Same Same, but Different!

Posted by Tom Scatliff, With 0 Comments, Category: Newsletters,
Our first mission trip was to Sihanoukville, Cambodia with a herd of young adults back in 2007. On that trip I learned the Southeast Asian expression Same Same, but Different. It encapsulates perfectly international ministry.  People across cultures and continents have so much in common, yet are so very different from each other. It highlights how we are all united under the one God, yet speak different languages, have different challenges, and live in different lands. That trip to Cambodia was instrumental to Tom and I entering into missions full time.
A few of us got one of these T's in Cambodia. (image: chummytees.com)
I think this same Southeast Asian expression also describes well our current transition to serving under a new organization. For the most part, our ministries will remain same same. We will be based in Indiana, where Tom will work at the ministry of SonSet Solutions with a team of engineers to develop technology that will help advance the Gospel worldwide. I will continue to be a community health consultant to various ministry partners around the globe. Overall, it'll be same same, but different because moving from Reach Beyond to Global Outreach Mission means we will have a greater capacity for time overseas and a greater reach to more international ministries.
Our new support page at missiongo.org. Click here to check it out!
Our ministries with Reach Beyond will officially end September 16th, and we will start with Global Outreach Mission once our monthly funding is secured. In addition to a few supporters not able to join us at the new organization, we now have a higher administration fee and additionally need to cover credit card processing fees, which all together puts us $600USD short each month. Once we secure this additional $600 per month, we will have the green light to apply for our work visas (in person at the Canada-US border) needed to work in the USA under Global Outreach Mission and continue our ministries. Our current goal is to complete all this by the beginning of October.

If you have been considering joining our support team, now would be the perfect time to do so! Shoot us an email if you'd like more information or follow the links below to our donation page.
ON THE WEB
candiceandtom.com/jointheteam
or
missiongo.org/scatliff

PHONE GLOBAL OUTREACH MISSION
Canada: 1-866-483-5787
USA: 1-888-900-5048
To help shore up this funding shortage we are taking a trip to Manitoba for the month of September. Usually we schedule ample time to meet with each of our supporters one-on-one and spend precious time together (our favorite part of such trips!), but this trip will need to be shorter than usual due to our youngest son having some health concerns. As such, we cannot be away from his doctors in Indiana for very long. By necessity we will be focusing on meeting with groups of people in order to provide everyone an update.
 
Below is a preliminary speaking schedule for our time in Manitoba.

September 1 – Christian Life Centre, Morden , Manitoba
September 8 – Westend Community Church, MacGregor, Manitoba
September 15 – Faith Fellowship Baptist Church, Brandon, Manitoba
September 22 – Parkside Gospel Church, Dauphin, Manitoba
September 29 – Grace Bible Church, Dauphin, Manitoba

Thank you to everyone who moved over to Global Outreach Mission with us! This time of transition has been a challenging one, but you are who sustains us and it is a great encouragement to move forward together!
 

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Life in the Congo

Posted by Tom Scatliff, With 0 Comments, Category: Newsletters,
Rats run the hallways of our house at night, each morning we take malaria medication to keep disease at bay, and electricity is only available between 7:00pm-10:00pm on some days. Roosters crow at all hours the night, storms rage so powerfully they slam interior doors, and bug bites are just a given.

Welcome to the Republic of Congo!
Inpatients at Pioneer Christian Hospital enjoying the new and improved meals supplied by the feeding program.
We spent ten weeks in the Congo this past spring with a few main purposes: To improve the feeding program at Pioneer Christian Hospital (the one we set up two years ago, as you can read here and here) and to beta test equipment Tom has been working on at our full-time ministry at SonSet Solutions in Indiana.

If a picture is worth a thousand words, this 3-minute video may be worth a million when it comes to how awesome God is and what He was able to accomplish regarding the feeding program during our time at Pioneer Christian Hospital:
Everything you need to know about the feeding program in less than 3 minutes!
candiceandtom.com/feeding-2019
Although my main focus was the feeding program, Tom’s role was much more varied. He was able to test some of the equipment he’s engineered at SonSet Solutions, such as this satellite-based vehicle tracker. He installed one of these units on a truck that does medical and evangelical trips out into the deep jungle. Often this truck is out of cell phone range and this satellite tracker, along with an SOS button, helps provide peace of mind for both those on the medical trip and their families back home who would otherwise not be able to reach them or know their location.
The satellite modem, installed on top of the truck, has already successfully tracked the truck through Congo.
Tom was also able to assist Radio Sango Kitoko ("Good News Radio"), a Christian radio station on the hospital grounds. Check out this three minute video for more on that:
Here's a video detailing some of the work we did in the radio station.
candiceandtom.com/radio-2019
Congo was exhausting, but very worthwhile. Thank you for your support so we could assist this incredible ministry in a variety of ways.

