May 2018 News from Raj

Dear Intercessor,

Greetings to everyone,

Wow! What a wonderful event we had on Sunday 29th April. The Supporters’ Dinner and AGM held at the Greenlane Presbyterian Church was jam packed with supporters, prayer warriors, intercessors, Pastors, leaders, elders, donors, young and old, united in one spirit to hear the many testimonies from people whose lives have been impacted and transformed by the power and revelation of who Jesus Christ is. I was truly honoured to take part in this wonderful event and for those who missed this event, don’t worry, there is always another opportunity to attend the next Dinner and AGM in 2019.

During the evening we heard a moving testimony from Priya, a new Hindu convert, who spoke from the heart with tears rolling down her cheeks, sharing how she gave up her entire Hindu belief system and religion to embrace Jesus Christ as her personal Saviour and Lord. She was only saved last year, yet she could witness to so many powerful encounters with Jesus that were real and tangible and patently evident as she spoke. While Jesus has not fixed every problem in her life, contrary to prosperity preaching which claims that God will make our lives completely perfect and prosperous and we don’t have to carry our cross, Priya told us about her struggles, her brokenness, her problems.  Nevertheless, despite it all, we could see the Joy of the Lord and the peace in her face.

We also heard from Reverend Tony Spandow, whose church, St Paul’s Presbyterian in Manurewa, has recently completed a six-week Share your Faith training with 23 members of the church. At the end of this EE training, the church held an outreach camp at Hamilton, where 60 people of all ages, young and old, gave their lives to Jesus Christ upon hearing the Gospel message presented using the EE sharing method. Glory to God! What a wonderful testimony; Heaven must be rejoicing.

During the evening, a 10-year old boy, Fred, shared how he was saved through EE’s Hope for Kids conducted by the EE Chinese Ministry team under the supervision of Ada Shea. It is wonderful to see the gospel spreading among the Chinese people. We also gave thanks for the NZ Chinese Ministry team who have recently completed EE Classic Training in Vanuatu, where 35 people heard the gospel and 15 people made professions of faith.

Another testimony was given about how a man, who had suffered 40 years of depression from the age of 23, was healed by the power of Jesus and how he no longer depends on medication as he has been completely healed by Jesus Christ and was cleared by a health specialist as fully recovered.

During the evening, I had the pleasure of submitting the EE National Director’s report for the past year. By the end of 2017 we had completed 34 national workshops for 263 participants from 81 churches, during which 262 new people were reached with the gospel and 68 made professions of faith. Not only that, local church evangelism resulted in another 260 people making professions of faith. This is without a doubt God’s hand upon our ministry, as well as in the commitment and hard of work of EE staff, volunteers and prayer partners responding to the opportunities that God presented to us to equip churches and bring the gospel to those who are yet to hear the good news about our Lord and Saviour.

I am immensely grateful to the Board of EE New Zealand, for the great leadership of our Chairman, Chris Lange, and for friend and mentor Tina Toschi, who did a fabulous job as the Interim Director until I was appointed as National Director in August 2017.

I wish to pay tribute to all the generous donors who continue to support the EENZ Ministry, without whom none of this good work could happen.

We have been blessed by the hard work of 40 volunteer trainers throughout the country, helping and supporting in various workshops and training events; may God continue to prosper and grow this vital work.

There are many to whom special thanks are due, especially our faithful intercessors, particularly those who pray every day for EE, individually and in groups. The on-going support of Greenlane Presbyterian Church is much appreciated for the use of the building for EE events.

My deep appreciation goes to Ilse van Rensburg, our Administrator, who works so hard in supporting all the work of the ministry and keeping the accounts and who now has an expanding role. Much appreciated is also the day-to-day help and assistance of David Kirby in accounting matters and Melanie Malcolm on numerous matters concerning the computer and accounts. The assistance of Marion Henderson and Martin Pennycuick of Vision Consulting Ltd. in the annual checking of our accounts is valued as well.

Our deep thanks goes to every single person who shares in this marvellous partnership in the Gospel. To God be all glory.

Blessings in Jesus name.

