Tuesday, June 26, 2007

New Jersey and Long Island

I am writing this post from the Hume 'n' Beans coffee shop at Hume Lake Christian camp in California. Joyce and I got here by flying from Newark to Fresno on Sunday night and then our son Matt picked us up and drove us up to the camp in the mountains. It has been a while since my last post so here is what has happened since then....

We (Joyce, Happiness and I) flew on the red eye from Sacramento to Newark last Monday night. We then went to the home of Jim and Rebecca Fox and shared at Evangel Baptist. Jim then drove us up to Schooleys Mountain on Thursday for our LMUSA missionary conference. It was great to see (almost) everyone again. We had a great time hanging around with the PIBC'ers there and also with the missionaries from the various LM-US fields, Ireland, Ecuador, Spain and Africa. Mission Day on Saturday was great! We were able to share about PIBC with many mission friends and enjoyed the good German food. We were sorry we had to leave in the middle of the meetings (we also left Happiness in NJ to work for a month at the Liebenzell retreat center) to go home, but we had to get to our family reunion.

We rushed out of the mission day to board the New Jersey train to Penn Station in New York and then on to the Long Island Railroad to Rockville Center to speak at Windsor Avenue Baptist Church in Oceanside. The train was an enjoyable first time experience for us. Tom and Susan Smith picked us up at the train station and we had a good time with them at the Pizzaiola Restaurant. Great Italian food! Sunday morning we enjoyed a fellowship breakfast at the church and then I showed our ministry video and gave the Sunday morning message. We then rushed to the Newark airport and flew back across the country to Fresno. We are already enjoying our time at camp (we are cold). More on that later this week.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Greetings from New Jersey

Sorry it has been a while since my last post. We have been on the move since last weekend. I am sitting in a missionary meeting at the Liebenzell USA HQ enjoying the fellowship of our missionaries from all over the world. We arrived in New Jersey on Tuesday and spent two days with Jim and Rebecca Fox, our old friends from Dallas Seminary days. Jim is now pastoring Evangel Baptist Church in Springfield, NJ and we enjoyed the opportunity to share Wednesday night at the adult Bible study there. It was nice to share in a church that already knew all about Liebenzell Mission.

Last weekend we spoke at 1st Baptist Church of Redding (California). It was good to see the people there again and we appreciate very much their support of our ministry over the last few years. We were also able to stay there with Joyce's sister Judy along with Wayne and their kids. (Pictured Pastor Rob Brown with Happiness and I) By the way Happiness did a great job speaking in both churches.

Tomorrow is mission day at Schooleys Mountain. Mission friends from all over will be coming to eat good German food and hear presentations from many of our missionaries. There will even be a German brass band there! (Pictures coming soon). In the afternoon we will get on the train (a new experience for both of us) and go from New Jersey to Long Island where we will speak at Windsor Avenue Bible Church. It will be great to see friends there we have not seen since 2001. Sunday night we will be heading back to California to go to our family reunion.

If you are in the New Jersey or Long Island area we hope to see you this weekend!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Last Weekend Activities

Last weekend we had the opportunity to minister at the Building Up Men Conference at Gold Country Baptist Church in Shingle Springs CA on Saturday and at Camino Community Church on Sunday. The BUM conference was an all-day affair with seminars, panel discussion (pictured) and I shared the main speaking with Neil Anderson (not the Biola spiritual warfare guy, but the Wycliffe translator from Papua New Guinea. He wrote a book about his experience in PNG called "In Search of the Source" which I would recommend.) It was fun to not only have an opportunity to teach but also to be taught. Joyce and I were also able to share together the night before about how we combine marriage and ministry. It was very encouraging to me to see so many men excited about godliness and service.
Our Sunday at Camino was also a great time. We shared in both services and then spent the rest of the day with former Liebenzell missionaries, now pastoring the church, the Leuices (pictured with all of us) and many Camino church people eating and fellowshipping. We enjoyed it so much we stayed until after 9 PM. It was great getting caught up in what is happening in the Leuice's lives and getting them up to date on what is happening in Micronesia.
We will be at The Gold Country Baptist Mission meeting on Friday night and at 1st Baptist Redding CA on Sunday.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Placerville Christian School