Now that we are back in Indiana we are tasked with transitioning to a new mission organization (Global Outreach Mission). Reach Beyond (who we have served with for the past five years) has stopped processing donations for us, so if you are on our sending team, all you have to do (if you haven’t done so yet!) is sign up at Global Outreach Mission here:
Lord willing, if all of our donors come with us, the transition between ministry organizations should be seamless. Our main ministries will remain the same, with an expanded international footprint.

Thank you for partnering with us in missions!

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Biblical Diseases

Posted by Tom Scatliff, With 0 Comments, Category: Newsletters,
Leprosy, without treatment, is a terrible death sentence. Continual loss of feeling and eventual loss of limbs, lead to lethal atrophy. But what is the treatment? Believe it or not, it is as simple as a regime of antibiotics. A treatment using antibiotic medication can treat leprosy and stop the disease in its tracks. Course of treatment is 6 to 12 months, depending on severity.

For the past few months, our family has been serving in the Republic of Congo, Africa. According to the American Leprosy Mission, the Republic of Congo has the highest number of leprosy cases of any country in the world. Its debilitating effects can be seen on the limbs and in the lives of those it’s infected.
Click here to check out a video with some footage of the Kimia Care Center.
The population most susceptible to leprosy is the Aka Pigmy group. Many Aka tribes live in the deep jungle surrounding Impfondo, the town where we reside. Pioneer Christian Hospital has become a place of hope for those who have heard the disease could be treated. Unfortunately though, many others still believe skin diseases like leprosy are a curse. Many more have the misunderstanding that leprosy is contagious; often, those showing signs of the disease are pushed out of their homes, lose their jobs, and enter a life of destitution.
 
Pioneer Christian Hospital partnered with American Leprosy Mission and birthed the Kimia Care Center to tackle this issue.

‘Kimia’ means peace. It’s a resident facility for those who are suffering the effects of leprosy and require in-patient treatment. At Kimia, not only do patients and their families find hope with treatment, but Living Hope with the Word of God.

The Kimia Care team routinely takes long excursions into the deep jungle to seek the lost, the ‘least of these’, those who are sick, and those who have not heard of the Living Hope. In these remote communities in the deep jungle, the team shows the Jesus film and a film on leprosy. On their last excursion this past March, nearly 500 souls made decisions for Christ. Pastors in these remote communities are now tasked with discipleship of these new believers. The team also treated many with leprosy and brought 12 families back with them to the Kimia Care Center for long-term inpatient care.
Candice got a chance to share some donated homemade dresses with the residents of the center.
Tom has been working with the Kimia Care team on a variety of projects. First, SonSet Solutions (where we work on loan from Reach Beyond) designed a GPS tracking device for the Kimia Care team’s land rover; it was built by one of Tom’s students over spring break. The trips to the deep jungle on unmarked roads can be dangerous and full of unexpected situations. If help is needed, the device can send an SOS signal via satellite communication. Also, the device continually provides GPS coordinates throughout the journey; offering peace of mind to those waiting for the team’s return, and also a ‘road map’ of sorts for the team themselves. 
 
Another one of the projects Tom has been working on is the installation of a solar power system at the Kimia Care Center (along with a few visiting electricians). Now they are able to leverage the power of the sun to fill the water tank and provide essential lighting for wound care. He’s also helped with their computer systems, internet connectivity, and printer problems.
An Aka mother and baby who are residing at the center.
We are thankful for the opportunity to support the Kimia Care Center and their important ministry for the afflicted and ill in Impfondo. Thank you for supporting our efforts. Your contribution has generational impact and life-giving power.

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Tooth on the Roof

Posted by Tom Scatliff, With 0 Comments, Category: Newsletters,
We made it! Five flights, three continents, a five-hour time change, and a wee bit of jet lag and we are in Impfondo, Republic of Congo, settling in and getting down to work.
Family photo with our temporary residence in the background. Littlest Scatliff was taking a much needed nap.
My (Candice's) primary goal during our time here assisting Pioneer Christian Hospital is to transition the feeding program, which we established at the hospital here two years ago, from 'Phase I' to 'Phase II'. Initially, the feeding program relied on dehydrated produce bags shipped from a ministry partner in Ontario, Canada. Along with these produce bags we sourced rice, beans, oil, and salt locally to prepare a nutritionally complete, low-cost meal to all inpatients. The dehydrated produce bags were invaluable in getting the feeding program off the ground in relatively short order and allowing the program time to mature into Phase II.  Now that the program has been running for two years, and we recently exhausted the supply of dehydrated produce bags, it is time to implement Phase II: sourcing produce locally to create a more sustainable and culturally appropriate diet. This transition from Phase I to Phase II would be impossible without the addition of Jesse Mitchell, a new long-term missionary here at the hospital who has the role of Food Security Officer. Jesse has taken over leadership of the feeding program and I am here assisting him to implement Phase II.
Matthew speaking the international language of "football".
We've started a vegetable garden on the hospital’s property to begin producing our own vegetables and beans. Not only will this cut costs for the program, but it also allows an opportunity for community development. Jesse, who is heading the garden project, is using it as an opportunity to train locals in proper agricultural practices and deepen relationships with many of the teens of the community. The teens, in turn, receive employable skills and compensation for their labour, which covers their school fees and allows them to continue their high school education (without an employment opportunity this isn't possible).