Raj, National Director

 

April 2018 News from Raj

Dear Intercessor,

Blessings to all of you for the new month of April. By now, you would have celebrated Good Friday and Easter Sunday, and during this time of Easter it is always a great time to reflect upon what Jesus did for us at the cross. I love Romans 5:8, where it says “God showed His great love for us by sending Jesus Christ to die for us while we were still sinners”. Yes, it is not because we are all naturally good or we have lived a perfect life that compelled Jesus to come to earth and die for us, but on the contrary, the bible says that we are wicked and deep inside we have sinful natures and we need a saviour to pay the penalty for our sins. As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who is wise; no one seeks God. All have turned away; they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one”. What striking words that the Apostle Paul used to describe the fallen condition of humanity. I was personally reflecting about this a lot and felt in my heart to share this with all of you. After reflecting upon this truth, I then reflect upon God’s goodness and mercy to forgive us and give us the free gift of eternal life, all by His Grace. Hallelujah!

Regarding EE training workshops, we have 2 ongoing ones at Avondale Christian Church and Greenlane Presbyterian church. However, the 6 weeks workshop at St Paul’s Presbyterian church has just concluded and we are now doing OJT (On Job Training). Please pray for souls to be added to God’s kingdom during this time.

Last week Raj Kashyap, Amyas, George and I were involved in a Gospel outreach to a group of young adults at the Full Gospel Businessmen’s’ Fellowship, with close to 20 people attending the event at St David’s, Hillsborough. All of them heard the Gospel presented using the EE sharing method and at the end of the night, they proclaimed Jesus as their personal saviour. Glory, Hallelujah. We received much positive feedback regarding this event and we are now keen to do this event on a monthly basis to take the gospel to young adults. If you are keen to join us or to bring young adults for this event, please email me here or text me at 021-733615. The next event is on the 23rd April at the same venue.  This is one way you could become involved in the mission of EE.

Blessings in Jesus name.

Raj, National Director

 

April 2018 News from Anne

 The highlight of last month was surely the Commissioning of Raj Narayanan as EE National Director at Greenlane on Sunday 18 March. It was such a privilege and joy to have Rod Story, Executive Vice-President of EE International, here to preach and commission Raj. Thank you to all those who came to support Raj, his wife Shanthi, and their son and daughter David and Ruth, and to celebrate this special occasion. Hopefully all those who were present will not quickly forget Rod’s challenging message on the question: How prepared are you to make a difference? The illustrations he took from the soldier: who to please; the athlete: how to focus; and the farmer; to plant in order to reap, are important.  So was the challenge Raj gave to us all to stand and partner with him in prayer, encouragement and financial support.

Wonderful answers to prayer on several fronts this month.  Simon Lovo in Vanuatu is making a good recovery from his illness and is now picking up plans for the year ahead. For a few years now, he has been coming once a year to Tauranga, to help minister to the seasonal fruit pickers from Vanuatu and he wants to bring his wife, Isobel, with him in May. I’m hoping to arrange some church meetings so that they can share about the EE ministry in Vanuatu – one of these will be at Greenlane Presbyterian in Auckland.

I am also rejoicing in the vitality of the EE ministry I found in the Solomon Islands. Rusi Turaga, the National Director, and his wife Sai are living in the Marshall Islands now to develop the EE ministry towards independence.  Rusi has left the Solomons in good hands, under the direction of Pastor Ross Marika, now Board Chairman. He is a very enthusiastic EE Teacher/Teacher, has equipped his church leaders well and has a fine operating model of an EE church. It warmed my heart to see the new church planting and building in the villages, despite the big challenge for Field Workers, many of whom live in the distant island regions. Three of them came to Honiara to meet with me from nearest island of Malieta, an eight hour journey! Local Area Ministry teams have much potential in this situation.

Anne Bowie, VP Oceania

 

Raj’s Commissioning

                  

Anne Bowie introducing Rev. Dr. Rod Story, Executive                                          Raj being Commissioned by Rev. Dr. Rod Story

Vice-President of Evangelism Explosion International

Raj and his family, wife Shanthi, David and Ruth.

March 2018 News from Raj

Hello everyone,

Greetings to you in the matchless name of Jesus. It is unbelievable that two months have already passed, and I thought we just started the year 2018. Time is certainly flying by very quickly. For us at EE, It has been another fantastic month as we have now started Share Your Faith & Everyday Evangelism (SYF/EV2) workshops at three churches around Auckland.

We have a wonderful turnout of trainees at all three the workshops and I am encouraged by many people who are eager to be equipped in how to share their faith. I don’t know if you see the same thing, but I am finding that more and more New Zealand churches are now interested in finding new Evangelism tools and techniques that they can use to share the gospel with those who need to hear them. I am personally excited about this new development.

