the Yuan Lin Small group started their own study.  Originally, it was led by Jerald Zhu, who passed away several years ago.  This group also studied through Discipleship II. Since this time, they have dissolved their small group to lead other small groups in their community.  They continue to promote Directions.

Well history is repeating itself again.  Today. I met with this couple and we have formulated a plan to reach out to their church body again.  Starting in March, we will provide a Directions time, being sensitive to church members needs.  We all know, mentoring needs to be done.  It is finding the correct method to encourage is key.

So, pray with us for relationships to be established that are conducive to spiritual growth.  Pray for us, as we formulate a healthy plan, to build up the believers in their church.

12/21 Jami In the States (12/20-01/10)

Abbey and I gave Jami a Christmas present.  A trip back to the States to see family, friends, and church.  She will be there until January 10th.  She will be winding her way around the area, so if you see her, say hello.

Pray for her safety and protections.  Pray for strengthened relationships with family, friends and church.  Pray for her Spiritual Batteries to be recharged.