The past few weeks we've been working on preparing the land and planning what to grow, and this week we've begun planting! Rainy season is nearly upon us, so the timing is perfect to get our seeds in the ground.  To being with, we will be planting plantain, pineapple, cassava (mainly for the greens), botecoteco (a local green leafy vegetable), and kundi beans.

Until our garden is able to produce adequate quantities to cover the hospital's needs, we will need to continue researching other local sources for vegetables and adjusting the feeding program's budget to accommodate the changes. It has been a delight visiting different gardeners in the area and learning about edible parts of different plants. I commend my family for being at least somewhat willing participants in trying different options of nutritious, low-cost vegetables. Last night's chaya omelets were quite the success.
Gardening "field trip". Tarsis is a Rwandan refugee who makes his living off the land.
Tom's role has been much more varied. He has been working on upgrading and expanding the hospital's internet speed and range. With better WiFi that reaches more of the campus, we are able to leverage technology to aid the hospital from afar. For example, an expert in generator repair (among many other things) can now log in from his mission base in Liberia to help diagnose problems with the generators here at the hospital in Congo.
 
Tom has also been helping install a solar power system at the Kimia Leprosy Center, testing a satellite communication system for SonSet Solutions, and will be working on field testing of the new audio bible for SonSet® radios.

On the family front, the kids have adjusted relatively well to being in Africa. We are thankful everyone has been healthy aside from some extreme heat rash during our first week here. Jonathan (8 years old) lost one of his front teeth during the second week of our stay and, following local tradition, he got to throw it on the roof!
The boys are loving the 4-month-old.
Thank you for praying for us and supporting us in ministry. It is important to let you know that Reach Beyond USA is no longer interested in loaning us to SonSet Solutions in Indiana. As such, we may need to change ministry locations (and remain as Reach Beyond Canada missionaries) or change to a different mission agency (and remain serving at SonSet Solutions). We are prayerfully considering our options and ask you to join us in seeking discernment regarding which move (geographical or logistical) would most honour the Lord.

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Back to Congo

Posted by Tom Scatliff, With 0 Comments, Category: Newsletters,
We’re returning to Impfondo, in the Republic of Congo! Why? To assist Pioneer Christian Hospital, a 75-bed missionary hospital that serves a very low resource population, in a variety of ways...


A virtual tour of Pioneer Christian Hospital.
First, the hospital feeding program that we established while there two years ago is now entering stage two. With the addition of a full time missionary to oversee the program, we get to move from relying on dehydrated vegetables shipped from North America to a more sustainable system of locally-grown produce. The garden we established on the hospital grounds is now capable of supplying this produce for the patients, and I (Candice), will be working with the new program director, Jesse Mitchell, to plan and implement these changes. Our goal is to not only improve the nutritional quality of the food, but also the cultural acceptability and reduce overall cost of the program. It has taken years, but it’s finally the time to marry the hospital feeding program with the garden initiative and I couldn’t be more excited about it!

Bean preparation in the hospital kitchen.
Second, to assist in the transition of leadership from Dr. Joe Harvey, the medical doctor that has been pioneering the hospital since its inception in 2002, to nationals and new missionary staff. Dr. Harvey’s own medical condition requires him to step back from leadership and Tom will be able to assist in training the national staff on many of the technical considerations of running the hospital (generators, solar power banks, communication systems, etc.) and the hospital’s Christian radio station (transmitter maintenance, broadcasting computer systems, and the like).
Third, to field-test much of the equipment Tom has been designing and engineering at SonSet Solutions.  This includes the new version of the solar-powered fixed-tuned SonSet radio®, a power quality analyzer, and the SonSetLink™ remote satellite monitoring system on an India Mark II water pump.
 