With the passing of the great evangelist Dr. Billy Graham, the gospel and evangelism is at the forefront of the news again. It is great to see that his passing was headline news on BBC and many other major news media outlets and forums. Dr. Billy Graham has done a fabulous job of laying the foundation for us.  Here is what our EE president John Sorenson had to say about Dr. Billy Graham:

“Dr. Graham holds a special place in the hearts of all of us here at Evangelism Explosion. He was a good friend of EE founder Dr. D. James Kennedy and the EE ministry.  In fact, he had a huge role in the establishment of EE in its early days. Dr. Graham paid for translations, encouraged leaders around the world to get involved, and featured a young Jim Kennedy at many of his Schools of Evangelism. He even wrote the foreword for Dr. Kennedy’s book, Evangelism Explosion, telling readers more than 40 years ago of his enthusiasm for our evangelism training ministry, which is now in every nation on earth. We need to celebrate it when people live well and finish well”

Blessings to everyone,

Raj, National Director

 

March 2018 News from Tina

2018 is definitely on a roll – we are so encouraged by the training and enthusiasm and interest in EE across such a variety of people groups.  While Raj is harvesting good rewards in Auckland, in March Anne will be in Christchurch to meet with the Hope for Kids teachers/co-ordinators, as well as in Dunedin to present an XEE workshop – this is besides fitting in her visits to Fiji and Solomons.  Pray for her during her travels.

We’re in Lent and our deeply needed call is for prayer – please make a concerted effort to set aside an hour a week (we have set Sundays from 5 – 6 pm aside) and join us as we pray for confidence to start conversations, the right words that will answer people’s needs, responding to divine appointments during the week as we go about our daily routine, and to use what we have learnt (or even parts of it as needed) at every opportunity that comes up.

Two key dates to look forward to:

(1) Raj’s Commissioning by Rev Dr Rod Story on March 18, and

(2) our AGM scheduled for May 4 at 6:30pm.

I am really looking forward to catching up with each of you at these events and hearing your news.  Also diarise the following International Prayer & Fasting dates:  May 1,  Aug 7,  Nov 6.

May our Lord bless you richly as you reap the rewards of your mission into your community.

 

Bless you all,

Tina,  BOARD OF DIRECTORS

 

 

March 2018 News from Anne

Last month I was wondering why I was not hearing from Vanuatu and I was preparing to go there to investigate. Then a message came through from Simon Lovo, National Director, saying he had been in hospital in Port Vila since early January. He had been struck down with a condition diagnosed as Clinic Reactive Arthritis, which is very painful and, in Simon’s case, affected his ability to walk. This usually clears up within a few months, but can last up to a year. Simon had been wondering why the EE Vanuatu Board had not met, but then we discovered that the Chairman, Rev, Thompson Aki, had also been ill for the past two months. Please pray for the healing and recovery of these two important leaders and for a release of much needed financial support. If you would like to join Raj and me in sending a donation to them, it would be much appreciated. This of course, meant postponement of my visit to Vanuatu in the meantime.

I did visit Tonga, however, just a week before Cyclone Gita hit Tongatapu, the most populated island and location of the capital Nuku’alofa.  Rod Story, Executive Vice-President of EE International, has been there many times and introduced me to Fa’unufe, the young EE leader who is likely to become the EE Coordinator of the EE ministry in Tonga, and also to the newly formed EE Tonga Advisory Committee. I contributed to a meeting of the Board and, best of all, spent a lot of time getting to know Fa’. A team from Figtree Anglican Church will be returning in July to teach an XEE Training Clinic and a Hope for Kids Workshop there. Rod Story is going back to recruit more senior pastors to the Board – and to be cook for the training team in July!

Talking of Rod Story, we’re excited that he and his wife, Rhonda, are coming over for the Commissioning of Raj Narayanan as National Director of EE New Zealand. The Commissioning Service will be at Greenlane Presbyterian Church on Sunday 18 March, at 3:30 pm (see your invitation attached/enclosed). We do hope you will be able to come, support and congratulate Raj on his appointment and also meet his wife Shanthi, and their daughter and son, Ruth and David. This is also an opportunity to hear Rev. Dr Rod Story who will preach at the Service.

