August 2018 News from Raj

“Kia Orana” everyone,

This is how we greeted each other in the Cook Islands, when Anne and I were there from 15 to 24 Jul. We were based in Rarotonga, and joined up the EE American team led by Alan Bussie. Alan and his wife Vanessa, Pastor Steve, Richard, Anne and I joined together and equipped 15 CICC (Cook Island Christian Church) members to share the gospel. The members were from Titikaweka (Southern region of the island) and Avarua (main city centre). The training was conducted during weekday evenings and concluded with OJT (On Job Training) every night, when we met people in the streets and their homes, sharing the gospel. Each night we were thrilled to see up to seven people professing Jesus as their personal Saviour. In total 35 people were saved after five days of training and witnessing. Glory to God ! Alan and Vanessa have stayed back to equip the trainees in discipleship as this is the next step we are undertaking through the CICC church.

One of the highlights for me was sharing the gospel with a Cook Island man who had lost his assurance of salvation due to illness and personal circumstances. As I shared the gospel, that eternal life is a free gift and cannot be earned but only received by the finished work of Christ, he started to weep uncontrollably in repentance, for thinking that he had to be perfect and good to receive the gift of salvation. After hearing and seeing the full gospel presentation, he recommitted his life to Christ and the very next day, his entire physical body had started to heal. His wife and daughter could immediately see the difference and they were overjoyed by the remarkable healing that came from the power of salvation. Once again, I witnessed Romans 1:16 in action: “I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation for everyone”. Glory to Jesus.

On the home front, the XEE training at Lynfield community church is entering week 5 and this Saturday we are planning to do OJT.  If anyone is keen, please contact us and join us to witness the power of gospel in action.

Thank you for all you are doing, supporting us with prayer and finance as we labour together on the mission field.

Blessings in Jesus name.

Raj, National Director

 

August 2018 News from Anne

This last month has been such an encouraging one. First of all, the mission trip to the Cook Islands about which Raj has written was a wonderful time of shared mission, both with the enthusiastically committed believers at Titikaveka and the team from Lexington, Kentucky. It reminded me of the power of the gospel in reaching whole families. One night I had the joy of sharing the Gospel and seeing a whole family of six profess their faith in Christ, from father to six-year-old son.  Another evening a family of five came to faith. All glory to God!

The focus of this month is the EE Oceania Conference in Australia.  It is very exciting that there are 32 leaders coming from nine nations right across the Pacific: Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu, Australia, Tonga, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Marshall Islands, the Cook Islands and New Zealand. They include the National Directors and Coordinators, Board Chairperson or member, ten Field Workers and leaders of the Chinese EE Ministries in Australia and New Zealand. Everyone will be living in at the camp, so you can well imagine the sharing and networking there will be, apart from the leadership and workshop sessions each day. Topics will include “Everyone Hears”, Rod Story’s presentation of EE’s plan for the next four years, Team Development, New Strategies, Building Local Area Teams, Growing Partner Nations and Looking after Volunteers. We will hear and see visual presentations from each of the six Multiplying Nations, hold workshops on the challenging areas of master planning, fund raising, reporting and keeping records, coaching, and perseverance in helping local churches implement their training. At the end of the week Paul and Anita Bertrand from the Philippines will be leading a training day in Explorers’ Club, the official follow-up course for children after they’ve done Hope for Kids. It won’t be “all work and no play” because there are more informal sessions in the evenings and, right in the middle of the week, a tour of the local scenic area as well as dinner.  Out of this week, will come ideas and recommendations from Boards and Staff that will go forward to the Congress of EE Nations next year.

Please pray for these leaders who are coming from some nations and situations where it is a big challenge to raise the funds for an air ticket. Pray that they will all get their visas to enter Australia, which has recently become more difficult, and in time for the Conference starting on 20 August. Most of all pray that God will be in our midst, leading, inspiring and teaching us by the Holy Spirit and that Jesus will launch us into a new season of harvest in Oceania.

Anne Bowie, VP Oceania

 

July 2018 News from Raj

Dear Intercessor,

Greeting to everyone in the name of Jesus!  I have just returned from Malaysia after attending my niece’s wedding. It was the first Christian wedding in our family, so I was really thrilled and excited, as we come from a long generation of Hindus and I am so happy that Jesus broke this cycle of Hinduism in our family.  So I give thanks and Glory to God for making this happen. I also took this opportunity to preach the gospel to the rest of my siblings and relatives and as a result of this another niece of mine, who heard the gospel for the first time, gave her life to Jesus and, not only that, she also brought her close friend, who after hearing the good news about Jesus, made Jesus as her personal saviour.  Glory to God for making this happen!

Overall, many seeds have been planted and I am sure it will harvest in God’s timing as He is the Lord of the Harvest.

Upon return, I have been preparing for the XEE evangelism training at Lynfield Community Church where seven people will be trained and equipped to share the gospel. Please pray for this training to go well.  Anne and I are also preparing to leave for the Cook Islands in July, to help the local team and the USA team equip the CICC (Cook Island Christian Church) to share the gospel with the locals. We pray for a great harvest to come from this training. We will be taking trainees and witness to the local people as part of the training, so do pray that God will prepare the hearts of the people who will receive the seed of Gospel.

