During August we’re focusing on having faith in God’s provision, however that comes. Each of the posts published this month will be about the manners in which God has chosen to provide for the authors. Please see the Prayer page to read our strategic prayer request for this month and to see how we, as a branch, are trying to have faith in God’s provision.
By Eunice Herchenroeder
“This helped me be a stronger leader in my church.” “This helped me know how to encourage the people in my church to worship in tok ples [our mother tongue].” “This helped me know how to teach in tok ples.”
A full year has passed since over 130 pastors and church leaders from 17 different church groups in Madang Province came together for the “Power in the Word” conference. It was a historic event, the first time that so many from such a diversity of churches had come together to worship, learn, encourage, and share. The above comments pretty well summarize the participants’ feedback. The other feedback they consistently and emphatically voiced: “We need to do this again next year – and every year – and four days was not long enough!”
So as you read this, plans are taking shape for this year’s conference. “Hope for A Better Future” will offer solid teaching from God’s Word to address deep concerns about the here and now – concerns that deeply impact their hope for the future of their churches, their communities, and their nation. It will also give pastors and church leaders (and whoever else chooses to come) opportunities to minister to and learn from each other. And it will provide a venue for discussing and modeling ways to incorporate mother-tongue Scriptures and local music and art forms into corporate and personal worship.
For several years our team has been praying that God will show us how to partner with the churches in Madang to accomplish the work of Bible translation. Our participation in this conference is, we believe, a part of God’s answer. As we work alongside local pastors and leaders in church-strengthening opportunities such as this one, we build relationships and trust. We help them discover how they can unite as Christ-followers to achieve a desire that they all share: to see “Your Kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” And ultimately, we help strengthen and equip these churches for the roles that we believe God will give them in helping finish the task of Bible translation here.
The week-long conference begins Monday, October 6. Between now and then we invite you to pray that God will prepare the hearts of conference attendees to be built up and challenged. We also invite you to pray that God will use this conference to mobilize local churches to participate in and support the ministry of Bible translation.
Eunice provides administrative support services and assists in the development of mother-tongue literacy materials for children.