Placerville Christian School has been a faithful prayer partner since our kids, Michael and Melissa, attended 2nd and 4th grade there during the 1992-3 school year and has been part of our financial support team since Joyce taught there during our furlough year 2001-2. Thus, we enjoyed seeing many friends when we spoke there Wednesday and Thursday. We spoke to the 4th-8th grade chapel on Wednesday afternoon and to the K-3rd grade chapel in Thursday morning. On Wednesday Joyce and I were joined by Michael and Samantha, Happiness Lodge and our Guam campus director Steve Stinnette to share with the older kids about ministry in Micronesia. The next morning, Steve had already left to go back to the East Coast, the person all the students wanted to see joined us, Titus Owen. The PCS students all know him because my mom and dad have been making regular appearances at the PCS chapels to tell the Bible story and, of course, the share many pictures of Titus. He amazed everyone with his loud cries of happiness throughout the program. Joyce was amazed at how big her 1st graders from back then have become.
We are so thankful for Placerville Christian School. The school itself supports and, in addition, a couple of the classes take regular offerings to support our ministry monthly. We also get regular updates from the 3rd grade class about what they are doing and reminders that they pray regularly for us. It is really wonderful to be part of a school that has such a heart for missions and teaches its students, even the youngest ones, that everyone has a part to play in discipling the world for Christ. Thank you PCS!!!
We (Joyce and I) will be speaking tonight at the Gold Country Baptist Church root beer float social about "marriage and ministry." Tomorrow Dave will be speaking at the BUM (building up men) conference. Sunday the whole gang will be up at Camino Community Church (pastored by Steve and Angela Leuice former co-workers in Micronesia). If you are in the neighborhood we would love to see you.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Dinner With the Plaxtons

Yesterday we met with our Guam campus director Steve Stinnette who is in the Sacramento area for some medical work. We took advantage of the opportunity to meet with PIBC/Liebenzell Mission USA appointees to PIBC, Tim and Melody Plaxton. We are expecting the Plaxtons to come out to Guam for this Fall semester. Tim will be the Guam campus Maintenance Director and Melody will be an English instructor. We had a great time of making plans and just enjoying one another's company (We also had some good Chinese food as you may be able to see in the picture). Please join us in praying for the Plaxtons to reach their full support level and be ready for the semester in August. If you are interested to support the Plaxtons you can get more info on their website or at the Liebenzell USA website.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Presentation at Gold Country Baptist

We had a great day yesterday getting reacquainted with old friends and of course, seeing relatives at Gold Country Baptist Church. (Joyce had the camera and, for some reason, took all the pictures in the nursery. The pic is of her with Titus and another 3rd generation Biola baby.) Dave preached in both services on a wisdom theology of missions from Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon. Happiness Lodge did a great job sharing his testimony in the service, sharing with the high school group and leading junior church (We kept him busy!) The only problem was that we could not get our video presentations going. I think our videos are incompatible with Vista. Michael and Samantha did a great job reporting on their ministry in the evening service. It was an Owen family Sunday. Of course, Titus was a big hit with everyone. Our main point in all of our presentations was that we are thankful for the church's 23 years as part of our ministry team.
Today Joyce and Happiness are over at Tim and Melody Plaxton's house helping them get it ready to sell. They need to sell before they can leave to join our staff at PIBC. We are hoping that they will be coming back to Guam with us in August. Please pray that along with us.
Upcoming this week are presentations at Placerville Christian School on Wednesday the 6th at 2 PM for the 4-8th graders and on Thursday the 7th at 9 AM for the k-3rd graders.
We love it here, but we are cold!