Next week, I embark of my first visit to the Solomon Islands and I’m excited about this. The National Directors, Rusiate and Sai Tulaga, have been away for most of the last year, living in the Marshall Islands to the north, helping to establish the EE ministry there. In their absence, the work in the Solomons has been led by Rev. Ross Marika, Senior Pastor in the Harvest Church and the Field Workers. There is also a new Board Chairman, Mr Mataiasi Lomaloma. I am looking forward to doing the Annual Review, assessing progress in the Marshall Islands and to meeting these new leaders.

A thought from the writings of Mother Theresa: “Prayer changes us and we change things.”               

Anne Bowie, VP Oceania

 

February 2018 News from Raj

It is with a lot of sadness that I am announcing the resignation of Lewis from EENZ ministries, due to health reasons.  In the first week of February, Lewis underwent  a triple bypass heart surgery at Waikato Hospital and he is now resting and recovering for the next 3 months. Lewis had asked that we support him in prayer during this difficult time in his life.  I would urge you to keep Lewis in your prayers and I will give you more updates in the next monthly prayer line.

Blessings, Raj   NATIONAL DIRECTOR

February 2018 News from Raj

Happy New Year everyone! I greet each one of you in the name of our Lord Jesus and may the Lord’s blessing and providence be upon you abundantly in 2018.

In regards to our EE mission and ministry, we are heading for a great start in February, with three confirmed SYF/EV2 (Share your Faith/Everyday Evangelism) trainings this month.  My team and I are looking forward to empowering the different people groups and age groups in each of these churches with the simple EE SYF/EV2 evangelism tool. Please pray for these to be a great success.

In regards to my personal witnessing that I do each week, the Lord used me to share the gospel to two young couples. To the first couple, I asked the Q1 and Q2 questions and both replied that they do not have any assurance that they will be with God in Heaven. They professed that they have been too sinful and not good enough to enter heaven. I shared the good news that salvation is a free gift and is not dependent upon how good you are but is solely dependent on how good God is. It is by God’s grace that we are saved, not of ourselves, it is a free gift from God (Ephesians 2:8). Upon hearing this good news, they both gladly received Jesus Christ as their personal saviour. During the salvation prayer, the young guy was so overwhelmed by the Holy Spirit that tears were flowing and he had to be comforted by his partner. It was so touching to witness this conversion of heart and I am sure Heaven is rejoicing over these two saved souls.

The second young couple that I shared the gospel with were newly married but they had to live separately because the guy had a severe infection on his arm and needs hospitalisation for two months in Middlemore hospital. He was very distressed by this experience and asked for prayer. I prayed with him in the name of Jesus and he was healed – the hospital discharged him within two days!! He is now resting at home and I had the opportunity to visit him and his wife at their home to share the gospel with them. They both accepted Christ as their personal saviour. What a mighty God that we serve. All Glory to Jesus. Please continue to pray for EE ministries as we could not do any of this without your prayer and the power of the Gospel.

Blessings, Raj   NATIONAL DIRECTOR

February 2018 News from Tina

Welcome to 2018.  I trust that the New Year has started well for each of you.

Exciting news of course is that Raj has a permanent desk in the EE office and can be contacted there at any time.  His passion and enthusiasm and commitment are contagious and, again, I pray that God will use this as Raj empowers others in the same way through the training already scheduled for this term.  Please continue to support him and his family, as you are doing.

Anne’s itinerary reads like a “Lonely Planet” resource and I am thrilled that Oceania has started the year so fruitfully.  EE is a wide open mission field, which anyone can take part in.  Talk to Anne if you want to partner with her in any way – she’d love to hear from you.  I am so pleased that she will still have her desk in the office and be contactable there.

Our first PRAYER & FASTING DAY for EE was on Wed 6 Feb.  Please spend some small part of your day today wherever you are and pray for the EE Mission Field on our doorstep and internationally.

Our first Board Meeting for this year is on Tues 13 Feb.  Again, please uphold us in prayer on that day as we plan and coordinate the ministry for 2018.

We’ve seen incredible transformation in individuals, in families, in churches and across communities because people have had the opportunity to explore a new life in Christ through EE.  Your support helps make it possible for more people in New Zealand to experience this – thank you to each one of you for your faithfulness and continuing commitment to this labour and mission.

 

Bless you all,

Tina BOARD OF DIRECTORS