Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter Greetings from Irene

Easter Greetings from Cambodia! Praise be to God for the power of the Risen Christ in our lives!

Saturday, we went to a private clinic in Phnom Penh to visit a proud new mother and father, Chanry and Sam Naren, two pastors who are serving in Kampong Cham and are celebrating the birth of their firstborn, a daughter, Elisa. Entering into the room, my heart sank when I saw the infant formula on the bedside table. The doctor had prescribed formula milk exclusively for the first three days. There was no reason not to follow doctor’s orders, so the parents thought. It thrilled my heart to be just on time to assist mother and baby to a good start with breastfeeding.

We have just finished a Midterm Evaluation of CHAD and are astounded at how God has grown the work into the life of the church here. Just to think that 5 years ago Jim Gulley started ADRC which in 2005 became CHAD to include health and that today CHAD is being embraced as a vital model for ministry, how wonderful! Involved in the evaluation were representatives of the Methodist Church in Finland Catarina and Hakan; Jim and Bruno Feuiller, an external evaluator and fellow missionary from Laos. Catarina also brought along two friends to see our work. We all agreed about the relevance of the program. It was gratifying to see the growing numbers of churches wanting to partner with CHAD. Main recommendations coming out of the evaluation are to decentralise; increase local congregational involvement and to develop leadership.

At the end of the evaluation, Hakan who is the General Secretary of the Free Church Federation of Finland, expressing hope for reconciliation and a fresh start for the nation of Cambodia resulting from the current ongoing UN trials, noted promising signs of new life in the Methodist Church in Cambodia (MCC) as we observe the continuing healing and reconciliation of relationships.

On a more personal note, God continues to heal my family and fill our home with new hope and joy. Fara is finding his way. Mutumwa is growing, happy and secure with his dad and “gogos”(grandma). We celebrate the developments in Zimbabwe and thank God for what He is doing there.

I thank you for all your support and prayers for this amazing work.May the power of the Resurrected Christ be a present reality in all you do this day and in all time to come.

Love in Jesus,

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