A "Behind the Scenes" look at baby entrance visa photos.
As always in ministry, I’m sure there will be a whole host of other activities we’ll be involved with during our time there and we’ll need to remain flexible, adaptable, and teachable (as being ‘FAT’ is a requirement to serve in Congo).
We leave mid-March and will be home, Lord willing, by June. This is the window we have between Tom’s responsibilities of mentoring engineering students in March, for spring break, and engineering interns over the summer. This time frame allows for ten weeks in Impfondo plus travel on either side. A fun side note is that the cheapest route to Congo takes us through Montreal! We are blessed to have a layover in Montreal that includes a Sunday… So we will see you, Lakeshore Church, on Sunday, March 17th! Woo-hoo!

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2018 Year in Review

Posted by Tom Scatliff, With 0 Comments, Category: Newsletters,
On New Year’s Eve we sat around the fondue pot dipping chunks of broccoli into gooey cheese and reminiscing over God’s goodness in 2018.  To be honest, the year had its challenges, but hindsight reveals how much of God’s goodness we would have missed out on
had we never received the challenges to begin with.
We started the year on an extended home mission assignment (HMA)… Meaning we were well behind in the monthly funding required to remain in the mission field and needed to visit our supporting churches and, Lord willing, make new contacts and gain monthly partners in order to keep serving in missions. We spent January and February doing just that, and in amongst the long days and prayer-filled nights, God blessed us with a train ride through the Rocky Mountains, times of sledding in the Canadian winter, and a birthday
spent on the Pacific coast with family. Extended HMAs can be difficult on family life with such a busy schedule and many meetings, so we are grateful for loved ones who prayed for and helped us take care of our children during those months. Our hearts were overflowing by the time we were returning home to Indiana and back to work.

True north strong and free.
As we drove home from HMA we encountered a blizzard, which was followed by a week of rain. All that precipitation resulted in severe flooding across the American Midwest. We were grateful that our house had been spared, but unfortunately one night we lost power
and the valiant sump pump that had been keeping us dry was choked of its power supply… resulting in water back up into our basement. It’s incredible, the damage that can be done by a mere few inches of water. We had only been home a week at this point. Our
Sunday school class showed up with coffee, food, crowbars, and work gloves. They had the place gutted in a jiffy.  The feeling of having brothers and sisters in Christ show up and help out in a time of need is like no other!

Before (the water) and after (the volunteer elbow grease).
When we were preparing to file our taxes in April, like all good guests of a country do, our tax preparer pointed out a major mistake in our previous (THREE!) years’ filings. We had previously hired professional accounting firms to prepare our taxes as we knew
little about filing in a new country and we (ironically!) wanted to ensure we did it correctly. This error -- compounded over three years -- resulted in a large amount owed.
Plus interest. Financially the news was crushing, but we wanted nothing more than to stand blameless before our God (because we will all stand before him one day and account for our actions in all things).  It has taken months, but we have rectified
the issue, and have been blown away with God’s provision of how to pay such a bill. I realize personal finances are taboo to include in a year-end letter, but I can’t help but praise God for such sovereignty over the situation.
It was at this point -- right after the water damaged basement and debilitating IRS bill -- that we found out we were expecting our (surprise!) third child. What a reminder that God’s plans are higher than our plans and His ways are better than our ways.  
In May we said goodbye to the family of six that was living with us for the previous eight months. They had succeeded in their goal of purchasing their first family home and we continue to rejoice with them as they now use their own home to minister to others.
Through the summer and fall we enjoyed many guests in our home: Family and friends that had been waiting for our guest rooms to become available.
Our responsibilities with SonSet Solutions, the mission we are on loan to from Reach Beyond, brought us all the way to Virginia on an intern-recruiting trip in the late fall. As a homeschooling family we couldn’t help but take a side trip for a day to Washington,
D.C. to take in the multiple free museums and monuments.

The Scatliffs go to Washington.
On the mission front, Tom made great progress on adding an audio bible to the solar powered, fixed-tuned SonSet® radio and refinements on the Equipment Power Protection (EPP) unit. The first EPP unit has been installed in Liberia; beta testing has commenced.
The SonSetLinkTM water monitor units he helped design and program were installed in over 141 locations (primarily in Africa) in 2018 and prove to be very beneficial to ministry partners. He looks forward to bringing a few of his main projects to
completion in 2019 and beginning some new ones.  
I continue to assist the field director in the Republic of Congo with the feeding program and garden initiative for Pioneer Christian Hospital. Our family is gearing up for a return to Congo this spring and look forward to helping hands-on for a few months
on the ground.
On a larger scale, SonSet Solutions as a whole assisted 195 ministries in 63 countries with consultation, equipment, and hands-on training during 2018. We are grateful to be part of such a group that has a passion for reaching the lost and using technology-based
solutions to advance the gospel.
We look forward in great anticipation of what the Lord has in store for us in 2019. We have learned that we can make our own plans, but God determines our steps. For we know His plans for us are greater than anything we can imagine (and I only need to look
at my precious third-born son to be reminded of that!).
Thank you for being part of our team.

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