Thank you for all you are doing, supporting us with prayer and finance.

Blessings in Jesus name.

Raj, National Director

 

June 2018 News from Raj

Dear Intercessor,

Greetings to everyone in Jesus name,

In May we completed the 10 weeks SYF/EV2 training at Avondale Christian church. We had several OJTs and at the completion of all of them, 18 people heard the gospel and six made professions of faith. Glory to Jesus! Below is our team who witnessed at Aotea square.

We also had a Filipino church in Christchurch, “Jesus Christ the Rock Ministries”, that was trained by Rene from EE Philippines, where 40 people were trained. During the OJT, 11 heard the gospel and nine made profession of faith. They will now be followed up and discipled.

We also had our first XEE training for this year at Greenlane Presbyterian Church on the 19th May with representation from 8 different nationalities: Brazilian, Chilean, Columbian, Kenyan, Vanuatu, Indian, Malaysian and Kiwi. The training went really well and we are now doing five weeks of follow-up training every Tuesday night. (Shanthi made her famous Malaysian chicken curry for lunch. It was a great hit). Here is the picture from the XEE workshop.

I have a confirmed XEE training at Lynfield Community Church commencing 30th June. It is now open for registration and if you are interested in attending, please email and let us know.  I also received an opportunity to preach at St Chad Anglican Church in Remuera. It went really well and we have an opportunity to run an EE workshop at St Chads in the coming month. The Lord always opens the door for EE ministry. Thank you for all your prayer and financial support.

Blessings in Jesus name.

Raj, National Director

 

July 2018 News from Anne

Simon Lovo, National Director in Vanuatu was confined to hospital for the first two months of the year, struck down with a severe arthritis from which the doctors told him he might take six months or more to recover. The inability to do any training or lead his Field Workers made him feel very discouraged and disappointed. To the doctors’ surprise, in late February he began to recover and, despite remaining physical weakness, decided to join a team of Vanuatu leaders who come each year to minister to the seasonal workers that pick fruit in the Bay of Plenty. While he was here, he spent a week with the EENZ team and enjoyed the fellowship of the team at Greenlane Presbyterian Church, as well as getting ‘up to speed’ with new developments in his leadership role. Both his health and enthusiasm have been boosted and he is back to full swing in his ministry. In a recent email he said, “How much I miss the love and hospitality with your EE team and church people.” Praise God for His goodness!

During my trip to Fiji in June, I had meetings with most of the Field Workers, Board Chairman, the new Co-ordinator, did an inventory of Oceania teaching materials and had the pleasure of preaching for a Fijian congregation that meets in the Sofitel Hotel in Denarau.  God blessed these meetings with very positive outcomes.

In 2013, EENZ decided ‘to adopt’ or partner with the Cook Islands and help it develop into an independent national ministry.  In 2014/15 former VP, the late Rev. Richard Harvey and I had meetings with Cook Island leaders and together with Chris Torrey, former NZ Field Worker, helped lead a very successful Classic EE Clinic at the Avarua CICC Church, which was well implemented.  In July, Raj and I will be joining an EE mission team from Lexington, USA, to teach another EE Clinic there, as well as meet with Tangi Tereapii, Cook Island Coordinator and possible Advisory Committee members. High on our list of goals is to introduce the Hope for Kids ministry and promote EE to other Cook Island denominational leaders.

Anne Bowie, VP Oceania

 

June 2018 News from Anne

 I was sad to miss the Annual Supporters’ Dinner, which from all accounts was a very inspirational evening. I was on the way to Malang, Indonesia, to join the other VP’s for our half-yearly conference. It is always great to pray, learn, discuss and plan together as a team. John Sorensen, EE International President, generally gives us a report on the health of the global work to see if the world-wide ministry is growing, plateaued or declining. Regular evaluation helps find out what needs to be improved or refined. Seven Vital Signs of a Health Ministry have been established as being: Active Churches, Training Events, Reported Professions of Faith, Field Staff, Hope for Kids, Gross Revenue and Active Donors. Praise God that, in the first quarter of this year, six of the signs indicate health, but there is one area of real concern: the number of active EE churches world-wide appears to be declining. First and foremost, EE is an equipping ministry and it is a lost opportunity when church members train in EE, but fail to go on and train anyone else.  As Dr. Kennedy said, “Just as it’s better to teach a person to fish rather than merely give them a fish; it’s more important to train a soul winner than to save a soul.” That is how every person in the world can be reached with the Gospel. Please pray that in all our EE workshops, God will raise up church members who will take responsibility for training and equipping others.

Shortly after I returned from Indonesia, we welcomed Simon Lovo, Vanuatu National Director, who stayed a week in Auckland and visited the EE Office most days. He also spent time with our leaders and even joined in the XEE Workshop at Greenlane on 19 May. One day, Ada Shea, Chinese Ministry Director, came to see Simon and took us both out for a delicious lunch.  You may remember that EE was introduced to the Chinese Church in Port Vila by her mission leadership team in April last year. Returning this year, they found the Church had doubled in size. She reported the great news that the Church, having enthusiastically implemented EE, now has so many new believers that their church building has become too small!  More than that, they are planning to plant a Chinese church on the neighbouring island of Malekula.  This is evangelism explosion.                                 

Anne Bowie, VP Oceania

 

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.