We are left dreaming of a white Christmas this year as we remain in Indiana for the holiday season. The weather is unseasonably warm and there is no snow in the forecast. This will be our first year away from our family since having children of our own, but we are using the time to focus on how The Lord has provided: a Savior, a family, and a home in need of a facelift (we are ripping out the dining room floor over the Christmas break!).
Earlier this month Tom visited Manitoba to update some of our sending churches, meet with supporters, and continue in our effort to bridge the funding gap caused by the plummeting Canadian dollar. Although we could not have forecasted such a financial turn when we left for the field 18 months ago, we know God knew it was coming and in many ways I’m thankful we did not. We remain completely reliant on Him for our needs and ministry funds. An incredible THANK YOU to everyone who has kept this in their prayers and kept us financially afloat. A great number of you have increased your monthly donations to help offset this gap, and for that we are incredibly thankful.
We prayerfully consider how to best use ministry funds and truly believe we are to march forward in ministry with faith that the funds will be provided, Lord willing.
Thanks to your support, this fall Tom and an engineering team have developed, produced, and shipped 50 water monitors to Water Mission, a partner ministry who will be installing them in Haiti, Peru, and Nepal. Tom is developing a newfangled water sensor that will be added to the system to provide feedback on efficiency of hand-pumps, and predict when the pump will break down. This new sensor will be included in the next version of the monitor.
On January 12th I (Candice) will be traveling to the Republic of Congo with three colleagues from SonSet Solutions (where we serve via Reach Beyond). We will be in Impfondo, Congo, working at Christian Pioneer Hospital. This 60-bed hospital serves local residents, many of whom are vulnerable people: Refugees, the poor, chronically ill, and AIDS orphans and widows. My primary focus will be to provide education in nutrition, health and breastfeeding in relation to disease and infant health and mortality. Additionally, I have been tasked with helping set up a feeding system at the hospital. Currently the hospital cannot provide meals to patients, which becomes an obstacle to care for many due to lack of resources. We are incredibly thankful that I am able to go to Congo and assist, thanks to an anonymous donation we recently received that covers the cost of the trip.
This trip will be very challenging in many respects: Malnutrition is rampant, as is poverty, lack of education, and lack of resources. Additionally, this will be the furthest I will be away from the family (a journey of three days, each direction) and I will be gone for longer than usual (just over two weeks). We covet prayers to cover this time while I am away (January 12-25).
We are so thankful for your participation, encouragement, and friendship. As this year comes to a close please consider supporting our ministry. The funds will be used to keep us serving full time. We are currently under-funded and require additional support to remain in ministry. If you would like to give a year-end gift please donate here for Canadian donations (scroll to the bottom of the page and select us from the dropdown) and here for the USA (at the top of the page, right under our name). Reach Beyond is a registered charity in both countries; you will receive a tax receipt for your donation. If you would rather phone or mail in your donation, please use the contact information located at the bottom of this letter. Thank you so much for your prayers and support.
Merry Christmas! And we look forward to what the Lord has in store for all of us as we serve together in 2016.